NFA State Board passes Position on Part-Time Faculty

14 Oct 2015 1:17 PM | David Steel

NFA Position on Part-Time Faculty


Whereas part-time faculty contribute professional knowledge and experience in their disciplines to higher education in Nevada, provide vital support to students’ learning and degree-seeking or other program-completion goals, and collaborate with full-time faculty and other NSHE colleagues in common cause to fulfill their institutions’ mission; yet, whereas in recent decades, part-time faculty have seen greater institutional reliance on their services be rewarded by increasing levels of economic exploitation and unprofessional treatment accompanied by decreasing levels of work and career support; and, whereas this widening gap of inequities dividing part-time and full-time faculty threatens the commonality of professional interests shared by all classifications of faculty--academic freedom, shared governance, protection of tenure rights, and employment due process--

Be it resolved that Nevada Faculty Alliance will advocate on behalf of part-time faculty by promoting on campus, before the Regents, and in the state legislature those policies, programs, and values that will improve pay, working conditions, and other key aspects of contingent employment in NSHE colleges and universities. NFA further resolves to invite its part-time faculty members into the advocacy process, as consultants and voters in determining priorities for activism, and to represent agreed-upon proposals as a strong voice for our colleagues who, in just concern for reprisal or retribution against them for supporting their own cause, are willing to be so represented. NFA believes that strengthening our alliance with part-time faculty can in time reverse the trend in NSHE toward hiring disproportionately high numbers of non-tenure-track faculty and will preserve the traditional model and values of tenure, the keystone to academic freedom in higher education.

In accordance with this resolution, we adopt the following five-point program as a guide to our advocacy work on behalf of part-time faculty employed at NSHE institutions:


Pay

1. Part-time faculty salaries should be incrementally raised until such time as part-time faculty are paid a salary proportional to that paid full-time tenure-track faculty of the same qualifications for the same classroom work, bearing in mind that full-time faculty perform numerous non-teaching duties. If part-time faculty are required to do non-teaching work, they should be compensated for those tasks


Working conditions

2. Part-time faculty should receive a full orientation and should be eligible for professional development opportunities. They should be provided suitable office space, office supplies, and library and other campus privileges, and should have access to secretarial and technological support services including computers and copying machines. Part-time faculty may have to cobble together several jobs to sustain themselves and, therefore, NSHE institutions should provide them with priority parking or discounts on parking permits where appropriate to help offset their time demands and to help them meet their teaching duties


Categorization

3. Part-time faculty should be defined as employees of the college or university, not as independent contractors. Accordingly, they should have unemployment insurance available to them when they are not on the college payroll.


Seniority

4. Part-time faculty who have passed a probationary period should achieve a form of seniority, including longer contracts and priority in class assignment over less senior part-time/adjunct faculty. Part-time faculty with a successful track record in teaching should be given special consideration in evaluation for full-time positions for which they are qualified.


Collective bargaining

5. Part-time faculty should have the right to choose collective bargaining.