Academic Senate

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Academic Preparation & Education Programs (APEP) Committee

Denise Fleming (East Bay), Chair

At its March 2016 meeting, the Academic Preparation and Education Programs (APEP) committee continued discussions around mathematics requirements for CSU admissions and graduation purposes. One of the outcomes of our work was a resolution, approved unanimously by the ASCSU, calling for a fourth year of high school mathematics as an admissions requirement for the CSU. Currently, the requirement stands at three years of math. In practice, this means that many high school students do not take math during their senior year and we maintain that it is the very lack of exposure to math that accounts for some of the falloff in skills and, by extension, the need for remediation in math upon entry to the CSU.

We premised the resolution on the belief that unbroken exposure to math can prevent this falloff.  We did not specify the type of mathematics students should take, because the committee believes that students, in consultation with their advisors, should be allowed to select what will best meet their short- and long-term needs. Thus, we envision a menu of appropriate choices ranging from refresher courses to options for earning college credit.

Just as the 12th grade Expository Reading and Writing Course (ERWC), developed by CSU faculty, has served to enhance skills and reduce remediation in English, we believe that a mathematics analog to the ERWC could be a viable option for those 12th grade students needing to hone their math proficiency. Now that Governor Brown has called for a $3 million competitive grant to prepare such a course, we anticipate that such an option will be shortly forthcoming.

We were pleased to meet with Interim Assistant Vice Chancellor. Joe Aguerrebere, who reported on the Smarter Balanced Digital Library (SBDL), a lesson planning and curricular resource repository made available to K-12 teachers at no charge. After learning that CSU teacher education faculty would incur a fee for access to the SBDL, Dr. Aguerrebere was able to negotiate no-cost access. Clearly, this resource will assist us is our work with candidates and administrators and we are grateful to Dr. Aguerrebere for his efforts on our behalf.

As some of you may have heard from EdSource and other outlets, the growing teacher shortage has raised both state and national attention. Dr. Aguerrebere also shared with APEP a “call for action” letter cosigned by the California Department of Education, Commission on Teacher Credentialing, and the California State Board of Education (February 17th, 2016). The signatories call for increased and innovative ways to meet growing needs in the areas of teacher recruitment, preparation, and retention. He also reported that CSU Presidents met and discussed a variety of possible options, including teacher preparation through self-support programs, online programs, and increased or restored grant and loan streams.

Finally, we again hosted Ruth Yopp-Edwards, Joan Bissell, and APEP’s own Sandra Chong for an S. D. Bechtel, Jr. Foundation Initiatives Update. Another generous round of funding has been made available and, to that end, a Request for Proposals was widely distributed. Hopefully, your campus will ensure those proposals reach all teacher education faculty.

Please send your comments and questions to We value your input and look forward to hearing from you.