Faculty Council Corner is a regular Thursday morning-ish feature (that sometimes shows up later) , presenting an open thread for you to bother your HWFC members with pressing questions (or for us to post the pressing questions that you have). Also, you can expect this to be the forum where we post regular updates about what is happening with Faculty Council and when.
This Week’s Updates: We’re still working on a date for a joint Union/FC meeting, but it should happen in early March sometime. Of more urgency is this from HWFC Rep and Grievance Chair Anthony Escuadro:
With one more week to go until the contract survey is closed on March 7, there have been only 8 responses to the survey questionnaire. Of those 8 people who responded, six are from full-time faculty, one is from a full-time professional, and one is from a part-time professional. In other words, this small group of eight people will have an immense say in what concerns and suggestions get relayed to the Union leadership about the upcoming contract.
There’s still time to make your voice heard at [Dave here: the survey is hosted on a Google site which anyone with access would be happy to send you or give you–you do NOT need to sign up with Google for anything in order to fill out the survey! I do not want to post it here, though, so as to control for takers and fakers.]. The survey should take around 15-20 minutes to complete.
If you are one of those eight people who have completed the survey, thank you [you’re welcome!]. If you have been waiting to voice your thoughts on the upcoming contract, now is the time. And if you have some ideas or opinions on the upcoming contract, but for whatever reason you don’t want to complete the survey, let us know why so that we can make improvements to the way we get feedback from the Union members.
So, just in case it is helpful to see an example, my own answers when I did it were as follows:
Areas that I’d like to see addressed:
1.Increased funding for professional development (higher levels of tuition and conference reimbursements)
2. Distance Learning/CDL sections, especially the section on Intellectual Property Rights
3. Gender neutral language
4. Other stuff that I’d be happy to see addressed:
~An improved statement on Academic Freedom
~Faculty Evaluations (Post Tenure Review)
~A solution for Team Teaching
~Department Chair Duties (Stipend/more release time? The departments are huge relative to their past on account of the adjunct explosion. Combine that with turnover and tons of new administrative duties and the chair job has become nearly impossible for most of them)
~Fix the academic calendar so spring M/W classes don’t meet only 30 times, compared to 32 for T/Th in spring and 31 for M/W and T/H in the fall.
I’m sure that there are many of you who have even better ideas. I hope that you’ll share them with our union leadership who in just offering this survey has already done more to solicit information from the membership about contract negotiations than I’ve seen since 2003. Let’s show them that their efforts are appreciated…
Last “Week’s” Pressing Questions: None.
More next week, I’m sure.