California’s public higher education is at a turning point due to the state’s systematic defunding of the Community College, Cal State, and University of California systems. Most immediately, the University of California Regents will vote at their November 17-19 meeting on a proposal to increase student fees by 32% over the next year. This fee increase would be in addition to the 9.3% increase that took effect at the beginning of the 2009/2010 academic year. UC student fees have more than doubled in the last decade, and with the proposed increase the cost to attend the UC will have tripled since 2000/2001. Meanwhile, in all three systems, class sizes are increasing, programs and departments are at risk, and student debt is rising. As student fees increase, students receive a lower quality education for a higher price.
The Santa Cruz Faculty Association has created three petitions. One is addressed to the UC Regents and demands that they vote against the proposed student fee hikes and that they aggressively pursue the restoration of public funding to the levels laid out in the 1960 California Master Plan for Higher Education. A second is addressed to California state legislators and demands that they vote to restore state funding of public higher education in California to the levels laid out in the 1960 California Master Plan for Higher Education. A third, addressed to the Governor, demands that he submit a budget that restores state funding of public higher education in California to the levels laid out in the Master Plan.
The Regents meeting is Nov. 17-19. The battle over public higher education is NOW! We need your signatures NOW!
After signing the three petitions below, forward this message to your friends, parents, colleagues, neighbors, to the cashier in the grocery store, tell everyone you know that we need to act now to restore quality, affordable and accessible public education to the State of California.