Unprecedented Actions to Reduce Teaching Equivalencies (TE) at Kapiolani CC

UHPA was notified by Chancellor Pagotto of a significant cut in Teaching Equivalencies (TE) for Spring 2020 due to fiscal problems at Kapiolani CC. These reductions affect a large number of faculty members and is without precedence. TE’s constitute work responsibilities that are part of your compensation and conditions of work. These reductions may impact delivery of instruction and support for students along with diminished employment for some employees. The impact of these measures is not fully known.

UHPA was not consulted before the implementation of TE reductions nor did Chancellor Pagotto request negotiations on changes in compensation and working conditions that are impacted by the action being taken.

UHPA considers this a very serious matter and is preparing to take the necessary steps to ensure that faculty members are protected from harmful employer actions that undermine your job security, compensation and working conditions.

UHPA has requested that the UH System administration intervene immediately to address the fiscal situation and stop the unilateral reduction of TE’s. Further this requires the employer and UHPA to meet and negotiate on these matters. The employer needs to meet its legal obligations.

Faculty Rights to Privacy Violated

UHPA is actively pursuing measures to protect faculty members from Legislator information requests that breach the privacy of personnel files. Numerous information requests have been received from Senator Kim that target individual faculty members in a manner that UHPA contends surpasses what is allowed by the collective bargaining agreement and Chapter 92F of The Uniform Practices Act.

UHPA has a pending grievance and is in discussions with the University on establishing standards for release of information which protects the privacy of faculty members

The information requests are raising the spectre of legislative intrusion into work load and faculty evaluation. Both the exercise of academic decision making by faculty members and University autonomy are undermined by the collection of data with little restrictions on use.

This is a growing area of UHPA activities designed to protect the ability of faculty members to meet their work responsibilities free from legislative intrusion.

UHPA Safeguards Your Intellectual Property: New Rights for Faculty Members

UHPA knows that as a faculty member you have made significant investments to develop and expand your knowledge in your specific field of study. The original materials you create for your classes and other purposes are the result of years of research. You have no doubt become a subject matter expert and your work deserves to be protected from misuse or copyright infringement.

You can be reassured that you are protected from having your works misused. After two years of tough negotiations with UH administration, UHPA has successfully included new contract language that respects the rights of faculty members. Article XI Intellectual Property, Patents and Copyrights, now in effect for faculty members, spells out the terms and conditions for any work for hire by the University of Hawaii.

Works for hire for copyrightable materials must meet specified conditions that are defined in the contract and can be enforced through the grievance procedure. The new language allows copyrightable products—as well as patents—to be subject to shared revenue agreements. This was designed so that faculty can receive an equitable economic return on any of their work that may be sold. The contract contains an updated definition of copyright, and UHPA now receives copies of all work-for-hire agreements.

UHPA and UH is in the process of developing templates for work-for-hire agreements to ensure there is compliance with the contract terms and conditions. Watch for more details.

UHPA Stops Residency Requirements for Lecturers! Being a UHPA Member has Advantages!

In June community college lecturers started receiving notices that because they did not reside in Hawaii they could no longer be hired to work for the community colleges. This action was taken unilaterally without regard to contractual rights of lecturers and the harm that could occur to instructional programs for Fall 2019. At risk were rights to long term rolling contracts, rights of assignments of 6 credits per semester, annual contracts, and health insurance benefits.

UHPA successfully prevailed in stopping the Community Colleges from implementing and imposing a change in conditions of employment for lecturers. Contrary to the misinformation that was circulating on some campuses there is no Hawaii law that requires hiring of only persons who reside in Hawaii. The University is exempt from state law that requires employees to be residents.

All Community College faculty members should receive notice from the employer that there is no residency requirement.

If you’re a UHPA member your support makes these wins possible!

UHPA Prevails in Obtaining Revised Contract Renewal Letters for Probationary Faculty

UHPA filed a class grievance regarding the failure to properly inform probationary faculty of the contract renewal recommendations by the DPC and Department/Division chair by December 20, 2018 as provided by the collective bargaining agreement. This information can be critical to any faculty member who may be subject to non-renewal or has performance deficits that may raise concerns with a Dean or Vice Chancellor. The December date enables a probationary faculty member to determine what options may guide their future employment and ability to remain at the University of Hawaii.

Such defects in the process will be corrected for the 2019-2020 academic year. As a remedy
Faculty members who were improperly denied a contract renewal will be awarded a contract renewal. Faculty members who were renewed and received improper letters will be sent corrected letters which affirm their contract renewals.

Tenure and promotion datasets updated for 2018

UHPA Members can access tenure and promotion data that includes 2016-2018 academic years.  Members can access both graphs and the tables producing those graphs published within a Google sheet.

UHPA Executive Director Kristeen Hanselman said, “Each year UHPA gathers information on faculty success in obtaining tenure, increased compensation with promotion, and completion of probationary periods thru contract renewal. These indicate that UH continues to replenish some tenured faculty positions and faculty members are successful in their career path. ”

This content is made available to UHPA Members only via our Google Drive files. If you’re not a member, signup is quick and easy via our online form.

 

Faculty rating is highest of recent UH Manoa rankings

The 2018-2019 CWUR World University Rankings report evaluated 18,000 universities worldwide.  Of those, UH Manoa ranked 306, 105 nationally, 245 in influence, 541 in citations and 574 in research output.  A detail not lost on us is that our UH Manoa faculty was ranked at 100, the highest of the ratings for the campus.  It’s nice to see great efforts and great results recognized by all. Congratulations UH Manoa Faculty!

