October 27, 2021

AAUP Update: DL/OER ESH Request Reminder and Contract 101 Thank You

Hi, everyone. I hope you’re all doing ok. I know this is a tough time for lots of folks, and many of you are tired and stretched thin.

I also know there have been questions surrounding course development and compensation, so I’m sending this message to remind you–or alert you–of an upcoming deadline. Per the e-learning side letter (often called the DL side letter), you can request ESH from ELITE to develop a DL course or a z-course. The process is outlined in the letter, and it includes submitting a form to ELITE for consideration. Deadlines for submission are firm, and if you’d like ESH to develop a course over the summer, the deadline to submit your request is March 15th.

You can access the form here: https://www.montgomerycollege.edu/_documents/offices/elite/deeshrequest.pdf

You’ll need signatures from your department chair and your dean, so I recommend starting this process ASAP.

Additional specifics are outlined in the letter, which I’ve attached. Since I’ve recently gone through the process, I’m also happy to chat if you have questions. 

We have an upcoming Contract 101 session on March 30th, and Tammy Peery will join us to discuss the e-learning side letter in detail. This should be a great event since she was a primary negotiator of the agreement. Because the summer deadline is quickly approaching, however, the negotiating team wanted to provide you with the information above ASAP.

We’d also like to thank everyone who hopped on to our Contract 101 session yesterday afternoon. We appreciate your engagement and your support of us as a team. It makes a tough job a little bit easier and a lot more rewarding. It really is an honor to serve you all.

Ginger R. Robinson, JD

Associate Professor, Criminal Justice

Criminal Justice Coordinator, Rockville & TP/SS

Criminal Justice Program Advisor, Rockville & TP/SS

Montgomery College

Forum #2: AAUP Contract 101 Notes

Contract 101: Grievance Procedures with Tim Kirkner

2/23/2021: 4-5:30 PM

Negotiating Team Members Present: AJ Baca, Robin Flanary, Sharon Piper, and Ginger Robinson

Executive Committee Members: Kay Ahmad, Rupa Das, Tim Kirkner, Michael LeBlanc, Rick Penn, and Harry Zarin

I. Welcome and overview – Sharon Piper

Sharon welcomed everyone to the session and explained what we would be discussing during this forum. Ginger shared the contract with the group and Sharon briefly provided a general overview of the process for grievances.

II. Grievance Policy and Procedures – Tim Kirkner

Sharon introduced Tim Kirkner who is the Grievance Officer for the MC AAUP Chapter. Tim provided some background information on the types of issues that come to him and how they are handled. He shared that not all issues that arise result in a grievance. However, he discussed the timeline guidelines and stipulations for filing a grievance. In addition, he shared that there may be some flexibility on the deadline for filing a grievance depending on when the issues come to light. Further, Tim indicated that parties often do not want issues to get to arbitration so most of the time they are resolved before they get to that point using a variety of mechanisms at our disposal.

He shared that it is often a good idea for faculty to use the college Ombudsman since this can document an issue before it gets to the next level. This may or may not be appropriate for contract violations but can be a first step to calm the tide and begin the resolution process.

Faculty have the right to have union representation at meetings whenever they deem necessary and can stop a meeting at any time should they feel that such assistance is needed. It is also better to get out in front of issues so that no one is surprised later. Deans may also remind faculty members that they may want to have union representation before a meeting takes place but faculty have been told this on many occasions in the past.

Tim did say that many parts of the contract are open to interpretation. So, there are times where he needs to sit in on disciplinary action meetings or potential grieveable issues to ensure that these interpretations are consistent with the spirit of what was written. The Executive Committee is mindful of these instances and works to tighten the language whenever deemed necessary.

Ginger responded to an inquiry about the mediation process and asked Tim to discuss this process further. But Tim indicated he has not used Mediation in his time here and that most jump this step because arbitration is binding and a more finite solution. Ginger commented that there are times when attorneys being present during mediation may be a hindrance so it may stifle conversation. Tim can use the Chapter attorney to solicit feedback and guidance on how to proceed on a particular case / issue but they only represent the Chapter, not individual faculty members so really has no legal standing.

We did briefly discuss the lawsuit that we filed in 2017-2018 as an example of how The Chapter proceeded with mediation when the college violated the contract and claimed financial exigency. Harry shared that we wanted to use arbitration, but the college refused even though this course of action is articulated as the next step when disagreements such as this arise. This forced us to file a lawsuit when our grievance was denied. We ultimately lost our case in court but established here at the college that we would explore all legal options when we felt that the college was not acting in good faith.

