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Teachers and students snacked on cheese, fruit and pastries as they discussed strategies to keep students from failing during the weekly “Whine and Cheese about AB-705” meeting on Oct. 25.
The meeting commenced at 12:30 p.m. and is held in the CTX Conference Room 201 on the second floor of the library.
AB-705 is a law that took effect on Jan. 1, 2018, and states that community colleges in California are obligated to make sure their students complete coursework at transfer level within one school year.
For Cerritos College and other community colleges all over the state, AB 705 means that students cannot be denied from taking transfer-level courses unless the school can prove that they will likely fail.
Professor Niki Lovejoy-Robold, who organizes and leads “Whine and Cheese” meetings, states, “This is an open space for faculty, students, staff, managers to share challenges or issues they’re having with the AB-705 implementation.”
The gathering started with a “whining period” in which participants shared how they are affected by the passing of the law and concludes with a dedicated time to strategize methods with which they can address the issues mentioned prior.
Instructors at the discussion expressed that they find it increasingly difficult to support individual students that enter the classroom at different levels of education as a result of AB-705.
Students approach professors and ask for help with time management and understanding the source material better. However, instructors discussed that students may fail despite the support they receive, leaving the professors with a sense of guilt at possibly not having helped enough.
Students often say that instructors “don’t know what it’s like at home,” and while that might be true, teachers explained, they are willing to work with students to find a solution to whatever problems they may be facing.
While some expressed disadvantages caused by the passing of AB-705, others said they are glad to not have to take remedial classes and just take those needed to transfer into a four-year university.
Students that return to school after long breaks described how remedial classes helped them remember what they learned years prior.
“I think they should remove these classes for students that are coming straight out of high school and keep these classes for people like me, adults that are returning to school after many years of absence,” said Olivia Medrano, a nursing major that returned to school after a 20-year break.
The next “Whine and Cheese about AB-705” meeting is on Nov. 8 and is open to students and faculty.