When California State University Chancellor Charles B. Reed assumed leadership of the CSU in March 1998, he and the Trustees agreed on several CSU priorities, including increasing resources, ensuring access for students, improving teacher preparation, reducing the need for remedial education, increasing accountability and partnering with the K-12 system. As Chancellor Reed begins his third year at the CSU, Trustees Chair William Hauck discussed at the Trustees meeting on March 15 the progress made on CSU priorities during the last two years.
"It's important to identify a few critical priorities and focus efforts in those areas. Under Chancellor Reed's leadership, the CSU Board of Trustees has done that, and we are on target," said Hauck. "The CSU is in very good shape, and it has been a team effort among Trustees, presidents, the chancellor, and our faculty, staff and students. We have made significant progress and will continue to do so in this new decade.
"We have worked together to ensure student access to a high quality education at a time when the CSU enrollment is growing tremendously. CSU resources have increased through stronger budgets. A significant part of those funds over the past two years has been the $113 million the CSU has used to reduce the faculty salary gap from 11.2 to 8.9 percent. Finally, we have developed relationships with the Governor's Office and the legislature, and we continue to tell the CSU story effectively. That is paying dividends for our students, faculty and staff," Hauck concluded.
The following updates the progress made on CSU priorities in the past two years:
Over the last two years, the CSU has received a more than 22 percent increase in its general fund budget, the highest two-year total since the mid-1980's.
For 2000/01, the Governor has recommended an additional increase of 10 percent.
The CSU is close to reaching a Higher Education Partnership with the Governor that would provide stable funding over a long-term period. Part of the partnership involves CSU accountability measures closely aligned with Cornerstones, the systemwide planning framework for CSU's future.
The CSU secured and allocated a total of $113 million for a faculty compensation increase of 5.7 percent in 1998/99 and six percent in 1999/00 for a two-year total of 11.7 percent, the highest two-year increase since 1987. That figure includes an additional $19.5 million for a 2 percent faculty compensation supplement last year.
The CSU secured in 1998 about $829 million through a bond act for capital projects including technology upgrades and new facilities so more students can attend the CSU.
In addition to state funding, the CSU has raised more than $1.5 billion in external funding over the past two years, including a record $860.5 million in 1998/99.
Ensuring Access for Students
The CSU is expecting an increase of about 130,000 additional students entering the system over the next ten years, and has several initiatives in place to ensure access to all qualified students. Over the past five years enrollment at the CSU has grown by about 40,000 students.
One initiative to ensure student access is to move toward more flexible scheduling. That includes not only more courses in the summer but also at night, on weekends and at other less traditional times. The CSU will begin state supported year-round operations at those campuses and in those academic programs where student demand is beginning to exceed capacity for instruction during the traditional academic year. The CSU began a planning process on ten campuses this year to identify impacted programs and adapt courses and support systems to a summer schedule. Year-round operations will not force faculty or students to attend classes in the summer, but rather provide more opportunities for those with that preference.
Within the past two years the CSU has increased resources and obtained property to increase access for students at off-campus centers at Channel Islands and Coachella Valley.
The CSU this year consulted all CSU constituencies and developed long-term enrollment management policies to ensure local access to higher education for CSU-qualified students to continue CSU's mission as defined by the California Master Plan for Higher Education.
Usage of CSUMentor, the online system that helps students and their families plan and apply for admission to the CSU, has quadrupled in the last year. More than 50 percent of CSU applications are now received online, and more than a quarter of a million high school students have established portfolios at the CSU to track their academic progress.
Improving Teacher Preparation
California will need an additional 300,000 new teachers over the next ten years, and nearly 30,000 teachers in the state are currently employed with emergency permits or waivers. As the producer of 60 percent of the state's teachers, the CSU shoulders much of the responsibility for improving both the quality and quantity of California teachers.
Chancellor Reed worked with U.S. Senators Feinstein and Boxer and U.S. Secretary of Education Dick Riley to extend federal Pell Grant assistance to California's financially needy, fifth-year teaching students. Since these students are post-baccalaureate students, they were not previously eligible for federal grant aid.
