Board of Governors Votes to Reform Accrediting Agency

For immediate release: March 21, 2016

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CFT leadership applauds courageous change in accreditation

SACRAMENTO, MARCH 21, 2016 - In an historic vote in Sacramento today, the California Community Colleges Board of Governors voted unanimously to reform its current accrediting agency, the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC), and begin to establish a new model for fair accrediting practices with a new agency.

Leadership from the California Federation of Teachers turned out in support of the resolution of separation from the corrosive practices of the ACCJC.

“We congratulate the Board of Governors for taking a courageous vote today to change the accreditation system in California. We look forward to working with all stakeholders to ensure a valid accreditation system,” said CFT Secretary-Treasurer Jeff Freitas. “There are two million students whose full access to educational opportunity depends on it, and there are tens of thousands in particular at CCSF whose access has been terribly damaged and need special attention.”

California's community college system today made an historic turn toward fair accreditation after years of enduring the harsh, arbitrary and opaque practices of the ACCJC. With this vote the Board of Governors solidified plans to move to a new accreditor. This action is unprecedented anywhere in the country, and would mean a renewal of opportunity for California’s community college students.

“In my three decades working in the California Community College system I’ve rarely seen the kind of consensus and unification around an issue that we have seen in this effort to bring fair accreditation to California’s Community Colleges,” said Joanne Waddell, President of the Los Angeles College Faculty Guild, and a CFT Vice President.

“In order to ensure safe passage to a new accreditor for all our colleges, it will be necessary that there be a strong mechanism established to watch over the commission,” added Lacy Barnes, CFT Senior Vice President and instructor at Fresno City College.

President of American Federation of Teachers Local 2121 Tim Killikelly said, “The Board of Governor’s overwhelming decision today to move to a new accreditor is the right one and we applaud it.”

More information on the accreditation action (item 2.2) can be found on the Action Calendar page here.

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The California Federation of Teachers represents 120,000 education employees in public and private schools, from Head Start through the University of California. It is affiliated with the American Federation of Teachers, AFL-CIO. For more information, www.cft.org.

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