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WCU Faculty May Strike

The faculty of West Chester University will hold a vote in November whether or not to authorize a strike.

According to a press release, members of the Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties (APSCUF) met in State College over the weekend and approved a strike authorization vote.

The APSCUF represents over 6,000 faculty members and coaches at the 14 university in the Pa. state system of higher education, which includes West Chester University.

According to the press release, faculty members have been working without a contract for 15 months, and still hope to avoid a strike.

According to the press release:

Dr. Steve Hicks, president of APSCUF, stated, “Faculty members do not want to strike. We do not make this decision lightly. We want to assure our students and their families that we will continue to do everything we can to settle a fair contract with PASSHE.”

Membership on all 14 campuses will take a vote in November about whether or not to strike.  There has never been a strike in the history of the organization.

Milton Bradley October 23, 2012 at 11:53 AM
For the sake of discussion, perhaps the Board of Governors of the SSHE can issue more tax-exempt bonds to cover the financial requests of state university faculty members? Under the heading of "Auxillary Construction/Renovations" from the SSHE Board of Governors' meeting minutes (4/8/10) it is clear where some financial concerns are being met. Just recently, in total, $9,751,675 in tax exempt bonds were approved by the Board to buy the WC College Arms Apartment complex($4,200,000), build a parking garage under the new WCU rec center($2,700,000) and some extra money thrown in for the rec center itself ($2,851,675). Again, these are labeled auxiliary expenditures. Will the faculty get such supplementary or additional financial help?
Milton Bradley October 23, 2012 at 11:55 AM
Continued.... Here are comments from a WCU professor, Dr. Davidson, who responded to an article that appeared over a year ago in The Inquirer. The Inquirer article addressed WCU's massive facilities expansion plans... "All is not well at WCU. Thank you for your laudatory article, "West Chester University plans new growth, new image" (Sept 5). As a faculty member, there are a few problems I feel compelled to point out. First, the university is backing away from what was a pedagogically sound policy of low faculty-to-student ratios (small classes). Classes with up to 60 students are increasingly common, making discussion difficult. This might be because the state has turned its financial back on its own university system, but the result can only be a deteriorated learning environment,
Milton Bradley October 23, 2012 at 11:58 AM
Continued... Secondly, of the $250 million spent on construction, very little has gone to improving the cramped and sometimes unhealthy quarters occupied by core faculty divisions such as english, political science, history, etc. As a result not all of us have experienced that "recent surge in school pride". Lawrence Davidson, Department of History, West Chester University" Obviously, at least one faculty member takes issue with the SSHE's allocation of state money/funding. SSHE is on the record stating that the driving force behind WCU's campus expansion plans is an enhanced revenue stream. Larger enrollment numbers means more money which mean less financial dependency or support from the state. So, maybe the general question should be asked, with the concept at hand of saving money by increasing revenue, what setasides were planned by SSHE for the future financial needs of WCU/state system faculty members?
Milton Bradley October 23, 2012 at 12:14 PM
I'll put forth an ironic note that the WC borough council has done more to solve the budgetary/financing issues of WCU than its own local government budgetary concerns. Through questionable zoning legislation, many special zoning exceptions, and improvident parking garage contracts with WCU, WC borough council has done much to fulfill the revenue enhancement plans of WCU. It's probably time for borough council to fulfill some of its own fiduciary obligations regarding their upcoming budget issues. Maybe WCU, in kind turn, could offer some helpful financial planning concepts to borough council.

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