PRESS RELEASE: Faculty Association Lauds Governor Signing Legislation on Sick Leave

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Faculty Association of California Community Colleges lauds Governor Jerry Brown’s signing of FACCC-sponsored AB 2295 (Ridley-Thomas).

The new law will increase the amount of time community college faculty have to transfer their unused sick leave between districts from one to three years, or within any greater period during which the faculty member’s reemployment rights are protected under a local bargaining agreement in effect in the first district.

“Many of our part-time faculty teach classes at several college campuses over the course of their career and, in some cases, will not know within the narrow one-year window if they will be returning to teach at a specific college,” said FACCC President Dean Murakami. “Allowing a three-year period to transfer sick leave from one district to another brings relief from an onerous requirement, especially for our part-time faculty.”

PRESS RELEASE: Faculty Association Outraged Over Accrediting Commission’s Intransigence

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Faculty Association of California Community Colleges (FACCC) is outraged by the unwavering decision by the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC) to deny an extension to City College of San Francisco (CCSF) to correct the issues threatening the institution’s accreditation.

Although the U.S. Department of Education explicitly declared that ACCJC has authority to extend the deadline for CCSF, the ACCJC maintains that approach is impermissible under federal law. In a letter to House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, the Commission noted that “ACCJC has determined that it cannot legally maintain CCSF’s accreditation while giving it another opportunity to comply with accreditation standards. New evaluation of the college while maintaining its accreditation…is not permissible under federal law.”

“The ACCJC’s position is completely unacceptable and downright irrational. There is no longer any semblance of operating in the public good,” noted FACCC Executive Director Jonathan Lightman. “They are deliberately misstating federal law, with a consequence of harming tens of thousands of students, faculty, and staff.”

“CCSF has done an incredible job in curing its deficiencies. Ignoring all of the progress is beyond insulting; it is downright destructive.” Lightman concluded, “Thankfully, there will be a full scale judicial review within the context of a trial before final action is taken. All of us anticipate the courts will have a better understanding of the law than the ACCJC.”

PRESS RELEASE: Faculty Association Lauds Signing of Faculty Leave Bill

The Faculty Association of California Community Colleges (FACCC) applauds Governor Jerry Brown signing AB 675 (Fong).

The FACCC-sponsored legislation ensures California community college faculty who need additional time while on parental leave during their tenure review process will not automatically forfeit a year of their review if the percentage of service completed meets local academic requirements.

“As educators, we know the importance bonding between infant and parent has on the psychological and social success of the child,” said FACCC President Dean Murakami. “The passage of AB 675 provides these faculty members and new parents with the necessary time for bonding.”

“Community college faculty members who celebrate the birth of a child during their tenure review process will no longer be faced with choosing between their careers or bonding with their child.”

PRESS RELEASE: FACCC Blasts ACCJC For CCSF Deadline

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Faculty Association of California Community Colleges (FACCC) is outraged by the unwavering decision by the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC) to deny an extension to City College of San Francisco (CCSF) to correct the issues threatening the institution’s accreditation.

Although the U.S. Department of Education explicitly declared that ACCJC has authority to extend the deadline for CCSF, the ACCJC maintains that approach is impermissible under federal law. In a letter to House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, the Commission noted that “ACCJC has determined that it cannot legally maintain CCSF’s accreditation while giving it another opportunity to comply with accreditation standards. New evaluation of the college while maintaining its accreditation…is not permissible under federal law.”

“The ACCJC’s position is completely unacceptable and downright irrational. There is no longer any semblance of operating in the public good,” noted FACCC Executive Director Jonathan Lightman. “They are deliberately misstating federal law, with a consequence of harming tens of thousands of students, faculty, and staff.”

“CCSF has done an incredible job in curing its deficiencies. Ignoring all of the progress is beyond insulting; it is downright destructive.” Lightman concluded, “Thankfully, there will be a full scale judicial review within the context of a trial before final action is taken. All of us anticipate the courts will have a better understanding of the law than the ACCJC.”

PRESS RELEASE: FACCC Education Institute Appoints New Program and Development Director

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Faculty Association of California Community Colleges (FACCC) is honored to announce the appointment of Lidia Stoian as the new Program and Development Director for its Education Institute (EI). She is responsible for all aspects of professional development programming and securing non-dues revenue to support these activities.

An immigrant from Romania and alumna of Sacramento City College, Stoian brings with her significant experience in both conference organizing and fund development, most recently with the California Society of Health-System Pharmacists.

“Through its research, communications, and various conferences, workshops, and symposia, the FACCC Education Institute does a tremendous job in enhancing the skills of community college faculty,” said Stoian. “My instructors gave me the tools needed to advance my career, and now I have the opportunity to give back to them.”

Stoian added that she is especially eager to work on the California Great Teachers Seminar, scheduled in Santa Barbara on August 3-8. FACCC Education Institute sponsors the annual California version of this national seminar, designed to inspire and celebrate great teaching.

PRESS RELEASE: Faculty Association Expresses Appreciation and Disappointment on May Revise

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Responding to today’s release of the Governor’s May Revision to the January budget proposal, FACCC leaders expressed a combination of appreciation and disappointment.

“FACCC is grateful to Governor Brown for including money to address the CalSTRS unfunded liability, although substantive issues still remain,” explained Executive Director Jonathan Lightman.

