Winter, 2000  Vol. XXIX, No. 2

CHANCELLOR REED TO STATE CONFERENCE LAST NOVEMBER 6th

Thank you for that kind introduction. Thank you for inviting me; I appreciate that invitation. I want to thank every one of you for your contributions to California State University, for your commitment to continue those contributions through this organization, and for what you all have done over the years for this university. I can tell from the folks I talked to here tonight of your passion and your commitment and of your love of the California State University. There were a few cheaters over here on this side talking about the crown jewel being Chico. I would tell you there are 23 crown jewels in the CSU, for what they do for the people of California.

I am proud to say that the California State University is the economic engine of the workplace of California.

Since we prepare 62% of teachers, almost 70% of the nurses, 65% of the engineers, computer scientists, more than half of the business leaders, it means that this university is tied to California's economic future. Now, we are great friends of the University of California. I like to kid the UC a little bit; there's only eight or nine of them. They do some really great and interesting and showy things, but as far as preparing the work force for this state, we do about ten times the heavy lifting.

In giving speeches, Winston Churchill always said to keep them short. That is good advice. It was an accident that I gave a lengthy speech one time; but it was to three thousand people, and it wasn't what they wanted to hear. And so they were throwing stuff at me, spitting on me, as I walked off the stage. It was a reform speech to the American College Coaches Association Athletic Directors of America about cleaning up collegiate sports. I had just been through two big scandals as Chancellor in Florida, so I decided to let them have it.

There are about six things that I would like to share with you tonight and talk a little bit about, and some of these things you all have faced in your service to C S U. The first thing is what the CSU is going be facing for the next ten years.

Over the next ten years, the California State University is going to experience tremendous growth. It's called "Tidal Wave 2." Clark Kerr coined the term "Tidal Wave " when the baby boomers were coming through the CSU and the University of California. In the 1960's, you were growing at 15% to 18% rates. It was a miracle that this State was able to provide access to everybody in California who wanted an opportunity to get a Baccalaureate. So that was accomplished and that was what made the CSU and UC famous all over the world -- the access and opportunity to earn a Baccalaureate degree. Well, as the baby boomers have gone, they've created the baby boom echo. And it is here -- it's "Tidal Wave 2." It's alive this year and will be with us for the future. Together, (CPEC, the Finance Department, the Governor's office, the Legislature, and us), we have tried to estimate, conservatively, enrollment for UC, CSU, and community colleges over the next ten years. This conservative prediction uses the going-to-college rate of the last five years to look forward ten years. Now, that rate really is not much to write home about. You know that more people ought to be going to college in the next ten years because of the demands for jobs, but the estimate has left the rate as it has been during the past five years.

This estimate creates an expectation that the CSU will have to increase its enrollment by at least 130,000 students in the next ten years. Those numbers also suggest a 42 percent increase in undergraduate enrollment. We currently have 360,000 students - and this year’s enrollment was even higher than we had anticipated. Well, someone said, "you have ten years, and that doesn’t sound too bad." That’s about a 4%, 4 1/2% annual increase.

Let me tell you what that really is. That’s about 12,000 or 13,000 additional students every year for the next ten years, conservatively. That’s like putting a new Dominguez Hills in place every year. That’s hiring that many faculty members, buying that many library books, that’s equipping that many laboratories, that’s advising, taking care of that many students. This is going to be the great challenge to California State University in the next decade

Now I am an optimist. I think we’re up to it. We have to, because, in this day and age, in this society, and in this state in particular, the ticket to a future is a Baccalaureate degree. You cannot get a good job today if you don’t have a college degree. What I worry about are all those people out there who don’t have an opportunity to get a college degree and what they might be doing... at night, or early in the morning.

So, what are we going to do? First of all, with your organization, you should know, this past year, we appointed 1000 new faculty members. We’ll be appointing at least 1000 new faculty members every year for some years to come.

We are worried somewhat because the legislature and the governor supported an enriched retirement bill and lowered the retirement age to 55 for full retirement in 30 years. I was at the Asilomar conference with Gene [Dinielli, CSU Academic Senate Chair] this week, and there were a lot of faculty members who came up to me to say that this is a very attractive retirement package that has been put in place. So if we have that turnover and we are growing at the same time, we are going to be doubly hustling out there to find new faculty members.

What are we going to do? It means that the California state University has to change the way it has been doing business in the past. There are two or three different things that I think we’re going to have to do if we are to go into the 21st century as a modern, well=planned organization and have any chance at all to serve 130,000 more students. Here’s what we have to do.

First, we need to operate our 23 campuses more days of the week, more hours of the day. That includes weekends,

because there are a lot a people who want to

attend college who are working full time. They can go to school on Friday, Saturday, and probably Sunday, but they can't go other days of the week. Doing this would increase the capacity that we have.

