Changes in summer courses begins summer 2013

Students can begin enrolling in summer semester classes at Cosumnes River College based on their priority level beginning April 22.

When searching the class schedule for the summer semester, students may notice a decrease in the number and type of courses that will be available.

“We’ve gone to one full academic year that starts in the summer so it’s a more integrated schedule in terms of how the department chairs and the deans look at what they schedule and staff,” said Whitney Yamamura, vice president of instruction and student learning. “Within that, deans and department chairs have made individual choices about what to offer in the summer.”

These decisions are not made lightly and involve a great deal of discussion.

“There has been quite a bit of thought put into which courses are going to be offered over the summer,” said Kale Braden, president of the Academic Senate.

The difference between courses offered last summer and this summer is not simply a cut in the number of courses available but also which courses are being offered.

“We’re really focusing on the three elements that the state has identified which would be the basic skills, transfer and career and technical education courses,” Braden said. “We’re really focusing on those key courses that could be barriers to keeping students from being able to complete.”

California community colleges have faced difficult decisions in dealing with budget cuts over the past few years.

“There have been campuses in the southern part of the state which have simply canceled summer school all together,” Braden said. “We’re nowhere near where some of the other colleges have been.”

Things are beginning to look up not just for CRC, but for community college campuses around the state.

“With the passage of prop 30 things are better but we’re still waiting to pull out of the downward trend,” Braden said. “It’s kind of like we’re leveling off at this point.”