AP 4021 Program Discontinuance - Administrative Procedures, Chapter 4 Academic Affairs

  • Reference: Education Code Section 78016; Title 5 Sections 51022, 55130
  1. Ohlone Community College District is committed to supporting programs that fulfill the goals of the mission statement as outlined in the College Strategic Plan. Only programs with low or declining enrollment, decreasing demand for service or clear obsolescence shall be considered for discontinuance, once the following criteria have been considered.
    1. Primary consideration should be given to the service the program provides to the college and to the community.
    2. Budget considerations should not be primary.
  2. When a declining trend has been identified in a specific program, The Vice President of Academic Affairs, after consultation with the Division Dean, may identify an instructional program for possible discontinuance by sending a written notice to both the College President and the Faculty Senate President. The Vice President shall provide appropriate supporting evidence in the formal “Notice of Program Identification”. This may include, but is not limited to, one or more of the following:
    1. Statistically significant decline in class enrollment throughout the program in four consecutive semesters*.
    2. A consistently low enrollment over four consecutive semesters*.
    3. Statistically significant decline in, or consistently low rate of student success.

    *Note: If the program’s courses are sequential and the beginning course(s) in the sequence only enrolls new students annually, then over a 3-4 year period.

  3. Upon receipt of the written notice from the Vice President of Academic Affairs, the College President and the Faculty Senate President shall form a Task Force consisting of the following:
    1. Vice President of Academic Affairs
    2. Faculty Senate President
    3. Division Dean of the affected program, appointed by the VP of Academic Affairs
    4. Division Dean outside the affected program, appointed by the VP of Academic Affairs
    5. Faculty member from the affected program, appointed by the Faculty Senate
    6. Faculty member outside the affected program, appointed by the Faculty Senate
    7. Counselor, appointed by the Faculty Senate
    8. UFO President
    9. Classified staff member, appointed by CSEA or SEIU
    10. Student, appointed by ASOC
    11. Curriculum Committee Chair
  4. The Task Force will review the data presented in the Notice of Program Identification. The group should also collect and discuss additional data as appropriate. This may include, but is not limited to the following:
    1. Needs of the community
    2. Data on program access, enrollment, retention, and completion.
    3. Impact on other campus programs
    4. Impact on other college courses
    5. University transfer trends
    6. Program Review findings and recommendations
    7. Local labor market information
    8. Data on employment of program students within the field
    9. FTES generated by program
    10. Other funding sources, such as grants or contributions from business and industry
    11. Requirements of licensing or accrediting agencies
    12. Review and comments by the Local Workforce Investment Board
    13. Advisory Committee recommendations
    14. Core indicators from the Chancellor’s office
    15. Availability of qualified faculty to teach courses in the program
  5. After reviewing the pertinent data, the Task Force shall make, in writing, one of the following recommendations, with supporting rationale, to the College President:
    1. The program may remain in effect.
    2. The program may remain in effect with a revitalization plan.
      1. The Task Force should define the responsibilities of both the college and the discipline faculty in the revitalization plan. The plan should be a joint effort and not the responsibility of the faculty alone. Revitalization efforts may include, but are not limited to independent reviews, outside consultants, and/or targeted advertising for the program.
      2. Whenever possible, the focus should be on “early and timely” help for the program.
      3. The Task Force will forward recommendations for revitalization and a timeline for improvement in a written report to the appropriate Division Dean.
      4. If there has not been a significant program improvement during the recommended timeline, the Task Force determine the appropriate course of action from the following:
        1. Give the program an extension of two semesters. At the end of the extension, the committee will reconvene and reevaluate.
        2. Accept the program in its current state, if it serves a community, instructional, or training need.
        3. Create a new revitalization plan to improve recruitment and enrollment. This plan will then be implemented over the following three semesters.
        4. Discontinue the program.
    3. The program should be discontinued.
      1. If it is determined that the program should be discontinued, there will also be a recommendation for a phase-out period to ensure that all students in the program have the opportunity to complete the program or transfer to a related program.
      2. Provisions will be made for adequate notification of affected faculty and the UFO to ensure resolution of any contractual issues to comply with Ed Code.
  6. Upon recommendation by the College President, the Board of Trustees shall make the final decision regarding the discontinuance of an instructional program.

Faculty Senate Approved: May 2007
Adopted: May 2007