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Las Positas College

Las Positas College's Planning and Budget Cycle

Las Positas College believes in a clear, transparent, and accountable planning and budget cycle.  The timing of the activities and processes of the planning and budget cycle was developed to align with the state budget cycle as well as regulatory requirements for the adoption of the College’s budget.  The planning and budget cycle is comprised of four processes: Program Review, College Planning, Resource Allocation, and Budget Development.  In addition, assessment of planning and budget occur throughout the whole cycle to ensure the effectiveness of the activities and processes.

Program Review Process

Program reviews are written each fall, summarized by division/area, and forwarded to the Institutional Planning and Effectiveness Committee.  Each program in the areas of instruction, student services and administration completes a Program Review at least onceevery three years, with updates written during intervening years. In this review, programs describe their achievements, struggles and future plans. They draw on data from a number of sources: institutional data regarding enrollment and success, external data from the governmentor advisory boards, and internal program data such as surveys or student interviews.  Program Review is amajor locus for reportingand reflecting upon Student Learning Outcomedata and incorporating that data into program planning.  Program Reviews are read by the Program Review Committee and division deans. Each dean (or vice president when appropriate) then writes a division Program Review summary, with the help of the program review committee. This Dean's Summary is reviewed by the members of the division who may suggest revisions. The finalized Dean's Summary is sent to the Institutional Planning and Effectiveness Committee for use in creating college planning priorities.

College Planning Process

In the Spring, the Institutional Planning and Effectiveness Committee determines and drafts next year’s recommended planning priorities to the President.  Planning priorities are based on a review of planning documents (e.g., Mission, Vision, and Values Statements, and Strategic Plans), college assessments (e.g., Program Reviews, SLOs, institutional research), and external mandates (i.e., State, Federal, and ACCJC).  The President reviews the recommended planning priorities and determines which planning priorities will be adopted by the College.  The President has the discretion to modify the language contained in the planning priorities.  The President announces the adopted planning priorities for the following year in May or early in the next academic year.  Planning priorities help guide the budget and allocations for the following year.

Resource Allocation Process

Resource Prioritization Committees review and prioritize resource requests based on College Mission, goals, and planning priorities.  Prioritized resources are forwarded to the President and executive staff for review and determination of alignment with college planning priorities; once this has occurred, the President approves the resource allocations that he or she has determined to have the greatest alignment with College priorities and are fundable.

Budget Development Process

Budget assumptions are developed early in the spring on a basis of several inputs:  the governor’s proposed budgets, apportionment reports, resource priorities identified by the resource prioritization committees and College planning priorities; the Administrative Services Office uses this information to create the tentative budget.  The College Council, interfacing with the executive staff, reviews the tentative budget to ensure there is integration with planning priorities.  Once the College Council has provided feedback, the President works with the executive staff to finalize the budget and forward it to the District Office for review and approval by the Board of Trustees.

Assessment of Planning and Budget Cycle

Assessment is important to ensure the College has an effective planning and budget cycle. The role of College Council is to determine the degree of integration of Planning and Budget, including whether there is alignment between planning priorities and resource allocation.  The role of the Institutional Effectiveness Committee is to determine if the processes that make up the Planning and Budget Cycle are effective.