Cal State Threatens To Withhold $7 Million From Northridge Campus

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Students and faculty at Cal State Northridge are protesting new budget-related restrictions that are aimed at reducing enrollment and are making it harder to register for classes at the San Fernando Valley campus.

In the fall semester, the school enrolled several thousand more students than the target set by the Cal State system's central administration in response to cutbacks in state funding. Now the system is threatening to withhold $7 million from the 34,000-student campus if it doesn't partly roll back enrollment for the current spring semester by the equivalent of 2,800 full-time students, officials said.

As a result, Cal State Northridge recently imposed a cap on the number of credits most students can carry and is enforcing it during the current add-drop period. Except for graduating seniors and a few other groups, that will mean no more than 15 credits. Also, the school has barred professors from enrolling extra students in their classes beyond a formal limit.

The overall amount of students' class credits is the most important part of the formula to distribute much of state funding to higher education. Cal State system officials say it is not right for some campuses to keep taking additional students while there is not enough money for sufficient counseling and library services.

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