By Angela Fries
February 7, 2013
The word “strike” has been on the lips of both faculty and students alike since last fall.
However, negotiations between APSCUF and PASSHE have finally picked up some momentum. After the threat of an impending strike from APSCUF, both sides came to a framework agreement for a contract.
The next step is for faculty delegates from all 14 universities to review the contract and vote on a yes or no recommendation. It will then come to a vote of all APSCUF faculty members. Lastly, the PASSHE board of governors will vote.
According to Stan Berard, LHU’s APSCUF president, the language of this agreement is nearly complete. The APSCUF negotiating team presented it to the 14 chapter presidents on Monday night and it was approved unanimously.
What does this mean for the students? The agreement includes making class size an issue on which faculty will have input through the curriculum committee on each campus. This means an increase in class sizes will be decided upon by the instructor, not by PASSHE.
The agreement also assures technical and instructional design support for distance education faculty, who develop online courses. Online courses may be slow to increase, as according to the proposed agreement faculty will no longer be paid for the development of new online courses.
For faculty, the new contract will include an increase in co-pays for health care services.
Conne Reece, APSCUF mobilization committee chair, said, “My opinion is that we did not give in. All of the rallies we had and went to, the e-mails we sent to the chancellor and the other strike-readiness activities we had worked.”
Angela Fries is a senior majoring in communication and can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org