Amended in Assembly April 27, 2015

Amended in Assembly April 6, 2015

Amended in Assembly March 19, 2015

California Legislature—2015–16 Regular Session

Assembly BillNo. 770

Introduced by Assembly Member Irwin

February 25, 2015

An act to add Part 54 (commencing with Section 88800) to Division 7 of Title 3 of the Education Code, relating to community colleges.


AB 770, as amended, Irwin. Community colleges: basic skills innovation program.

Existing law establishes the California Community Colleges, under the administration of the Board of Governors of the California Community Colleges, as one of the segments of public postsecondary education in this state. Existing law authorizes the establishment of community college districts under the administration of community college governing boards, and authorizes these districts to provide instruction at community college campuses throughout the state.

This bill would establish a financial grant and professional development funding program, which would authorize the governing board of a community college district to apply to the chancellorbegin delete forend deletebegin insert for, and would require the chancellor to distribute,end insert multiyear financial grants and professional development funding upon appropriation of funds for that purpose,begin insert not later than 180 days after the chancellor’s receipt of the appropriation,end insert for community colleges within the district to adopt or expand the use of evidence-based models of academic assessment and placement, remediation, and student support that accelerate the progress of underprepared students toward achieving postsecondary educational and career goals.

Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: yes. State-mandated local program: no.

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:

P2    1


The Legislature finds and declares all of the

3(a) Over 70 percent of students enrolling, for the first time, in
4courses offered by campuses of the California Community Colleges
5are classified as underprepared for college-level work and in need
6of remediation.

7(b) National research has found that, regardless of incoming
8preparation levels, the more semesters of remediation students are
9required to take, the less likely those students are to complete
10college-level English and mathematics courses, which are gateway
11courses to most postsecondary degree and credential programs,
12and for transfer to four-year postsecondary institutions.

13(c) Research in California has demonstrated that relatively few
14students who enter remediation ultimately attain a postsecondary
15degree, credential, or transfer to a four-year institution, and that
16students of color are disproportionately affected.

17(d) Drawing on national initiatives aimed at increasing student
18completion of college-level English and mathematics courses,
19efforts in California have demonstrated the success of innovative
20ways to deliver English and mathematics remediation.

21(e) In those pilot efforts, students’ odds of completing
22college-level English courses more than double, and their odds of
23completing college-level mathematics courses are more than four
24times higher in comparison to students in traditional remediation.
25However, at most community college campuses, these new
26approaches are offered on a small scale and are not available to
27most students.


SEC. 2.  

Part 54 (commencing with Section 88800) is added to
29Division 7 of Title 3 of the Education Code, to read:


P3    1PART 54.  Community Colleges Basic Skills
2Innovation Program



4Chapter  1. General Provisions




A financial grant and professional development funding
7program, administered by the chancellor, is hereby established.
8The chancellor shall distribute multiyear financial grants and
9professional development funding, upon appropriation by the
10Legislature for this purpose,begin insert not later than 180 days after receiving
11the appropriation,end insert
to the governing board of a community college
12district that applies and satisfies the requirements of this part.
13Moneys allocated pursuant to this program shall be expended for
14community colleges within the district to adopt or expand the use
15of evidence-based models of academic assessment and placement,
16remediation, and student support that accelerate the progress of
17underprepared students toward achieving postsecondary educational
18and career goals.



(a) The governing board of a community college district
20may apply for funds pursuant to this part for the purpose of making
21more effective, evidence-based practices available to significantly
22more underprepared students who enroll at campuses of the
23California Community Colleges. A community college within the
24district may receive funds for purposes of implementing these
25evidence-based practices for the first time or expanding
26evidence-based practices that are in effect as of the date of the
27district’s application for funds.

28(b) The evidence-based strategies implemented or expanded
29pursuant to subdivision (a) shall include innovative basic skills
30improvement strategies that have demonstrated effectiveness in
31accelerating the progress of underprepared students toward, and
32increasing the number of underprepared students who successfully
33achieve, one or more of the following goals:

34(1) Completing a college-level English or mathematics course,
35or both, within a three-course sequence or less.

