Noncredit offerings should be treated the same as credit courses
By Paul Fong, AFT 6157 President
Members of the AFT 6157 participated in several important events in late April and early May. Bowling for Change, sponsored by the South Bay Labor Council, was a lot of fun, watching teammate Mayra Cruz with her perfect form, bowling impressive games; Barbara Hanfling bowling a strike and Andres Quintero improving tremendously from last year’s score, breaking the century mark.
Thank you to Jory Segal and husband Joel, Andres Quintero, Barbara and Mayra Cruz for joining AFT 6157. And thank you to Frank and Janina Espinoza for being our cheerleaders.
The entire 4th Street bowl was full of labor groups, supporting the SBLC in its mission of providing services to more than 100,000 working families in the South Bay.
The other notable event was the May Day March. Some Executive Board members and rank-and-file members marched in the May 1 march and rally in downtown San Jose. It was great that Andres Quintero helped us carry our AFT 6157 banner through the entire march of more than three miles. Andres truly believes in “Organize and Resist” the Trump agenda. Thanks also to Fabio Gonzalez, Kathy Jasper, Erika Lawson and Barbara Hanfling for joining us.
May is a busy month with many events scheduled including graduation offered at both EVC and SJCC. It has also been declared Asian Pacific American Heritage month by Congress.
Negotiations-Pitting our Most Vulnerable Students against our Most Vulnerable Adjunct Faculty
The District has a proposal that counters its mission of social justice for all. They have offered a much needed 10th step for our adjunct faculty in exchange to load our noncredit instructors with 25 hours as opposed to the current 15 hours for lecture and 20 hours for lab.
Noncredit faculty work with our most vulnerable students and therefore it is usually much more difficult to teach such classes.
When I served on the State Legislature, the officials also knew this fact, which is why the legislature funded credit and noncredit for CD/CP classes (Career Development/College Prep) with the identical same funding.
SJECCD is increasing our noncredit offerings in our District, and these classes should be treated the same as credit courses. Creating this second-class instructor is unfair to our noncredit faculty.
We at the AFT 6157 have rejected the noncredit teaching load of 25 hours. The Executive Board has created important arguments to oppose the differential treatment of our credit and noncredit faculty. (See below) We are extremely blessed to have this group of social justice advocates on our Executive Board.
- Noncredit teaching includes working with our most vulnerable students and needs full-time and adjunct faculty as qualified as for every other course we teach. If we pay them less per course by requiring more time in the classroom, we are robbing our students of the very best.
- As the District values social justice and equity, we don’t want a lower classification of faculty so we will have two tiers of faculty. Those who teach credit and spend 15-20 hours in the classroom; and those who teach noncredit and spend 25 hours in the classroom.
- Based on the commitment the District made last year in negotiations to treat noncredit faculty identically to credit faculty, departments were energized to create the new curriculum for noncredit. This energy to serve our most vulnerable and needy students will not be sustained.
- SB 860 equalized funding for noncredit classes. Why? Because the legislature believed that these CD/CP classes should be paid at the same level and at the same load. The Legislators recognized that noncredit is the key to success through strong workforce, student success and the noncredit consortium.
- What do most other colleges do? Most other colleges bargained noncredit when state apportionment was only paying half of what it paid for credit. Therefore they agreed to 25 hours per week. Now the state has determined the CD/CP noncredit, which is all we will teach, is equivalent in pay to credit. Therefore there is no reason why we shouldn’t pay and load them identically to credit.