Pierce College, established in 1947 as Pierce College of Agriculture and now a more comprehensive and prestigious institution, is being seriously threatened. Its democratic future is being endangered by an unfair, autocratic proposal: the dismissal of 17 undeniably qualified and conscientious teachers.
This proposal has been imposed--impudently, arbitrarily and unnecessarily--by the Los Angeles Community College District's downtown administration. These 17 are but one small portion of 142 community college instructors to be discharged. The famous (or infamous) "March 15 letters" have officially apprised them of their dismissals.
This so-called "streamlining" by the downtown office is totally unwarranted. It is supposedly designed to rid the colleges of so-called "unnecessary" classes and to provide a more "balanced" curriculum. It proposes to institute other courses ostensibly more popular and appealing to students--such as business, vocational and computer sciences classes. It also intends to drop teachers in historically low-enrollment courses (such as German) and even in such traditional courses as history. This orientation toward more "functional" type courses will totally change the character of Pierce College and will make it more and more similar to West Valley Vocational Center across the street from Pierce. This needless repetition is preposterous, particularly when who is to say how long these currently "popular" classes will be in favor?