Shoreline Community College Vice President for Student Success Tonya Drake (left) and faculty member Betsey Barnett present during an all-campus meeting, Friday, May 21, 2010. See the story below. More all-campus meeting photos
Shoreline Community College officials have finalized the plan to hit a state-mandated $1.59 million reduction target for the coming budget year.
Near the end of the recent legislative session, comments and rumors began to swirl about what might be in store for the next round in Olympia.
“There’s been a lot of talk that we, higher education, could be facing a 20 percent cut for the coming biennium,” said Daryl Campbell, vice president for Administrative Services at Shoreline Community College. “We have nothing to indicate that kind of cut is in our future.”
Campbell explained that during the dying days of the regular session and as lawmakers worked through the protracted special session, Gov. Chris Gregoire raised the specter of cutting the conversation short and making a draconian cut that could be in the 20 percent range.
“Then, after the session, the community and technical college presidents put forth a survey of all colleges asking what would they do if such a cut became reality,” Campbell said. “That survey was an attempt to very clearly illustrate just how devastating cuts of that magnitude would be.
“However, at this point, there’s nothing saying that’s where we’re headed.”
There is information coming that will begin to frame next year’s legislative discussion, he said. The state’s June economic numbers and forecast will be an early indicator, but Campbell said the September report would likely be more substantive. Campbell also said that college officials will stay in close contact with key lawmakers to better understand the state’s budget pressures.
Campbell also said that the Strategic Planning & Budget Committee would be working over the summer to gather information that would help any budget or restructuring process that would start this coming fall.
“We won’t move ahead without involving everyone,” Campbell said. “The commitment from this administration is for everyone’s voice to be heard. When everybody’s back (in the fall), expect that this will be a top priority if the administration.”
At an all-campus meeting, Friday, May 21, 2010, vice presidents Daryl Campbell, John Backes, Tonya Drake and Stephen Smith laid out the personnel and other cuts and talked about next steps to move the college forward.
“With 80 percent of out total budget going for employees, it is impossible to make reductions of this size without losing some positions,” said Campbell, vice president for administrative services. When the new budget year starts on July 1, Shoreline will be without:
- Four current classified employees and another eight positions that are now vacant or will be due to retirement;
- One part-time faculty advisor and another five faculty teaching positions that are now vacant or will be due to retirement;
- Three administrative exempt employees and one more position that will be open due to retirement.
Even those losses weren’t enough to fill Shoreline’s share of the budget hole, Campbell said. “We’re also shifting some positions to non-state funding sources, or ‘soft money,’” he said. In most cases, the funding source won’t make a substantive difference to job duties although there could be some changes.
The shifts include two administrative exempt positions and two classified positions that will have all of the salaries paid from non-state funds. In addition, another administrative job and two more classified jobs will have some state and some non-state funding.
The losses of employees and positions necessitate a restructuring of the college in some areas, Campbell said. The restructuring redraws reporting lines and reallocates job duties where needed because of the cuts. In all, 16 such changes were announced at the Friday meeting.
“This is the proposed plan,” Campbell said. “The next step will be for President Lambert to take it to the Board of Trustees for their final approval.” The trustees will review the reduction plan and budget during a special meeting the week of June 7 with final action expected at the June 23 meeting.
In the following Q&A session, Cynthia Johnson read a prepared statement about her department, the Center for Business and Continuing Education (CBCE), which is slated for significant reduction. The budget reduction plan calls for the elimination of Johnson’s position, and four others.
In her comments, Johnson outlined four of what she called erroneous assumptions about CBCE. Her points included information about the lease of space at the Lake Forest Park Towne Center, concerns over profitability and student count, how CBCE fits into the overall college mission and whether cutting her position contributes to reducing state-funded expenditures.
John Backes, vice president for academic affairs, acknowledged Johnson’s comments, noting that it is the overall budget impact of CBCE that had to be considered. After the meeting, Backes said that a proposal by Johnson to preserve the program is being reviewed.
On being learning centered
Shoreline Community College will start moving toward becoming a learning-centered college.
Learning to learn
Early steps on the learning-centered path are scheduled in the comin weeks and during summer quarter, said Tonya Drake, vice president for student success. They are:
1:30 – 3 p.m.
Thursday, May 27
PUB Room 9202
Wednesday, June 2
PUB Main Dining Room
For details visit: http://servicelearning.shoreline.edu/
Multicultural Understanding Course
Online, non-credit course
Thursday lunch meetings
12:30 – 1:30 p.m.
The good news is that it may not have to move very far.
During the Friday, May 21, 2010 all-campus meeting, Vice President for Student Success Tonya Drake and faculty member Betsey Barnett, tag-teamed on a primer about being learning centered and what it could mean at Shoreline.
“Back in the day, there was lots of exploration about learning, discussion about learning,” Barnett said. Since then, she said, concerns over budget and student counts have blurred that focus on learning. “There are still those concerns, but what can we, you and I, do? We can’t do anything.
“What can we do? Refocus on what we do here, focus on learning.”
Drake said the idea is to be more than just focused on learning for students, but to include employees and everyone at the college. “It’s about becoming a learning community,” she said.
Drake used three examples to illustrate her point. First, was student Ava Munson, recently named as a New Century Scholars, one of 20 in the U.S. Munson’s experience at Shoreline, Drake said, includes her family and life experiences, the in-class learning, the extra-curricular activities all resulting in changes of identity, meaning and purpose.
Drake made similar points about Shoreline employee Chris Melton and then used a recent student-sparked, college-supported food drive as an example of “what can happen when the entire college community comes together.”
Barnett said the process isn’t so much a change as a “slight shift in focus.”
“We’re already doing much of this,” Barnett said. “We have this history, this reputation.”