The ACCJC visiting team is coming on October 10th, 2016. The Commission will decide our fate in January 2017. There are several red flags from the ACCJC that we must keep in mind.
One is old: Restoration Status. Two are recent: New Policy on Visiting Team Accreditation Recommendations and Beno’s Retirement.
Under Restoration Status, which was created only for CCSF, we need to meet “full compliance” while other colleges must meet “substantial compliance”. Also there is no appeal process available to CCSF. If the ACCJC decides to disaccredit us, the only option is to go to federal court and get an injunction to keep us open.
Our Board of Trustees made a prudent decision to approve $250,000 to hire a law firm, Cooley, to prepare the college for this possibility.
New Policy on Visiting Team Accreditation Recommendations
The ACCJC has changed its policy on visiting team accreditation status recommendations. The new policy is that the team will NOT make accreditation status recommendations, unlike its previous policies.
The timing of this new policy, when they are about to visit City College of San Francisco, is both curious and frightening. As you may know the 2012 visiting team wanted to give City College of San Francisco Probation, not Show Cause, by a 14-0 vote. The ACCJC then decided to give CCSF Show Cause and the crisis began. The reason for this new policy according to ACCJC is to avoid any “perceived inconsistencies.” There will be no inconsistencies because the team will not even be asked.
Although we welcome Barbara Beno’s exit from the ACCJC, the June 30th, 2017 date of her retirement means that she will still be at the helm when CCSF’s fate is decided. This is troubling.
We all must remain vigilant to the reality that the ACCJC has the power to disaccredit our college. We know that their illegal and unfair treatment continues under Restoration Status.
We have taken action. AFT National, CFT and AFT 2121 has filed a complaint with the federal Department of Education to seek the immediate withdrawal of recognition for ACCJC and to end the illegal denial of due process under Restoration Status.
The recent letter calling on the federal Department of Education to deny recognition for the ACCJC from Congresswomen Pelosi, Speier, and Eshoo was an important step. The ACCJC must not be allowed continue its illegal actions against CCSF and further its culture of fear in the California Community College system.
The struggle to save our college continues.