As we draw to a close of the Fall 2014 semester, we want to wish everyone a happy holiday season and a healthy new year.
We want to express our sincerest appreciation and recognize the commitment of the outgoing Adjunct Faculty leadership to their members. In addition, congratulations to the new AFA leadership; we wish them all the best and offer our assistance in any manner we are able.
The NCCFT Executive Committee has been actively engaged in a variety of unique endeavors this semester which surely will continue into the Spring semester.
- We have reviewed the “draft” copy of the CBA line by line, commented and sent it to the College. We are awaiting their response.
- We have been successful in advocating for our members with respect to catastrophic illness, full-time lines, Affirmative Action hearings, and the settling of numerous potential grievances.
- We have been working closely with the VP of Finance and HR over the past few months to ensure that the following payments were made to faculty members
- on 12/1 longevity payments of $2,000 were made to members who on September 1 had been employed by the college for twenty-five years or more and were not eligible for a step increase
- on 12/3 the department chairs day stipends were paid
- scheduled for 12/17 is the retro one-time bonus of $1,750 for the 2013/2014 academic year
- scheduled for 12/31 is the 1/2 step retro pay from the 2013/2014 academic year
- scheduled for 12/31 is the retro pay for all eligible LINCC members from the 2013/2014 academic year
- As part of the Retention Committee, we have begun discussions with the Administration attempting to understand the reasons for student attrition and recommending potential solutions. We have meetings scheduled into 2015.
- As part of the Presidential Search Committee, we are meeting to develop criteria for the search. Applications will be accepted until December 15, 2014 and the Committee is scheduled to meet January 15, 2015 to begin discussions on the applications.
- We are engaged with the Middle States Review.
- We have participated in the NYSUT Higher Ed Policy Council and the Community College meetings. While these meetings had general interest topics covered, they also addressed specific issues germane to NCC. We gained invaluable insight as to the complications of the SUNY Seamless mandate at both the two and four year campuses and what must be addressed after implementation. These issues have been and will continue to be addressed in the Academic Senate.
- We are engaged with the Academic Senate Executive Committee, CWCC, Department Chairs, Administration and BOT with respect to the new paradigm on campus concerning shared governance.
- We are meeting with the Academic Senate to develop the Spring Colloquium scheduled for May 21.
- We are engaged in the development of the Spring “Student Showcase” scheduled for April 23.
Everything on this list is important to various segments of the College Community which make it important to all of us. These issues are interrelated and provide a mosaic that shapes our relationships and allows for a spirit of camaraderie and cohesiveness. We need this cohesiveness as much now as ever.
We have been writing about the new paradigm on campus with respect to the recent actions of the BOT. The responsibilities and authority of the Academic Senate are clearly defined in our CBA. There is no question that the Committees of the Academic Senate have been addressing their respective “Charges”. However, it now seems that if the Administration is unhappy with the conclusions drawn by the Committees, they draft a resolution for the BOT which directs the committees to provide an acceptable outcome.
- SUNY Seamless: This semester, the CWCC drafted a proposal, set meeting dates to review, vote and forward that proposal to the Academic Senate. Our Academic calendar would have allowed that proposal to be completed in late winter. The Administration did not accept this, drafted a resolution for the BOT pushing the completion date to December 12, 2014. The Academic Senate did everything in their power to accelerate the process to comply and for all intents and purposes, have been successful. Now, the Administration is “concerned” the BOT may not accept the definition of completion as some pro-forma procedural activities must take place. But, not to worry, the Administration is telling the Academic Senate they will do their best to explain and placate the Board.
- Developmental Education: The Developmental Ed. Committee has been addressing their charges with due diligence. There seems to be a dispute with the appropriate language for one of the Charges. The Administration was unhappy with the Committee’s interpretation, so they wrote a resolution for the BOT that directed the Dev Ed. Committee to conclude its investigation by March, with monthly reports, and goes so far as to direct a specific outcome.
- General Education: The Administration is unhappy with the SUNY Seamless proposal. They will accept it for now, however, they drafted a resolution for the BOT that directs the CWCC to reduce the two math, two science, and two PED requirements from the AA and AS degree requirements AND to provide data to demonstrate why the CWCC will recommend that change.
It begs the questions –
- How do you eliminate two science and two math courses from an Associate in Math and Science?
- What happens if the “data” does not warrant a reduction or elimination of these courses?
Regardless of our individual opinions on any of these issues, the Academic Senate is the place and has been the place for discussions and vetting. This has been done. Why should we allow a minority opinion to disrupt the will of the body? Why should we allow our Administration and BOT to direct policy that has no empirical evidence to support their position?
Understand this, if you do not think these issues affect you, think again, YOU may be next.