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Monday, September 14, 2009

Monday, September 14, 2009

UC Student Association Endorses Walkout

UCSA's Statewide meeting at UCLA this weekend endorsed this resolution by what we are told was an unanimous roll-call vote. There is now a link to the official version.
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Resolution in Support of the September 24th UC-Wide Walkout

WHEREAS, In an effort to close the budget gap, the University of California Regents in July declared a state of fiscal emergency, afforded UC President Yudof emergency powers and approved his furlough plan and extraordinary budgetary revision.

WHEREAS, The existing budget plan will institute mandatory and elected furlough days for all workers, staff and faculty, pay cut reductions between 4 to 10 percent, major cuts to programs and student services, major cuts to in-state enrollment, layoffs, the elimination of positions, workload increases, increasing class sizes, tutoring reductions coupled with library closures, in addition to multiple and catastrophic increases in student fees in continued divergence from the principles of the California Master Plan for Public Education.

WHEREAS, UC President Yudof's budget plan will perpetuate the privatization of the UC system and neglect its goals of educational access, affordability and shared governance. Thus, it is counter to both transparency and accountability of decision-making to the community it strives to serve by increasingly placing the burden on students, workers, graduate student employees (GSE's) staff and faculty.

LET IT BE RESOLVED, that the University of California Student Association is of the opinion that
-Furlough days are detrimental to the educational experience and overall mission of the University of California
-No furloughs or salary reductions should be imposed on those who make less than $40,000
-The 9.3% fee increase imposed for the 2009-2010 academic year is highly objectionable and the proposed mid-year fee increase is contradictory to the UC’s dedication to accessibility
- The UC budget needs to be fully disclosed and there needs to be transparency in decision-making
- Shared governance and the democratic process should be respected
- The University should return to the Master Plan

LET IT BE FURTHER RESOLVED, that for the aforementioned reasons the University of California Student Association will participate in the UC system-wide Walkout on September 24th.

LET IT FINALLY BE RESOLVED, that the University of California Student Association stand in solidarity with workers, GSE's, staff and faculty and actively build coalitions with these groups for the purpose of the UC system-wide Walkout on September 24 and the continued defense of the future of public education in California.

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

Good.

But actually we are told that all undergraduates with annual family income below $180,000 had the previously approved (combined) 9.3% fee increase fully covered, through a combination of gift aid increases and tax credit expansion. And now again, Pell grants and Federal tax credits are going up quite a bit, so it looks as if return to aid should cover UC students just as before.

Kevin said...

"Return to aid" is a heavy tax on middle-class students. If the state is unwilling to support students, why are the other students being taxed so heavily to provide access to the most impoverished? There should be no return-to-aid in student fees---instead all state funds should be used for financial aid, and fees should be set at the real cost of providing instruction.

Anonymous said...

kevin, when you say "fees should be set at the real cost of providing instruction" - do you realize that could be double what it is now, or more?

Kevin said...

Yes, I think that fees should be set at 2-3 times what they are now, and all state funds to the university directed to financial aid to bring the cost back to reasonable levels. It should be very clear that the state is supporting students, rather than that they are supporting "the university".

This would likely result in a much more equitable allocation of funds than the current system, in which UC Berkeley gets about twice as much per student as UC Santa Cruz. It would be much harder for UCOP to hide the finances if each campus got to keep all its tuition, and all that UCOP spread around was financial aid.

Anonymous said...

I think Kevin's idea is worthy of exploration. What I like about it at first glance is that it calls a subsidy a subsidy, and thus exposes the giant subsidy to the better off middle class and welathy that is the UC System.

In a better world I would rather that we stick with the older idea of a public university for purposes of public good, and thereby support higher education for all who want it. But we do not live in that world at present.

I don't think we should give up on the idea of public good. Rather, we need to think strategically about how we can restore the currency of the public good in our political system. I think the way to do that is to pull the subsidy out from under the better off free riders so that they realize they were benefiting (and could once again benefit) from a generous definition of the public good.

I am not the anonymous above, but another anonymous

Aldo Antonelli said...

Kevin's idea is worth exploring, but we should be aware of what it entails, namely the complete privatization of UC. It would also be difficult to justify giving financial aid to students who choose to attend UC but not those going to Stanford or USC.

Kevin said...

I was aware that honest pricing would look like privatization, but it looks like the state is going to privatize us whatever we do, simply by cutting funding until the dribble of funds from the state will have no useful effect, though the legislature will still want to control everything we do. I don't see that much harm in the state subsidizing California residents to go to other California schools---the number of students that the existing private schools in California could "steal" from us is relatively small.

ingrid said...

well, first of all i'm glad some action is finally being taken about the problem of UC tuition. it has been unbearable for a long time. i graduated in june 09 and in my time at uci i saw the amount of classes i need drop, less services, more tuition, and less financial aid. also, someone mentioned that there would be more pell grants, etc. that's not the point. the point is that the UC needs to be more transparent, if students knew where most of their money is going (and most does NOT go to pay your teachers or student services) they'd be even angrier than they are now.

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