The second, and probably the biggest change that we're going to have to make, is that we need to operate our universities all year round. I have some experience with being able to do that. And so we're going to operate 12 months of the year. That means that we need to hire more faculty members, we need to pay the existing faculty members more money, and we need to convince the legislature and the governor to fund all of our students all of the time.

The biggest single surprise to me on coming to California from Florida was that the CSU didn't operate the year around. And, not only that, but the legislature doesn't fund it to operate year round. In other words, if you take American History in the summertime, you pay three times as much for it as if you took it in September or January. That doesn't make any sense at all. Why would we want to discourage people from getting through college faster and from accomplishing their objectives in a shorter

amount of time? I don't have any idea. A legislative committee didn't have a very good answer to that. So we're going to go all out to secure year round funding.

We have 2 million dollars to allocate to the universities to do the planning necessary to covert to year round operations. Third, we've got to expand the capacity of our existing institutions. As you know, two or three new institutions have come on line in the last 5 to 7 years, CSU Monterey Bay, CSU San Marcos, and, hopefully, CSU Channel Islands, or Camarillo. We can expand the capacity of our current institutions. For instance, in Chico, we're looking at buying some additional property that's not very far from the campus. Where we can do that, we will. Capacity is limited by campuses being land locked and by other problems. We know that on some of the campuses water is a problem, and we can only take care of so many students because of the amount of water we have there. So, we'll have those problems.

Fourth, we need to build a few more branches and centers. It is the least costly way to expand capacity. I don't think that in the next ten years we can build any

additional universities. They're just too expensive and there's too much infra- structure and too much operating cost.

I was at Coachella Valley, in Palm Desert, which is an hour and fifteen minutes away from San Bernardino. They have a thousand students down there going to school right now, full time. The gross rate of population increase they're going to have is about 10% a year. Where are these people going to go to school? If you look toward San Diego, there's only one university in the southern part of San Diego County. There are a lot of students there, towards the border, and we think we can serve some of these students with a branch or center. So, we're proceeding that way.

Now, in addition to this tidal wave of students, we've got our work cut out for us to continue with the same level of budget that we've had probably in the last couple of years. This year, we've asked for $244 million dollars of new money. That sounds like a lot of money, but it goes pretty quickly, divided 23 ways. Also, it will cost a little over $80 million just to serve the 14,000 additional students this year.

But, with the new technology required for all disciplines to be able to be on the cutting edge, we must put the technology infrastructure in place. We’ve got to buy all of that equipment, all of the software all of the time. In other words, our technology has to work 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, with the help desk open. Today, students go to school at night and work during the day. They go on Saturdays and Sundays, using that computer. We have web-based courses now that are serving them, and we also have digital library assistance that they can access, not only in California, but throughout the U. S. It costs a lot of money for us to be able to do that.

We also need to pay our faculty a much more competitive wage. The state has fallen way behind. It surprises me that we don’t have an optional retirement system, so that people can come from other places and bring their retirement plans with them. Or, Californians should be able to go elsewhere and come back, keeping their retirement plans in place. That costs money, and we’ve got to be able to find the means to do that in order to be competitive to recruit the best faculty members that we can find.

 

Now, the other thing that we've been working on with the governor and the legislature is a compact, which really is nothing more than a moral commitment from the political leadership of the state, to say that if you do these things, then CSU will commit to an accountability process, that we will be more accountable to the legislature and to the people of California.

If the political leadership will provide funding at a base of 4% and fund our enrollment increases, we can plan for "Tidal Wave 2." If you can count on funding, year-by-year, you can build quality, and you can build for the number of students. In return for this, we have said that we are going to operate the universities and make them more accessible to students. We're going to improve our retention of the students, and we're going to be able to show what employers say about our graduates.

Now, there are two other big things that we're spending our time on, and I think we have the right agenda at CSU. At our table tonight, we talked about both of these things. The first thing is that I have asked the entire CSU and all of the faculty, and frankly the students, also, to focus on the CSU improving the public schools of California. There is nothing that the CSU can do that is more important. Ninety eight percent of our students come from California K-12 schools. So, if we improve the public schools, we improve the CSU. Students will come to us at higher levels, and they'll leave us sooner at a higher level. So, focusing on public school education is a direct responsibility of the CSU. It's in the master plan for the CSU to do the teacher education preparation. I've asked all of our institutions to do several things, but there are two very clear goals. Produce more teachers and do it better. More and better. On the more side, we have launched a major recruitment plan. I hope that you will see it on your cable television channels this winter because we're spending $2 million dollars to recruit youngsters into the teaching profession. We have two -- no, four ads -- they're in English and in Spanish; they’re aimed at 17 to 25 year-olds. We did a lot of polling and focus groups. Why did they want to become teachers? Not because of the salaries; second or third on their lists. They want to do something to help other people. So, our ads are aimed that way. The second ad is aimed at people in mid-career who want to change their lives. The inquiries about admission have increased rapidly. We staff an 800 number 24 hours a day. There have been over a million hits on our web site.

