The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

Classes impacted at City College due to financial constraints

Insufficient funding and space at City College has impacted classes to the extent that many fill up before new students have a chance to register for them.

All sections of Chem 155, Phys 110 and 111, and Math 150 had their classes full and their waitlists full or nearly full by 5 a.m. April 11 for both summer sessions, the day new students were first able to register.

“The state doesn’t give us enough resources,” said Paul Jarrell, executive vice-president. “We still have good instructors, but they are hard to find. Some of our instructors drive from Los Angeles or Santa Maria.

“It’s a problem that city colleges face around the nation.”

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He also explained that administration is primarily preoccupied by “trying to get [students] through.” However, they are faced with monetary obstacles that make it hard to accommodate all students.

Jamie Campbell, math department chair, agreed with Jarrell.

“We don’t have enough resources [instructors], physical space, or funding,” Campbell said.

Space has also proven to be a problem. Some STEM classes require labs that must meet strict state requirements and the college is having difficulty finding the money or space to host more of these classes.

Another reason new students will find some classes difficult to enroll in is that City College gives priority registration to certain students. Among these are the school’s 1,300 Promise students who come from local high schools and 300-350 student athletes.

“We want to encourage local district students to come here,” Jarrell said.

All the students who receive registration priority are stated in Administrative Policy 5055 “Enrollment Priorities.” The different groups include members of the armed forces, veteran pursuants, foster youth, former foster youth, homeless youth pursuant, Disabled Student Programs and Services students, Extended Opportunity Programs and Services students and students who are receiving services through CalWorks, a welfare program that gives cash aid and services to eligible low-income California families.

A major ongoing financial challenge the college has struggled to overcome over the last two years is the budget deficit. With this deficit in mind, one way the college has decided to cut down on expenditures is by cutting down the number of employees. 

On April 17 the College Planning Council was presented a ranked list of new and replacement staff positions that need to be filled by the Classified Staff Hiring Subcommittee as part of the Workforce Reduction Attrition Plan.

The plan’s primary goal is to help reduce the college’s deficit by not replacing positions once they become vacant. The aim is to save $1.3 million via this plan, and as of Fall 2017 $1 million has already been saved.

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