April

Another Way to Look at Learning Outcomes

At our Fall 2002 Plenary Session the Academic Senate once again expressed through its resolutions strong objection to the new standards adopted by the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges. Resolution 2.01 F02, asserting that the Commission has cited no evidence demonstrating that current measures of student learning are inadequate, urges community college faculty to refrain from developing outcome measures simply to satisfy the Commission's dictates.

Leadership Today and Tomorrow

The Academic Senate offers a summer Faculty Leadership Institute to aid new faculty senate leaders by providing them with the information they need to be more effective leaders. Participants in this valuable institute are provided with a review of the senate concerns, principles and parameters of governance (the 10 + 1), budget workshops, and strategies for working with other governance groups.

Ideals and Politics

The Academic Senate's resolution process has seemed to me, from my first exposure to it, to be an absolutely remarkable example of democratic governance. Resolutions are drafted, discussed at local senates, area meetings and plenary sessions; they are clarified and "perfected" and, finally, they are subjected to debate and vote on the final day of each plenary session. There is no doubt when the voting is through that the 57,000 faculty of our 109 (and counting) campuses have spoken.

Disciplines List Review Begins

As you may be aware, the Academic Senate establishes the minimum qualifications for the faculty of California Community Colleges and maintains the Disciplines List setting out the required qualifications. Every three years the list is reviewed to permit faculty and discipline organizations to propose changes. It is now time to begin drafting those changes to the Disciplines List that you may have been considering. Yes, we did that just a year and a half ago, but we are now using a new process, whereby those in the field can recommend changes any time.

Alternative Calendars: An Update

QQuarter system? Condensed calendars for a twelve-week semester? A fifteen week semester? The Fall Plenary session of the Academic Senate for the California Community Colleges offered a chance for faculty considering such changes to review the implementation efforts of colleges who have already moved to an alternative calendar. This article reports on the participants' observations as part of the larger, ongoing discussion that must take place during local senate deliberations.

Coronations and Assassinations: Finding the Appropriate Role for Faculty in the Evaluation of Administrators

It has been ten years since changes in the California Education Code authorized faculty to have a meaningful contribution to the evaluation of administrators, and eight years since the Academic Senate published two important papers on the evaluation of administrators, Administrator Evaluation: Toward a Model Academic Administrator Evaluation Policy [1992] and Chief Executive Officer Evaluation: Toward a Model Chief Executive Officer Evaluation [1993].1

Defining A High Quality Education for All StudentsTestimony prepared for the Public Hearing of the Joint Committee to Develop a Master Plan for Education: Kindergarten through University

I want to thank the Joint Committee for their invitation to testify and to engage in a thoughtful discussion about high quality education.

The Academic Senate for California Community Colleges represents the local academic senates of all 108 colleges. We provide expertise in academic and professional matters to the Chancellor and Board of Governors as well as to the Legislature and Governor's Office.

About education . . .

After his first two years of attention to K-12, we had hoped that Governor Davis would turn his attention to the community colleges. And his January budget was an indicator that he would do just that. It was a great start; the best we've ever had: an increase of $228.8 million, or 8.1% in state general funds alone. But shortly thereafter, the state's energy crisis hit. All other issues have been eclipsed in Sacramento as the Governor and the Legislature have scrambled to respond.

Why the Master Plan Matters

California's Master Plan for Higher Education is being revised for the third time since its original adoption over forty years ago. Each revision reawakens the hope that the promise of the original Plan will finally be actualized: a tuition-free quality college education for every citizen of the state who might benefit from it. The community colleges are at the heart of that hope, but they have never been able fully to deliver. Elitist attitudes and hierarchical thinking have so far consigned the community colleges to third-class status in terms of their funding and support.

Institutes "R" Us

As summer approaches, the Academic Senate is working on several training experiences for faculty and others. These summer institutes are a valuable service provided by the Academic Senate and, we hope, at least one of these opportunities may interest you-yes, YOU, not just your senate president! On tap are the Faculty Leadership Institute, the Student Leadership Institute, the Technology in Teaching Institute and the Curriculum Institute. Details on all these institutes will be available on our web site as they develop.

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