Improving Higher Education Accreditation Practices

Resolution Number SAC09.57

WHEREAS, under the previous administration, the U.S. Department of Education has asserted that the accrediting agencies for higher education have failed in their duties and has consequently demanded that accrediting agencies assert themselves and take action against our community colleges; and

WHEREAS, notwithstanding the fact that real and important issues do exist for our community colleges and those issues need to be resolved, it is a fact that the accrediting agency in California has acted capriciously and has issued negative findings that too often are not related to educational issues but to trivial matters that lack sufficient import to be cited as reasons for withdrawing accreditation; and

WHEREAS, the negative findings of the accreditation agency in California seem to follow a pattern that gives the appearance of selective findings repeatedly invoked in support of a predetermined outcome, rather than the findings of an honest inquiry;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the California Democratic Party proposes that the accreditation agencies for higher education be instructed that the time frame for compliance, currently set at two years, be defined as commencing when the educational institution receives a set of clearly stated accreditation issues to be resolved along with clearly defined criteria for the resolution of those issues; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the California Democratic Party calls upon the California Democratic Delegations to the United States Senate and House of Representatives to bring their combined influence to bear on the higher education accreditation process so that it might function in a proper manner.

Submitted by Tom Olson, President, Northern Solano Democratic Club

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Adopted by the Executive Board
Of the California Democratic Party
At its Executive Board Meeting
Crowne Plaza Hotel, Burlingame
July 19, 2009

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