Some BC programs suffering from budget cutbacks
February 17, 2010
Filed under Campus
While categorical programs at Bakersfield College may be protected from local budget cuts, DSP&S, CalWORKS, CARE and EOPS are still facing deeper cuts from the state level.
According to Chris Yatooma of the State Chancellor’s office, categorical programs receive their own funding separate from general funding from the state.
“Right now, the state provides about $4600 per credit student from the general fund,” he said. “Categorical program funding is a set-aside of state dollars dedicated to a set program or category to support student services or other support activity outside the usual funding stream.”
Angelica Gomez, director of the DSP&S office, expressed her concern that the funding may continue to dwindle.
“The college can’t shut us down though,” said Gomez. “Only the state chancellor’s office can do that.”
However, Gomez conceded that the state office can still take action if they don’t feel the programs can continue to run as they have been.
“We, [DSP&S], are not a required program,” said Gomez. “We can be completely terminated and that’s the state’s right to do. Students need to realize, however, that if that happens, the college is still responsible for mandating accommodations and making sure those accommodations are available to students.”
Gomez indicated that the state attempted to pull all four programs into a block grant, but the measure failed.
“A block grant simply means that all four programs would have been combined into one, and the money would have been distributed to one program instead of four,” she said. “We’re all crossing our fingers that block grants continue to fail, because that would seriously jeopardize our programs.”
Gomez also wants students to be aware that DSP&S is still operating at BC until the state orders its removal, and that the process to become a DSP&S student hasn’t changed except for the testing location.
“All the Finlinson Assessment Center is doing is proctoring our tests which we used to do in our office,” said Gomez. “Students need to understand that to be approved into our program, their disability must be verified by a medical physician.”