So…The Disappearing Crossing-Out-“Public”Item…Awkward Turtle…

So I was dutifully trying to do my job yesterday (I say trying becuz it’s pretty common opinion that i’m not very good at my job) and looking through all the agenda items for the upcoming Regents meeting at UCSF this week (#MarchRegents) when I noticed something…

…You know how the SF Chronicle reported that there was going to be a policy eliminating the word “public” out of the policy governing Professional School Student Fees?

It disappeared.  It’s not on the agenda for the upcoming Regent’s meeting.  Serious.  Otherwise, it’d definitely be on our briefing for the upcoming Regents Meeting. But even on the agenda at the UC Regents website, it’s not there.  And no, it’s not happening behind closed doors, because the Student Regents would still receive materials on it, and it’d still be listed as an item on the agenda.  So we would still know, and tell ya’ll about it.  But it’s not on the agenda.

So to be entirely clear – there is no item upcoming in the Regents meeting that is asking the Regents to strike the word “public” from the Professional School Student Fee policy.  We don’t know what happened to it, we’re looking into it.  It does seem that some kind of proposal like that may be floating around in the UC mist, but it’s definitely not concrete on the agenda.

Which doesn’t mean people shouldn’t talk about it at the public comment section of the meeting, I mean, it’s still totally appropriate to express your opinion about the matter.  It should just be noted though, that at this particular meeting, such a proposal is not on the table.  I hope that cleared up some confusion!

I know…disappearing item…awkward UC turtle…

Response: So also, I think it might be a good debate/dialogue to have with a really good response from UCLA GSA, who posts their opinion here, or as said in their tweet: @UCRegentLive Not so much disappeared as changed. Policy is the same. Method of making the policy is slightly different.  I’d like to respectfully disagree, not because their logic of the mechanisms of the J2G item is necessarily wrong, but because I think the 1) intent is different between the policy presented to the regents in item J2G and the policy discussed in the article, and 2) there is an inherency difference between the two policies.

I think the intent of the J2G policy is not to destroy the “public” in the professional school policy…I outline the thoughts with the J2G policy (aka Clarification of the UC Student Fee Policy) in this briefing.  It’s my belief that the intent is really to defend the UC against lawsuits like Kashmiri v. Regents or Luquetta v. Regents.  This is significantly different than the intent with the policy outlined with the SF Chronicle article, which is to expressly be able to pass professional fee increases without needing to call it an exception.  J2G item described, even when passed, will probably still need professional fee increases to still call for an “exemption”

Also, it’s significant to note that the policy that was called for in the SF Chronicle is an actual policy change, that would change the language of the policy.  The Item that UCLA GSA refers to is…literally a “clarification”.  The UC already believes that the paragraph in the “Clarification of the Student Fee Policy” is in action, they just wanted to actually write it out so they can have more legal protection to something they already practice.

So I wanna end this with the idea that  I could be completely wrong, which is an experience that is common to me.  But this is my first impressions of the policy in question (By SF Chronicle), that it is actually not on the agenda.  But I think UCLA GSA’s point is interesting and should be considered!  Thank you!


6 responses to “So…The Disappearing Crossing-Out-“Public”Item…Awkward Turtle…

  1. Philippe Marchand

    Hi Jesse,

    From the version I saw (and I’m only a lowly Berkeley GA officer and not a Regent), it seems that they are not removing “public”, but adding “private”.

    – Before: Professional Degree Fee proposals must include comparisons to tuition and fees from comparable public institutions.
    – After: the comparison is with comparable public and private institutions.

    But really the result is just the same, no? Even if the SF Chronicle might have been wrong (not the first time) on the exact language.

    One problem with a direct comparison to private institutions fees is that is evades a number of different parameters in which public and private institutions differ. The amount and distribution of financial aid in the student population, the state funding, etc.

    In any case, I can assure that people in student associations are being cynical that this is just ex post facto justification of the fee increases of the fall that were made despite the existing policy.


    • Hi Philippe!

      haha, no doubt tho, if you’re a grad student at berkeley, you’re definitely smarter than the current student regent-designate. 😀 to address some of your comments, what I meant when I said that the “item had disappeared from the agenda” was literally that no policy proposal dealing with professional school fees was on the agenda.

      The nearest one was Item J2G, which was more about whether the professional school student fee policy was a contractual obligation, and didn’t change any of the comparison language.

      I definitely believe that the points you made are valid, and still relevant to the UC – the only thing I was commenting on is that no such policy is being proposed in this upcoming Regents meeting.

      i’d definitely appreciate any comments you have on the matter!

  2. You’re writing is terrible. Please stop referencing vague colloquialisms and expect the readers to understand them. Also its helpful if you do not assume that people read every single word you type, contextualize the information you present.

  3. I sincerely do apologize for my terrible writing. The referencing of vague colloquialisms is unfortunately how I speak, but I completely understand that they make for very difficult reading, and will refrain from the use of “awkward turtle” in the future.

    I will also work to contextualize the information I present – it’s difficult because these is an extensive amount of context that goes with a lot of this information – I try and contextualize it through links to other websites that give a deeper picture. This particular blog post was also written pretty late into the evening, and so probably was not done the appropriate amount of justice it deserved.

    In either case, I appreciate the constructive criticism, and will work to improve the writing in the future!

  4. hey! Also! I just rewrote the post to be more clear and more contextualized! I hope it helps! You can check it out here!

    As always, appreciate the constructive criticism!

  5. Pingback: UC Regents Meeting Starts Today « Student Activism

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