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Legislation and Policy

Using Criminal History Records in Hiring: CCCCO Legal Guidance

The California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office released Legal Advisory relating to the use of criminal history in hiring. The purpose of the Advisory is to provide a survey of the applicable laws, and to suggest approaches to employment decisions that will help community colleges comply with their legal obligations.  

Chancellor’s Office Legal Opinion on Residency of Formerly Incarcerated Students

The California Community College Chancellor’s Office of the General Counsel released a legal opinion on residency regarding students who were moved out of state during incarceration. 

Don’t Stop Now: California leads the nation in using public higher education to address mass incarceration. Will we continue?

This new publication applauds the unprecedented growth in the number of California?colleges teaching in correctional facilities and reaching formerly incarcerated students in the community, but warns of failure if the state does not focus on quality and sustainability.

List of Regionally Accredited Post-Secondary Institutions

Under Prop 57, incarcerated students can earn Educational Merit Credits (EMC) when they successfully obtain a GED, high school diploma, Associate of Arts or Science degree, Bachelor of Arts or Science degree, or a graduate degree (Masters or Doctorate) while incarcerated. In order to be eligible for Educational Merit Credits for obtaining a college degree, the degree must be earned from a regionally accredited institution. Here’s a list of all regionally accredited institutions. 

Connecting With your Local Community College

The California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office released a prospective student mailer which details foundational information for anyone interested in registering at their local community college. This document includes information on eligibility, community college benefits, and mentions support services for formerly incarcerated students, specifically.

CCCCO Expenditure Memo 2016-2017

Here is the California Community College Chancellor’s Office expenditure memo, which outlines the guidelines allowing for increased flexibility with Basic Skills, SSSP, and Equity funds. The Chancellor’s office encourages colleges to apply these funds to supporting formerly incarcerated students. 

CLASP’s Reconnecting Justice: Lessons Learned and the Agenda Ahead Report

The Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) published a report, by Duy Pham and Wayne Taliaferro, that illustrates key takeaways from their October 2016 forum, Reconnecting Justice: Pathways to Effective Reentry through Education and Training. The report focuses on the intersections of criminal justice, incarceration, and education, the positive impact of investments in correctional education, job training and supportive reentry services for communities with high incarceration rates, and includes federal and state policy recommendations. This report includes examples from California’s legislation and model practices in correctional education.

Textbook Reimbursement for Community Colleges Teaching in State Prisons

This memorandum provides information regarding available funds for colleges teaching students that are currently incarcerated in state prisons. A total of $3 million is available to colleges to provide textbooks or digital course content to students under the jurisdiction of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) who are enrolled in one or more California community college course.

New “Excused Withdrawal” for Incarcerated Students: Revision to Title 5

The California Community College Chancellor’s office has issued a revision to Title 5 allowing colleges to assign an “EW” to incarcerated students who are involuntarily transferred or released early. Read more to learn how this revision can impact your students. 

California Community Colleges Fair Chance Hiring Policy Summary

On February 8th, the California Community Colleges Chancellor issued guidance on Fair Chance Hiring Best Practices (Policy Guidance) following the December 2018 Chancellor’s legal advisory (Office of General Counsel Advisory 2018-04) regarding the use of criminal history records in hiring, promotion and retention decisions by the community colleges and districts. The policy guidance and legal advisory together pave the way for California’s higher education system to expand employment opportunities for people with arrest and conviction records.