Highlights from the Board Report: February and March 2014

Highlights from the Board Report is a monthly irregular feature that highlights what one person finds to be important from the most recent Board Report. We read it so you don’t have to. You’re welcome.

(UPDATE: Apologies if you tried the links and found them less than helpful. I believe they are fixed now. h/t to Jenny Armendarez for the tip.)

So it’s been a long while since I’ve done one of these, but that doesn’t mean there’s nothing to know. As we swing into budget season, I thought it might be worth doing again. Not only that, but there’s some great news that I want to highlight on the Intertubes for perpetuity.


~Congratulations to our colleagues who earned tenure (Samar Ayesh, Luke Belz, Tony Florez, Janette Gayle, Joe Hinton, Sarah Kakumanu, Erica McCormack, Megan Ritt, Ray Tse, and Phil Vargas) and contract renewals (Cynthia Cerrentano, Amy Rosenquist, LaNisha Thomas)! The tenure group is a really amazing class and not least because they are so unfailingly collegial with each other and everyone else. Almost as amazing as the class of 2003 (here and here). I’m excited to see what they will have done at the end of their tenth year. And congratulations to our colleagues at other schools, too, though I’m left wondering what in the world is going on over at Kennedy-King? Out of 21 candidates, there were 3 resignations, 2 non-renewals, and an extension. Something isn’t working over there.

~There were some changes to VP approvals for cross-college assignments and overtime (related to CDL, no doubt). Now both VPs have to sign off instead of just the home college VP. Have fun with that!

~Some hiring happened, including a new IT Director at HW. Remember when District saved us all that money by consolidating all the IT jobs on Jackson? And now each college has Directors, Managers, and all kinds of stuff. Fascinating.

~Presidents hired consultants.

~Our Faculty Council President reported that she got a new one-way email up and running. yay.


~Love the looks of the new Maternity/Paternity Leave policy. It only applies to non-bargained for employees, though. Hopefully it will make it into the new adjunct contract, if they ever get such a thing. Speaking of, when will that union get one? They’ve been teaching all year under an expired contract, yet, not a peep. Does their leadership not realize that 2/3rds (more actually) of our faculty are adjuncts? What did they say at the State of the College? 287 adjuncts? That’s compared to 120 or so full-time faculty. That’s a lot of potential disruption. Granted, they’re not all unionized, but still. A glance at The Adjunct Project tells the story of their pay relative to others who do their work (and it’s embarrassing).

~Concealed carry may be legal in Illinois, but it’s still not allowed on campus (which I’m personally happy about, lest we have to seek an answer to this puzzling question).

~Speaking of things related to “pay” and “embarrassing” there was hiring in March, and we have another new $100,000 Associate Vice Chancellor–this one is the Vice Chancellor of Decision Support (I swear I am not making that up). It’s a “new position,” too. (This suggests two things, immediately: 1) I want to have a contest for coming up with the most ridiculous VC or AVC title to be created and filled in FY15, with a pie of your choosing going to the winner; and 2) did anyone attend the “Meet the Vice Chancellors” gig (other than administrators)? And if so, how many were there? Was the two hour meeting taken up by introductions? Did some of them have to stand in the lobby so there was room for an audience? File your report in the comments if you went. In happier news on the hiring front, Tasha Williams, who was always great here, has been promoted to Dean of Student Services at Malcolm X. Congrats to her.

~The board approved a big contract for new furniture system-wide. The vendor is “responsible for working with CCC to design classroom furniture layouts, purchase, assemble, and install selected furnishings, and dispose of existing furniture district wide.” The first deliverable listed is, “Design classroom furniture layout for each classroom with faculty input.” We’ll see what that means, I guess. Anyway, I’m interested in this. I’ve been looking for info and research on classroom arrangements fo a year now and found very little.The only thing I’ve found is this from a book called Participatory Workshops by Robert Chambers that I borrowed from our CAST room.

~Various other things were purchased by Presidents who aren’t packing for Vermont.

~According to the Provost, GradesFirst is a big success. They also gave us a look at “a day in the life of academic affairs.

~Pathways are an amazing success, too, we’re told, though if I’d seen this pathways presentation, which has to be one of the worst examples of PowerPoint usage that I’ve seen, I would have been struggling to stifle my giggles while thinking of THIS (called “Dear Presenter, Please Don’t Drive Me to Suicide During Your Presentation;” the language is salty, but right on in my humble).

~The Inspector General is on the job, too. More complaints, more investigations, more punishments (though only 32 of 256 complaints were sustained; in baseball language, that’s well below the Mendoza Line. I know that’s not really their fault, but one wonders at the wisdom of so much money and time and effort going to an office with a 12.5% success rate. Oh, is that an unfair measure of what they do? Does that fail to take into account the inputs? Join the club. But I digress.

