Well, two more letters in the mailbag for today, providing rather different perspectives.
I’m not a blogger just the husband of a wife who appreciates her job teaching. She worked her way through the ranks part time contract then full time. God forbid others may have to do the same. It must be tough working for $60.00 to $100.00 per hour part time not knowing what the future holds. Oh wait a minute I work too. So lets get it straight you can get by just like you did when you started working. College courses change with the times so must the colleges. Stop expecting the unrealistic expectations. Set realistic goals for the union to achieve like a 5 percent increase in full time staff.
There’s much that I disagree with in the second letter (particularly its assumption that part-time faculty don’t work when preparing their classes or evaluating their students’ work), but I’m delighted that its author and I are in complete agreement about one thing: “College courses change with the times[, and] so must the colleges”.
Of course, in the current round of negotiations, I only see one side arguing that Colleges need to change with the times — a quick review of the offer presented by the Employer directly to the Union membership on August 8 indicates the Employer was rather clearly interested in maintaining the status quo.
And for an indication of what that status quo looks like to one informed observer, I turn to our second letter:
As a fairly recent retiree from CAAT-A, I was horrified when talking with a former colleague this past week, how much the system has deteriorated, just since the time I retired. The contract-to-full-time ratio is even worse than it was just a few years ago. So many full-time faculty have not been replaced, and I think the Union has to face the realization that management will continue on this path until there are no full-time faculty left, and the Union becomes redundant.(I’ve always thought this was management’s real goal). In a college-wide meeting, I heard one of our former college presidents describe his idea of the “perfect college” as one with no full-time faculty–and that was over 25 years ago!! Although management always pays lip-service to “the concerns of students”, lip- service is all that it is. They benefit greatly from strikes, and are the only ones who do (aside from the province). There is something wrong with that.
As ever, please feel free to leave your thoughts, photos, limericks by hitting the “comments” button, or by e-mailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org. All messages will be kept anonymous.
One question I do have is how the thoughts or opinions (or fears?) of Partial-Load faculty might have changed over the past week.