Tito asked Harry to briefly explain how we might have to handle these kinds of issues at the college down the road because of recent rulings on class action lawsuits.  Harry shared that if “class action” is not mentioned in a contract, we may not be able to file one grievance on behalf of all faculty members, so each faculty member would have their own filing, which we would likely oversee. The language of the previous ruling was not necessarily binding so we still are not exactly sure how we will need to proceed should a similar situation arise in the future. Harry said that filing individual lawsuits for each aggrieved faculty member would result in a significant amount of work for the college but is not our concern given their response in to our aforementioned grievance and lawsuit.

Sharon and Harry shared that we do have some concerns about the fact that some county groups will get a raise next year so we may need to be a bit more aggressive on negotiations next year, and we will remind the county at budget time that we have done our part this year to help the county recover economically and we hope they remember this next year.

Ginger encouraged everyone to come to Tim or an executive committee member to come to us as soon as they have any issue or concern. Several others spoke about instances where Tim has helped in the past and why having him there is helpful in process, fact finding, and corrective action. If we wait too long to address problems, it may be too late to avoid undesirable corrective actions.

We had some casual conversation on general issues that might arise and how best to address them. But Tim reminded everyone that he welcomes all inquiries and is willing to assist when needed.

III. Involvement with The Chapter – Harry Zarin

Harry did ask again for folks to consider joining us in whatever capacity they feel most comfortable / qualified. This was another attempt to remind faculty that they are welcome and that we need their participation.

After Harry was done, Sharon asked about the timing of these forums and everyone seemed to agree that late afternoons seem to work well. We had about 10-15 faculty, deans, and chairs join us at various times during this session, in addition to the negotiating team and Executive Committee members. Sharon thanked Tim and the Negotiating Team for their efforts on this forum.

With no other questions or concerns apparent, we adjourned at 5:07 PM.

tb/SP

AAUP Update: Contract 101, Survey and Overload Pay

Colleagues:

Contract 101 Session:

The following is a message that was previously sent to all of you by Sharon Piper our Chief Negotiator.  I am sending it to you again as a reminder of the informative session our Negotiating Team will be hosting this afternoon at 4:00pm.

“The Negotiating team for AAUP is planning two more sessions of Contract 101 for this academic year. This spring our sessions will cover the grievance process (Article 3) and the e-learning side letter.  Our first session will be held on Tuesday February 23, 2021 at 4 pm via zoom and will feature our grievance officer, Tim Kirkner discussing Article 3- Grievance Procedures of the full AAUP contract.

This is a come when you can, leave when you need to session and there will be a Q & A after Tim’s discussion if anyone has specific questions. We have appreciated the turnout and feedback on the Contract 101 sessions in the fall semester and hope to see many of you next week. Please contact me or the other members of the negotiating team if you have any questions, concerns, or suggestions. “

Below is the link for this afternoon’s Contract 101 session.

https://montgomerycollege.zoom.us/j/95877189043?pwd=K2xicHR3b1YxVkV6eDlnTldSM3dnQT09

Your Voice, Your MC Employee Experience and Culture Survey:

It was announced on February 10 that we are being asked to participate in a survey titled, “Your Voice, Your MC Employee Experience and Culture Survey.”  This one survey combines the three separate surveys we have been asked to complete in previous years. As your Chapter representative, I was one of several employees on a committee that helped to formulate the plans for this new survey. Modern Link is the vendor that is conducting the survey and the deadline to submit the survey is March 1.

As was announced in the e-mail we received on Feb. 10, “At the close of the survey, Modern Think will provide the College with a summary of the organizational competencies and relationships that most directly impact and influence our culture. In April through early May, Modern Think will host a series of feedback sessions with College stakeholder groups to share and validate their findings. Then, building on the data and findings from the survey, a proposed action plan will be developed over the course of the summer and shared with the College community in the fall.” 

The e-mail we received on February 10 also stated, “On February 15, 2021, full- and part-time faculty, staff, and administrators received an email directly from Modern Think (surveys@modernthink.net) inviting participation in the survey.  In that email you received: 

  • a web link to the survey, 
  • a unique username and password—issued by Modern Think, and separate from MyMC credentials—to access and complete the survey, 
  • the deadline to complete the survey, and
  • contact information for Modern Think, in case of any issues with the survey instrument.”

I encourage all of you to take the time to complete and submit the survey.  Completing the survey should only take you 20-25 minutes.  We have been strongly advised that the survey responses are completely anonymous so please be very honest when you complete the survey and let your voice be heard.

Overload Pay for Full-Time Faculty:

A number of faculty members have written to me asking about the spring 2021 overload payroll schedule.  The question arose this year because of the larger than usual number of second seven week classes that we are offering this semester.  The answer to this question was announced in the February 3 edition of the Employee Matters newsletter. 

