August 28, 2015—Today the Community College Chancellor released his long awaited Accreditation Task Force Report, and the news was not good for the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges. Bottom line: The task force, a blue ribbon group representing faculty, administrators, elected officials and other stakeholders, is recommending that the ACCJC be replaced by another accrediting agency.
Under fire ever since the CFT filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education in 2 013, the private, taxpayer-funded agency, through its president, Barbara Beno, and its chair, Steven Kinsella, has insisted that the way it conducts the important work of accreditation is the only way it can be done.
This blanket attitude has lost its ability to withstand scrutiny as one hole after another has appeared in the ACCJC’s arguments through the publicity earned in street demonstrations by students and faculty, court cases, audits, legislative hearings and the ACCJC’s leaders’ own contradictory actions and words.
The task force found:
- The ACCJC’s level of sanctions imposed on colleges was “inordinately high” compared with other regional accreditors
- The “California Community College system and its member institutions have lost confidence in the ACCJC”
- The colleges and the system need to transition to another accreditor.
While the chancellor is to be commended for releasing this report, he has been quoted as saying the process of transitioning to a new accreditor may take as long as 10 years. This is not an acceptable timeline. It underscores the importance of passage of Assemblyman Phil Ting’s AB 1397, which is now on the Senate floor awaiting a vote.
Links to media coverage of the Accreditation Task Force Report
- College accreditation group should be replaced, task force says, San Francisco Chronicle, August 28, 2015
- Report urges new accreditor for California community colleges, San Francisco Examiner, August 28, 2015
- Trouble for an Accreditor, Inside Higher Ed, August 31, 2015
- Report Urges New Accreditor for California’s Community Colleges, The Chronicle of Higher Education, August 31, 2015
- CCSF was right all along about accreditors, San Francisco Examiner, September 1 , 2015
- Colleges blast accreditation panel, The San Diego Union-Tribune, September 6, 2015