An open letter sent to the Board of Trustees cites a crisis of confidence in the administration among faculty, and claims that mismanagement may result in the loss of state funds, according to Faculty Association President Roger Marheine, who wrote the letter.
â€œThe premature elimination of Winter has triggered a crisis,â€ Marheine wrote.
According to the letter, the cutting of over 1,000 class sections over the past three years, as well as cancellation of Winter Intersession has put the school in a predicament. â€œWe are now under our [full time equivalent student] allotment and are in danger of losing state apportionment,â€ Marheine said.
In an email reply, Board of Trustees President Geoffrey Baum deemed the letter to be an act of â€œpassionate advocacy.”
â€œThrough our actions and the very generous contract offer to facultyâ€”which was rejected by you and your colleagues on the PCCFA leadershipâ€”the Board of Trustees has made clear its policy priorities for the District,â€ Baum said in his email.
Marheine elaborated in a separate email that the state allocates a certain amount of funding for all community colleges based on Full Time Equivalent Students (FTES), which is a formula. â€œWe are in danger of losing funds because the state sees [PCC] as losing enrollment,â€ Marheine said. â€œThus now the college wants to raise class sizes to get as many students as possible to meet its FTES number.â€
â€œFaculty and students are thus being punished because of the college’s mismanagement, in particular the cutting of winter [session].â€
In a Nov. 26 reply to Marheine, General Counsel Gail Cooper said his letter is replete with misrepresentations.
Cooper refutes the letterâ€™s claim that the elimination of Winter 2013 is a â€œcrisisâ€ and issue ofÂ â€œmismanagement.â€ She says that the faculty and students are prepared to start Spring 2013. She added that faculty, students and other individuals who had issues with the start date, have been accommodated.
â€œIn the wake of Proposition 30â€™s success, and in compliance with the law, the Administration is planning to add many sections for spring and summer,â€ Cooper said. â€œThe college will meet and earn its state-assigned FTES apportionment.â€
Both Cooper and Baum feel that Marheineâ€™s efforts are futile because the FA rejected negotiations for a new faculty contract.
Marheine ended his letter with a plea to the Board: â€œWe are PCC.Â We deserve better. We are at a leadership moment,â€ Marheine said.
â€œWe need visionary leadership that responds to Shared Governance committee input.Â We need confidence in your leadership at this moment of crisis.â€