Budget cuts cause rise in SDCCD tuition costs

Dana C. Griffith, Staff Writer

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San Diego Community College District is raising its tuition costs to $46 per unit in fall 2012 as a result of the most recent round of budget cuts.
Budget cuts have caused the SDCCD to cut $31 million from their $300 million budget, so students are impacted both financially and by a decrease in the availability of classes.
These budget cuts have also caused the SDCCD to cut all summer school classes excluding specialized programs. This means students trying to quickly pass through their first two years of college will have to wait.
“The total number of classes we schedule for summer 2011 will mean the same number of classes will have to be subtracted from the fall 2011 or spring 2012 semesters,” according to Mesa College’s Academic Senate in meeting notes from April 11, 2011.
The San Diego Union Tribune reported on proposed budget cuts for this year. The superintendent of San Diego Unified School District, Bill Kowba, has called for a draft budget cut that would remove about 821 teaching jobs.
Governor Jerry Brown released his draft state budget plan, which resulted in SDUSD cutting $121.5 million from public schools’ budgets, and community colleges are feeling the burn next. Brown is pushing for a tax this November to generate money for schools. If this initiative fails, community colleges in California face a $4.8 billion cut to their budget.
The public is starting to respond to Brown’s new tax ballot measure. “Those of us that are wealthy like myself should pay more,” said Eli Broad, a wealthy LA businessman and philanthropist in an interview with the LA Times on Wednesday. This echoed Brown’s call for higher income taxes on those making more than $250,000 a year.
“There are so many human needs in education and elsewhere. And I like the fact that it’s temporary, for five years. Hopefully, by then, a lot of other things will change,” said Broad.
According to Mesa College’s website FAQs, people who are affected by the budget cuts should contact San Diego and California elected officials. Contact Governor Jerry Brown about his tax initiative at http://gov.ca.gov/m_contact.php.

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Budget cuts cause rise in SDCCD tuition costs