In 1999 -- a year ahead of schedule -- the CSU met the Board of Trustees goal of increasing by 25 percent the number of teachers it annually recommends for credentials.
CSU enrollment in teacher preparation increased by 50 percent to more than 14,000 students from the fall of 1996 to the fall of 1998.
CalStateTEACH, an 18-month program that combines distance education and face-to-face interaction for working teachers seeking their credentials, began last fall and expanded this semester to include about 300 participants.
CalTeach, a one-stop information, recruitment and referral center for individuals interested in teaching careers, launched the first-ever statewide paid television advertising campaign to recruit teachers for public schools. Last year their website received 3.5 million hits. This year, the governor has proposed increasing the CalTeach budget by $9 million.
Every CSU campus within the past two years has reviewed and begun simplifying the admissions process for students.
By next year, every campus will have revised its curriculum to offer a blended program so students can begin learning about teaching earlier in their academic careers.
Reducing the Need for Remedial Education
About 94 percent of fall 1998 freshmen who needed remedial education and returned as sophomores were proficient in mathematics and English.
In combination with other support, campuses are now: providing inservice training for high school teachers to clarify and align CSU and school standards; developing more effective English and mathematics teaching methods; administering and interpreting diagnostic testing; and providing trained CSU student tutors who will work with high school students to strengthen their basic English and mathematics proficiency skills.
The CSU allocated $9 million in 1999/00 to campuses to establish or expand outreach efforts to 223 public high schools that send the CSU the most students in need of remedial education.
Last fall, the percentage of incoming students needing remedial education leveled off at 54 percent for mathematics and 47 percent for English. An update on fall 1999 freshmen will be given at the Trustees meeting on March 14. It is expected that those numbers will decrease for the first time since the CSU began tracking them.
Partnering with the K-12
Chancellor Reed worked with the CSU presidents, key members of the U.S. Congress and U.S. Secretary of Education Dick Riley to secure more than $8 million in federal funding for CSU campuses to partner with school districts in GEAR UP (Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs).
Every campus has increased partnerships with K-12 schools as evidenced by more than 475 teacher-intern agreements across the state, 21 teacher aid programs and systemwide participation in the on-site inservice preparation of middle school math teachers.
Last summer the CSU and the University of California provided workshops on how to better teach reading and math for 6,000 current teachers. The CSU hosted about two-thirds of the workshops.
The CSU distributed 80,000 posters to high schools and middle schools statewide with step-by-step instructions about the courses students need to complete to enroll at the CSU.
In March 1999 the Board of Trustees adopted the Cornerstones Implementation Plan culminating a three-year planning effort involving a wide range of faculty, administrators, students and Trustees. This plan outlines an agenda for action over the next decade, including: providing recommendations for ensuring access; highlighting the quality of programs and faculty; and improving the rate at which students earn the bachelor's degree through better transfer procedures, remedial education, school outreach efforts, and active student learning. Other recommendations address postbaccalaureate and graduate education and the more creative use of the extended education function.
In November 1999 the CSU Trustees adopted a formal accountability process through which the CSU reports annually about results that are important and identifiable to the public. The accountability process calls for annual reports on: student achievement and satisfaction; quality of teaching and support services; administrative effectiveness; service to the community; impact on the state's economy; alumni, employee, faculty, and staff satisfaction; access to the CSU; articulation and transfer of students; graduation rates; teacher education; relations with the K-12 system; remediation rates; use of facilities; university advancement; and contributions to community and society.
By being more efficient, the CSU has surpassed in each of the past two years its goal of redirecting $10 million to educational services to provide more resources for students. One example is expanding distance education opportunities for students wanting these courses. Another example is an agreement with Enron Energy Services (EES) and the University of California in which Enron is the sole provider of electricity to most of the CSU and UC campuses, resulting in estimated savings of about $15 million over four years for both systems.
The chancellor has emphasized commitment and accountability for strengthening CSU's system of shared governance and collegiality. Over the past year, significant progress has been made to involve faculty earlier in agenda setting and more closely and interactively with administration in carrying out its advisory function. These efforts will be evaluated as part of the annual accountability process.
Public Affairs Offices/Campus News