~Faculty Council President Cristina Aguila said something, but I don’t know what because it hasn’t posted yet. I’m guessing that it was about how much communication has improved, and the IRB, and distance learning. That’s just a guess, though,


Amuse-bouche is a (new!) regular feature designed to add a little amusement to your day and celebrate the arrival of the (early) weekend. Suggestions welcome!

I had heard of Vine before I saw this, but didn’t know what it was (it’s like a micro-YouTube; videos with a 6 second limit that loop). Lucky for me, somebody made a highlight reel, and it is truly amazing for a hundred different reasons. I found it here, and, as the author predicts, it was the best 11 minutes and 38 seconds of my day.

And don’t let the freeze-frame fool you–that’s just designed to drive page views…prepare to be dazzled by the creativity of the millenial generation.

Highlights from the March Board Report

Highlights from the Board Report is a monthly regular feature that highlights what one person finds to be important from the most recent Board Report. We read it so you don’t have to. You’re welcome.

The March report is up; congratulations to Chairperson Woolf on the completion of her inaugural Board meeting as the gran formagi!

~No reports from HR and Academic Affairs, but there was some stuff about money.

~The policy on facilities use (which was a part of/at the root of/led to some complications (depending on your interpretation of things) last fall) has been clarified a bit (with respect to inside/outside groups and priorities and the rest). I’m particularly interested in this:

“-The service and consumption of alcoholic beverages on City Colleges of Chicago Campus property is prohibited, unless served by a properly licensed caterer with the State and/or City required liquor liability (dramshop) insurance” (emphasis mine).

~There were changes made to the academic policy, too–notably in regard to graduation eligibility (via the elimination of the home campus requirement and the promised enforcement of the diversity appreciation requirement for all of our degrees. There were some other changes, too. Check it out.

~On the personnel front, there were 11 new hires at the DO (recession, schmeesession!) including two new Associate Vice Chancellors, one of whom is a replacement for a former Vice Chancellor (of Development) who was moved over into a different Vice Chancellorship (of Athletics). That means that in addition to the Chancellor and Board members and their Chief Advisor, we now, officially, have 11 chiefs of this or that and Vice Chancellors, a Provost, a General Counsel, an Inspector General, 7 college Presidents, somewhere between 9and 81 Associate Vice Chancellors, approximately 37 (give or take 20) Directors, at least 20% of which are executive directors, and a bevy of managers. The numbers are, admittedly, a little fuzzy in spots. I’ll do a tighter count when next year’s budget comes out. Ahem. Onward. It seems that we lost Workforce Development VP Christopher Wilkerson (we hardly knew ye…did we?), and Tom Higgins has, apparently spent his sabbatical working on time travel, as indicated by his special assignment which reads “Start date from 07/30/2012 to 05/14/2012 and end date from 08/10/2012 to 05/25/2012”, which is awesome.

~Our Phy Sci people are ringing the register again (congrats to all!).

~Who uses a travel agent these days? We do, I guess!

~We hired somebody to make sure that we’re getting our share of the Tax Ripoff Increment Financing law. Hey, it’s on the books, might as well use it, I guess. (Of course, there’s this to consider…)

~Limegreen gets some more love, in the form of up to 60 G’s to manage Graduation–should be awesome!

~Plus (up to) 80K to UIC for the use of the Pavilion…wait a minute…60 plus 80…that’s a Vice Chancellor! What if we hired an Associate VC of Graduation for $100,000 and then split the other $40,000 between the seven colleges? Just brainstorming here…any other good ideas?

~They approved a contract for two years of temp staffing…think they’re planning on not having administrative assistants for a spell? Luckily for us the contract didn’t say anything about temporary faculty. Yet.

~Daley and Olive Harvey get theater renovations.

~Contracts for what bugs ya.

~The Presidents and Chancellor agreed on some other things.

~Polly Hoover addressed the board about some curricular issues, especially the stuff going on with CPS.

If you think I missed anything (or mis-stated anything), please post your ideas in the comments.



Highlights from the February Board Report

Highlights from the Board Report is a monthly regular feature that highlights what one person finds to be important from the most recent Board Report. We read it so you don’t have to. You’re welcome.

I haven’t done one of these for awhile; sorry.

I had one drafted for December, but then I started to get too worked up over the December District Office hiring (14 new district positions (including two new Vice Chancellors and a Procurement officer (all $100,000+, and of the 14 positions, 6 were not even in the budget released only four months earlier–see it’s happening again). How many new faculty? Five.) And that’s after November  added a new Associate Vice Chancellor of Enrollment Management, and  January was better (Nine DO hires, including a promotion for Alvin Bisarya (or at least an extra 10 G’s), four of which were new positions, which I think (but amn’t sure) means unbudgeted, but they hired 32 faculty across the district including 7 at HW), but, regardless, I digress. February is the point today.

The report from yesterday’s Board Meeting is up and available. (Whatever else is true of our District people, they’ve become lightning fast at getting those board reports up!). And, though there’s no notice of it in the Board Report, yesterday was Martin Cabrera’s last meeting as Chair of the board (check out the Union Google Group to see the nice things Perry had to say about him and his rein in the big chair); Mayor Emanuel has recommended Paula Wolff to be the new chair (an appointment that Perry called “Historic” which is exciting. Let’s hope. In any case, congratulations to Dr. Wolff.

~Nothing from HR or Academics, but there’s some stuff about money (and apparently there was a discussion about FY2013 Reinvention Vision, Goals and Objectives. I’d like to see that…maybe it’ll be on the Reinvention Blog.

~Contract Renewals are up–congratulations to Samar, Luke, Tony, Janette, Joe, Sarah, Erica, Megan, Kwok-Tuen (Ray), and Philip on their 2nd contract, and triple congrats to Yev Lapik and Paul Wandless on achieving Tenure! Looks like things went better at the other colleges this year than in some past years, too (though, in the Google Group, you can read Perry’s note which seems to suggest that there were some shenannigans around “lost portfolios.”

~No more post-retirement lifetime  medical/dental/vision coverage for people who have served 7 or more years as district officers, and no more 100% coverage for current district officers. Wayne is sad this morning.

~There were some personnel moves. The big news? No new Vice Chancellors this month. Hallelujah. HW had a couple of hires (welcome aboard Daryl Tolbert (Business Advisor–don’t know what that is; probably part of the 10000 Businesses thing?) and Raeann Caldwell has a new gig as a “retention specialist”). Also, a bunch of new faculty across the district (five at Daley (two in Humanities!)). Donna Williams is moving to Malcolm X, but otherwise there were no separations for us this month.

~We’ll be getting something called Early Alert to help with advising;

~Polly Hoover addressed the Board in regard to the CASH-to-ROI program (Worst-name-ever award winner) that was piloted at Daley and is soon to spread to the other colleges. Her speech is a really, really well argued one and important for faculty to check out (especially those engaged with Developmental Ed). Make sure you CHECK IT OUT.

If you think I missed anything important, please toss it up in the comments.

Highlights from the Board Report: April

Highlights from the Board Report is a monthly regular feature that highlights what one person finds to be important from the most recent Board Report. We read it so you don’t have to. You’re welcome.

Well, it’s been awhile since I did one of these, but the February and March Board Reports were getting plenty of attention as it was, so I didn’t think I needed to do any highlights from them. No reason not to do April’s Board Report, though.

~At the March Academic Affairs meeting (which took place in February, remember?), the Chancellor reported on the “PeopleSoft pre-requisite project.” There is no information on what that is, though. I suspect that it has to do with something like, “changing all of the local pre-requisites to make sure that they are all the same (without consideration of (or input on) what impact that will have on students, learning, or colleges) because doing so will mean not having to change (read: pay Oracle for) new capacity.” I am, however, just speculating since to my knowledge, no information on this has been shared with mere faculty, except for the fact of the pre-requisite changes. Ahem.

~Ironically, considering what I just wrote, a PeopleSoft Upgrade is coming (perhaps they will consider “the capacity to support locally approved and determined pre-requisites that fit with the curricular expectations and institutional knowledge of each college’s student learning needs as they do their “gap-fit;” I shall hope for, but not expect it). Also coming soon, an “Investment Manager.” And someone forgot to use Spellcheck (can you find it?). (And with that I think I have exorcised the last of my lingering bitterness for the moment. Sorry. Sometimes one just needs to vent it a bit.)

~Oh, wait. There is a mention of pre-requisites. It’s in the approved March Board Meeting Minutes; the sentences read: “Provost Henderson is also instituting customized career planning for the students and working with OIT to improve our online registration. Many of the pre-requisites were not lined up with the student’s (sic) career choices and the programs they choose.” If anyone knows what that means, please interpret in the comments. Also, the colleges are apparently at 97% compliance with the residency requirement. (Sorry, I was wrong; I guess there was a little left. It’s gone now, though.)

~A new rule was passed that allows the Board to debar potential vendors from the procurement processes of the CCC for shady or illegal dealings.

~Some HR action occurred. Kennedy King got a new interim President, the District Office got a new PART TIME Ethics officer for $75Gs (good work if you can get it–sorry, wrong again; now I’m done), and five of nine hires for the month were hired to work at 226 W. Jackson (dang!); additionally, Jesse Montelongo was moved to the District Office, and Brandon Pendleton returns from Deaning elsewhere to our HR department. Dorothy Clark’s retirement became official, and Chris Kabir (Keenan’s assistant) left us for greener pastures.

