Supporting Community College Quality
Strengthen California’s Economy by Investing in Community Colleges
California Community Colleges play a critical role in lifting the state’s economy, filling middle-class jobs, closing achievement gaps, and providing educational access to all Californians. Community colleges are an invaluable investment.
- Support Greater Investments in Per-Student Funding
There is a critical nexus between general operating funds and educational quality. General operating resources fund innovation on campuses, and base funding is essential for the fiscal stability of our colleges. General operating funds support districts confronting rapidly growing energy, pension, and teaching costs. We must make an investment in general resources that enable high functioning campuses. Our priority is to protect quality public higher education opportunities for Californians by securing this robust investment in California’s community colleges.
CLOSE THE GROWING BACCALAUREATE DEGREE GAP
- Continuation and Expansion of Baccalaureate Degrees at CCCs
According to a PPIC report, if current trends continue, California will face a skills gap of 1.1 million workers with bachelor’s degrees by 2030. Failing to keep up with the demand for skilled workers could curtail economic growth, limit economic mobility, and increase inequality. It could result in a less productive economy, lower incomes and tax revenue, and greater dependence on the social safety net. We support the continuation and expansion of the Baccalaureate degree programs at community colleges, as well as the exploration of innovative partnerships between community colleges and four-year universities that reduce a students’ time to degree.
PATHWAYS OUT OF DEVELOPMENTAL EDUCATION
- Support Pathways That Successfully Transitions Students Through Developmental Education
We support efforts that lead to the development of pathways that allow timely and successful transitions out of developmental education, including multiple measures for placement and non-credit options. These efforts include Guided Pathways, an evidence-based and necessary catalyst for a systemic and integrated redesign of the student experience at community colleges.
SUPPORT A FINANCIAL AID STREAMLINING SYSTEM
- Invest in Financial Aid Advising Instead of Financial Aid Paper Handling
Complicated, outdated, manual financial aid processes create barriers to student enrollment and retention. Financial aid offices can simplify their entire student aid processing lifecycle by implementing software that streamlines the workflow. This effort would allow financial aid counselors, who are a primary source of information for students to understand how to pay for college, to focus on providing students with supports like counseling and training workshops.
- Honor Voters’ Will and Fund Capital Outlay Projects
In 2016, California voters approved a facilities bond providing a $2 billion infrastructure investment in California’s community colleges. The League supports the release of state bond dollars to support community college construction projects. Failing to fund these capital projects represents a missed opportunity to create jobs and to cultivate a skilled and educated workforce in communities throughout the state.
EQUITY & AFFORDABILITY
- Equitably Fund Cal Grants for Community College Students
The State Budget continues to distribute less then 10% of Cal Grant resources to California community college students despite the fact that our students comprise two-thirds of the higher education population. The lack of adequate financial aid leads students to take fewer classes, extends their time to graduation, and makes college unaffordable and a degree unattainable.