Whereas, There have been numerous reports of paraprofessionals acting in counseling roles, and such paraprofessionals do not meet the state minimum qualifications for the faculty counseling discipline;
Whereas, Paraprofessionals may give incorrect information and advice to students regarding college programs, services, and transfer;
Whereas, Paraprofessionals lack the appropriate education, training, and expertise to help meet students' needs in career preparation, transitioning to four-year institutions, and attaining personal and social education goals, yet are assigned the responsibility to develop student educational plans; and
Whereas, The cost savings and the current controversy over the 50% Law has made it attractive for administrators to hire paraprofessionals in place of counselors;
Resolved, That the Academic Senate reaffirm the principles in its adopted papers The Role of Counselors in California Community Colleges and Standards and Practices for California Community Colleges;
Resolved, That the Academic Senate work with the Chancellor's Office to gather information on the use of paraprofessionals in counseling departments in California community colleges; and
Resolved, That the Academic Senate move into Title 5 Regulations via the consultation process the standards and principles in the papers The Role of Counselors in California Community Colleges and Standards and Practices for California Community Colleges.
The use of counseling paraprofessionals was a major focus of 09-10 CLFIC activities including: 1. an April 2010 Rostrum article entitled "When Are Counseling Paraprofessionals Appropriate? 2. SP10 8.01 "Commitment to Established Principles and Guidelines Regarding Use of Paraprofessionals". 09-10 committee also performed a review of Title 5 sections in which role of counselor or "advisor" was mentioned. 10-11 CLFIC continued the work of the 09-10 committee by authoring a resolution, "Title 5 Change to Clarify the Role of Advisors and Paraprofessionals in Counseling" that was passed at Spring 2011 plenary.