Report on the Meeting of the CSU Board of Trustees

Jan. 11-12, 2000
Harold Goldwhite, Faculty Trustee


The Board met in an informal, and open, retreat in Manhattan Beach. The two newly appointed Board members, Debra Farar and Roberta Achtenberg, were in attendance as were almost all Trustees, as well as members of the Chancellor’s staff. Chair Dinielli and Past Chair Highsmith were present as observers for the Senate. In the interests of economy of your, and my, time I will touch only on items of particular interest in this summary report. Please contact me for further information.

On Tuesday evening Chancellor Reed gave an overview of the mission of the CSU and its present status. He also said that the Governor’s budget proposal for 2000-2001 was a good one for the University with a 10% increase in General Fund support, including a 5% compensation increase pool. The capital budget includes over $45 million for technology infrastructure. The Chancellor hopes to get further improvements for CSU during the budget negotiations over the next few months.

The Wednesday sessions covered a full range of agenda items. The format included informal summaries by staff followed by questions and discussion from board members.

Access: The Board reiterated its commitment to serving place-bound students at their local campuses. Capacity may be increased by more use of off-campus facilities; year-round operation, but only if acceptable financing is forthcoming from the State; technology; better articulation, including lower-division preparation for the major; and more common calendars. My impression is that there will be a move towards this last matter in the near future.

Quality: The Chancellor reiterated his call for improving the already high quality of the CSU’s programs. A critical area is teacher preparation, where there is also need for a major increase in numbers of credentialed teachers. CSU’s work on remediation is showing signs of success, and the University continues to work on this problem with K –12 colleagues. A recent study of the ELM examination may lead to some changes in the areas of mathematics in which the CSU will expect entering students to be prepared. Recent work on accountability will mean that future academic program reviews seen by the Board will include descriptions of how assessment results have been used to improve programs.

Resource issues: A new era of labor relations is ahead because of the Fair Share legislation, and a proposed change in HEERA which may no longer allow management to impose a contract if impasse is declared. CSU’s efforts to recruit are hampered by low salaries and high living costs. Recent changes in PERS may make retirement more attractive to faculty in their late 50’s, and their replacement poses real problems for us.

Communications and advancement: CSU has recently done surveys and polls on public perceptions of the University. Much remains to be done to improve the public’s information about the value of the CSU to the State. Our advancement efforts have been impressive in recent years; there still remain difficulties in contacting alumni, and persuading them to support CSU.

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