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
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%
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
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
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
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 ½ 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
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.