- Follow #WeAreWI trending globally, 18K in just the past day, as of 7 pm, February 26
- American Dream Rallies slide show
- Run continually updating Twitter search for #WEareWI, #p2, #WIunion, #StateSOS
- Watch live updates on nationwide solidarity rallies powered by CoverItLive
- Search social media for links and photos posted on social media
- RT and blog to share... and participate virtually
Saturday, February 26, 2011
Friday, February 25, 2011
Tuesday, February 22, 2011
Monday, February 21, 2011
Hello from slushy Madison. After a week of relatively good (for February in Wisconsin) weather, Sunday brought rain, snow, and slush.
Photo, Feb 19, 2011, UK Daily Mail
Networks and local TV and radio coverage don't capture what is going on, partly because most news outlets are corporately owned. Being part of a very diverse Saturday crowd of 70,000+ who support workers' rights was a wonderful experience. While our local Fox outlet worded things so that there was an implication that the 80,000 crowd was split between the tea party folks and workers' rights group, there were a fraction of (far less diverse) tea baggers. Things have been very peaceful all week.
If you watch the video links below, note the mix of ages, colors, unions, etc. represented. Our University of Wisconsin TAA is the oldest in the US, and they are superb. For those who want to portray Madison as a bunch of left-over hippies, wrong. Those occupying the Capitol weren't born and most have little knowledge of the Vietnam War riots.
Part 1: http://www.vimeo.com/20089255
Part 2: http://www.vimeo.com/20168864
Our part-time teachers' union (many members are past and present TA's) has no flag, bagpipes, or drums, but many of us demonstrated every day inside and outside the Capitol and will continue to participate as we are able. As those with full benefits and good pay look at losing those, we hope they come to understand and appreciate our world of few or no benefits and low pay. We did gain a voice when we became a union in 1996, and now that voice is threatened.
There are relatively simple solutions to the WI budget non-crisis. A one cent sales tax would take care of much, but the Republicans have made "no tax increase" into a religion. Corporations pay very little state tax in Wisconsin. The tax on beer hasn't been raised in decades. The crushing of unions has nothing to do with the fiscal mess – it's a pure power play.
100 Best Protest Banners... and from the end-of-email-message banner of our AFT Local 6100 VP Bob Curry: SUPPORT THE HEROIC WIS-SENATE 14 !!!! (5 states don't have bargaining rights for teachers. They rank 44, 47, 48, 49 & 50 in ACT/SAT scores. Wis ranked 2nd.) In solidarity, Nancy ~ visit TAA on Facebook
It was nice to see supportive Californian Sandy Baringer today in Madison. She braved the drive from Iowa, no fun with our wintry weather. However, protests continue.
100 Best Protest Banners... and from the end-of-email-message banner of our AFT Local 6100 VP Bob Curry:
SUPPORT THE HEROIC WIS-SENATE 14 !!!!
(5 states don't have bargaining rights for teachers. They rank 44, 47, 48, 49 & 50 in ACT/SAT scores. Wis ranked 2nd.)
In solidarity, Nancy ~ visit TAA on Facebook
Sunday, February 20, 2011
Adjuncts vs. full-time faculty, a Community College Spotlight column, covers mostly Jack & WA HB1631 kerfuffle (why Jack Longmate along with Wisconsin protesters and former AUC classmates occupying Tahrir Square are my personal heroes). In my personal opinion, "Jack vs WEA" counts as a trend because we're going to see more of it, official rhetoric to the contrary not withstanding. Read your labor history. Nothing new under the sun. Wisconsin action, new NH union, and adjuncts at Chicago's Columbia College swapped for even cheaper models are all briefly touched on.
In a telling quote closing her piece, Joanne Jacobs writes, "Years ago, I sat next to the chancellor of the local community college district at a dinner. I told him my sister was a part-time instructor at several community colleges with no benefits, no job security and not even a mail slot to call her own. 'Closest thing to slave labor we have in this country!' he said."