The Trustees and I have committed ourselves to produce 25% more teachers in 2000 than in 1998, and we are on schedule.

We just hit 25%; we have no room to lose anybody. On the other side is the five year credential program. One observation that I got by reading transcripts and talking to students is that it was taking our students from six to eight years because of the type of students that we have.

Now, other places prepare teachers very well in four years. I talked to our students; it’s not five years, but six to eight years, because they are part-time. If, in their fifth year, they go out to an elementary school or a high school, and they find that they don’t even like kids, that's way too late. If it’s going to take six to eight years, my advice to a student is to become a doctor or a lawyer. The pay is better. So, what we now say is: if you want to become a teacher, let's get you into real life laboratories, and let's give you a chance to learn how to teach at the same time you learn what to teach. And if we can take teacher training and learning the content and put them together, our students will become better teachers. So we have redesigned our teacher preparation programs, and I feel very good about what we are doing.

We know that a high performance teacher in a classroom is the single most important thing in that classroom. If there is a high performance teacher, students will achieve. If they have a poor teacher, students will regress. You read about and you hear about how important it is to set high standards, set new standards, change the curriculum, lower class size; all that kind of stuff. We’re going to do everything we can to produce better teachers, and at the same time, help school districts with their present work force.

This past summer, the CSU took on the responsibility of helping reeducate 8,000 reading teachers. Next summer, we’re going to help with 8,000 more, and the summer after that with 8,000 more. We know that if students can learn to read by the third grade, they have a pretty good chance

of making it through school.

Now, there are a couple of other things that we're working on in partnership with the schools. Every week I go some place and, yesterday, while I was in the Coachella Valley, I asked for the superintendents and some principals in that region to meet me. I asked the school districts to do two things: teach reading across the entire curriculum all the way through the 12th grade, and require all students to take algebra and geometry.

Don't stop teaching reading when you get to the 5th grade. That's what we do now. The saddest thing in the world is to go to a high school and find kids who can't read and who are graduating. They will want to go get a job after graduation, and I'm not talking about a job at Boeing, but a job as a security guard. The other side of this is to ask students to write something everyday, not a term paper, or a theme, but write a paragraph about what they have read. Ask students to write a letter, to write a page. The only way you learn to write is by writing. You can't learn to write by taking true/false tests.

The state is requiring all high school students to take algebra and geometry. Now, let me tell you what we currently teach in California high schools. We teach "almost algebra," "maybe a little math," "some days a little math," but it's not algebra and it's not geometry. Now that's not fair to students either.

Then I saw a group of students from Northridge come to a trustee meeting in July. They were students in a remedial program, and these young people were mad as hell. They were slamming their fists on the podium and saying: "You're not being fair to us when you're putting these standards in place because I took every course I was told to take in high school." And you know, that's probably right. They did. And they took those other "math" classes. So we're trying to get across that it has to be algebra and geometry.

There's one other phenomenon in California that I find interesting; nobody takes anything in the 12th grade, especially mathematics. Even good students don't take math in the 12th grade. It is a long time from June of your junior year to September of your first year in college and you just forget. So, I'm asking the superintendents, the school boards, to make students take mathematics, algebra, algebra II, geometry, and trigonometry in the 12th grade. If students do that, they'll pass our entrance and placement exams. They'll graduate from college and they don't even have to look at an SAT or ACT exam. If I look at a high school record, and they have a "B" average and they took this set of core courses, I know they'll do okay. So, we're going to try to do that.

Now, we're producing 50,000 brochures or big, colorful, posters. They start in the 7th grade and go 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, and 12. In the middle, they say if you want to go to the California State University, here's what you need to do. And we're going to send 50,000 of these to the middle schools, the junior high schools and high schools of California. When students look at them, they're going to see math all the way around the corner; they're going to see English, history, writing, and those kinds of expectations and we're gonna push as hard as we can.

This year, we received $9 million dollars from the legislature and we're asking our faculty members to build a relationship with the 232 high schools in California that send us the largest number of students needing remedial education. We want our faculty to build a relationship with the faculty of those high schools, to take our placement exams and sit down and say, "Here is what your students are doing. What can we do to help with achievement in English, writing, and math?" We're going to work as hard as we can this year with those 232 high schools.

About 54% of all the students that we admit as first-time college students require some form of remedial work. That's too many. So, we have got to do something about that and that is the focus back on improving public schools, building a partnership, and setting the expectations. Because if we do that, then our business schools, nursing schools, engineering schools, all will be much better off.

That's the agenda of the California State University and, again, let me thank you for your long and dedicated work, your commitment to the CSU and just let me ask you to do this. Spread the good word in your communities about what CSU is doing and continue to do so, because if you do that, you'll help us every day.

 

 

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