Another California Idea

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Many California students are now out of luck due to higher education cuts. California’s budget troubles not only make California public colleges more expensive; the cuts will also make the colleges more selective.

Because of this, California community colleges now are considering offering bachelor’s degrees. From an article in the Contra Costa Times:

With tens of thousands being turned away from state universities, California lawmakers likely will consider granting community colleges the right to offer a limited number of bachelor’s degrees.

The shift… would represent a major philosophical change in California, where the three state higher-education systems have clearly defined roles.

That’s a creative solution to a thorny problem. Other states have tried similar approaches. Florida community colleges, for instance, have awarded bachelor’s degrees in some programs since 2001.

The solution might be more complicated than the problem, however. There are over 100 community colleges in California, with some three million students. The community college system is already “overflowing,” explains the Contra Costa Times article and the programs couldn’t offer bachelors degrees without more funding, which the state legislature is highly unlikely to provide.

Daniel Luzer

Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer