News Release

CFA Calls on Governor and Legislature to Increase Funding for CSU in 2018-2019 Budget to Admit More Students
NEWS RELEASE: CFA Slams Disinvestment in California State University students

Following Governor’s Budget News Conference on Jan. 10, faculty will mount Pop-Up Art Installation to symbolize the tens of thousands of students turned away from our state public university system

With more than 31,000 students denied admission last Academic Year, in Open Letter, faculty call for bigger enrollment growth funding to admit 18,205 of those students

Sacramento, CA – In an open letter to the leaders of the California State University system, the California Faculty Association blasts both the inadequate funding proposal that the CSU Chancellor and Board of Trustees sent to the governor and legislators and the long-term, systemic underfunding of the CSU by state decision-makers.

CFA’s Open Letter: We Must Protect Student Access to the California State University calls this approach to public higher education “unconscionable.” It is signed by CFA President Jennifer Eagan and was sent Thursday to CSU Chancellor Timothy White and to members of the CSU Board of Trustees.

“We urge the Chancellor, Board of Trustees, the Governor and State Legislators to stand up for public higher education and what our students—and our state—really need,” says Eagan.

She says, “Our state’s students need college degrees. And if their own futures were not enough reason, let’s remember the State of California needs this investment in every student qualified to get into college and get a degree. Our economy and society need it. We all know it. It’s crazy to turn away all these students knocking on our campus doors.”

NEWS MEDIA INVITED

CFA Pop-Up Art Installation:
“Every Student Deserves a Seat—Fund the CSU!”

North Lawn, California State Capitol, Sacramento

(During and after the Governor’s News Conference to release his 2018-19 State Budget Plan)

Wednesday, January 10 at 10 am – 1 pm:
Faculty “Docent Talks” (faculty available for interviews with news media)

  • Each of 1,570 chairs will represent the missing seats for 20 qualified students turned away from the CSU in the 2016-17 academic year. That totals 31,400 students denied access to the CSU in one year.
  • CSU Faculty wearing red vests will be present and give docent talks about the art exhibit & issues
  • Installation programs will be handed out featuring facts about state funding for the CSU

To schedule interviews in advance and for more information on the faculty’s presentation and background on the budget, please contact Alice Sunshine 510-384-1967 or Lisa Cohen 310-395-2544.

BACKGROUND DETAILS

CFA supports an increase in funding for the CSU that would accomodate a 5 percent growth in student enrollment in the 2018-19 academic year.

The CSU is turning away qualified students who were promised a place in our state university system in California’s Master Plan for Higher Education. More than 31,400 students were denied admission in 2016-17, more were turned away in the current year. Without a conscious change in funding policy, more students are likely to be excluded in the future. Under CFA’s proposed funding for enrollment growth, an additional 18,205 full-time students would be admitted.

CFA calls for an increase in state funding of $422.6 million for next year. The CSU’s Board of Trustees request for increased funding was just $263 million. However, previous reports indicate that the Governor intends to increase the CSU budget by even less—just $102 million.

CFA’s Open Letter states: “CFA is painfully aware that a 5 percent increase in enrollment does not reach every eligible student. Thousands would still be turned away, but we have to start somewhere. California must continue to re-invest in the future until the promise is fully realized.”  See https://www.calfac.org/item/open-letter-we-must-protect-student-access-california-state-university

In early 2017, CFA highlighted a point made by CFA leader Cecil Canton, a Sacramento State faculty member, who testified to a state legislative hearing that as the CSU student population “got darker, the funding got lighter.” (Canton will be among the faculty docents giving interviews at the Pop-Up on January 10). The changing demographics of the CSU student body and the decrease in per student funding is documented in the CFA report “Equity Interrupted: How California is Cheating Its Future” (calfac.org/equity-interrupted).

The Open Letter reiterates: “Today’s high school and community college students are the most racially and ethnically diverse in the state’s history. Over the years in which this demographic shift occurred, we see a simultaneous, systematic, and chronic reduction in state funding for the CSU.”

POP-UP ON THE CAPITOL NORTH LAWN JANUARY 10

The faculty will make the case during and immediately following the Governor’s budget announcement at the Capitol on Wednesday, January 10.

Faculty from CSU campuses will talk about this disinvestment in our students in front of the back-drop of a Pop-Up Art Installation. CFA leaders will act as docents, provide interviews, explain the art installation, and hand out facts and information for legislators and staffers, interested parties, and the news media.

CFA President Jennifer Eagan says, “The time has come for the state of California to end the long, slow process of dismantling public higher education. For decades, state disinvestment from the California State University has harmed students and it has harmed our state. We are taking this action to demonstrate just how many students are being left behind and to call on all advocates for public higher education and our state to stand up for the CSU—for our students, for our university, and for the future of California.”

ABOUT THE CALIFORNIA FACULTY ASSOCIATION: CFA represents more than 28,000 tenured and tenure-track instructional faculty, lecturers, librarians, counselors and coaches on the 23 campuses of the California State University system, from Humboldt State in the north, to San Diego State in the south. Learn more about CFA at calfac.org            

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