“Due to the increase of second-half term courses for the spring 2021 semester, overload pay for full-time faculty will be processed differently this academic year. This year, faculty will receive overload pay based on their spring course start dates. Faculty should consult with their department’s administrative aide for information about their pay dates.” 

If you have any questions about when you will begin seeing overload pay in your paycheck, please contact your department’s administrative aide.  Your Department Chair and Dean should also have this information. 

I hope you all are safe and healthy and are having an enjoyable semester.  I think you all would agree that remote teaching, counseling, and advising isn’t an ideal way to teach, counsel, and advise our students.  It is also not an ideal way for our students to learn, but it is the best we can do under these trying circumstances.  Since March 2020, we have all done a remarkable job of adapting our courses and services to meet the needs of our students.  The Administration appreciates all we have done as do our students.  We should be proud of ourselves for all we have accomplished during these difficult times so that our students can continue their college education. 

On behalf of the Chapter,

Harry Z.
President-AAUP

AAUP Update: Report on Negotiations for the AY 2021-22

Negotiations began 10-19-2020

Met for a total of 3-4 times with discussions by Zoom, and several consultations by phone with Santo Scrimenti, Darrell Van Dusen and our attorney David Kelly.

Members of the negotiation team:

  • Sharon Piper, Lead
  • Tito Baca
  • Robin Flanary
  • Ginger Robinson

Focus of negotiations:

Financials, which includes salary, EAP and overload. AAUP requested the following interests be discussed in addition to financials, which management did agree to discuss. Management did not introduce any side issues for discussion from their side.

Additional interests included:

  • Parking fees
  • Tech reimbursement
  • DL side letter reimbursement
  • Interest based bargaining

In discussing these interests one of our goals was to try to re-purpose the $197K pot of EAP travel money for this year into something we could benefit from.

Resolutions:

Parking fees cannot be waived due to the bond issue for capitol improvements which requires an identified revenue source. We offered to pay everyone’s parking out of our EAP funds. This proposal was turned down because

A revenue source had to be identified (our fees) and
They were not able to provide this benefit to other employees and students

Solution: If you have not done so already and you do not want to pay for parking you are not using this year, cancel your parking and re-enroll next fall when it is assumed we will return to campus.

Tech reimbursement: We provided data from an informal survey (42 respondents) on tech expenses that FT faculty incurred since we went remote in March 2020.  Management admitted to very mixed messages regarding the availability of tech resources and reimbursement for already purchased supplies/software/hardware. Because these processes were already in place and monies from CARES were available to provide support, the commitment was made for management (chairs/deans/HR/ IT) to better communicate the availability of resources for reimbursements and supplies. I am checking with Santo to see if there are any updates to that information for the spring semester and we will make that available on our AAUP-MC webpage so stay tuned.

DL Side Letter: Our argument was that the new use of Zoom and BB Collaborate for the SRT format (called online synchronous classroom in the side letter) and other online resources including OERS and other software constituted a change in online course management systems (item #5 on the e-learning remuneration section of the side letter, which provides for the ability to negotiate for additional compensation). Several options were provided by AAUP for additional compensation, including: increase in reimbursement for ESH for course development, a stipend to each faculty for transition to SRT and 7 week courses for this AY, and decrease in remote class sizes. Management disagreed that our transition to zoom could be considered a change in an online course management system and that as issue this did not relate to financials per se it was not a topic they wished to negotiate now.

The side letter will be re-negotiated in fall 2021, so these issues will all be re-introduced at that time during those negotiations.

IBB: After multiple meetings and some side bar discussions with Santo, Donna Schena and Krista Walker from HR, we have a commitment to discuss a joint IBB training for AAUP and management teams to be held either this spring or prior to the start of negotiations next fall. We are hopeful this occurs, and will keep you posted.

Resolution on the Travel EAP Monies: We reached an agreement and the $197K has been moved for this year to the general EAP monies bucket, so if you have not signed up for virtual conferences, professional organizations and grad school, there is an extra 197K in the pot, please use it this spring!  We will request whatever monies are left over at the end of this AY to be moved into the emergency fund for students to assist them with costs related to attending school virtually during covid. We did this last spring with our extra EAP money, and it was available to all students, regardless of status, which CARES money is not. 

Financials: We were not particularly hopeful going into the financials discussion because of the various things that could impact financial status of the college during an election year and a pandemic with uncertain levels of enrollment.

