By Doug Ford
At last someone in Californian education is approaching long-needed reforms in the way I have long been advocating. Eloy Ortiz Oakley is the first Latino educator to lead the California Community College (CCC) system, selected in July 2016 and installed as chancellor on Dec. 10, 2016. He was with the Long Beach Community College District (LBCCD) from 2002 to 2016, serving as Superintendent-President from 2007 to 2016. Under his leadership the LBCCD “received numerous awards and recognitions for its efforts to improve student completion rates and for directly supporting a strong business and entrepreneurship eco-system throughout the greater Southern California region” (California Community Colleges, Chancellor’s Office biography).
The best-known initiative he is recognized for is the Long Beach College Promise, worked out by partnering with the Long Beach Unified School District (LBUSD), and California State University at Long Beach (CSULB). Through the College Promise, “LBUSD administrators and high school teachers work with college faculty and staff to create clear structured pathways for students to follow as they move from one education institution to another.