Vote expected on City College accreditation


A regional commission will vote on City College of San Francisco’s accreditation this week, resolving more than two years of uncertainty, but it could be as long as a month before local officials learn the results.

The Novato-based based western regional branch of the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges will meet Wednesday through Friday this week in Sacramento and vote in closed session on whether to renew the community college’s accreditation.

The commission typically does not announce its actions for 30 days after its meeting, however, which means school officials might not learn the results of the vote before Feb. 10 or Feb. 13, according to commission spokeswoman Eliza Chan.

“We are hoping for sooner,” college spokesman Jeff Hamilton said today.

The commission first voted to revoke City College’s accreditation in June of 2013, citing problems with financial accountability and institutional governance. In response, the California Community Colleges Board of Governors moved to appoint a special trustee to oversee the college and strip the college’s elected board of power.

The decision was met with protests from local officials and a lawsuit filed by City Attorney Dennis Herrera alleging the commission had violated the college’s due process rights.

The commission voted in August of 2015 to uphold its previous decision, but by then had agreed to grant the college the newly created “restoration” status, meaning it had two years to meet all accreditation standards.

The school has retained its accreditation during the process, and the board was restored to full power in July of 2015, but the uncertainty has had a heavy impact.

Interim Chancellor Susan Lamb said in July that enrollment at the college has dropped around 25 to 30 percent during the accreditation crisis, triggering plans for cutbacks in some areas by the 2017-2018 fiscal year.

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