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The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

City College’s Academic Senate adopts resolution of no confidence in Chancellor Brian King

Members of the Academic Senate hold a vote Tuesday, Dec. 5, 2023 to move forward with City College’s resolution of no confidence in Los Rios Community College District Chancellor Brian King during their last meeting of the year. Photo credit: Nick Shockey / nshockey.express@gmail.com
Members of the Academic Senate hold a vote Tuesday, Dec. 5, 2023 to move forward with City College’s resolution of no confidence in Los Rios Community College District Chancellor Brian King during their last meeting of the year. Photo credit: Nick Shockey / [email protected]

City College’s Academic Senate adopted a resolution of no confidence in Los Rios Community College District Chancellor Brian King at its board meeting Tuesday, Dec. 5. The resolution was unanimous among those present.

The Academic Senate is a group of City College faculty who make recommendations to the City College administration and to the Los Rios Community College District Board of Trustees on various academic and professional matters. 

The resolution of no confidence happened right before the meeting was set to adjourn and after one Senate member rose to leave. With the resolution, the Academic Senate urged the district’s Board of Trustees to take swift action to remove Chancellor King from office. 

King, who was not present for the vote, is currently a finalist for the position of chancellor for the San Diego Community College District, according to The American River Current newspaper. King did not respond to a request for comment as of press time.

The resolution comes as a result of a White Paper created by the Academic Senate, a draft which highlights concerns since May 2022 relating to King’s leadership and what the authors say indicate a series of evading responsibilities and accountability as chancellor, according to the paper. 

The white paper lists several concerns and incidents as evidence to this claim, and was first presented to the District Academic Senate in May 2022. City College was the first campus to submit such a document, according to City College Academic Senate President Sandra Guzman. 

These concerns include a failure to meaningfully consult with City College’s Academic Senate on academic and professional matters dating back to 2018, a pattern of lack of transparency with the board and others, undermining the autonomy of college presidents by centralizing key offices who previously reported to them, and empty promises regarding equity and anti-racism measures.

The City College vote of no confidence is in support of the American River College Academic Senate, which had formalized their vote earlier this semester.

A large factor in the ARC vote of no confidence was a recent incident where the Chancellor’s Office had, according to the City College Academic Senate’s Vote of No Confidence document, for over a year knowingly failed to alert students, faculty and the general public of vital safety issues of ARC’s Davies Hall — namely pressing concerns of a risk of collapse in the case of a natural disaster or building remodel. According to ARC’s VNC document, it was not until Sept. 7 of this year when the district informed faculty and rushed to push classes online in the two weeks following.

By withholding this information, the letter states, “LRCCD leadership knowingly placed the lives of students, staff, faculty, and the general public in jeopardy for well over a year, resulting in psychological harm to members of these constituent groups, and representing a catastrophic failure in leadership for which we believe there are now limited remedies.”

During a previous City College meeting on Tuesday, Nov. 28, Academic Senate member and professor Illana Johnson of the Behavioral and Social Sciences division mentioned the moratorium on all Native American remains and cultural artifacts issued Oct. 4 as potential evidence supporting a lack of accountability. Johnson felt Chancellor King’s brief announcement and lack of clarity regarding the moratorium as it was unfolding “has shown a failure of leadership. What I’ve experienced coming from the Chancellor’s Office is absolute disarray, zero knowledge on the subject, and changing their minds all the time.”

The district requires that at least two colleges come forward to present a vote of no confidence in order to potentially move the issue forward to the Board of Trustees, who are in charge of hiring Los Rios chancellors, according to Guzman.

The next step is for a resolution of no confidence in King to be presented at a District Academic Senate meeting, which is the official voice of Los Rios faculty, and is composed of members from each of the Los Rios community colleges. The next meeting is scheduled for Jan. 23, 2024.

The Express will continue to follow this developing story. Check back here for updates.

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