CREDIT: Luis Alejo

Press conference in support of the Completion of Ethnic Studies on June 27, 2018 in Sacramento.

CREDIT: Luis Alejo

Press conference in support of the Completion of Ethnic Studies on June 27, 2018 in Sacramento.

A new law requiring a degree in social anthropology to graduate from California State University is likely to have far-reaching implications for the state’s 115 degree community colleges.

The administrators of the CSU with 23 locations plan to implement the new requirement as a lower department course, which means that the students would have to take it in the first half of their course work. Thousands of students take these courses at community colleges and receive their associate degree before moving to CSU as part of a specialized way. If the CSU continued with its current plan, it would shift the burden to community colleges to offer ethnic studies to these students.

The CSU board of trustees is expected to vote this month on the completion of the implementation plan. The trustees will meet on November 17th and 18th.

The new law FROM 1460requires that CSU students take a class in one of four ethnic study disciplines: Native American Studies, African American Studies, Asian American Studies, or Latina and Latino Studies.

The nationwide Chancellery for Community Colleges supports the new law, but fears that it may not be feasible for them to offer the courses as suggested by the CSU. Currently, dozens of community colleges don’t offer ethnic studies courses, and those who do would likely need to expand their offerings. The law goes into effect for students entering college next fall, and colleges would have to offer courses by fall 2022 at the latest.

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Aisha Lowe, the Community College System’s vice chancellor for educational services and support, estimated that providing the required courses would cost up to $ 45 million in new expenses for the system.

“It triggers a lot of changes that need our support, but we could definitely spend some money making those changes and probably a little more time than we currently have.” Lowe said in an interview with EdSource.

Some key proponents of the new law disagree with the CSU’s interpretation that the requirement must be a class of lower departments. That includes the author of the law, Meeting leader Shirley Weber, D-San Diegoand the California Faculty Association, the union that represents the CSU faculty. They indicate that nothing in the law states that the class must be taken as a lower division course.

Representative Shirley Weber from D-San Diego wrote AB 1460, the law that makes ethnic studies a qualification requirement for the CSU.

In a statementThe faculty union said the plans of the Chancellery of the CSU were “not focused on what is required by law and made apparent attempts to minimize faculty control over the curriculum. ”

Theresa Montaño, a member of the CSU’s Ethnic Studies Council, which laid the foundation for the law, said the faculty wanted to give students more flexibility to meet requirements at their own discretion.

“Legislation required ethnic studies to be carried out. It doesn’t require ethics studies to be conducted as a prerequisite for general education or for lower-grade courses, ”said Montaño, who is also a professor of Chicano studies at CSU Northridge, said in an interview. “It is important to us to give students choice throughout their academic career. ”

The CSU Chancellery will continue to receive feedback from the Ethnic Studies Council and other stakeholders until the end of October, but has a strong tendency to ask the Board of Trustees to implement the new requirement as a class of the lower departments.

Under this plan, the requirement for ethnic studies would become part of the general educational requirements of the CSU. All CSU students have to take 48 semester units, including 39 units from the lower department, for general education courses. The CSU’s plan for the Ethnic Studies Requirement is for the 3-credit course to be added to the lower department’s requirements instead of three social science credits.

Students who move from Community College to a CSU campus as part of Community College Associate Degree for Transfer Path are required to meet their general educational requirements at community college. Students on this path receive their associate degrees from the Community College and are guaranteed admission to the CSU if they meet the system’s minimum admission requirements.

According to the Chancellor’s office, around 14,000 students were relocated to a CSU campus this fall.

Alison Wrynn, the CSU’s deputy vice chancellor for academic programs, said in an interview that some students taking this path would not have a place to take an ethno-high school course. That’s because students in certain majors have too many upper-class requirements in their major to fit into another 3-credit grade, Wrynn said. For example, students who acquired their associate degree for transfer in business administration and transfer to the CSU in order to complete their bachelor’s degree in the same major would haveNo place for a new requirement, ”she said in her senior classes.

We believe this fits in better with the lower department and that it is a good starting point for our students on a requirement, ”said Wrynn.

The law comes into force for students who graduated from CSU in 2024-25. This means that students entering college next fall will be the first grade to be subject to this requirement.

Lowe, the vice chancellor of the community college system, said it was not possible for all colleges across the state to have enough ethnic studies available by next fall. Instead, the system wants the courses to be available by autumn 2022. That way, next year’s incoming students could meet their sophomore year requirements at Community College.

The law would affect each of the system’s 116 community colleges, with the exception of Calbright, the fully online college that offers certificates but no degrees.

Lowe stressed that the community college system supports the spirit of the demand, which is consistent with the recent chancellor’s office Call to action, This encourages the system to “actively develop strategies and take measures against structural racism”.

However, Lowe also admitted that securing the funding needed to recruit enough new faculties at the colleges to offer ethnic studies to all students will be a big job. The Chancellery estimates that about 40 colleges currently do not offer ethnic studies courses at all, and those who do will likely need to offer more of these courses in order to reach all students.

Budget negotiations with the state are already difficult for the community college system, which receives fewer dollars per student than the CSU and UC.

Even if they get the funding they need, colleges also need to figure out where to find enough qualified new faculties to fill the positions, Lowe said. This could include changing the minimum qualifications for these new employees.

“All of this has to be unpacked. What is the pipeline of these professionals and how do we develop that pipeline? Does this pipeline need to grow and grow in ways that are beyond the scope of our system, and what does all of this mean for teacher recruitment and minimum qualifications? “Said Lowe. “So a lot just has to be done for our system to deliver that.”

The Chancellery of the CSU issued a draft executive ordinance at the 23 locations in September listing the proposed changes, and a revised ordinance is expected to be issued before the end of October. Wrynn, deputy vice-chancellor of the CSU, said the chancellor’s office would listen to any input it had received by then.

“If there is any other way to meet the needs of all 23 locations and 116 community colleges, we can definitely get into this conversation,” she said. “But these are the changes we need to make.”

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