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LANEY COLLEGE Monthly Update to the Laney College Community & The Peralta Community College District Chancellor & Board of Trustees


Positioning Ourselves for Greatness

this issue Assessment P.2 -3 Accreditation P.4 Graduation P. 5 & 6 Budget Planning & Development P. 6 Re-Organization P. 7 Events P. 8

THANK YOU! I remain impressed with the level of due diligence that is displayed on the Laney College campus! You work earnestly to maintain the grounds of the campus, beautify locations with art presentations, render spaces welcoming with music, dancing and live theatre, and you stimulate the minds of learners in ways that activates a deeper appreciation for knowledge – including innovative sciences and technologies. Certainly, you do much more as you engage students and colleagues in constructive discourse, deep reflections, and use of metacognitive—thinking—skills. Students state how you help them find their voices and accept who they are while also maintaining high expectations for their achievements. Laney is made extraordinary in part because of this respect and unconditional care and consideration you demonstrate with students and one another. Without exception, each one of us is responsible for this important educational institution. When visitors traverse the grounds, they witness the level of quality, vitality, conscientious consideration, forward thinking, and innovative programming that characterize who we are. Indeed, they experience why we illuminate being a destination place on the planet. Your earnest efforts, thoughtful attention to details, respectful engagement with one another...are only a few of the reasons why we are enhancing the overall effectiveness of this fine institution. Increasing our levels of learning about how to perform our respective roles smarter and more efficiently and effectively is what renders us the professionals we seek to be. Professionalism is a living state: we do not simply become professionals because of our past degrees and experiences. We must continue to engage actively in professional activities in order to keep our skills and talents relevant and to maintain our status as professionals. This is essential independent of the source of support. I’m honored to know that many of you engage yourself in such ways because you value your roles and seek to function at higher levels of integrity. Grant Awards! Kudos to us for working diligently to secure $5 million in grants this year. Already, we have exceeded the half-way point by being awarded the AANAPISI ($1.67 million) and the TRIO grants ($1.1 million) from the United States Department of Education. Yes, we still have much to do. Yet these efforts led by Deans Newin Oranté and Lilia Celhay have assured our progress. Thank you to the many faculty and classified staff as well as other administrators who were instrumental in these efforts. Page 1

Assessment coordinator who works across the institution to promote, educate, and otherwise administer the overall effort; dedicated time and other resources for faculty, staff and administrators to study needs and gaps, and plan for addressing them; provided structured and informal work sessions to develop assessment rubrics and text instruments; and ensured that quality and integrity throughout these efforts remained primary.

ASSESSMENT Laney College continues to aggressively pursue its path to meet the 2012 proficiency requirement for fully implementing the characteristics of institutional effectiveness in Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs). This means that (1) student learning outcomes and authentic assessment are in place for courses, programs and degrees; (2) results of assessment are being used for improvement and further alignment of institution-wide practices; (3) there is widespread institutional dialogue about the results; (4) decisionmaking includes dialogue on the results of assessment and is purposefully directed toward improving student learning; (5) appropriate resources continue to be allocated and fine-tuned; (6) comprehensive assessment reports exist and are completed on a regular basis; (7) course SLOs are aligned with degree SLOs; and (8) students demonstrate awareness of goals and purposes of courses and programs in which they are enrolled. We have already done a lot to reach the proficiency level. For most courses and programs, we have: developed SLOs; secured the TaskStream system to store and make accessible all SLO and assessment information and to generate reports; provided a SLO/

Of course, we seek quality and transparency. Given details about our progress, we must more aggressively carry out the entire assessment cycle *see the Learning Assessment Committee (LAC) website for more details: http:// As the SLO/ A Coordinator conveys, “At the beginning of the fall semester, the LAC set several goals for the college. For your review, they are available at presentations/. This semester the LAC is supporting the development and assessment of program outcomes, and devising ways to assess the college’s General Education (GE) outcomes. We are also participating in the nascent work of the college’s Institutional Effectiveness Committee and setting up a TaskStream Reviewer Team to handle the burgeoning queue of work that faculty submits for approval, in addition to conducting the ongoing work of the committee with respect to all things assessment. We have recently decided on, and will begin actualizing our plan for, supporting program assessment by providing stipends to Department Chairs or their designees for specific deliverables. The college community will be hearing more about this within the next two weeks.”

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ASSESSMENT CONTINUED... Remember, all units of the College must be engaged in this process as an integral part of each professional carrying out her/his job. For more than 20 years prior to the ACCJC’s requirement, many other U.S. accrediting bodies expected their colleges to carry out such course, program and degree level assessment as part of their normal operating practices. Thus, this approach to validating the effectiveness of an educational institution has historical precedence. While achieving student learning outcomes in California was an implicit expectation, as of 2002 it became explicit and codified. I along with many other educators argue that this should have always been the case as a clear signal of educational quality. Clearly, many of you agree given your efforts. I thank so many of you, including our assessment leads, Michelle “Cheli” Fossum (previous) and Dr. Karolyn van Putten (current), for ensuring the quality and integrity of our efforts overall. Kudos also go to Dean Newin Orante and CARE Coordinator, Mildred Lewis for advancing this agenda efficiently within Student Services.