“Moreover, there are serious priorities for the community colleges left unaddressed in the May Revise that are fundamental to student success, including dedicated funding for counselors, full-time faculty hiring, restoration of student services, and part-time faculty support (starting with office hours).” Lightman added that the state should also raise the overall per-student rate for the community colleges in light of the devastating effects of the recession.

FACCC will work with legislators and other stakeholders to ensure these concerns are included in the final budget sent to the Governor.

PRESS RELEASE: Faculty, Students Advocate For California Community Colleges At Annual Advocacy & Policy Conference

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Faculty Association of California Community Colleges’ annual Advocacy & Policy conference brings together faculty, students, and other statewide leaders to analyze and debate the most pressing topics in California’s Community Colleges.

The conference will be held on March 2-3, at the Capitol Plaza Holiday Inn, Sacramento.

Following policy discussions, participants take to the Capitol on March 3 to advocate for California Community Colleges in the Legislature. This year’s theme, “Changing the Narrative on California Community Colleges,” will guide the event in its focus on how community colleges can emerge from the recession in providing high quality, low cost higher education for all of California.

Keynoting the event is renowned author Sasha Abramsky, whose work “The American Way of Poverty: How the Other Half Still Lives,” has been widely acclaimed throughout the United States.

Other prominent speakers include Nikki Paschal and Mike Roth, Paschal Roth Public Affairs; Linda Michalowski, Vice Chancellor, California Community Colleges; and, Erica Romero, Executive Director of Western States Legislative Affairs, Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities.

The event will be held in conjunction with the March in March, where students and faculty hold a large demonstration in support of California Community Colleges.

PRESS RELEASE: Faculty Association Announces Award Winners for 2014

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Faculty Association of California Community Colleges is proud to announce the award winners to be honored at its annual Advocacy & Policy Conference, March 2-3, at the Capitol Plaza Holiday Inn, Sacramento.

Award winners were selected by FACCC’s Board of Governors on the basis of their service to California Community Colleges. The prestigious selections are divided into three categories—faculty, legislative, and students.
FACCC 2014 Award recipients by category are listed below.

Faculty Awards:

  • Doug Dildine, Diablo Valley College & Contra Costa College
    Part-Time Faculty Member of the Year
    Presented to a part-time community college faculty member for excellence in local advocacy.
  • Michael Odanaka, El Camino College – Compton Education Center
    Full-Time Faculty Member of the Year
    Presented to a full-time community college faculty member for excellence in local advocacy.
  • Linda Sneed, Cosumnes River College
    Margaret Quan Part-Time Advocate of the Year
    Presented to a part-time community college faculty member for excellence in statewide advocacy.
  • Paula Muñoz, Ventura College
    John Vasconcellos Advocate of the Year
    Presented to a full-time community college faculty member for excellence in statewide advocacy.

Legislative Awards:

  • Assemblymember Nancy Skinner (D-Berkeley)
    Legislator of the Year
    Presented to a legislator demonstrating outstanding commitment to California Community Colleges.
  • Assemblymember Jimmy Gomez (D-Los Angeles)
    Freshman Legislator of the Year
    Presented to a legislator in his or her freshman term demonstrating outstanding commitment to California Community Colleges.
  • Chuck Nichols, Principal Consultant
    Assembly Appropriations Committee
    Staff Achievement Award
    Presented to a non-elected staff member in a policy position who has devoted a significant amount of years to working on community college issues.

Special (One-Time) Student Awards

  • Richard Copenhagen, Former President, Student Senate for California Community Colleges
    Courage Award
    Presented to a community college student for extraordinary courage in California Community College student leadership.
  • Emily Kinner, Former ‎Vice President of External Affairs, Student Senate for California Community Colleges
    Courage Award
    Presented to a community college student for extraordinary courage in California Community College student leadership.

FACCC’s Advocacy & Policy conference brings together community college faculty, students, and other statewide leaders to analyze and debate the most pressing topics in California’s Community Colleges. Following policy discussions, participants take to the Capitol to advocate for California Community Colleges in the Legislature. This year’s theme, “Changing the Narrative on California Community Colleges,” will guide the event in its focus on how community colleges can emerge from the recession in providing high quality, low cost higher education for all of California.

Keynoting the event is renowned author Sasha Abramsky, whose work “The American Way of Poverty: How the Other Half Still Lives,” has been widely acclaimed throughout the United States. Other prominent speakers include Steve Smith, Director of Communications, California Labor Federation; Ana Matosantos, Former Director, California Department of Finance; and, Erica Romero, Executive Director of Western States Legislative Affairs, Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities.

PRESS RELEASE: Faculty Association Appoints New Communications Director

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – FACCC is honored to announce the appointment of Mikhail Chernyavsky as its new Communications Director.

Chernyavsky is the staff liaison to the media, and editor for FACCC’s electronic and print publications, including its award-winning journal, FACCCTS.

A professional journalist, Chernyavsky most recently worked for CBS Sacramento and Good Day Sacramento, focusing on the stations’ digital media. In addition, he previously worked with the communications and marketing outreach of the California Medical Association.

An immigrant from the Soviet Union, Chernyavsky was raised with a stressed-importance for education, and is eager to focus his talents on helping spread the voice of such an important cause.

“I know how difficult it can be to have access to a good education,” said Chernyavsky. “This is why it’s so important for me to be part of a team that is the driving force for California Community Colleges, their faculty, and students.”