~We’ve pretty much used up our grant money. Actually we spent more than 100% of it. Now that is efficiency!

~The District is renting a space for the inspector general and staff so they can “conduct investigations in a discreet and confidential manner.” It will cost no more than $63, 278 a year, not including the estimated $75,000 in furniture. (See? this one is ripe for snarky bitter commentary, and…nothing.)

~We’ve got a fixer of the clocks.

~The Board approved a $1.2 million contract to Sofbang to “design and implement a Hosted Microsoft Exchange Email Managed Services solution” over a five year period, and re-upped with Aztec for another year at the rate of $4200 a month.

~We rented the UIC Forum for graduation for “not more than $65,000.”

~Approved some money to pay for EBSCO.

~FC4 President Ellen Eason Montgomery addressed the Board to present the FC4 Academic Freedom resolution.

If I missed anything, throw it up in the comments! See you in May.

Highlights from the Board Report–October

Highlights from the Board Report is a monthly regular feature that highlights what one person finds to be important from the most recent Board Report. We read it so you don’t have to. You’re welcome.

In light of the last few days, I considered renaming this post, but talked myself out of it. Nonetheless, here we go:

~Brandon Pendleton was named a finalist for the Kathy Osterman award.

~Enrollment is up everywhere  except Kennedy-King, which is down slightly, as of September.

~There was an interesting financial report. I won’t pretend to know what the numbers mean, but you’re welcome to look for yourself. I was interested in the section on Projects, which stated the following:

With the start of the Fall 2010 semester, Follett’s and Becks implemented a text book rental program in order to provide a method of obtaining books at a lower price. As of 9/1/10, $84,755 was expended by students at Daley, Olive Harvey, Kennedy-King, and Malcolm X. Follett’s indicated no rentals at their locations as of the first. Administrative Services will follow with Student Services to investigate the reasons for lack of activity since the program was strongly requested by students at Harold Washington and Truman.

There’s also a report from IT–they’ve chosen the Microsoft solution for student, faculty and staff email. They did not say if they will be transitioning email during finals week. What do you want to bet that its either that or during the first week of spring classes?

~There was a nice resolution for Saundra Banyard.

~There were some interesting hires.

~People did great things.

~Faculty Council President Ellen Eason-Montgomery addressed the Board.

I’ll let you decide what the highlight is…for some reason, I couldn’t pick.

Highlights from the Board Report–March

Highlights from the Board Report is a monthly regular feature that highlights what one person finds to be important from the most recent Board Report. We read it so you don’t have to. You’re welcome.

Highlights from the meeting dated March 4, 1010.

1. I think they may be onto us. This report was rather skimpy. There were none of the usual links to Human Resources and Academic Affairs reports and the like. All they have up there is a link to a notice about raising tuition and the resolution to hire our new Chancellor (and then the usual hirings, overtime assignments, etc.). I don’t know whether to be pleased at the brevity required for researching this post or troubled. I shall temporarily adopt the former position. Mostly because I’m all jacked up on Nyquil and in no condition to do any thinking.

2. Tuition is going up. Current tuition is $79 a credit hour. Next fiscal year, starting Summer 2010, the number will be $87 per credit hour, going up to $89 per credit hour the following year. The prices go up for precredit (half the credit rates) and continuing and vocational education as well (same as credit).  Fees are up, too: Registration goes up $5 (to $30), Activity fee goes up $20 (to $170) for ft regular term starting this fall, and in 2011 the summer activity fee goes up $10 (to $85). No change for PT students. CDL fees go up $5 to $45 per course this summer, and another $5 to $50 per course starting in the summer of 2011. I’m personally quite amazed that the activity fee is going up another $20. I haven’t heard any students complain that the SGA or clubs are short of money. $20 per student per semester is an awful lot of scratch when my understanding is that most of it goes to SGA and clubs who have a hard time spending what they’ve got now. I’m no accountant, but I don’t know how that helps. Maybe somebody out there does?

2. Cheryl Hyman is our new Chancellor. Welcome aboard (stifles yawn…old news).

3. HR News: Inggrid Yonata of the President’s Office was hired to a position of “Coordinator,” promoting her from Temporary Support Staff. I don’ t know what it means, but she’s great and I’m sure whatever it is she’s coordinating will be more than adequately coordinated. Love to see great people get gigs here.

4. No resignations or terminations. Not really anything else to report. There is something about a change to the Policy Manual in regard to Graduation Gradepoint, but there’s no link so I don’ t know what it is. Maybe you know?

5. The meeting was mercifully adjourned.