Peralta Community College District's Only Student-Run Publication
Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

Students discuss their work in class at the MESA center at American River College on April 25, 2024. (Photo: Cristian Gonzalez/CalMatters)
California boosts spending to help students earn math and science degrees
Li Khan, via CalMatters • July 9, 2024
Carpentry instructor spruces up department
Carpentry instructor spruces up department
Rym-Maya Kherbache, Staff Writer • April 24, 2024
Archives
Breaking: PCCD appoints former San Leandro police chief to Interim Executive Director of Public Safety
Breaking: PCCD appoints former San Leandro police chief to Interim Executive Director of Public Safety
Abdul Pridgen will lead the district’s community-based safety program
Li Khan, Editor in Chief • June 21, 2024
Student Trustee Natasha Masand believes her voice has the power to impact the PCCD community.
Student Trustee Natasha Masand finds her voice
Isabelly Sabô Barbosa, Social Media Editor • March 19, 2024
Archives

    Student funding (finally) gets hearing

    Trustees respond to Oliver’s strong plea

    An ongoing complaint of Peralta procedures regarding student funding got a major hearing at the Nov. 18 Peralta Trustees meeting. 
    Student Trustee Carl Oliver asserted that district “procedures and policies are made up out of nowhere,” citing a request by a Merritt student government official to attend a conference that was turned down by the campus business officer. 
    Oliver, who is also student body president at Laney College, noted that “education code 76063 states that student organizations will determine their own procedures for spending funds.” He then revealed that other (Peralta) student government funds “were moved to the district, although they (student governments) did not approve the funds to be moved.” 
    Sounding exasperated, Oliver continued: “I’ve emailed about this to pretty much half the people in this room. I didn’t get much of a reply. I’ve gotten no communication about why these funds were moved. We did not approve it.”
    The student trustee then said he’s getting complaints from students about law enforcement on campus. “I’ve learned that law enforcement is allowed to suspend students without speaking to administrators. Students have been suspended, they’re away from their classes for two weeks, they come back. They basically have to drop their classes. And they never needed to be suspended in the first place.”
    Oliver announced a Town Hall discussion he has planned on “Law Enforcement on Campus” for Wednesday, Dec. 3, from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in the Laney College Forum for all Peralta students. “Everyone will have two minutes to speak about their feelings about law enforcement on campus.” Oliver has asked the Alameda County Sheriff officers that patrol the campuses to attend and address the concerns of the students.
    Quick to respond to Oliver was Trustee Abel Guillen. “These are pretty serious concerns that were shared and I don’t think they follow the procedures that the district has in place.” Guillen then addressed Chancellor Jose Ortiz. “Could you please look into this and be sure that proper procedures are being followed.” Ortiz responded, “We’ll follow up on that.”
    As for the suspensions, Guillen said, “That’s an academic matter and not the purview of law enforcement.”
    Trustee William Riley weighed in addressing Vice Chancellor of General Services Sadiq Ikharo: “On the issue of suspensions brought up by the student trustee. Is it possible to get an update (on the situation) within 24 hours?”
    Ikharo: “Yes we can.”
    Trustee Nicky Gonzalez Yuen returned to the issue of student funds. “Trustee Oliver has been raising this issue of funding and student funding for over a year. I think this issue is ripe. I’m tired of hearing this and I’m sure Trustee Oliver is tired of saying it. I think it would be appropriate at this point to get a report at the next board meeting of the status of student funds. I’d like to see this on the next agenda.”
    The funding and suspension discussions were followed by the annual campus security report with its list of presentations.

    Clery Act reveals district’s crime stats

    Lieutenant Craft spoke about the campus police efforts to help uphold the Clery Act, which updates the public about the sexual assault cases reported annually on college grounds across the nation.
    Police officers provide patrol to the Laney campus, and there are currently seven deputies who work with the Peralta district. Their jobs include giving out citations and keeping students safe. The matter at hand for officers is to also include a report that outlines any sexual assault cases. 
    Sergeant Dave Varnell analyzes and keeps track of the data. While there have been no sexual assault cases since 2011 at Peralta, his presentation showed a modest number of burglaries, assaults and over 3,000 calls of service in the past year.
    The 612 arrests made in 2013, the assaults and the burglaries in the past year, were attributed by Lt. Craft to the district’s size in. Peralta district is larger than Contra Costa and other community colleges, and only four officers work in the morning from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.; then three officers work 3 p.m. to 11 p.m. All deputies are given the weekends and the holiday time off. “The department has seen a substantial cut in staffing as of late,” said Lt. Craft.

    About the Contributor
    In the fall of 2019, The Laney Tower rebranded as The Citizen and launched a new website. These stories were ported over from the old Laney Tower website, but byline metadata was lost in the port. However, many of these stories credit the authors in the text of the story. Some articles may also suffer from formatting issues. Future archival efforts may fix these issues.  
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