Education Strikes Back

Nov 21, 2011

Host: Lauren Meltzer

Producer: Lisa Denenmark 

Has California’s longstanding commitment to higher education cratered? Are the state’s university systems in peril? What led CSU faculty to a historic strike last week that effectively shut down two campuses?  Recent years of budget cuts, faculty layoffs, and steep tuition hikes are taking their toll on students, faculty, and the long-term health of the state. In terms of school funding, California now hovers at the bottom of states across the U.S. Students in the state university system—California’s largest university system and the most important source of college degrees—are struggling to meet rising costs, and the loss of a year or more in completing their studies because of the lack of key classes.

How are reductions in freshman enrollment, increases in out-of-state students, overcrowded classrooms, and cutbacks in outreach, counseling, and support for disadvantaged students depositioning the universities’ strategic role at the center of California’s economy?

What is the administration up against, and what larger issues might the defunding of education link to? The past week heard students, faculty, and the public say “no” to the austerity measures, saw rallies against economic inequity and the mobilization of the discourse of the occupy movements. The show talks about the factors that led to the historic week in California higher ed and the leadership needed to get out of what some educators are calling a crisis.


  • Wei Ming Dariotis, Assistant Professor of Asian American Studies and president of the SFSU Chapter of the California Faculty Association.
  • Wendy Brown, The Class of 1936 Professor of Political Science at University of California Berkeley, and co-chair of Berkeley Faculty Association.
  •  Laurel Rosenhall, Journalist, who covers higher education for the Sacramento Bee.City Visions: