School Controversies

From controversial reform to cursing in the classroom, our articles provide the latest news on school controversies. Here you’ll find information on some of the hot button topics related to community colleges.

View the most popular articles in School Controversies:

California to Reform Community College System

Updated
|
California to Reform Community College System
We look at a controversial new plan by California Governor Jerry Brown to reform the community college system in his state.
The California Community College system is the largest of its kind in the world, and as such, it tends to come under intense scrutiny any time changes are suggested or made. Governor Jerry Brown has recently been thrust into the community college focus, as the governor has dealt with a budget crisis facing the system. Now that California voters have agreed to pour more money into the state’s community colleges, Brown is making headlines once again, with his ideas for reforming the entire system.
 
More Money brings Reform Plan
 
Thanks to the passage of Proposition 30 last November, community colleges will be receiving more funding – nearly $200 million more, according to a Los Angeles Times report. The money
. . .read more

Changes Coming to Nevada Community Colleges

Updated
|
Changes Coming to Nevada Community Colleges
In the face of a budget crisis, Nevada community colleges are seizing the opportunity to make sweeping changes in their system, from requiring a high school diploma to changing the formula used to determine tuition and fees. Will other states follow suit?
Nevada has traditionally had one of the most liberal enrollment policies for students who want to attend community college. Until recently, students did not even need a high school diploma or equivalent to take classes at one of these institutions. However, booming enrollment and low graduation rates have forced these schools to take a second look at their admission requirements. In addition, Nevada community colleges are seizing the opportunity to restudy how they calculate tuition and fee rates for each academic year.

Diploma Now Required

According to a brief report in the Houston Chronicle, about half of all the college students in Nevada attend one of the state’s community colleges. At the College of Southern Nevada, there are around 44,000 students currently enrolled. However, the president of CSN, Michael Richards, said that of that number, only about nine percent graduate from college each year. Richards asserts that in order to make community college students more successful, they need to be better prepared for the rigors of higher education.

Maria Sheehan, president of Truckee Meadows Community College agrees. She told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that the primary goal of the new admission requirements would be to see more students succeed once they were enrolled at a community college.
 
“It’s not about limiting access,” Sheehan told the Review-Journal. “It is not about being punitive. It is not about denying access to career changers.”
 
The new requirement was adopted by the higher education system’s Board of Regents, at the prompting of community
. . .read more

Cursing in the Classroom: Professor Ousted for Swearing

Updated
|
Cursing in the Classroom: Professor Ousted for Swearing
In a Hawaii community college philosophy course, a professor used profanity to get students' attention and inspire independent thought, but the efforts may have backfired.
Philosophy courses are designed to make students think, challenge their beliefs and help them arrive at theories and dogmas that will support them throughout life. One professor in Hawaii uses a rather colorful means of jumpstarting the process in his philosophy courses at Hawaii Community College. He throws a few expletives into his first few lectures in hopes of getting students to sit up and take notice – and to think for themselves. However, his out-of-the-box teaching style may have lost him his job. 
 

About the Professor

According to a report at Inside Higher Ed, Daniel Petersen has been teaching philosophy courses at Hawaii Community College and at the University of Hawaii at Hilo for 21 years. He begins his classes with the phrase, "Shit happens," to introduce the idea of free will and determinism. Petersen says his approach grabs the students' attention in the first few moments of the class, and it tunes them into the subject matter so they engage more readily.

"I do what I do to wake students up," Petersen told the Star-Advertiser. "It makes them stand up and take notice. I know many of them are very religious. It makes them sit up and think a bit. But I've never sworn at a student." Petersen emphasizes that he has never directed his profanity directly at a student, but has used a smattering of four-letter words in the context of his lectures for this precise purpose.
 
The Complaint
 
Petersen's approach apparently offended at least one student last year. This student shared her
. . .read more

Recent Articles

Careers: Biodiesel Training
Careers: Biodiesel Training
Start your engines…powered by biodiesel! Learn more about biodiesel programs at community college and how these could jumpstart a lucrative green career for you.
Why President Obama is Hailed as the Community College President
Why President Obama is Hailed as the Community College President
Learn how President Obama, who is considered the "Community College President," has rightly earned his title based upon his proposed funding and support for community colleges throughout the country.
The Benefits of Community College Minority Mentoring Programs
The Benefits of Community College Minority Mentoring Programs
Learn about how minority mentorship programs at community colleges are improving academic performance and graduation rates, as well as providing a medley of benefits.

College Policies

College Funding (22)