Please check out the following sites for more details… Learning Assessment Committee website: How to Write SLOs website: SLO/Assessment reporting forms can be found at: How to create rubrics and examples: View SLOs that have been developed so far:

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ACCREDITATION My Accreditation Visit. Last week, I experienced being part of another Accreditation Team as we visited the College of the Desert. What a wonderful team of conscientious, quality seeking, and expert professionals! While mentally and physically exhausting, the visit was rewarding. As a peer, my participation was timely given the Accreditation related schedule for Laney College. Laney must submit its Progress Report to our accrediting agency, the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC) by April 1st; prepare for the April 11-12th visit by the ACCJC Visiting Team; prepare for its’ Mid-term Report due Spring 2012, and during academic year 2011-12, begin organizing for its’ next Self Study, which is due by 2014 for the comprehensive re-accreditation review in 2015. Laney College Progress Report & Accrediting Team Visit Spring 2011. Please check out the website http:// for specific details about the latest requirements for the Peralta Community College District (and Laney College) as specified by the ACCJC. Given that the matters requiring the follow-up report and visit are all centered on District level matters, you will find the official Peralta Community College District response. As well, the original letter from the ACCJC to the Laney President is also available for your review. Laney’s Mid-term Report, Due Spring 2012. Laney must demonstrate its effectiveness in addressing the accrediting standards, address any outstanding ACCJC recommendations and have made significant progress in meeting the Laney planning agenda as outlined in the Laney Self Study Report (see http:// website). Using the rubrics provided by the ACCJC, Laney is required to demonstrate proficiency for student learning outcomes (SLOs) and to have achieved sustainable continuous quality improvement in the areas of program review and planning. Good news – Laney has already met the program review and planning requirements. Now, we are working earnestly to ensure that we meet the SLO requirement. With your leadership, we will! (see website http:// for each of the rubrics) Laney’s Preparation for Self Study, Report Due in 2014. Laney must demonstrate its’ effectiveness in addressing all areas of the accrediting standards and address its planning agenda as outlined in the Laney Self Study Report (see website) submitted in 2009.

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maintained) hope. You helped them deal with personal challenges as well as institutional systems failures and insufficient staff in order to address their immediate concerns. One ASLC leader conveyed that a faculty member’s reminders that one could advance even when grades were not ideal, galvanized that individual to do just that. Now, this student and others are completing the last of their classes and program/ degree requirements and are preparing for their next set of adventures and challenges.

With the theme of “Dream Conceived, Dream Achieved,” all faculty, administrators and staff are urged to join our graduates to celebrate their achievement of certificates and degrees at the Laney College 2011 Graduation. Let’s honor the dreams of Laney’s Graduates! After all, many of these students have persisted through a myriad of hard times in order to get to where they are. Think about it…our average student is 32 years of age with so many demands. They have dealt with economic distresses, enrolled with minimal funds, and experienced a host of other challenges such as: cuts to classes that delayed their graduation dates; working multiple jobs; managing competing and sometimes unreasonable family demands; experiencing the death of loved ones, etc.. These students have demonstrated a high level of resilience, and in many instances their fortitude is extraordinary. They have remained steadfast to achieve their educational goals.

These students demonstrate why Laney is critical. You are the critical resources that change lives. Your presence at the Laney Graduation is essential to honor their achievements. As well, it allows the students to honor you! In the meantime, please join the counselors and student services staff as well as the Laney administrators in prompting students to assess their readiness to graduate. Sixteen hundred (1600) Laney students who had completed 45 units or more were sent post cards last month inviting them to apply for graduation. The following website has been established to ensure that they obtain the necessary details about the steps to graduation and events developed by the ASLC and others to expedite their

success in doing so: wp/graduation-2011/. Given the extended deadline of March 31st, we encourage you to

Some Spring 2011 graduates have already described many faculty members by name as the central reason why they had acquired (or

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GRADUATION CONTINUED... help get the word out. Last year we witnessed greater numbers of graduates than the year before. We expect this trend to continue, yet only with your help.

BUDGET PLANNING & DEVELOPMENT Laney’s Town Hall Meetings: March 10th, March 22nd and April 26th from 12:00 – 1:30 p.m. Laney’s Spring 2011 Town Hall meetings are opportunities to learn about developments at the College and the District, and to share with your peers and the administration potential prospects, challenges and recommendations for improving learning and working conditions for students and employees. During the first of the three town hall sessions, on March 10th, approximately 250 students, faculty and staff joined the President to review the budgetary issues that plague the State and directly affect this District. At least 70 shared concerns, fears and thoughtful recommendations for how best to address the anticipated budgetary crises. During the March 22nd town hall meeting from 12:00 – 1:30 p.m., we are welcoming Chancellor Allen to provide additional details about the state of the District invited to seek clarification and learn about the challenges caused by the fiscal crises: as well, you are welcome to share ideas that may help us minimize the negative effect of this crisis on students and achievement of their educational goals. On April 26th, you are encouraged to join all members of the Laney College community in another Town-Hall as we review the re-organization plans for the college. These are plans that will have developed through college-wide input. At this Town Hall, the rationale for the organizational changes will be illuminated further, along with more details required to advance the Educational Master Planning agenda of the College.

