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SB-770 California Community Colleges: pathways to law school programs.(2021-2022)

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Date Published: 05/20/2021 09:00 PM
SB770:v96#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Senate  May 20, 2021
Amended  IN  Senate  May 05, 2021
Amended  IN  Senate  March 10, 2021

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2021–2022 REGULAR SESSION

Senate Bill
No. 770


Introduced by Senator Roth
(Coauthor: Senator Cortese)

February 19, 2021


An act to add Part 53.5 (commencing with Section 88750) to Division 7 of Title 3 of the Education Code, relating to community colleges, and making an appropriation therefor. colleges.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


SB 770, as amended, Roth. California Community Colleges: pathways to law school programs: appropriation. programs.
Existing law establishes the California Community Colleges, under the administration of the Board of Governors of the California Community Colleges, as one of the segments of public postsecondary education in the state. Under existing law, the board of governors appoints the Chancellor of the California Community Colleges to serve as the chief executive officer of the segment. Existing law authorizes the governing board of a community college district to enter into a College and Career Access Pathways partnership with the governing board of a school district with the goal of developing seamless pathways from high school to community college for career technical education or preparation for transfer, improving high school graduation rates, or helping high school pupils achieve college and career readiness.
This bill would appropriate make $10,000,000 from the General Fund available to the chancellor, and would require the funds to be used to expand upon appropriation in the annual Budget Act, for the purpose of expanding pathways to law school programs. The bill would specify that this purpose includes, but is not limited to, supporting opportunities for dual enrollment partnerships between community colleges and local high school law academies, implementing partnerships with the California State University system that incorporate associate degree for transfer programs, expanding existing transfer agreements with the University of California, and providing student advising and guidance to help participants in the Community College Pathway to Law School initiative successfully transfer into the California State University or the University of California. The bill would authorize the board of governors to contract with the Foundation for California Community Colleges to provide administrative support for the expansion of these pathways. The bill would require, on or before July 1, 2025, the office of the chancellor to submit a report to the appropriate budget and policy committees of the Legislature regarding outcomes resulting from the use of funds.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: YESNO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 (a) The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:
(1) The state’s attorney workforce does not accurately represent the diversity of the state, which can significantly impact administration of justice, access to appropriate representation, and workplace satisfaction.
(2) According to the statistics published by the State Bar of California, despite significant growth in the proportion of attorneys who are women and people of color over the past 30 years, California’s attorney population does not reflect the state’s diversity, with Latinos being particularly underrepresented.
(3) Additionally, according to the State Bar of California’s “First Annual Report Card on the Diversity of California’s Legal Profession,” White attorneys account for nearly 70 percent of California’s active licensed attorney population, while people of color constitute 60 percent of the state’s population.
(4) These same statistics are reflected in the judicial branch. While there has been increased focus on diversity within the ranks of justices and judges, White judges account for nearly 66 percent of justices in the trial courts, courts of appeal, and the California Supreme Court.
(5) A statewide initiative was established in 2011 through the California Partnership Academies focused on high school law academies, with a specific mission of building a diverse educational pipeline from high school to law school. Brought together through a unique partnership between the State Department of Education and the State Bar of California, this pipeline has expanded to include higher education partners with the creation of the Community College Pathway to Law School initiative. In 2015, California LAW (Leadership, Access, Workforce) Pathways was formed to merge both statewide initiatives and is housed at the Foundation for California Community Colleges.
(6) Since its inception, California LAW Pathways has grown to include agreements with 21 high school law academies, 30 community colleges, 10 undergraduate four-year universities, and 10 law schools.
(7) California LAW Pathways is designed to fit seamlessly into the existing educational system.
(8) California LAW Pathways uses the framework of the highly effective California Partnership Academies for underrepresented students, and is designed to align with the “Vision for Success” of the office of the Chancellor of the California Community Colleges.
(9) There are currently more than 700 community college students and 3,000 high school pupils enrolled in the program statewide. Of these high school pupils, 87 percent are underrepresented minorities and the program has a 98-percent graduation rate.
(10) California LAW Pathways creates a model pipeline to help close the diversity gap in the state’s attorney workforce population.
(b) Therefore, it is the intent of the Legislature to enable more students to participate in pathways to law school programs and diversify the future workforce in the state.

SEC. 2.

 Part 53.5 (commencing with Section 88750) is added to Division 7 of Title 3 of the Education Code, to read:

PART 53.5. Pathways to Law School Programs

88750.
 (a) For the 2021–22 fiscal year, the sum of ten million dollars ($10,000,000) is hereby appropriated from the General Fund shall be available to the Chancellor of the California Community Colleges.
(b)The funds appropriated pursuant to this section shall be used Colleges, upon appropriation in the annual Budget Act, for the purpose of expanding pathways to law school programs programs, which may include, but is not limited to, all of the following:
(1) Supporting opportunities for dual enrollment partnerships between community colleges and local high school law academies.
(2) Implementing partnerships with the California State University system that incorporate associate degree for transfer pathways that will prepare students for a career in the legal profession.
(3) Expanding existing transfer agreements with the University of California that will prepare students for a career in the legal profession.
(4) Providing student advising and guidance to help participants in the Community College Pathway to Law School initiative successfully transfer into the California State University or the University of California.

(c)

(b) The Board of Governors of the California Community Colleges, or its authorized designees, may contract with the Foundation for California Community Colleges for the purpose of providing administrative support for the expansion of pathways to law school programs.

(d)

(c) (1) On or before July 1, 2025, the Office of the Chancellor of the California Community Colleges shall submit a report to the appropriate budget and policy committees of the Legislature regarding outcomes resulting from the use of funds pursuant to this section, including, but not limited to, the number of students participating in pathways to law school programs, the demographics, graduation, and success rates of those students, and transfer pathways established.
(2) This subdivision shall remain in effect only until January 1, 2026, and as of that date is repealed.