Taylorized! Cast Out in Chicago or trading down. Leave a comment at Inside Higher Ed. Who in their right minds would think this is an isolated incident. Where else is it happening?
Campus-wide, as many as 100 adjunct faculty members, many of them with 15 to 20 years of service, have had their course loads reduced, often without notice, with sections either canceled or staffed instead by younger and less expensive teachers, according to the union. Columbia's administration contests the union's tally and says it has asked the union for data to back up its assertion but been rebuffed; the union worries that handing over its list would expose its members to potential retaliation. Inside Higher Ed has seen a partial list of affected part-time faculty members, with initials appearing instead of names, and counted 30 across three departments, in addition to the dozen faculty in arts, entertainment and media management already cited.
Thursday, February 17, 2011
From inside the capital, workers on the job supported the rally by displaying a sign of "SOLIDARITY!" through the window for protesters to see. (Fight Back! News/Staff)
Spread the word - Students will walk out of all UW schools on Thursday at 12n CST in opposition to Governor Scott Walker's budget proposal that will break unions.
Students all over Wisconsin have walked out and schools in Madison are being closed because of "excessive teacher absence," which looks to me like a strike. The attack against collective bargaining, notice that police unions are exempt, is unprecedented but the response to this, which is part of the austerity measures happening across the country, is tremendous and we need to unleash this type of response nationally as the workers, students-- the community as a whole in Wisconsin has.
- Appleton East students show union support
- Stoughton students walk out of class to protest Walker’s moves
- Hundreds of East High students leave school in protest of Walker proposal
- Viroqua students walk out in protest
- Students stage impromptu protest at Shorewood High
- Eyewitness photos of Tuesday protest
Photo: Chronicle, 2/15/2011
With Unions Under Threat, Academics Join Huge Rally in Wisconsin
Wednesday, February 16, 2011
Sunday, February 13, 2011
From Miller-McCune, blacks and Latinos who apply to the most selective public universities in some "race-blind" states are being reshuffled downward to lower-quality schools, researchers say; and studies find a decline in Asian-American students’ success once they move away from home and go to college. A review of Diary of a Dean by Herbert I. London. A review of No University is an Island: Saving Academic Freedom by Cary Nelson. Does Google Scholar push the most popular content rather than act as a neutral tool? A review of Too Much to Know: Managing Scholarly Information before the Modern Age by Ann M. Blair (and more). Laurie Fendrich on the humanities and human temperaments (and part 2). Challenging the Left: An Objectivist case for intellectual diversity in academia. A review of Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses by Richard Arum and Josipa Roksa (and more and more). Cult Stud Mugged: Why we should stop worrying and learn to love a hip English professor. Stephen Brockmann wonders if a key cause of the crisis facing humanities programs can be traced to the culture wars of the '80s. Monty Python's Academic Circus: Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition — or high modernism in the guise of British goofballery. What is academic work? In academic debate for academic debate's sake, the pleasures are as palpable as they are esoteric. Do rich, white Protestants have a big edge in admissions?
Saturday, February 12, 2011
SB 5 opponents, including some AAUP members, packed hearing and overflow rooms in Columbus, Ohio, at a committee hearing Wednesday. SB 5, a piece of legislation introduced last week, seeks to prohibit Ohio public employees, including faculty at state universities and colleges, from collective bargaining.
Sunday, February 6, 2011
Big Changes Within NFM
- NFM Welcomes Its 1,000th Member!
- Meet the NFM Board (New Feature!): Vanessa Vaile; Peter G. Brown
- Me and UC: Fighting To Win ... Again By Adjunct in Connecticut
- Conference Update By Maria Maisto
- Announcements: Insurance Update; Post Your Comments on the New Faculty Majority Blog and Facebook; Got regional news you'd like to share?; Call for Stories
- Passing the Mortarboard ($$)
Thursday, February 3, 2011
Open Words Special Issue on Contingent Labor and Educational Access
Deadline for Submissions: First drafts, June 1, 2011; Second drafts, November 1, 2011
Open Words is a journal dedicated to publishing articles focusing on political, professional, and pedagogical issues related to teaching composition, reading, ESL, creative writing, and literature to open admissions and non-mainstream student populations. Edited by John Paul Tassoni (Miami University Middletown) and William H. Thelin (University of Akron), Open Words is a refereed journal published twice yearly.