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input. All ideas are welcomed. All concerns must be heard. All suggestions for strengthening or otherwise improving this draft are sought. Thus, I ask all sectors of the Laney community to review this reorganization plan. While it reflects aspects of models found at other California community colleges, it is unique as it addresses known and anticipated gaps specific to Laney. Thank you in advance for studying it in order to understand it and be able to ask key questions and/or provide constructive feedback. Between now and April 6, I’ll be seeking your feedback that will inform the broad re-organized structure. (After April 15, I’ll be seeking additional input about many of the details.) Here are the various ways you may provide feedback:

RE-ORGANIZATION Laney is strategically re-organizing the College in order to meet the needs of students and the greater community, especially in light of the State-driven budget cuts. Laney is consolidating more units and key areas of responsibility, and generally doing less with less while working smarter as we also work earnestly to address the high demands and critical needs of our students.

Special Brown Bags with the President

The reorganization is being framed by the Educational Master Plan agenda and is consistent with the strategic initiatives of the College. As such, the organizational changes will be carried out so that as we increase our fiscal capacity, we will be able to smoothly transition into doing all that we intend to do now, but with more resources in place that will allow us to actualize long-term priorities. We must serve the community. We must do so with purpose and rigor in terms of depth and scope. This can only be accomplished by proactively addressing the obvious constraints and the often hidden challenges.

Classified Senate Wednesday, March 30, Noon – 1:30 p.m. , T-450

re-organization structure for your review and constructive comments. The Laney President will benefit from your honest feedback and

in order to obtain additional insights and recommendations.

Associated Students of Laney College Monday, March 28, Noon-1:30 p.m. Faculty Senate Tuesday, March 29, Noon – 1:30 p.m., T-450

Other Methods On-line: send all comments, notes, and suggestions to the following email address, .

Survey Monkey: Before the April TownHall meeting, an on-line survey based on Attached is a working version of the first draft of the your preliminary feedback will be devised

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Some of Laney’s Upcoming Events 

The Movement—Quad (March 24) Noon-1:00PM For profit and nonprofit women organization share information on the Women Movement.

40 T H at Fallon Celebration Did you know that Laney moved to its current Fallon Street location in 1970? This year, we will all learn a lot more about Laney—its historical contributions, partnerships, and priorities. In the meantime, we are asking persons who are among the 700,000 alumni, hundreds of retirees, and other persons affected by this distinguished institution, to share their stories via the employee survey at or send them to Lisa Watkins-Tanner, Staff Assistant to the Laney College President, at Likewise, we are asking the Laney student alums to complete the online alumni survey at alumni/ in order to gather their stories which will inform a remarkable series of celebratory events during Spring 2010, and especially during the week of April 25-29, 2011. By December, the Laney 40th at Fallon on-line website will be available at . We encourage you to use this as a reference to remain updated on our series of wonderful events.

Voices from the Curbside— Theater (March 25, 26, April 1, 2, 3) 7-10:00PM The production features the Destiny Arts Youth Performance Company, a dynamic, diverse collective of teenagers from Destiny Arts Center who creatively address challenging personal and social issues. Their self-conceived productions are a trademark combination of different movement, theater and musical styles. This show will also feature guest appearances from the Destiny Arts Youth Martial Arts Team and the Destiny Junior Company.

Honoring Her—Theater (March 28) 3-4:30PM Come celebrate phenomenal female professors, staff members, and students who have influenced the lives of others at Laney.

Red Cross Blood Drive—Student Center, 3rd Floor (March 30 & 31)

Phi Theta Kappa Induction Ceremony— Student Center Conference RM 401 (March 31) 4-5:00PM

Spring Concert– Theater—Quad (April 11)

Historical Walking Tour—Laney (April 25) 4:00PM A historical prospective of Laney’s Facilities.

Open Rehearsal— G189 (April 26) Time TBA

Artist Speaks—Chris Johnson “Question Bridge, Black Male”, E-255 (April 27) 11-12:15PM

Sustainability Conference—Bistro, Garden & Estuary (April 28) 11:30-1:30PM

Art Spectrum (April 28) 4-7:00pm Open Studio—Student Center Student Art Reception—Library Community Art Reception—Theater Lobby Faculty Art Reception— June Steingart Gallery Spoken Word—Bistro

Laney College President’s Monthly Update ISSUE 04 MARCH 2011 900 FALLON STREET Oakland, California 94607

Please visit our website at for more events and information. We look forward to seeing you all at our next event!

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Laney College Newsletter Issue 4 March 2011  

Laney College Newsletter - Issue 4