Processes for Establishing Guidelines for Evaluation and Promotion

Article 9.7 of the CBA states that each department may adopt guidelines for evaluation and promotion. The faculty and chair may prepare draft guidelines and distribute them to all faculty for review and comment, and ultimately a vote. Deans are allowed 30 days to ensure the guidelines “comply with the [CBA] and the mission and goals of the University”, then approve them or return to the department for revision.
Provided the department responds to the Dean’s comments within 60 days, the Dean does not have the power to modify the guidelines. Once the faculty, chair and Dean are in agreement, the CBA gives the Provost the power to review and promulgate the guidelines, but not to edit the guidelines. If the Provost decides not to promulgate the guidelines, they shall be submitted to the UFF and UNF-BOT bargaining teams for immediate negotiation.
Please let UFF know if this process was not followed in your department by completing this brief survey

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Political Activity Do’s and Don’ts for Faculty

We each have the Constitutional right to the freedom of speech and free association, although when exercised in the course of public sector employment, the courts have placed restrictions on our First Amendment free speech rights. As public employees, we have additional Constitutional protections in the workplace that those in the private sector may not enjoy. In-unit faculty are also protected by the provisions in our Collective Bargaining Agreement in regards to our Constitutional rights and the right to due process for disciplinary action (see Articles 27 and 30). Nevertheless, as an employee of a public university in the state of Florida, there are some general guidelines and best practices for engaging in political activity as it relates to your position at UNF. Though the following list is not meant to be comprehensive, it provides some basic do’s and don’ts.

POLITICAL ACTION can be defined as persuading government officials via any medium, such as signing petitions, organizing or participating in demonstrations, distributing fliers, political fund raising, and political outreach.

IT IS OK to volunteer for and engage in political activities on your own time (including legitimate leave time), with your own equipment, and via a non-UNF server.

IT IS OK to discuss politics in and out of the classroom within the educational contexts of learning, research, and teaching your subject.

AVOID volunteering and engaging in political activities while at UNF during regular business hours and even if not in a scheduled activity.

DO NOT use your UNF email account for political action (it becomes public record).

DO NOT use UNF property for political activity including, but not limited to, phones, computers, printers, copiers, university administered websites, official university letterhead, or official university logos.

DO NOT direct students to volunteer or engage in political action as part of their class requirements.

DO NOT engage in political initiatives and mention your institutional affiliation. Instead, give a disclaimer indicating that your actions and statements are your own and not those of the University.

This list is not meant to discourage civic engagement at UNF, an important part of campus life. For more resources on this topic, see below:

http://www.acenet.edu/the-presidency/columns-and-features/Pages/Legal-Watch-Litigation-and-regulation-in-academe.aspx

https://www.aaup.org/academic-freedom-students-and-professors-and-political-discrimination

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AA Policy: Former Administrators Keep Admin Salary When Going Back to Faculty Roles

Faculty administrators are paid significantly more than their departmental same-rank peers. The argument for this is that one’s workload and hours change when going into administration. When or if those administrators go back to their faculty roles, this logic would suggest, they would go back to a normal faculty salary. Yet when administrators at UNF do go back to faculty ranks (voluntarily or not), they keep their administrative salary rate. The only adjustment is to nine months rather than twelve. And in most cases, they keep part or all of their stipends. In short, Academic Affairs policy ensures that once a faculty member joins the ranks of administration, he or she is to enjoy the better pay of administration forever. Not only is this policy unjust and inequitable, it is financially irresponsible.

COMPARE FORMER ADMINISTRATORS’ SALARIES TO THOSE OF THEIR PEERS

When former administrators go back to normal faculty positions, they by default assume the same duties and responsibilities as their same-rank departmental peers. Ostensibly, a change back to a faculty role is a reduction in workload and stress (again, the rationale for significantly higher administrative pay is that administrative roles are more demanding than faculty roles). Despite moving into a less demanding role and perfomring the same work as their peers, these former administrators continue to make salaries that trump those of their departmental colleagues. This policy exacerbates compression and inversion, hurts faculty morale, and suggests that UNF administrators are more than happy to help themselves to more than their fair share of very limited funds.

The additional pay granted to former administrators is also financially untenable. Institutions in the SUS–and especially UNF–have recently struggled to maintain programs and staff. When seeking better compensation or benefits (to try to bring UNF out of the bottom of the SUS), faculty and staff have repeatedly been told that “there is no money.” It is increasingly hard to take such claims seriously in light of policies like this one.

Finally, the oft-cited rationale for paying bonuses to former administrators is seriously flawed. Justification for the policy seems to be based upon the proposition that in taking on administrative roles, faculty must make significant sacrifices (namely to their research agendas). While this may be true at research-intensive universities (R-1), that is not the context at UNF. Myriad chairs and deans continue their research agendas while serving as administrators. Were such a justification true, few Associate Professors would willingly take on administrative roles nor would we have seen numerous administrators promoted to Professor while working full time as administrators (and adding yet more to their administrators’ salaries). Logic would suggest that either administrators are able to maintain their scholarly agendas or some administrators are skimping on their administrative duties. It is also important to note that most administrators at UNF have opportunities to teach and to do service. In many cases, administrators have access to numerous professional opportunities for advancement that faculty do not.

