Speaking of community colleges, 18 months plagued with fights between the administration of City College of San Francisco, the City, and the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges over the college's accreditation looks to be finally over with the commission giving in and allowing CCSF two years to come into compliance with their guidelines. As the Chronicle reports, the decision comes after an extension was already granted by the commission back in November.
As of last week, CCSF's fate was still hanging in the balance, and a judge's decision is still pending in a case in Superior Court brought by City Attorney Dennis Herrera. In that case, Judge Curtis Karnow had the ability to rule in favor of the commission, allowing them to revoke accreditation immediately and hamper the education of some 80,000 full- and part-time students. He was in a sticky position, however, not wanting to wade into what was essentially an accreditation decision, and this announcement now gives him an out.
This story dates back to mid-2013 when the ACCJC decided to revoke the college's accreditation based on various factors that included "high non-instructional faculty costs" as well as very high facilities costs, perhaps aggravated by the school's multitude of campuses, including their newest one in the Mission. The commission felt that these factors were negatively impacting standards in other areas such as student support services and library services. It's unclear to me what, if any, other politics were at play here, but the commission's president Barbara Beno has previously referred to CCSF as "a college near death."
California Community College chancellor's office spokesman Paul Feist has said as of this month, "We are very optimistic. The college has made tremendous progress over the past two years and has entered a phase of stability and sustained improvement."
And, obviously, an influx of federal funding via President Obama's community college plan would be a huge help, if that ever happens.