State Legislators Demand Audit Of Commission That Revoked CCSF’s Accreditation

The regional panel that decided last month to revoke the accreditation of City College of San Francisco effective next year is now under increased review itself after state legislators today approved a request to audit the organization.

The Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges will be the subject of the audit requested by state Sen. Jim Beall, D-San Jose, a member of the bipartisan Joint Legislative Audit Committee, which approved the request.

The ACCJC announced last month that City College would lose its accreditation at the end of July 2014.

The school is appealing the decision and is hoping to maintain accreditation by addressing recommendations made by the commission and making changes to its governance structure and finances.

However, the accrediting commission has already come under fire from the U.S. Department of Education, which last week issued a letter finding fault with the ACCJC’s accrediting process for City College.

The letter mentioned a possible conflict of interest by having the commission’s president’s husband on an evaluation team for the school, as well as having a lack of faculty members on evaluation teams and providing vague instructions for compliance.

Now comes the pending state audit, which is expected to take about six months to complete.

Beall said in a statement that the audit was necessary because the ACCJC “virtually operates unfettered with little to no oversight, yet its decisions have a direct impact on the world’s biggest system of higher education with over 2 million students.”

He said, “The public and the Legislature deserves to understand how this commission makes and arrives at decisions that affects the futures of so many Californians.”

State Sen. Jim Nielsen, R-Gerber, who joined Beall in the audit request, said the commission “has overreached their authority and has not been forthcoming in their decision-making process.

According to Beall’s office, members of the ACCJC’s evaluating teams were allegedly instructed to destroy documents related to their reviews of community colleges after the commission has recently come under fire.

“Instead of serving the needs of college students, the commission is busy manipulating outdated regulations and shredding documents to prevent their disclosure,” Nielsen said.

Representatives with the ACCJC were not immediately available to comment on the pending audit and allegations by the state legislators.

Dan McMenamin, Bay City News

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  • Rik

    It has been said repeatedly in these columns, anyone who examines the expense accounts of the ACCJC ( WASC affiliates by definition ) will gasp at the initial $35,000 Union Square Hotel Bill, the fact that meals were catered to committee members by organizations outside the college ( even though the College has one of the best Hotel and Restaurant programs in the country ) and local transportation fees were racked up ( let’s see, is a ride on the cable cars relevant to the business of reviewing the college?) Note that expenses like these are ongoing and the six figure sums they generate must be paid by CCSF. Committee members get away with these percs without paying any income taxes on them. Let the everyday working stiff try that and see what happens. Yes, by all means a complete audit is in order for both the ACCJC and WASC.

  • Rik

    It has been said repeatedly in these columns, anyone who examines the expense accounts of the ACCJC ( WASC affiliates by definition ) will gasp at the initial $35,000 Union Square Hotel Bill, the fact that meals were catered to committee members by organizations outside the college ( even though the College has one of the best Hotel and Restaurant programs in the country ) and local transportation fees were racked up ( let’s see, is a ride on the cable cars relevant to the business of reviewing the college?) Note that expenses like these are ongoing and the six figure sums they generate must be paid by CCSF. Committee members get away with these percs without paying any income taxes on them. Let the everyday working stiff try that and see what happens. Yes, by all means a complete audit is in order for both the ACCJC and WASC.