Tuesday, February 13, 2018

N.Y. Teamsters form 'sanctuary union' to fight ICE agents

New York Daily News
By Ginger Adams Otis
February 10, 2018

Worried about federal immigration policies, a New York labor organization is taking steps to protect its own.

Across Long Island and throughout the city, some 12,000 Teamsters are getting prepped to become a "sanctuary union."

Read the full article at the New York Daily News website here.

Monday, February 12, 2018

Labour MP refuses to cross picket line in solidarity with striking lecturers

Morning Star
By Peter Lazenby
February 10, 2018

A LABOUR MP has cancelled a lecture she was due to give at the University of Manchester because she refuses to cross picket lines.

Lucy Powell was scheduled to deliver the address on Thursday February 22, the day that members of the University and College Union (UCU) launch a series of 14 strikes in defence of their pensions.

Read the full article at the Morning Star website here.

Friday, February 9, 2018

Oregon bill combats DACA termination, continues college tuition equity

Statesman Journal
By Natalie Pate
February 7, 2018

Despite national efforts to end DACA, undocumented student in Oregon will continue to have access to tuition equity if Senate Bill 1563 passes.

Students who are not citizens have historically had to apply for "official federal identification" - Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals documentation - before they can be eligible for resident tuition at public universities.

Read the full article at the Statesman Journal website here.

Governance Committee Denounces Remarks by UW System President

AAUP- National
February 8, 2018

In October 2017, news broke of University of Wisconsin system president Ray Cross's decision to propose a merger of the system's two- and four-year institutions.  It was the latest in a number of unilateral and secretive actions taken by system leaders, state legislature, and Governor Scott Walker, condemned at the time by the AAUP and AFT Wisconsin as consulting "a concerted attack on the university as a public good and on the university's role in fostering democratic participation."

The day after the news of the proposed merger, President Cross, facing backlash from faculty, staff, and students, wrote the following in an email message to a system regent: "Getting hammered by the 'shared governance' leaders because they weren't involved in the process; however, had they been involved we wouldn't be doing anything!!"

Read the full post at the AAUP website here.

Budget Deal Would Add Money, but Not Restore DACA

Inside Higher Ed
By Andrew Kreighbaum and Elizabeth Redden
February 8, 2018

Senate leaders on Wednesday looked poised to reach an agreement on a two-year budget deal that would lift spending caps put in place at federal agencies by Congress in 2011.  The lifting of those caps has long been sought by higher ed institutions who say they threaten sustainable funding of research.

The agreement would add $4 billion in new money for student aid, according to a brief summary document circulated on Capitol Hill Wednesday, and boost spending on the National Institutes of Health by $2 billion.  Not included in the deal is a fix for the group of young immigrants known as Dreamers, who have faced uncertainty over their status since President Trump announced in September that he would wind down the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.  DACA provides temporary protection against deportation and work authorization to hundreds of thousands of young immigrants -- including many college students -- who were brought to the U.S. illegally as children.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Using the N-Word

Inside Higher Ed
By Scott Jaschik
February 9, 2018

Eric Triffin is known for singing and dancing in New Haven, where since 1986 he has been an adjunct in public health at Southern Connecticut State University.  He typically begins his classes by asking a student to pick and play a song.  Many times he joins in the song and dances to it.

Triffin was suspended this week when he sang along to a song that a student played at the beginning of class, a rap song that featured the N-word.  Some black student leaders are calling for the university to punish Triffin for what he did in class that day.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Power of the Purse

Inside Higher Ed
By Colleen Flaherty
February 9, 2018

Institutions will now have to tell the National Science Foundation when a principal investigator, co-PI or any other grant "personnel" are found to have committed sexual misconduct or harassment of any kind -- or when the allegations against a PI or co-PI are severe enough to warrant suspension during a campus investigation.

The change, announced Thursday, is one of the ways the NSF hopes to foster the kinds of positive research climates that keep students in science, France Cordova, foundation director, said during a news conference.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

As U. of Washington Braces for Right-Wing Rally, Judge Bars It From Charging Security Fee

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Andy Thomason
February 9, 2018

A federal judge on Friday granted a request for a temporary injunction barring the University of Washington from charging the campus's College Republicans a $17,000 security fee in order to host a rally by Patriot Prayer, a right-wing group, The Seattle Times reports.

