As we get started on the new academic year, it is my pleasure to serve as your new UUP Chapter President. Officially, I took over the reins from Peter Brown as of June 1, and with the assistance of our Vice Presidents—Kevin Saunders, Annee Roschelle, and Barbara Heiles—we are hitting the ground running. There is much to do, and we need YOUR input and engagement.
In addition to my duties as Chapter President, I have started my second term on the statewide Executive Board (having been re-elected at the Delegate Assembly last April); over the summer, I also accepted an invitation from UUP President Fred Kowal to serve on the Negotiations Team for our next statewide Agreement.
I shall strive to do my best to represent all of our members’ interests in all of these endeavors, but I cannot do it alone. I’ll be relying a great deal on the talents and ideas of our newly-elected Executive Committee, which includes a number of new union activists, with fresh ideas and perspectives on how we can all work together for the greater good. We began the academic year with a half-day retreat of the Executive Committee, which was very productive, as we set an ambitious agenda for the Fall semester and beyond.
As we head into negotiations with the State, UUP’s Chief Negotiator, Philippe Abraham will be making visits to all of the campuses that we represent, along with members of the Negotiations Team. His visit to New Paltz will be on Thursday, October 15, at a lunch at the Terrace from 12-2 pm. Save the Date!!
In advance of Philippe’s visit, we are organizing a series of smaller meetings, for various constituencies within our membership—professionals (broken down into groups by the VPs to whom they report); tenured academics; not-yet-tenured academics; part-timers; and full-time non-TT lecturers. These meetings will be facilitated by our Chapter officers and members of the Executive Committee as a safe space to bring your concerns, to build solidarity, and to more effectively organize our issues for presentation at both labor-management meetings and as valuable information for input into the negotiations process.
The dates and locations of these smaller constituency meetings can be found below. We will be providing food and refreshments, in exchange for your experience and ideas!! I do hope that many of you will be able to attend!!
Please RSVP for your meeting to Chapter Assistant Mary Thompson at firstname.lastname@example.org or x 2770 as soon as possible, so we can order the food and ensure we’re booked in a room that’s big enough!!
Date Time Group Location
9/10 12-1 Professionals (1) SUB 62/63
9/15 3:30-4:30 Tenured academics CSB 1010
9/16 12:30-1:30 Non-TT lecturers JFT 1010
9/16 1:30-2:30 Untenured TT academics JFT 1010
9/17 12-1 Professionals (2) SUB 418
9/21 12:30-1:30 Part-timers/adjuncts JFT 1010
9/22 12:30-1:30 Part-timers/adjuncts JFT 1010
9/24 12-1 Professionals (3) SUB 62/63
The Professionals are being divided into the following groups, based on which VP they ultimately report to:
Group 1 are members that report to the VP of Enrollment Management and Provost on 9/10. Group 2 are members that report to the VP of Student Affairs on 9/17. Group 3 are members that report to the VP of Administration and Finance and the Presidents office on 9/24.
Commentary by UUP President Frederick E. Kowal
The National Council on Teacher Quality criticized United University Professions (“Our budding teachers deserve better training in New York,” March 30) for our position regarding the State Education Department’s deeply flawed teacher certification process.
Hey, NCTQ, what took you so long?
After all, UUP has loudly voiced its concerns about New York’s teacher certification exams for the past two years. And for good reason: these tests are riddled with problems pertaining to content, their computerbased format — administered and scored by corporate education testing giant Pearson — the basis for cut scores, and the lack of timely access to test preparation materials.
SED changed certification requirements for 2014 and 2015 student teachers well after they started their teacher preparation programs. And the department was two years late in making test preparation materials available for the Educating All Students exam and Academic Literacy Skills Test.
SED’s latest imbroglio was its decision to require students to take the newly revised Content Specialty Tests before establishing passing scores for the exams. As of early April, graduates are languishing as SED figures things out. MORE
In the most important day of the year for public higher education in New York, UUP members turned out in force for Higher Education Advocacy Day to push back against an unprecedented threat: A governor who wants to hijack public higher education funding and the democratic process and public debate that help set that funding in the first place.
“Andrew Cuomo has attacked all of public higher education,” said UUP President Fred Kowal, as higher education leaders and members prepared for a day of meetings with lawmakers Feb. 26 in Albany. “I don’t like to use marshal terms, but we are in a war – a war against the work that we do. We defend the good and the right. The times we face and the challenges we face demand that we be bold.”
UUP leaders spent the day telling lawmakers that this year’s advocacy is not just about asking for deserved funds to be restored to SUNY; it’s about pointing out that the governor – as stated in the new UUP television and print ad campaign –is just plain wrong.
View the ad!