Notes from Yesterday’s FC4 Meeting

As you might have gathered from Jay Levine’s report and the correction in the first comment, the March FC4 meeting took place yesterday at Malcolm X. Ellen (obviously), Rosie, Nicole Smith, and I were there representing HW.

There were four primary orders of business and one ’emergency topic’: 1) a discussion and proposal about how to build on the positive aspects of last week’s discussion among the FC4 Executive Committee, the local FC Presidents, and the district administrators and continue such discussions into the future; 2) the ’emergency’ topic of what, if anything, to say to Jay Levine, who was hoping to get statements from faculty as a follow up to his story on Tuesday night;  3)  a pair of Physics classes up for approval; 4) discussion about and creation of a resolution that Ellen will formally present to the Chancellor and the Board asking them to affirm by Board Rule what Chancellor Hyman claimed explicitly and emphatically, multiple times, according to those present–namely, her support for academic freedom and faculty control over curriculum and teaching issues; and 5) a follow up discussion to the emergency meeting and subsequent faculty surveys and confidence straw poll.

The first issue was resolved by the drafting and passing of a resolution “extending the Executive Committee of FC4 to include the Presidents (or their designee)” and the recommendation that the Presidents meet regularly, including over the summer, with Task Force Reinvention teams and the district administration (at the regular Executive Committee meetings).

Amid that conversation was discussion of whether and how to respond to Mr. Levine’s request for some sort of statement. After relatively brief discussion, consensus favored a member going out and saying something along the lines of, “We’re working on an official response, and when we have it we will share it, first, with our administration, and then with the media. Now is not our time to respond.”

The two courses were passed.

After a long and winding discussion, punctuated by important debates and a few wanderings, and many useful suggestions and edits, a resolution was adopted. I don’t have the final version (or, rather, I don’t trust that the version I wrote down is the actual, final version), so I won’t provide it here. When it is available from Julius Nadas (FC4 Secretary), I will post it here.

Discussion then turned to college by college reports of the survey and confidence straw poll. Faculty participation differed from campus to campus, from 70 at Wright (out of 120) to 50 at Truman to 28 at Kennedy King to 19 (or so) at Harold, etc. Concerns of faculty ran the gamut of the options listed at the meeting (including centralization, non-transparency, surveillance, district hiring, and most of the rest of the list compiled at the meeting). Very low levels of confidence were reported from the faculty at the various campuses who participated. 27 out of 28 at Kennedy King, 50 out of 50 at Truman, and 69 out of 70 at Wright said they did not have confidence in the current administrative team. It’s important to remember that this was not an official no-confidence vote, but the tally does not bode well for the confidence of the crew regarding the direction of the ship.

Suffice to say, the next board meeting and the intervening weeks should be rather interesting for a whole variety of reasons…

2 thoughts on “Notes from Yesterday’s FC4 Meeting

  1. Let’s establish communication with Jay Levine as a faculty body and not as local 1600 members. These issues are all about academics.

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