The NCCFT Executive Committee supported the Academic Senate Executive Committee’s October 28, 2014 resolution asking the Board of Trustees to rescind their SUNY Seamless Mandate resolution. We supported this resolution as a matter of principle. Whether or not you agree with the concepts presented in SUNY Seamless, we believe the BOT’s resolution was premature and resulted from this Administration’s disingenuous representation of our process. They surprised all of us by presenting the resolution to the BOT without announcing it as an agenda item nor discussing the action with the Senate, Chairs or NCCFT. We were told by Board members that this BOT resolution was meant to “nudge” us to move forward since the SUNY mandate must be complied with and the Board did not want to interfere with the Academic Senate’s authority.
We also support the Governance process and respect the efforts of the Senate, CWCC, Academic Chairs, and all the departments attempting to comply with this ill-conceived SUNY mandate. The ASEC’s resolution, in our opinion, was not a stop work order, but a notice to the BOT to respect our shared governance process and allow us to continue our efforts to bring NCC into compliance.
The recurring theme during this entire debacle is that we must comply with the SUNY mandate or else SUNY will reduce FTE funding, deny conferral of degrees to our graduates, and will impose their own curriculum requirements. These are the same empty threats our Administration explained to the BOT to convince them to intervene. Empty threats because SUNY does not pay FTE monies, SUNY never indicated they would deny conferral, and SUNY went so far as to say they would not implement their own criteria into our programs. Remember, our resistance to the rush to implement bought us valuable time to address many inefficient and impractical requirements in the original MtP.
In reality, ask yourself, “If we don’t comply within the timeline imposed by SUNY, might someone on campus lose favor with the Chancellor?”
Now we are faced with another BOT resolution demanding action by our Developmental Education Committee http://www.ncc.edu/aboutncc/ourpeople/board_of_trustees/11_2014_November_13_Calendar.pdf . We are not going to address the merits of the committee charge. This is a Senate matter, at least until policies are discussed that will result in lost full time jobs. However, we will address this new order of business. The latest BOT resolution not only demands a timeline for action, but also demands specific results. We ask you, since this is not a SUNY mandate but rather a pet project of the Chancellor to eliminate remediation from the campus, thus saving money and eliminating jobs, why is the Administration drafting language for the BOT to intervene again?
Who owes this Chancellor so much that they are willing to interfere with our governance process, attack the dignity, ability and authority of the faculty, and implement their own distorted view of student achievement?
Furthermore, if past practice is any prediction of the impending procedure, the BOT Academic Affairs Committee will allow the Administration to make their case for the BOT to intervene again; the BOT AA Chair will not allow the faculty to speak; the BOT will meet in Executive Session to discuss the resolution and vote on the resolution in public session. They will then adjourn the meeting and give the attending public 3 minutes each to speak, if we place our names on a speakers list by calling the Secretary to the Board (Anne Brandi) prior to the meeting.
Administrative interference with faculty rights is a common complaint we hear from our K-12 brothers and sisters. Ask yourself, who on the Board would bring this new paradigm of K-12 interference to Nassau Community College?