Columbia, CA — Columbia College enrollment is up this year. Columbia College Acting President, Dr. Leslie Buckalew, says “State wide we really credit prop 30, the temporary tax increase, for giving us the financial resources we need to increase enrollment.”
Before the passage of Proposition 30, funding for community colleges had been cut $1.5 billion between 2007-08 and 2011-12. During that period, course sections declined nearly 24 percent system-wide, and enrollment fell from approximately 2.9 million students to the 2012-13 headcount of 2.3 million.
Proposition 30 provided California community colleges with an additional $210 million in funds from the 2012-13 budget and another $600 million in the recently approved 2013-14 state budget for a funding total of $6.2 billion statewide.
Dr. Buckalew says, “Columbia enrollment is up 5.2 percent from last year or 44 full-time equivalent students. We have been able to extend our course offerings by about 44 sections a 10 percent increase in our fall schedule from last year.”
Dr. Buckalew also says they are creating the Spring schedule now, and Columbia will expand the class schedule by an additional 65 to 75 sections in general education.
California Community Colleges Chancellor Brice W. Harris reports 95 colleges responded to a survey which concluded; “The median percentage increase in enrollment projected at community colleges throughout the state is 2.5 percent, and colleges report a 5 percent increase in the number of course sections offered.”