Community Colleges May Suffer With Budget Deal

Schools Face More Class Cuts, Fee Hikes

Educators and students of all ages are wondering how much schools will be affected by the state's budget deal announced Monday.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and four key lawmakers hammered out a compromise that will go to the full Legislature on Thursday.

Included in the tentative deal is $15 billion in cuts as well as borrowing.

In the tentative agreement, $9 billion would be taken from K-12 schools and community colleges over a two-year span.

"I think students shouldn't be taking the brunt of our economic crisis," said Mesa College student Ravare Rupert.

Students at Mesa College said they have already been facing higher costs to get a higher education.

Student Christian Garbutt said, "It's usually $20 a unit."

Come fall students may be faced with a $6-per unit increase, if the state deal is approved. The $26 per unit would be a college district high, which has only been seen in California one time before.

"$6 a unit can add up, especially if you are taking more than just a couple classes," said Garbutt.

Enrollment is up, but yet the San Diego Community College District said they may need to cut more than 600 classes by the fall semester.

In the last year and a half, 600 classes had already been cut from the San Diego Community College District, with 200 classes cut this summer alone.

Many students said they are losing out on precious time because of the cuts.

"I had to waitlist three different classes. I finally got one of them but it was a whole big struggle to get in," said student Seth Rosenthal.

Student Tanisha Jordan said, "At City College, I couldn't get any classes."

Jordan commutes 10 minutes to Mesa College, but she said the trip is now eating at her pocketbook.

"It's ridiculous; gas is expensive, its costs … it's getting crazy," said Jordan.