Tenure and promotion datasets updated

UHPA Members can access tenure and promotion data that includes 2016 and 2017 academic years.  Members can access both graphs and the tables producing those graphs published within a Google sheet.

UHPA Executive Director Kristeen Hanselman said, “Each year UHPA gathers information on faculty success in obtaining tenure, increased compensation with promotion, and completion of probationary periods thru contract renewal. These indicate that UH continues to replenish some tenured faculty positions and faculty members are successful in their career path. ”

This content is made available to UHPA Members only via our Google Drive files. If you’re not a member, signup is quick and easy via our online form.

 

2018 Hawaii State AFL-CIO Scholarships

Thanks to American Income Life (AIL) for their generous donation of $3,000 for the 2018 Hawaii State AFL-CIO scholarships. There will be three scholarships awarded in the amount of $1,000 each. High school students planning to attend post-high school study on a full-time basis will be considered for the three scholarships. Please see the details and the criteria below that will be used in determining the winners.

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The Hawaii State AFL-CIO has established scholarships that will be awarded to students who are currently attending high school in the state of Hawaii and plan to pursue post-high school study on a full-time basis at a university, college, community college, vocational or trade school.

The following criteria will be used in determining the awarding of the scholarships:

  1. An essay of not more than 1000 words as to the importance of labor unions in Hawaii. The essay may be written from a personal point of view or from a historical perspective.
  2. Completing a cover letter with relevant information: name, address, phone number, e-mail address and what type of school you plan to attend.

The scholarship is open to any graduating senior and having a family member in a union is not required. There will be three scholarships awarded in the amount of $1,000 each.

All submissions must be received or postmarked by Friday, April 20, 2018. Applications can be sent by e-mail to: aflcioscholarship@gmail.com or by mail to: 345 Queen St., Suite 500, Honolulu, HI 96813. Please direct all questions to Jason Bradshaw at 597-1441.

A decision will be made by Friday, April 27, 2018 and winners will be notified shortly thereafter.

 

Senate Bill Puts Quality of Higher Education at Risk

SB 2328 proposes that all courses at all UH campuses be required to use instructional materials exclusively from the OER at the UH, beginning with the 2020-2021 school year.

As the chief advocates upholding the quality of the education at the University of Hawaii, UHPA and faculty members submitted testimony against SB 2328 for a hearing before the Senate Higher Education Committee held on Tuesday, Jan. 30. Legislators were urged to defer or reject the proposed bill for sound reasons.

Our Top 10 Reasons UH Faculty Oppose Open Educational Resources Mandate:

1. Infringement on Academic Judgment

Restricting the resources that faculty can and cannot use for their courses infringes on the academic judgment of faculty. Is this a new definition of a state-run university?

2. Impact on Quality of Education

Open source information is usually generic and basic; it is not the cutting-edge information Hawaii university students deserve. Textbooks are written by national experts and contain up-to-date resources on specific subjects. They become future resources for graduates in their vocation and part of their library for life. Putting constraints on what faculty members must use to conduct their courses hampers their ability to educate students with the latest information. An OER mandate will decrease the quality and amount of information students can receive in their classes.

3. Lack of Important Resources

Higher education is a time for students to spread their intellectual wings and delve deep into subjects with passion. Unfortunately, not all instructional materials are available on open access. This limits academic rigor and holds back students from fully exploring subjects. Libraries continue to play a significant role in universities, but at the UH even our libraries have been subject to budget cuts.

4. Significant Funding Requirements

There are other costs associated with OER that on the surface may not be as readily apparent. Even under the best of circumstances, OER cannot provide instructional and research materials without a substantial investment to develop materials and purchase academic resources that are not subject to open access.

5. Cost of Course Development

The cost to construct course content and the methodology for delivery are also worth noting. Depending upon the area of study, specialized technology and software-based resources are required to meet OER standards.

6. Technological Constraints

Eliminating textbooks creates access challenges for both students and faculty members. With the rapid changes in hardware and software, some may have a challenge accessing online materials because of a lack of appropriate tools, internet access, security, access to technical support, and other obstacles. This creates an uneven playing field for student learning.

7. Need-Based Subsidies

With the increase in the cost of textbooks and other instructional resources, there needs to be a corresponding increase in funding for textbooks through subsidies. By decreasing the out-of-pocket expenses for books, the net effect is lower educational costs for students. This can be accomplished through allocations made by the legislature.

8. Legislative Overreach

Simply commanding faculty members to turn over their intellectual property is not only offensive to academic practice, but also fails to recognize that the content may be subject to peer review. Asserting that faculty are required to make their work available to all is contrary to academic protocols. Already, many faculty members voluntarily share their work among their department and students. It is substantial legislative overreach for the legislature to act as the employer by assigning specific duties to faculty members.

9. Alternative Solutions

OER is not a black-and-white, either-or issue. Textbook manufacturers seek to maximize their profits by releasing new versions of books each year with minor changes, such as reordering exercises and adding modest material, and have reduced the number of books that could be used for several semesters. UH faculty, on the other hand, search for the best mix of quality and cost when choosing textbooks. Some use past editions, available on Amazon, halving the cost of a textbook for students. We should encourage OER material when it makes sense and think of more creative ways to lower the costs of educational materials for students.

10. Non-OER Books Facilitate Dialogue

At a time when so many scholars are engaged in writing about social justice and look to publish their work in the near future, this bill unintentionally subverts attempts for students to become scholars who offer a critical lens about race, class, and gender. By mandating what a faculty member may or may not include for course material, we set back the clock on educational resources for the 21st-century learner. At a time when people of color and women face daily harassment and persecution, recent, cutting-edge publications become increasingly crucial for students, teachers, staff, and administrators to engage in dialogue.