Judge Curtis Karnow of San Francisco Superior Court issued an order Thursday blocking the disaccreditation of City College of San Francisco, which was ordered last July. City Attorney Dennis Herrera has been fighting on behalf of CCSF claiming that the revocation of the school's accreditation by the western regional branch of the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges, calling their evaluation process "dubious" and saying that their deadline for terminating the school's accreditation was "equally dubious." The school was scheduled to be shut down in July 2014.

Judge Karnow said the impact of the accreditation would be "catastrophic," and therefore is blocking it until the conclusion of a full trial in Herrera's August 2013 lawsuit against the commission. Among Herrera's claims against the commission are that there was a conflict of interest when ommission President Barbara Beno appointed her husband to one of the evaluation teams, and the two teams "lacked adequate representation by professors."

The commission claimed last year that the school had failed to address 12 of 14 recommendations they made in 2012 with regard to raising standards for instructional programs, improving library and student services, and upgrading their facilities. And they blamed "institutional deficiences in the area of leadership and governance" for the problems.

A spokesman for CCSF said that regardless of Herrera's lawsuit, the school was still working to address all of the recommendations, and they invited the commission to send a new evaluation team now the school has a new chancellor and three new top administrators.

CCSF enrolls about 85,000 students spread over 11 campuses throughout the city, with about 37,000 of those studying English as a second language and about 51,000 pursuing academic credit. One of the commissions documented concerns about the school was the large number of campuses, which drive up facilities costs.

In addition to Herrera's lawsuit, a second lawsuit has been brought by the school's teachers union. The college itself is not a party to either lawsuit.

[SF Appeal]