Special Issue Guest editors Seth Kahn (West Chester University of PA); Amy Lynch-Biniek (Kutztown University of PA); and Sharon Henry (University of Akron)
This special issue of Open Words invites contributors to consider relationships among three issues:
- contingent labor
- educational access
- non-mainstream student populations (by which we mean both non-traditional students, in demographic terms, and populations more likely to be served by colleges recently than they have been historically)
The fields of composition and literacy studies have struggled with these three issues for decades. Scholarship and policy statements on contingent labor are replete with calls for equity, variously articulated but vigorous nonetheless—and with occasional exceptions, largely unsuccessful. The intensity with which we've written about open-admissions and open-access higher education institutions has waxed and waned over the years, but big questions about the roles of literacy instruction, the micro- and macro-politics of higher education, critical pedagogy, and many more bear on the working, teaching, and learning conditions of open-access campuses as heavily as, if not more than, anywhere else.
Finally, we've thought and written a great deal about working with non-mainstream students (i.e., students often served by open-admissions institutions, but increasingly at other kinds of schools as well), and again, still face large-scale structural problems with ensuring equitable opportunity and quality learning experiences for them. Individually, the problems facing contingent faculty, those facing open-access institutions, and those facing non-mainstream students are difficult. Taken together, we believe they are exponentially more complicated.
Thus the motivation for this issue: we work and live at a time when the American cultural and economic politics are pushing against labor equity and quality education; when colleges and universities operate according to corporate logics that consistently work to dehumanize faculty and students. While these forces come to bear on contingent faculty, open-admissions campuses, and non-mainstream students in unique ways, we also believe that careful analysis of such conditions presents significant possibilities for positive changes across levels and types of institutions. At the risk of sounding cliché, even managerial, difficult situations really do sometimes present unique opportunities.
With that frame in mind, we invite contributions for our Spring 2012 issue addressing relations of contingent labor, open access, and non-mainstream students; manuscripts (generally 15-25 pp., although we will review longer submissions) might consider these questions, or use them as provocations to ask and answer others:
- How does the increasing reliance on adjunct faculty on open-admissions campuses (and/or campuses serving largely non-mainstream student populations) impact students' learning conditions? Faculty's working conditions? Academic freedom? Curricular control? And how are these situations complicated at institutions employing graduate teaching assistants?
- Why is the casualization of academic labor happening more quickly, or to greater degree, on open-admissions campuses and campuses serving non-mainstream students? What strategies do faculty, both contingent and permanent, and students have at our disposal to respond to the inequitable conditions facing us?
- How do the interests of open-admission, community, vocational/technical, and branch university campus faculty coincide/overlap with the interests of students and administrators? How do these interests differ?
- How is the trend toward hiring non-tenure track faculty affecting the teaching of writing? As PhDs in literature, for example, are pushed out of tenure lines into these non-tenure lines, how do their (probable) lack of familiarity with composition scholarship and theory, and differing professional commitments to teaching writing, impact students, programs, and other faculty on our campuses? And, how is this trend affecting literature programs and the degrees to which they can address the interests and concerns of their 'non-mainstream' students?
- To what extent are contingent faculty involved in curricular and/or professional development, and to what extent can/should they be? How might departments/units balance the desire to involve contingent faculty in curriculum development, or placement (for example), with the minimal (if any) compensation most units offer for the work? How does this problem become more complex on campuses serving large populations of non-mainstream students with large numbers of contingent faculty?
Please submit manuscripts electronically, in MS Word (.doc or .docx) or Rich Text Format (.rtf), to Seth Kahn (firstname.lastname@example.org) by June 1, 2011.