36(2) Earning eight units applicable to a college certificate or

38(3) Earning a college certificate or degree approved by the
39California Community Colleges.

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(a) In order to receive a grant, the governing board of
2a community college district shall demonstrate in its application
3for funding that the community colleges that are to participate in
4the grant program will redesign their curriculum, career pathways,
5assessment and placement procedures, or any combination thereof,
6to implement, or expand the use or application of, one or more of
7the following practices and principles:

8(1) Adopting placement tests and related policies that include
9multiple measures of student performance, including grades in
10high school courses, especially overall grade point average, and
11input from counselors.

12(2) Increasing the placement of students directly in gateway
13English and mathematics courses and career pathways
14supplemented by remediation.

15(3) Aligning content in remedial courses with the students’
16programs of academic or vocational study to target students’ actual

18(4) Completing a college-level English or mathematics course,
19or both, within a three-course sequence or less. Students pursuing
20mathematics-intensive courses of study may require a longer
21sequence of mathematics coursework.

22(5) Contextualizing remedial instruction in foundational skills
23for the industry cluster, pathways, or both, in which the student
24seeks to advance.

25(6) Providing proactive student support services that are
26integrated with the instruction provided.

27(b) Each participating community college shall be responsible
28for all of the following:

29(1) Developing a plan based on one or more of the
30evidence-based principles and practices described in subdivision
31(a) that demonstrates a clear strategy for ensuring that all of the
32following occur within a five-year period:

33(A) A significant share of the underprepared students who enroll
34at participating community colleges within the community college
35district achieve one or more of the three goals listed in subdivision
36(b) of Section 88805.

37(B) Underprepared students who are enrolled at the community
38college achieve the goals listed in subdivision (b) of Section 88805
39within a shorter time period than before the implementation of this
40part at the community college.

P5    1(2) Ensuring that its faculty participate in professional
2development regarding academic programs or new curriculum
3developed or expanded pursuant to this part, using grant funds to
4support that faculty participation.

5(3) Annually reportingbegin insert until 2024end insert to the chancellor’s office on
6program outcomes, disaggregated by demographic characteristics
7of its students, for purposes of measuring progress compared to
8 the community college’s performance before its implementation
9of this part. These reports should include all of the following:

10(A) The number and percentage of underprepared students
11served by the grant program.

12(B) The number and percentages of these underprepared students
13achieving each of the three goals listed in subdivision (b) of Section

15(C) The number of faculty involved and faculty needs regarding
16the innovation and operation of courses pursuant to this part.

17(c) The chancellor’s office shall be responsible for all of the

19(1) Administering the grant program, and distributing and
20monitoring awards to recipient community college districts.

21(2) Developing application criteria, administrative guidelines,
22and other requirements for purposes of administering the grant

24(3) (A) Aggregating, analyzing, and reportingbegin delete annuallyend delete the
25information submitted pursuant to paragraph (3) of subdivision
26(b) to the Legislature on the progress of the grant program in
27achieving its prescribed purpose.begin insert The report shall be issued every
28other year, commencing with the first year the Legislature
29appropriates funding for this purpose, until July 1, 2024. The
30initial report shall be due to the Legislature on or before the end
31of the fiscal year in which the Legislature initially appropriates
32the funds for this purpose. In subsequent years, the report shall
33be due to the Legislature on or before July 1.end insert

34(B) begin insert(i)end insertbegin insertend insertbegin insertThe requirement for submitting a report imposed under
35this paragraph is inoperative on July 1, 2028, pursuant to Section
3610231.5 of the Government Code.end insert

P6    1begin insert(ii)end insertbegin insertend insert A report to be submitted pursuant to this paragraph shall
2be submitted in compliance with Section 9795 of the Government