The current policy is unjust and indefensible. Faculty and taxpayers should be outraged.

 

 

Sign Faculty Letter Opposing Appointment of Adam Hollingsworth to UNF Board of Trustees

We are circulating a letter opposing the appointment of Adam Hollingsworth to the UNF Board of Trustees. We ask that you, our UNF faculty, sign onto this letter. The greater the objection to this cronyism appointee–by a man who lied about his own academic background in order to obtain numerous jobs–the greater our impact. 

SEE DRAFT LETTER HERE

If you are willing to be a signatory to the letter, please contact John W White.

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Florida Times-Union Article about New BOT Appointment

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UNF faculty union president objects to governor’s trustee appointment

Posted January 11, 2017 05:19 pm
By  Amanda Williamson

Governor Rick Scott appointed his former chief of staff to University of North Florida’s Board of Trustees at the end of December, but members of the school’s faculty union question that decision.

Adam Hollingsworth, 48, left the governor’s office shortly after Scott’s re-election in 2014 — approximately a year after the Miami Herald-Tampa Bay Times Tallahassee bureau exposed him for lying about earning a public relations degree from the University of Alabama in 1990.

Aside from Hollingsworth’s casual comments referencing his degree, the newspaper said, he also allowed his former employer, CSX Corporation, to issue press releases 1998 and 2002 saying he’d graduated from Alabama. He hadn’t, the Herald reported.

In 2009, Hollingsworth did in fact earn his degree.

That fact, however, causes more than a little bit of unease for John White, president of the United Faculty of Florida, UNF chapter.

“It seems to me someone should be disqualified from overseeing or evaluating the value of the degrees that we grant at UNF if they lied about having one,” White said. “Granted, that was a long time ago, but it seems to me it is an egregious affront to what we stand for at this university.”

UNF faculty want Hollingsworth to recuse himself from serving on the board.

White said he doesn’t expect that to happen — and if it doesn’t, union members will urge the Florida Senate to vote no on Hollingsworth’s confirmation.

Hollingsworth refused to comment about his UNF Board of Trustees goals, and whether his past would impact his performance at the university.

He did say in an e-mail to the Times-Union, “The University of North Florida is a terrific institution. I am grateful to have been appointed to the Board and I look forward to serving to the best of my ability.”

UNF President John Delaney also stands by the appointment. In a Jan. 10 email, he wrote: “[Hollingsworth] attended his first meeting today and was a significant contributor. What is past is past, and he will be a great Board member.”

Hollingsworth came clean in 2013 as newspapers questioned the degree. He called his actions then a failure in judgement.

In a statement issued at the time, he said: “For many years, I publicly stated that I was a graduate of the University of Alabama, however, I did not complete my degree until 2009. I am not proud of this and I deeply apologize for this misrepresentation.”

Hollingsworth continued to deny his sudden departure from CSX to work for Jacksonville Mayor John Peyton had any connection to his inflated resume, the Herald said.

The Herald also reported Hollingsworth allegedly lied on a 2011 application for an appointment to the board of Enterprise Florida, Inc., the state’s public-private economic development agency. A year later, he replaced Steve MacNamara as Scott’s chief of staff.

Comments from the governor’s office at the time indicated Hollingsworth never tried to hide anything in his applications — and when applying for the chief of staff position — did disclose his degree was not official until 2009.

While the degree looms largest in White’s concerns, he said Hollingsworth also appears to have no experience in higher education.

According to the UNF website, the Board of Trustees is responsible for cost-effective policy, implementing and maintaining high-quality education programs consistent with the university’s mission, performance evaluation, and developing a process, meeting state policy, budgeting and education standards.

For White, that process should be independent of the governor’s office. Instead, he sees this as a way for Scott to extend his influence.

“Seems to me to be cronyism,” White said. “The government is increasingly controlled by one person, and that person is no friend to higher education.”

Rumors in 2014 placed Hollingsworth’s future post-Scott at Florida State University. Student groups were angry, White said in an email.

FSU President John Thrasher called Hollingsworth a friend — but said a job in the school’s administration was not available for Hollingsworth at the time.

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Bargaining to begin January 27th

UFF will present proposals for a much-needed family leave policy, including leave for the birth or adoption of a child, or when the employee is a primary caregiver of a family member with a serious medical condition.  We will also present a proposal for salary increases that addresses inflation, merit, and compression and inversion. Bargaining sessions are open to the public; we encourage all faculty members who have an interest in these issues to attend the session.

Friday January 27th at 1pm in the Professional Development and Training Conference Room (1/1306)

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