Revisiting Shared Governance at a Community College in the USA
Sharon Lalla describes a striking case of a College in the USA, the environment of which presented significant weaknesses that resulted in isolation, loss of trust, lack of transparency, and lack of empowerment among its constituents. As this situation started to become a risk for the College’s accreditation, urgent measures had to be taken with a focus on shared governance. Sharon Lalla shows that when shared governance is missing or ineffective, a radical transformation of the College’s culture is crucial. Effective shared governance has been proven to create a sustaining traveling organization in higher education systems. This is why accreditors require it. When there is no or weak shared governance practices, there are few or even no checks and balances in place. Members at all levels, including the highest decision-making levels, need to be transparent about issues and policies that can potentially have an impact on the organization.
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