College board adopts academic standards for student fee waivers |

College board adopts academic standards for student fee waivers

Griffin Rogers

Students accepting fee waivers at California community colleges will soon need to meet minimum academic requirements to receive the financial assistance, following a decision by the California Community Colleges Board of Governors on Jan. 13.

Effective fall 2016, students will need to maintain a 2.0 GPA or higher for two consecutive terms in order to remain eligible for the Board of Governors Fee Waiver.

They will also need to successfully complete half the units attempted during the same period to retain the waiver.

Sue Saia, director of student services at Lake Tahoe Community College, said she supports the policy, as long as programs are in place to help students be successful.

“I’m a firm believer in accountability,” she said. “I think a satisfactory passing grade is completely reasonable.”

The new policy is part of a larger initiative that aims to support students, help them define career goals and stay on track.

However, it may also mean a decrease in enrollment among students receiving the fee waiver, said Aaron McVean, LTCC’s director of institutional research and planning.

‘They might not be as likely to sign up for classes if that fee isn’t available to them,” he said.

Quarter fees at LTCC are $31 per unit, and officials said about one-third of LTCC students currently have their fees waived through financial assistance.

Aaron Dartt is one of those students.

“It’s probably a good thing, to be honest,” he said of the newly adopted policy. “A lot of people take advantage of the system.”

Students need to know that they have a responsibility to keep up their end of the bargain if receiving financial assistance, California Community Colleges Chancellor Brice W. Harris said.

“This policy provides students with incentives to meet standards that will ultimately help them achieve their educational goals,” he said in a statement. “It benefits students, and it is responsible stewardship of state resources.”

Bijou Community School recruiting for bilingual immersion program

Bijou Community School has started recruitment for its two-way bilingual immersion program.

The recruitment is for the upcoming kindergarten classes, and families must complete commitment forms by March 14 to be entered into the March 20 lottery.

Necessary forms can be found on the school’s website at

The two-way bilingual immersion program combines English learners and English-speaking students so they can learn the fundamentals of two languages: Spanish and English.

In the program, students can develop their first and second languages while developing cross-cultural bonds, according to the website.

LTEMS accepting names for fall kindergarteners

The Lake Tahoe Environmental Science Magnet School is accepting applications for its fall 2014 kindergarten classes.

Parents wishing to submit their child’s name for possible selection need to do so before March 28 at 3 p.m., as the lottery will be held April 1.

In order for a child to be qualified, he or she must be turning 5 years old on or before Dec. 2. Students living in South Lake Tahoe can apply.

For more information, the school can be reached at 530-541-2850.

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