The College Republicans sued the university on Tuesday, calling the fee "draconian and unreasonable" and arguing that it was illegal.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Ed website here.

Friday, February 2, 2018

The Death of College Free-Speech Zones

Inside Higher Ed
By Jeremy Bauer-Wolf
February 2, 2018

In 2016, Kevin Shaw, a student at Los Angeles Pierce College, was stopped from passing out Spanish-language copies of the Constitution around the community college.  He was told he needed to keep his activities confined to a small slice of campus -- what the institution has deemed its "free-speech zone."

Such areas, designated at some colleges both public and private, are where administrators expect students to exercise their free-speech rights to avoid interrupting the campus flow.  They can be small, such as the one at Pierce College, which was a rectangle no more than three parking spots wide, a little more than 600 square feet -- or limiting in other ways.  At the University of South Dakota, a student needs to reserve a free-speech spot at least five days in advance.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Less Community, More Vocational

Inside Higher Ed
By Ashley A. Smith
February 2, 2018

The Trump administration's rhetoric for more work force and career training increased Thursday, with the president calling for community colleges to undergo a name change.

President Trump's call for more vocational training (quotation and video below) reflects statements he made during Tuesday's State of the Union, during which he called for a larger national investment in work-force development.  But community college leaders were quick to point out that their institutions already offer the vocational or work-force programs Trump has highlighted, and more.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

'White Supremacists Are Targeting College Campuses Like Never Before'

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Emma Kerr
February 1, 2018

White -supremacist propaganda at colleges increased by 258 percent from the fall of 2016 to the fall of 2017, affecting 216 campuses across the nation, according to a study released on Thursday by the Anti-Defamation League.

For just the fall-2017 semester, the organization found 147 incidents of white-supremacist fliers, stickers, banners, or posters on campuses - up from 41 reported during the fall-2016 semester.  In the past year, the group said, 346 incidents have been reported in all, at colleges in 44 states and Washington, D.C., from community colleges to the Ivy League.

Read the full article at the Willamette Week website here.

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Important January 2018 Leadership Update + Brief Filed in Janus v. AFSCME

AAUP Collective Bargaining Congress
AAUP Email Communication
January 22, 2018

Welcome to a new semester and a new year.  We know that we will face challenges in 2018, but we also see great hope emerging because of AAUP leaders like you.

On Friday, the AAUP filed with the National Education Association (NEA) an amicus brief in the U.S. Supreme Court.

The case Janus v. American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, Council 31 is the latest legal threat to union rights and is part of a broader effort to weaken the power of working people, to undermine public services, and to erode the common good.  The AAUP, with its members and allies across the country, will continue to fight these attacks, and AAUP chapters will continue to organize to defend higher education as a public good.

Read the full communication here.

Friday, January 26, 2018

When a Field's Reputation Precedes It

Inside Higher Ed
By Colleen Flaherty
January 25, 2018

Theories abound as to why women remain underrepresented in may fields.  A new study says that perceived gender bias in a given discipline is the primary criterion women use for selecting a college major, not the perception that a field science or math oriented (sorry, Larry Summers).

Departments "need to think through what types of messages they may be sending about gender and who belongs in a particular major," said lead author Colleen Ganley, an assistant professor of psychology at Florida State University.  "These messages could be quite subtle, but, based on our data, people seem to be picking up on them."

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Michigan State president announces resignation

By The Associated Press
January 24, 2018

LANSING, Mich. -- Michigan State President Lou Anna Simon has announced that she is resigning.

Simon is stepping down in the wake of a scandal involving Larry Nassar, who worked at Michigan State as a medical doctor.  Nassar was sentenced Wednesday to 40 to 175 years in prison for molesting young girls and women under the guise of medical treatment.

Many of the victims accused the university of mishandling past complaints about Nassar.

Read the full article at the OregonLive website here.

'Some Kind of Authority'

Inside Higher Ed
By Colleen Flaherty
January 24, 2018

In an extremely rare move that expresses ongoing internal disapproval of how the University of Rochester handled a major sexual harassment case, the institution's Faculty Senate is considering censuring the professor at the center of it all.

During a senate meeting Tuesday, the body's executive committee also introduced a motion condemning employees in the university counsel's office who searched the emails of professors who sought to bring the case to light - and then shared those emails with the professors' department chair without permission.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.