Repeatability legislation to limit retaking classes in June

Thinking about re-taking one of your favorite classes? Well you should consider taking it this coming spring because as of June 1, the repeatability of certain courses will no longer be permitted in the Los Rios district.

Repeatability of active participation courses, such as classes in physical education, visual arts, performing arts and others, will no longer be allowed. In the place of repeatability there will be a family, of progressing courses of which a student can take up to four, according to mandates from the California Community College Chancellor’s Office.
Judy Beachler, the Dean of Instruction and Student Learning at Cosumnes River College, explained the concept of a family of courses.

“Using Piano as an example, where the family is Piano I, Piano II, Piano III and Piano IV, Piano V, Piano VI, students are allowed to take four of the six courses in the family,” said Beachler.

This legislation will come into affect almost a year after the most recent change of school policy in regards to the repetition of classes, also known as the three-strike policy.

The three-strike policy means that “if you have already attempted a course three times, you will not be able to enroll in that course again (even if you are planning to take it at a different Los Rios college),” according to the CRC website.

The policy, enacted summer of 2012, means that any total of three “F,” “W,” or “D” grades in a class will remove the possibility of taking the class a fourth time. This policy is also retroactive, meaning that all past academic attempts are included and counted towards the three-strike total.

Beachler explained that the two pieces of state-mandated legislation, the repetition of courses and the repeatability of them, will work in conjunction with each other come June 1, 2013.

“Repetition affects repeatability,” Beachler said.

If you are confused, you’re not alone.

While still nine months away and in a constant state of change, the general idea is that a strike in the three-strike policy will count as an attempt at one of four possible classes to be taken in a family, in regards to repeatability.

Theater Professor Frank Condon, who has been teaching at CRC for the past 18 years, has two classes affected by repeatability, both beginning and advanced acting.

“For students who are interested in developing the craft of acting, I believe it hurts them,” Condon said.

The students themselves seem to agree.

“How are you supposed to develop your skills as an actor if you can’t take the class over and over?” asks Jenny Cox, a 19-year-old theater arts major.

However, all is not set in stone and school districts across the state are working with the Chancellor’s Office to plan out how certain classes will be affected by the new rules.

A few classes are exempt from the legislation, such as work experience and expanded learning courses.

Individual student exceptions will be made if classes are required by a legal mandate or an employer.

With state-wide budget cuts to public education and the approaching vote on California Gov. Jerry Brown’s Proposition 30, CRC is “responding to a current climate,” said Celia Esposito-Noy, the Vice President of Student Services and Enrollment Management.

As of now the administrative goal of CRC is to ensure that students are completing their degrees in a rapid manner.

However, as the year progresses students should not worry they are being left in the dark, as CRC is “committed to keeping students informed as it [the legislation] develops,” said Esposito-Noy.