Hearing on CCSF future on tap

The discussion about what's next for City College of San Francisco will begin today behind closed doors, but the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges, which will decided the school's fate, is being tight-lipped about the process.

City College was given a “show cause” sanction last year after a team found numerous violations in the institution's operations.

The 19-member board will address whether City College has made enough changes to continue operating and lower the sanction from show cause to allow City College more time to meet the criteria or closing the college.

The accreditation board will meet for three days, with much of the session covering numerous colleges throughout the western U.S., according to the commission's website.

The commission is made up of individuals in and outside the education field including numerous people who currently work at California or Hawaii community colleges. Members of the public can serve on the commission as well.

For this week's meeting, City College officials including interim Chancellor Thelma Scott-Skillman, Special Trustee Bob Agrella and accreditation liaison Gohar Momjian will be on hand to answer additional questions should the commission need them, City College's spokesman Larry Kamer said.

Any questions asked would be information in addition to a 300-page document submitted by CCSF officials in March detailing the changes they've made to meet the accrediting standards as well as a report made by a volunteer visiting team that was at City College in April.

Since receiving the show-cause report, City College officials have moved swiftly in reforming the college in hopes of avoiding the worst possible outcome: closure. A total of 14 recommendations were given to the college for improvements.

From layoffs to a new administrative structure, the college's elected officials have vowed to keep the institution open, operating and serving San Francisco's students.

But the changes have not come easily. An growing opposition movement among students and some faculty who worry the changes will negatively affect City College has protested many of the decisions.

Once the meeting adjourns Friday afternoon, all there's left to do is wait. College officials have said they will continue to work and make changes until they're given a ruling.

A report is expected to be released in early July.

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