CSU and California Community Colleges Join Together to Boost Number of Math and Science Teachers

Contact: Claudia Keith, CSU, ckeith@calstate.edu, (562) 951-4813
Ron Owens, CCC, rowens@cccco.edu, (916) 327-5356

Oct. 23, 2006 – The California State University (CSU) and the California Community Colleges (CCC) have joined together in a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) aimed at increasing the number of qualified math and science teachers and to establish clearer pathways for transfer to the CSU.

California faces a shortage of fully credentialed and qualified math and science teachers, and particularly teachers from diverse backgrounds that are represented in the K-12 student population. The MOU is part of a larger CSU initiative launched in 2004 to at least double the number of math and science teachers over the next five years to a minimum of 1,500 new teachers in these fields by 2009-2010.

“The community colleges are the largest source of transfer students for the CSU and it is vital that we partner together to help students transfer into teaching programs and complete the essential lower-division coursework,” said CSU Chancellor Charles B. Reed. “We want to provide the needed resources and support for students interested in teaching careers, particularly in the math and science fields where the need is the greatest.”

Chancellor Marshall (Mark) Drummond noted that California’s 109 community colleges enroll more than half of all freshmen college students in the state and the majority of students from underrepresented communities, as well as serve as feeder schools to all 23 CSU campuses. “Because of this fact, we’re in a unique position to coordinate our effort with CSU to increase the number of fully credentialed and qualified math and science teachers in California,” Chancellor Drummond said.

As part of the agreement, resources made available through recently enacted legislation (Senate Bill 70 – Scott, Statutes of 2005) will be targeted to aligned programs. The CSU and the CCC will provide web-based resources on recruiting, academic advising and financial aid to transfer centers at the community colleges, with details on grants, scholarships and loan programs available. Math and science faculty from both the CSU and the CCCs will be tasked with identifying a minimum of six units of lower-division coursework in math and science majors that focus on teacher preparation. In addition, CSU campuses will form a series of advisory groups in connection with teacher recruitment projects that include representatives from community colleges, CSU math, science and education faculty to assist in the design of programs and courses for math and science transfer students.

In addition, the CCC and CSU math and science faculty will partner with local high school math and science instructors to align and integrate curriculum and field experiences, provide mentoring to students interested in entering the field and provide funding for community college students to serve as paid tutors to develop their K-12 teaching experience.

The California State University is the largest system of senior higher education in the country, with 23 campuses, approximately 405,000 students and 44,000 faculty and staff. Since the system was created in 1961, it has awarded about 2.5 million degrees, about 84,000 annually. The CSU is renowned for the quality of its teaching and for the job-ready graduates it produces. Its mission is to provide high-quality, affordable education to meet the ever-changing needs of the people of California. With its commitment to excellence, diversity and innovation, the CSU is the university system that is working for California. See www.calstate.edu

The California Community College System provided educational, vocational and transfer programs to more than 2.5 million students during academic year 2005-2006. Constituting the largest system of higher education in the world, the California Community College System is currently comprised of 72 districts, 109 campuses, 64 approved educational centers, and 20 separately reported district offices. These assets include 58.4 million gross square feet of space housed in 4,629 buildings atop of more than 20,489 acres of land. More information about the system can be found at www.cccco.edu

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Last Updated: October 23, 2006

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