Faculty Council Meeting Reminder

Just a reminder that our first FC meeting of the spring will be today at 4pm in room 1046. All are welcome and invited.

The first item of business will be a discussion of the proposed changes to the Tenure Review Process. If you’d like to see the current state of the proposal, you can go HERE to get the details of what’s being proposed.

(As I’ve said before, this is a project that is near and dear; it was almost four years ago that I first drafted a proposal for changing the tenure process and showed it around to people, a few of whom said, “I like it, but it’ll never happen.” Others tried to make something happen. It took awhile, but here we are and it looks like something may actually happen. So for anyone who says, “Nothing ever changes,” I say, “Voila.” I say it very, very slowly, but still…)

Michael Maltenfort, one of the architects of the proposal, will be joining us for questions and discussion.

See you there, we hope.



New Space Committee Meeting Reminder

From last week’s email:

The Space Committee is looking for committed individuals across the Harold Washington College community interested in executing the following charge:

In service to our mission and at the request of the Chancellor of the City Colleges of Chicago, the Space Committee is charged with understanding how we currently use our space at 30 East Lake Street and with identifying recommendations for re-allocating, re-configuring or re-modeling our current space or re-locating certain operations to other locations. Programmatic recommendations, including the use of space at different times of day or week, are also within the scope of the Space Committee. Each recommendation should describe how its adoption would serve and further the mission of Harold Washington College:

Mission:  Harold Washington College (HWC) is a learning-centered urban institution of higher education offering accessible and affordable opportunities for academic advancement, career development, and personal enrichment. The College is committed to upholding high institutional and academic standards and to understanding and improving student learning.

The Space Committee is chaired by Interim Dean of Career Programs and Continuing Education John Hader, and will deliver a report to President Donald Laackman for his consideration by the start of the 2012 Spring Semester. This report will provide input into the long-term capital plan for Harold Washington College.

The first meeting will be held on Friday, September 23, 2011, at 10:00 AM in Room #1115.

Don’t Forget–Union Meeting Today

From Jesú:

Union Sisters and Brothers, come help welcome our new members.  We
will also address other important issues, including feedback tools on
our Contract.

When:  Thursday, September 8, 2:00p.m. to 4:30p.m.
Where: Room 1115

Pizza, soda, and other refreshments will be provided.

Also, mark your calendars for the following Union meetings:

• Thursday, September 22, 2p.m.-4:30p.m. Room 1115
• Thursday, October 20, 2p.m.-4:30p.m. Room 203 D/E
• Thursday, November 17, 2p.m.-4:30p.m. Room 1115
• December, Christmas Party, TBA

If you have further questions, feel free to call or text me (Jesú
Estrada, Chapter Chair) at 312-371-3774 or email me at
mariajestrada@aol.com.  New members, if you can’t come, feel free to
see me in room 629 during Union hours: M/W 10a.m.-11a.m. and T/TH
1p.m.-3 in the afternoon.  At that time, we will schedule a lunch.

Members, please help spread the word.  Also, since there are two
meetings this month and only one can be sanctioned, I am going to ask
Laackman to sanction the one on Sept. 22.

In Solidarity,

Jesu Estrada, Chapter Chair

News from the Meeting Featuring the Reveal of Reinvention Proposals

As reported in the comments of yesterday’s “ReinQuestion?” post, there was no meeting today.

The big empty space between the post this morning and this one is where the information revealed in the title would have gone if the meeting had happened. I had no Plan B for the space, so I let it be.

It is unclear now when (and whether) there will be any sort of meeting with faculty leadership about these proposals at all. Feel free to speculate in the comments on what will (eventually) be proposed. (Then you can say, “See? Told you…”)

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…

FC4 Officers and FC Presidents Meet with Honchoi

That’s the plural of “honcho,” as in “head honcho” (two of them) right?

Anyway, our local FC President Rosie Banks, joined the officers of FC4 and the other local FC Presidents in a meeting this morning at 8am with Chancellor Hyman and Board Chair Cabrera at the District Office (called at their request).

When I have information to share about the meeting, I will share it.

“Emergency” Meeting Reminder

Don’t forget about the meeting tomorrow; I’ll be out of town, unfortunately, but hope to see some reports about it upon my return:

Faculty Council is concerned about our reduced role in district policy decisions.

FC4 has called a district wide meeting of all interested faculty to be held on:

Friday March 11, at Malcolm X College,  in Room 2616  from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM

at which we will discuss control of the class-room environment – targeting faculty involvement in academic policies. We are concerned about faculty morale, have a low confidence in the status of joint governance, and are not happy about various other issues. We want to investigate how best to fight the imposition of a business model on academic decisions.

Please relay this invitation to all full time faculty at your college and ask them to RSVP by March 4th to: Julius Nadas, secretary of FC4, at JNADAS@ccc.edu

Thank you,