Lawmakers today will continue a push to reinstate the elected board of trustees that had overseen the beleaguered City College of San Francisco until being stripped of power last year.
As City College fights for survival amid questions about accreditation status and an enrollment drop, Supervisor David Campos will be joined today by Assemblyman Tom Ammiano, D-San Francisco, in support of a resolution that, if approved by the Board of Supervisors, would build political pressure to re-empower the trustees.
Meanwhile, Rep. Jackie Speier, D-Hillsborough, sent a letter Thursday to U.S. Department of Education Secretary Arne Duncan taking aim at the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges, which cast the future of the junior college in doubt last year when it decided to strip the institution of its accreditation, citing a host of issues related to its finances and governance structure. That decision is being challenged by City Attorney Dennis Herrera, who has argued the commission acted unfairly.
Speier’s letter asks the federal education department to address perceived flaws in the accrediting system such as a lack of commission oversight.
The letter was sent as more than 100 City College students and faculty held a rally to call on the school’s special trustee to resign. Last July, the California Community Colleges board of governors installed Robert Agrella as special trustee, eliminating the powers of the board.
Campos’ resolution urges State Chancellor Brice Harris to “immediately restore” the board of trustees, allowing the body to hold meetings and make decisions and to remove Agrella by July. Supporters want to see the board’s power returned in time for the November elections of the trustees.
The Board of Supervisors Neighborhood Services and Safety Committee votes today on the resolution and if approved, the full board will consider it March 25.