May 23, 2022
Contact: Paul Feist
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SACRAMENTO, Calif. — The California Community Colleges Board of Governors today approved a pair of regulatory reforms central to advancing diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility goals and improving campus policing practices.
“These actions taken together advance the Board’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Integration Plan adopted in 2019 to make campuses safer, more accessible, and more welcoming to students of color and students from underserved populations through strategies that foster inclusive and non-threatening learning and working environments,” said Board of Governors President Pamela Haynes.
One of the changes adopted by the Board of Governors creates the regulatory framework for colleges to work with their community of local stakeholders, including students, faculty, staff, and collective bargaining partners, to incorporate Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Accessibility competencies and criteria into performance evaluations and tenure review. Local district leaders will need to support and provide every employee with professional development and ongoing supports to educate the most diverse student population in California.
The Chancellor’s Office convened students, faculty, staff, administrators, trustees, and statewide researchers over a period of two and a half years to co-design and advance this work. This policy approach also aligns to the Governor’s Recovery with Equity Taskforce recommendations, which called all higher education segments in California to “incorporate equity-centered practices into teaching and learning, grading, annual evaluations, and faculty review/tenure processes.”
A second reform requires community college districts throughout the state to implement changes that include transitioning campus policing from a “warrior” to a “guardian” mindset emphasizing de-escalation and crisis intervention, developing community and evidence-based policing policies and practices, and increasing diversity in hiring to help staffing become more representative of the larger campus community.
“These actions mark a seminal moment in an intentional process to strengthen campus and classroom climates across our institutions and aid in student retention and persistence,” said Chancellor Eloy Ortiz Oakley. “And they deliver on a promise we made in our Call to Action, issued during the racial reckoning in the spring of 2020.”
The Call to Action included a system-wide review of first responder training; an open dialogue and review of the campus climate; creating inclusive classrooms and antiracism curriculum; reviewing and updating district Equity Plans and expediting the implementation of the Board of Governor’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Integration Plan.
To advance this work, the Chancellor’s Office convened a task force representing a diversity of stakeholders, students and campus executives to reimagine – not defund – campus policing consistent with the California Community Colleges’ commitment to equity and student success. The task force’s recommendations serve as the foundation for the regulatory changes adopted by the Board of Governors. Ongoing work to implement the full set of recommendations will move forward.
The California Community Colleges is the largest system of higher education in the nation, composed of 73 districts and 116 colleges serving 1.8 million students per year. California community colleges provide career education and workforce training; guaranteed transfer to four-year universities; and degree and certificate pathways. As the state’s engine for social and economic mobility, the California Community Colleges supports the Vision for Success, a strategic plan designed to improve student success outcomes, increase transfer rates and eliminate achievement gaps. For more information, please visit the California Community Colleges website or follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.