City College of San Francisco was placed on warning status this week by its accreditor, the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.
In a Tuesday letter to Chancellor David Martin, the accreditor said the college was falling short on several standards, including the governing board considering the “long-range fiscal implications when making financial decisions,” acting “in a manner consistent with its policies and bylaws,” and allowing the chancellor to administer board policies “without Board interference.”
“If the institution cannot document that it has come into compliance within the designated period, the Commission will take adverse action,” Mac Powell, president of the commission, and Lori Gaskin, chair of the commission, wrote in the letter.
The college has until January 2027 to come into compliance and is required to give the accreditor a report on how it plans to address problems by March 2025.
The college has had a history of problems, including long-term enrollment declines, administrative turnover and controversial faculty layoffs. It has also wrestled with financial troubles and eventually clawed its way to financial solvency. The college faced an accreditation crisis in 2012 but ultimately had its accreditation reaffirmed for seven years in 2017. That period has now passed.
The college also had a change on its board in 2022, when three candidates backed by the college’s faculty union won in an election.
Anita Martinez, one of those members and the board’s vice president, sent a five-page rebuttal to the accreditor’s visiting team in October when it came to the findings that would result in a warning, the San Francisco Chronicle reported. The letter argued the board couldn’t cede “complete” authority to the chancellor but was “quite conscious” of the need to plan for the college’s long-term health.