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The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

CPC talks about anti-racism and begins future planning for 2024


Conversations surrounding the reorganization of academic affairs and an update to the 2024-2025 school year’s calendar surfaced at the College Planning Council meeting and a presentation on anti-racism was given to the group on Tuesday, May 2. 

Doctor Frank Harris from San Diego State University has been doing work with City College on race related issues throughout this school year. He is currently the interim dean of diversity, equity, and inclusion at SDSU. 

At Tuesday’s meeting he showed a presentation titled Understanding and Confronting Anti-Black Racism and showed data of Black students’ experience at City College. 

“Over the past year or so that I’ve had to work with the college, anti-Blackness has come up quite a bit in conversations or dialogue that we have had,” Harris said. “One way we might see the effects of anti-Blackness is in the outcomes that our students experience.”

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According to Harris’s presentation, in the 2021-2022 school year, Black students had the lowest course success rates, meaning they had the least amount of success in passing their classes or getting good grades in comparison to other students of different races. In the same school year, Black students had the lowest rate of persisting from fall semester to spring and in the 2018-2019 school year Black students had a completion rate of only 7%. 

Throughout his presentation, Harris encouraged CPC members to join in on the conversation and discuss their personal experiences and thoughts surrounding anti-Blackness. Tara Carter, chair of the curriculum committee addressed faculty directly and explained that they have a direct effect on these issues. 

“Sometimes racism and anti-Blackness feels incredibly overwhelming and it often feels that there’s absolutely nothing we can do to fight these systems and structures. However, faculty, you do control your curriculum so this is something we can work on,” Carter said. 

Harris expressed an interest in meeting with the curriculum committee and explained to the council that in order for equity to begin to take place, the City College community needs to have conversations about access to resources and opportunities and include minority groups who have previously been excluded from these discussions. 

Before his presentation came to an end, Harris reminded the group that “we can always do something, and nothing is ever too small.” 

After everyone thanked Harris for his presentation, the focus shifted towards Vice President of Academic Affairs María Villagómez. Villagómez proposed moving the class withdrawal date a week later which was quickly approved by the council. 

The CPC serves as an advisory group corresponding to the interim superintendent-president on issues concerning economics, policies, and plans. 

Similarly to Vice President of Student Affairs Paloma Arnold, Villagómez has also been constructing a reorganization of academic affairs with plans to implement these changes by July. According to her presentation, the purpose of the reconfiguration would be to create more equity and efficiency within the department, to investigate the workload balance and create more fiscal responsibility. 

Interim Superintendent-President Kindred Murillo expressed admiration for all the hard work Villagómez has done throughout the reorganization process. 

“Thank you for being a first year VP and taking on such a rigorous project,” Murillo said. 

Discussions of this reorganization will be brought to the other governing bodies and will continue at the last CPC meeting taking place on Tuesday, May 18.

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