The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board has axed eight fine arts courses from the core curriculum beginning in the fall.
These include introductory courses that teach students how to draw, paint, sculpt and create ceramics. This will reduce enrollment in these courses because they will no longer be recommended for non-art majors.
That’s unfortunate because the emphasis on locking every student into a degree plan squelches the opportunity for students to explore subjects they might be interested in to provide enjoyment for the rest of their lives.
Students often come to community college because they are unsure about what career they want to pursue, and the Alamo Colleges aren’t allowing any room for exploration.
With EDUC 1300, Learning Framework, eliminating a humanities course, students may miss developing a love of reading literature, opening new worlds for them.
Or they miss learning about other cultures through foreign language classes.
Kinesiology classes, no longer required to graduate, open students to lifelong habits for good health.
A community college should not structure a curriculum so narrowly that students can’t take classes outside their major.
If a student wants to take nine credits of mathematics when they only need three, let them.
If they want 12 credits of humanities when they need three, let them. Don’t stop students from learning.
Community colleges also should remember they are chartered to serve their communities.
In years past, hobbyists enrolled here just to learn from accomplished professors how to draw or take photographs.
The college should streamline admissions and advising for people who just want to take a few courses for enrichment.
Members of the community shouldn’t have to go through My Map, student development and sign on to a plan in GPS just to take ceramics or yoga.
Let the community use the community college the way it was meant to be.
And give our students the freedom to try courses to explore learning and see where it takes them.