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Letters: Two-tiered fee system won't work

June 14, 2013

Re "Community college stopgap," Editorial, June 11

Setting up a two-tiered fee system in our community colleges would fundamentally shift the responsibility for funding increased access to colleges from the state to students.

AB 955 would create a toll lane that gives students who can afford to pay about $200 a unit — rather than current fee of $46 — access to courses that lower-income students cannot. Fee waivers granted to our neediest students could not be applied to these pricier courses.

Last year, voters in California wisely passed Proposition 30 and sent a strong message of support for public investment in higher education and against increases in student fees. Thanks to Proposition 30, colleges have the funding stability and resources necessary to begin adding back course sections that will provide access to those needing education and training.

Creating a system of haves and have-nots is no way to educate our state.

Brice W. Harris

Sacramento

The writer is the chancellor of California's community college system.

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