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Faculty Union Sues to Block Sanctions Against City College of San Francisco


The Chronicle of Higher Education.  September 24, 2013.  The California Federation of Teachers on Tuesday filed a lawsuit that seeks to block the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges fromrevoking the City College of San Francisco’s accreditation next year. The city attorney of San Francisco filed a similar suit last month, but the union’s lawyer said the new suit hits the commission with accusations that go beyond what was alleged in the city’s complaint.

The union asserted that, among other things, the commission was biased by conflicts of interest. It also accused the commission of voting to revoke the college’s accreditation earlier than its own policy allowed. The federation was joined in the suit by the American Federation of Teachers Local 2121, which represents City College faculty members.

The commission itself came under fire last month, when the U.S. Department of Education warned it that it was out of compliance with several federal regulations, saying that it could face its own sanctions if the problems were not fixed within a year.

On Tuesday, the commission issued an unsigned response to the lawsuit that said: “The public needs to know that there is a federal regulation that mandates that an accrediting body terminate the accreditation of an institution found in noncompliance with any standard or provide a timeframe of no more than two years for the institution to bring itself into compliance.”

The three-paragraph statement credited the college’s leadership and “some faculty and staff” with working hard to comply with requirements, while “others appear to be trying to reverse the commission’s actions rather than meet accreditation standards.”

The commission said it hasn’t seen the lawsuit and could not comment on its specifics.

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