Our initial ask was the equivalent of a 1.5% increment and 1% GWA, for a 2.5% total increase for those below the top of the scale, 1% for those at the top with 2.5% increases for overload and EAP. These increases were reasonable given inflation expectations going forward. This was countered with no increases for this year, with all financials remaining at the 20-21 levels.

We countered with the equivalent of a 1% GWA to all FT faculty to be applied half in August and half in January, with no increases to EAP and overload rates. This was countered with no increases for this year with financials to remain at the 20-21 levels for next year. The reasons cited were: decreased funding to CCs across the state starting 7-1-2020, no anticipated increases from the state to the college’s budget for the next AY 21-22, an anticipated decline in enrollment of 8.5% and a 25% decline in enrollment for WDCE, with a predicted shortfall of $12 million for the next AY. There are a variety of possibilities to make up this shortfall, but that amount was their best-case scenario.

So, at this point for next year, we are hoping to avoid furloughs now. Written into the MOA is the option for a financials re-opener just in case things improve significantly and there is money for increases. This was added after Hogan gave all state employees a 2% increase across the board for next year.

We are asking you to ratify this contract and are hopeful that we can get through AY21-22 without furloughs, and that next year’s negotiations allow for a better outcome.

Submitted by Sharon Piper, Lead Negotiator, MC Chapter, AAUP

MOA on use of EAP travel funds for AY2021

Dear Faculty Colleagues:

The following statement is a summary of the Memorandum of Agreement between the AAUP and Management at Montgomery College regarding the use of EAP travel funds for the current academic year (AY2021).  EAP funds are designated as either “general” (tuition, conferences, professional memberships, etc) or “travel” (costs of travel to conferences, etc- including transportation, hotel, meals). The MOA is linked here and under “Chapter Documents”. 

Please contact a member of the negotiating team if you have any questions. 

” In the course of negotiating the AY21-22 AAUP FT faculty contract, concerns were raised about the inability of FT faculty to use travel EAP funds for this academic year because of the current covid constrictions on travel. It was proposed by the AAUP that these travel funds be added to the general EAP funds for this academic year so that they would be available for general EAP usage. This proposal was agreed to by management and a MOA (memorandum of agreement) to that effect has been signed. These funds can be used either for general EAP purposes, or for travel this academic year, should that become an option in the spring semester. Please follow the prescribed protocol for access to general EAP funds as provided by your program or department.”

For the Chapter, 
Sharon Piper, Lead Negotiator

For Management, 
Carol Kliever, Employee and Labor Relations

Forum #1: AAUP Contract 101 Notes

Hello,

Last week we had our first in a series of forums for “Contract 101” that was designed to further engage full-time faculty with issues related to our contract. We had a wonderful turn-out and conversation as we explored Articles 2,4, and 5 with about 30 faculty members online. Attached you will find the notes from that session along with the specific “Articles” as an addendum. A special thanks to all those who attended and we hope this was helpful but please note that notes from these sessions including this one will also be posted on the MC AAUP Chapter web site.

November 11, 2020 – Session Notes

Please watch for email announcements on future Contract 101 sessions coming in the spring. They will delve into a variety of topics from negotiations and how to get involved with The Chapter to social issues that we all must address.

On Behalf of The Negotiating Team,

Tito

AJ “Tito” Baca Jr., Ed.D.
Professor – Health Sciences
AAUP Executive Committee

AAUP Update: Contract 101 Seminars, Negotiations, Schedules, and More.

I hope this update finds that all of you are healthy and well.  All of us have had to make considerable adjustments to our daily lives and the students appreciate all that we are doing to support them during this most difficult time. 

This year the Executive Committee is planning to host faculty meetings several times during the academic year. We would like to use these meetings as an opportunity for you, the members, to check in with us.  You can ask questions about issues that concern you and you can give us information about any issues you would like us to know about. 

One issue we will be focusing on this year is succession planning.  Many of us on the Executive Committee and the Negotiating Team have been involved in Chapter leadership for a long time.  As with any organization, succession planning is an important issue that needs to be addressed.  We look forward to meeting with members of the Chapter and hope that many of you will consider taking on a role in leading the Chapter in the years to come.

Contract 101 Seminars:

As a service to our membership, the AAUP Negotiating Team will be sponsoring two virtual discussions this semester on the AAUP contract.

The first session will be held on Wednesday November 11, at 7:30pm and will cover the contract

  • Article 2 – Management functions,
  • Article 4- Faculty appointments,
  • Article 5 -Workload.

The second session will be held on Wednesday December 9 (time TBA) and will cover

  • Article 6- Leaves of Absence,
  • Article 7- Chapter Rights and
  • Article 8- Salaries.

