– In light of the California State budget crisis, Gavilan
College students may say good-bye to the usual $11 per-unit fee in
time to register for fall classes.
GILROY – In light of the California State budget crisis, Gavilan College students may say good-bye to the usual $11 per-unit fee in time to register for fall classes.
The increased fee could be as much as $7 per unit, but no one will know for sure how much the increase will be until the legislature finalizes the state budget, said Gavilan spokesperson Jan Bernstein-Chargin.
“Even though the budget isn’t finalized, we are expecting increases and this applies to people who registered at lower rates,” Bernstein-Chargin said.
All students will be affected by the increase, whether they have already registered or not, Bernstein-Chargin said. Gavilan will bill students for the difference once the state budget is passed.
“As soon as we get the word, we will send out notices,” she said. “We’re hoping we can do this by November, but we don’t know when the legislature will be finalizing the budget.”
The chancellor of California Community Colleges sent a letter on July 3 to community colleges throughout the state suggesting students be notified of possible increases which will apply to all fall classes. In response, Gavilan sent postcards to those who completed registration and is notifying all others in the registration office. Classes start Aug. 19.
“At this point we want to make sure that people are prepared. We are letting them know that this is likely and that they will be billed for the difference,” she said. “We want people to plan their budgets and plan for extra expenses.”
This may mean that more students will qualify for financial aid, and the financial aid office is prepared to help everyone in need, she said.
“Certainly, a higher fee will make it more difficult for people to attend college. We hope people will still make the sacrifice they need to make because it’s the greatest investment in their future. At the higher level, it’s still the lowest of all the nation in terms of per unit fees for college education,” Bernstein-Chargin said.
The fee increase will be used strictly to offset the state budget deficit and won’t affect Gavilan’s budget, Bernstein-Chargin said.
“I haven’t heard any complaints so far. Most students I’ve spoken to understand,” Bernstein Chargin said.
For more information, visit the financial aid office in the administration building or call 848-4727.