What’s up with ACCJC?

The Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges, which oversees accreditation of community colleges in California, has been troubled by allegations for years that its methods are arbitrary and punitive. Faculty have charged that the ACCJC, instead of helping to improve the delivery of education, diverts attention, time, and resources away from the classroom to “compliance,” much of which has little, if anything, to do with education. The Commission’s work is also, they say, responsible for deteriorating relations between faculty and administrators fearful of ACCJC sanctions, which occur at a startlingly higher rate here than in regions overseen by other accreditation agencies.

In 2013 the CFT challenged the Commission in a formal process known as “third party comment,” in which interested parties can file a complaint with the commission and with the U.S. Department of Education. CFT also filed suit, seeking an injunction to keep City College of San Francisco open, as did the City Attorney of San Francisco.  An injunction was granted on January 2, 2014.  The trial took place for five days, October 27-31, and closing arguments were heard on December 9.  The judge issued his tentative decision on January 16, 2015, affirming ACCJC broke the law by denying CCSF due process rights during accreditation review.

Meanwhile, on January 14, the ACCJC granted City College "restoration status," a new policy the commission pretends extends CCSF's accreditation, but gives the ACCJC the ability to pull accreditation without right to appeal, and requiring CCSF to achieve "full compliance" with all accreditation standards.  This is a much higher bar than the requirement than for every other community college in California—in other words, more of the same from this rogue agency. Below are links to stories and documents about the trial and the issues that explain what CFT and its locals—and a growing number of elected officials and other organizations—are doing to change the ACCJC’s behavior, and what the Commission has been doing (or not doing) in response.

News

Press releases 

Resources

Third party comments, amendments, and lawsuit

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CFT perspective Feb 2015 Cover

Perspective

A publication of the Community College Council, Perspective contains essential news about issues in the community colleges. 
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