The California State University system for the first time in its history is proposing to turn away qualified students owing to a worsening state budget crisis, reports the Los Angeles Times. As part of a plan to slash its 450,000 enrollment by 10,000 students for the 2009-10 academic year, the 23-campus system, the nation’s largest, will push up application deadlines and raise the academic bar for freshmen at its most popular campuses, Chancellor Charles B. Reed said Nov. 17. The university has never tried this type of enrollment cap, and Cal State officials said they cannot be sure how it will work. While sophomore transfers and out-of-state and international students will be squeezed, California high school graduates probably will bear the brunt of the downsizing, officials said. The university typically admits 45,000 to 50,000 freshmen each year; if even half the reductions land on them, it would mean a 10-percent drop in first-year admissions. "These are going to be kids who have done everything they’re supposed to do, and told year after year they’ll have this opportunity," said Kathy Rapkin, chair of the counseling department at Arcadia High School and past president and Southern California regional representative for the California Assn. of School Counselors. "These kids are not going to get a place." Reed said the Cal State system anticipates $66 million in midyear budget cuts, and further reductions for 2009-10. He refused to discuss whether a fee hike is in store for next year. His enrollment plan comes as demand for Cal State admission soars; applications are up 10 percent from the same time a year ago, officials said…

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