Minutes of Special Meeting


September 19, 2009




The special meeting of the Cabrillo College Governing Board was held at the Aptos Chamber of Commerce Museum Meeting Room, 7605-B Old Dominion Court, Aptos, California on Saturday, September 19, 2009.  Chair Rebecca Garcia opened the meeting in Open Session at 8:00 am.  Roll was taken; present were Chair Rebecca Garcia and Trustees Gary Reece, Al Smith, Rachael Spencer, Katy Stonebloom, Susan True, and Claudine Wildman.  Also present were facilitator Cindra Smith and Cabrillo College President Brian King.  Student Theo Offei joined the meeting in progress.  The agenda was adopted and Chair Garcia asked for Public Comments on non-agenda items.  There were no public comments.






Item 1. Board Roles and Responsibilities, and Enhancing Board Effectiveness and Support of Student Success


Board Self-Evaluation

Board members reviewed summaries prepared by the facilitator/consultant on the results of the constituent ratings and comments, board member ratings and comments, and a comparison of ratings from 2008 to 2009.


Successes and Accomplishments

Board members noted a number of accomplishments during the past year, including:

  • hiring a new VPSS,
  • facilities that are on the road to completion,
  • maintaining a positive image of Cabrillo in the community, and
  • participating in the budget subcommittee and the deliberative process of making budget cuts.

The board members generally work extremely well together, are open and listen to each other and to constituents. They are committed to the success of Cabrillo College and its students.


Board Role in Change

Members discussed the impact of the poor economy on the college, and their role in leading change to maintain a positive culture at the college. Topics included:

  • Present a positive, united voice. When disagreements occur, they will be respectful. Board members will support board decisions, once they are made.
  • Focus on the “big picture”; avoid making piecemeal decisions.
  • Support presidential leadership.
  • Trust the college’s decision-making process.
  • Ensure ongoing and open communication, which is more important in times of change.
  • Engage in, support and appreciate thoughtful, information-based recommendations; avoid emotional and personality-based discussions.


“Needs Improvement”

Discussion included areas where evaluation indicated “needs improvement,” including:


Student services goals and program evaluation


Board meetings and interpersonal dynamics


CEO Evaluation


2008-2009 Priorities

Members reviewed the board priorities adopted at the November 2008 meeting, noting that they were ambitious and that circumstances have caused some realignment of priorities.


Board Role in Student Success

Members discussed the CLASS project and the topics covered in the August CLASS Institute. They explored some definitions of student success including: students set and achieve their goals, course learning is aligned with stated course outcomes, students expand their expectations, and they follow through to completion.


They discussed possible data and information that would help the board know whether students are being successful, including completion rates, persistence to goal, and achievement data (e.g. transfer rates, basic skills progress, etc.). They expressed a desire to learn more about gathering and using data to monitor student success.


Members reviewed the characteristics of institutions that foster student success as listed in the “Top Eight” Reasons for Achieving the Dream, noting the particular importance of #3 during budget reductions: “Planning and budgeting (including reallocation of resources) are aligned with the vision and values of a student success agenda.”


Finally, discussion included the desire to know more about and to reinforce and support practices that foster student success, such as quality teaching and student support services, tutoring, full-time enrollment, educational plans, tracking and preventing multiple drops.


DRAFT Priorities for 2009-2010

Members indicated they desired a small number of key draft priorities for 09-10.


Draft Priorities related to District Goals

  • Continue to monitor the fiscal situation of the College and respond as necessary to ensure fiscal viability.


  • Strengthen the focus on student success and role of the board in creating an environment that supports student success. Specific actions include, but are not limited to
    • Assure that budget allocations are aligned with practices that support student success.
    • Better understand available data and how to use them for data-informed decision-making.
    • Be more knowledgeable about and support current practices that foster student success.
  • Continue to expect and monitor strategic plan implementation, including monitoring KPIs. Delegate authority to the President to implement the strategic plan given budget constraints, and hold him accountable to making progress on the goals.
  • Monitor that the structure of student services is designed to effectively and efficiently support student success; provide support for new VPSS efforts to strengthen student services.


Priorities for Board Functioning

  • Maintain effective board functioning and respectful communication.
  • Become more knowledgeable about student success and the board’s role.
  • Strengthen “data-informed” decision-making at the board level; assure that recommendations and board reports focus on how college operations contribute to student success.
  • Continue to monitor board requests for information in order to provide for the best use of staff time.


Retreat Evaluation

Members appreciated the informal format of the workshop, the focus on student success, the highlight summaries of the surveys, student trustee participation, and the focus on board self-evaluation. Possible changes include better distribution of evaluation highlights, using the master plan, encouraging all board members to take the survey, and considering a new location.











The special meeting of the Cabrillo College Governing Board was adjourned at 12:00 pm.





                                                                                    Respectfully submitted,