Faculty Voice Newsletter: December 2017: Letter from Faculty Senate

by Robin McFarland and Skye Gentile

It has been a busy semester! A few highlights from Faculty Senate:

  • Guided Pathways

Faculty Senate continues to engage in the work to implement Guided Pathways. As one of twenty California community colleges to be selected to participate in the California Guided Pathways project, Cabrillo has committed to transform the way we support students from the time they apply through their journey to attain certificates, transfer, or degrees. Kudos to the many of you who are involved in the PIT Crew or work teams led by Marcy Alancraig and Isabel O’Connor. Senate is committed to doing this work to support student success and equity.

  • Faculty Hiring

Every fall, the Faculty Senate participates in the process to prioritize the full-time faculty hires. This is often a wrenching process that reveals the deep need for full-time faculty. This year, eight positions were approved of the ten that were requested.

Faculty Senate passed a resolution that was presented to the Governing Board advocating hiring all ten positions. The resolution recognized that there are not currently (nor have there been in the recent past) adequate numbers of full-time faculty to sustainably carry out the work of the college; that the college is unable to recruit and retain faculty (both adjunct and full-time); and that many programs are approaching the tipping point where they are unable to offer sequential classes for students to progress to a degree or certificate in a timely manner. We, along with the CCFT, will continue, of course, to focus on faculty hiring.

  • Got FLOW?

FLOW stands for Flex Learning Options For Workers, a project undertaken by Community College chancellor Eloy Oakley in response to a request by Governor Brown to establish a 115th fully online community college. There has been little opportunity for input from community college faculty or administrators into the development of this project. Obviously we are all in favor of finding ways to “serve working adults in order to meet California’s workforce needs,” as the project states. The concern is that resources would be diverted to this pet project rather than be used to support and expand the work that is already being done at our existing colleges. There was a very short window for feedback to the chancellor’s workgroup (November 8 to November 22). Cabrillo Faculty Senate sent the following message, adding our voice to many other colleges that oppose this endeavor.

“The Cabrillo College Faculty Senate unanimously voted to oppose the FLOW project, including the creation of a new online community college in our system. Any further steps on FLOW implementation should proceed only with system wide faculty and colleges’ consultation and approval.

The Cabrillo College Faculty Senate agrees with the resolution passed by the state Academic Senate at the recent fall plenary session: 7.10 F17, Using System Consultation and Faculty Input to Address Expansion of Online Education. We agree that the goals of the governor and the FLOW workgroup can be better accomplished using existing resources and structures within the community college system rather than by creating a separate online college or other entity.”

You may learn more at the following website:


Finally, we wish you a restful winter break. We are grateful for our fantastic colleagues!


Robin McFarland and Skye Gentile