Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Three Coast Community College District "action" letters from the Accreds

     As you know, recently (early July), each of the three colleges of the Coast Community College District received "action" letters from the Accreds—letters that identify actions the ACCJC has taken regarding their accreditation status.
     Each received a "warning." They've got to show that they've gotten their acts together by March of 2014.
     Below are links to those letters (posted at the respective college websites):
● OCC Accred action letter
● Golden West Accred action letter
● Coastline Accred action letter
     The letters refer to various recommendations, tracing back to actions taken in 2007. Some are "district" recommendations and some are "college" recommendations. Presumably, those are recommendations, coming from the Accreds, directed at the district and the college in question. That makes sense.
     The letters also include "commission recommendations." Now, just what might those be? Given the pattern established by the "college" and "district" recs, one would assume that "commission" recs are directed at the commission. But, clearly, that's not so. Are they recommendations coming, not from the "visiting team" but, rather, from the "commission"? But why would recs come from two distinct ACCJC bodies?
     What gives?
     Included among these "commission" recs are the following:

OCC's "commission" recommendations

Coastline's "commission" recommendation
     Not sure what this is all about.
     Anybody know?

Marty Hittelman
     Earlier, I expressed some confusion (and irritation) at the appearance of “commission recommendations” in the letters. It’s obvious that “college recommendations” are the ACCJC’s directions to the college and that “district recommendations” are the ACCJC’s directions to the district. But, then, what are “commission recommendations”? Are they the ACCJC’s directions to the commission—i.e., to itself? Obviously not.
     Pretty sloppy if you ask me.
     So what are they?
     I speculated that they are recommendations, either to the college or to the district (suddenly, that's not defined), coming, from, not the visiting team (aka the "external evaluation team"), but from the commission itself (an entity that receives the team’s recommendations but is not bound by them).
     Section 2.2.2 of the ACCJC’s “Guide to Accreditation for Governing Boards” may shed light on this question:

     Gosh. I wonder if Babs Beno gets to toss a few "Presidential" rec's on top of that?

* * *
     As you know, for many years, the ACCJC has been widely criticized as being arbitrary and less-than-transparent. Its recent ticket-pullage (or, rather, the manner of said ticket-pullage) of City College of San Francisco has seriously fanned those flames. Watch for people with torches and pitch-forks heading north.
     For a seemingly trenchant critique of the ACCJC, see California Federation of Teachers' ACCJC Gone Wild by one Martin Hittelman, a former community college instructor and (former) president of the CFT.

The Commission is a secretive crew
     My own observation of the ACCJC and its President makes clear that this agency is too often simply the Cop from Hell, arresting the innocent and issuing commendations to the guilty. Consider our own district and college (IVC). Owing to pressures from the Accreds, our own institutions have devoted untold hundreds of hours to idiotic, byzantine, and counter-productive "civility" initiatives, convoluted planning procedures, and an utterly wrong-headed learning "delivery" architectonic (anchored, of course, in "SLOs"). Meanwhile, various 800-pound gorillas (e.g., IVC's top administration, hopeless Foundation leadership) continue to thwart excellence and decency—and generally leave a stink that has gradually come to be accepted as our immutable native atmosphere.
     Years ago, we'd hope that the ACCJC would "come to the rescue." They never did. Now, we know that they're just part of the problem.
     Sometimes, you've just got to step back and ask whether you're doing any good at all. I can't imagine any intelligent person stepping back from the ACCJC and seeing even the most minimal sort of success. Our "accreditation" mechanism needs a radical change. We'd be better off hiring some guy to hang out in the parking lot, asking random students if they can spell the name of the college.
     Could we please try that instead?

2000: Williams contra WASC/ACCJC
Also: Frogue, Wagner, Fortune

2008: BABS BENO (7:25) chirpily notes "progress," despite immediate evidence to the contrary. IAN WALTON, however, (7:40) notes that the emperor has no clothes


Anonymous said...

Visiting teams collect data, verify info provided by a college, and submit a report to the Commission. The Commission may have a different finding than the team's recommendations based on the Commission's overview (going back many years some times). It's happened to us at SOCCCD.

That's my observation assuming I understood what you were asking.

Anonymous said...

The overreaching by the ACCJC was well covered in the LA Times today. See Page A12 "College Monitors gone wild".

Anonymous said...

Recommendations 2 & 3 aren't even recommendations at all but rather, statements. What gives?

Anonymous said...

Roquemore's been on a number of accred visiting teams, so what does that tell you about the quality. This is a man who sits in his office and lets his minions (aka Craig and Linda) do his evil bidding. The morale on campus has never been worse with the leadership we have. Roquemore was mentored by Ragu, only he is worse. Ragu carried out his own torment over people, Glenn directs (or allows) Craig and Linda to do the dirty work.

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