This District can lead when it chooses too, but it often gets left behind as other community college systems lead on important issues and AB 705 is a perfect example of this dynamic. AB 705 is a piece of research-driven legislation that is intended to make major changes to the way California's community colleges place students in English and math courses in order to increase student success.
The Campaign for College Opportunity released a progress report on AB 705 implementation in December 2019 that showed only 2 of the District's 9 campuses as strong implementers of AB 705's reforms and that strength was in English only.
Since the Campaign for College Opportunity studied the issue, the District has made great strides implementing AB 705 across its campuses. The District has a very thorough AB 705 guide written for students that outline's each college's placement criteria.
There is a leadership lesson in the Campaign for College Opportunity's analysis that I want to highlight. The lesson from AB 705 implementation isn't that only 2 of the District's campuses started out strong with these reforms. The lesson is that the most successful region in this state – the Central Valley – led on these reforms because they were thoughtful, proactive and collaborative about it. Leadership in the Central Valley mobilized communities of interest and they made a real difference for their students.
With new leadership on the Los Angeles Community College District Board of Trustees, we can mobilize Los Angeles in service of our students.