We will try to schedule these sessions during times that will allow for maximum attendance.  Zoom links and other information will be sent in a separate e-mail at the beginning of November. 

Update on Negotiations:

Negotiations started on Monday, October 19, 2020.  In this initial meeting with Management, we discussed ground rules and AAUP interests. Financials (salary, EAP and overload) are on the table for this round of negotiations.

Tito Baca, Ginger Robinson, Robin Flanary and Sharon Piper (lead negotiator) are representing the Chapter as members of the Negotiating Team. 

All activities that take place at the negotiating table are confidential until both sides agree to the release of information. We will provide you with updates as best we can while negotiations are taking place.

The Winter Session:

This is just a reminder that if you are teaching during the 5-week winter session, your winter session ESH counts towards your spring load. 

Important Reminders:

  • The maximum workload you are allowed in any given semester is 20ESH.
  • The maximum workload you are allowed in any academic year, August to May, is 36ESH.
  • The minimum workload you need to carry in any academic year, August to May, is 30ESH.

Spring Scheduling:

The spring schedule has been posted and spring registration for students who have earned at least 30 credits began on November 2.  Registration for all other students begins on November 9. 

Like it or not, this year’s spring schedule is like none we have ever seen before.  The number of 15-week classes has been drastically reduced and the number of accelerated classes (primarily 7-week classes) has been dramatically increased.  The link to the Spring 2021 FAQ that was previously published is below.  Please refer to this FAQ for information on what changes were made to the spring schedule and the why.

Many of us have been meeting with students to help them figure out which classes they should take in the spring.  It is very important that all of us work with the students to help them understand the ramifications of the new schedule. Many of the students I have met with do not understand the schedule and the implications of trying to complete a class in 7-weeks.  Please encourage them to carefully consider the combination of classes they take and how many credits they plan on taking prior to actually registering for classes. 

Academic Planning Sessions:

The Academic Affairs Division will be conducting academic planning sessions on Nov 5 and 6.  During these sessions, extensive discussions will be held on the shape of future academic semesters at MC. College leadership, including Dr. Pollard, the Senior Vice Presidents, Chairs of major College-wide committees, AAUP leadership, and Faculty Council chairs have been invited to attend these planning sessions. We hope these sessions will give us a forum to talk about what a post-pandemic MC will look like.  I will be representing the Chapter at these academic planning sessions.

Parking Fees:

A number of inquiries have come to several members of the Chapter’s Executive Committee regarding parking fee assessments.  Faculty want to know if they should or could cancel their parking fee assessment.  Considering that we are all working remotely this question makes sense.

I had a private meeting and subsequent conversations with Donna Schena, Vice President for Administrative and Fiscal Services regarding this issue.  She said that she would issue a statement to the College community on this subject and she did so on October 8.  In her memorandum, she provided all of us with information about why the parking fee exists and how the revenue is used.  With that information in mind, she stated the following regarding cancelling your parking fee assessment:

”I ask you to consider what the parking revenue covers and the context of the College’s fiscal circumstances, when making your decision about whether to cancel your parking pass and the fee associated with the pass. If you wish to stop your payroll deduction for the upcoming year, you should send an email to: parking@montgomerycollege.edu. The effective date of the cancellation will be the first payroll period after receipt of the notification. “ 

You are free to request that your parking fee assessment be cancelled by following the directions Ms. Schena provided in her memorandum. In addition, you need to return your parking placard to the Central Administration building.

Open Enrollment has started:

The following is a message from the Benefits Office.

“Open Enrollment for benefits has started and runs through 5 pm on Monday, November 16th.  There are no changes to any of the benefit structures (with the exception of specialty drugs on the Cigna POS plan), and no increases to any of the paycheck deduction amounts for 2021.  Just a reminder that if you are not making any changes, then no action is required.  The one exception would be if you are electing a flexible spending account for 2021.  This requires re-enrollment in Workday every year.  Please log into Workday through My MC and click on your inbox (envelope in top right corner) to view and open your Open Enrollment event.  You must review all the pages, read the disclaimer, and click “I agree” at the end and submit.  Please save and print a copy of your changes as proof.  If you wish to change a Supplemental Retirement Annuity deduction amount (pre-tax money going to TIAA, Voya, Equitable, and/or Valic), this must be done in a separate event (Change Retirement Savings), also through Workday.  HRSTM will be offering both pre-recorded and live sessions on the different benefits, as well as virtual office hours.  Please watch for the email blasts, visit the Open Enrollment website, and visit Alex, your virtual benefit advisor, while on the site.”

Please stay healthy and well during these difficult times and take the time to take care of your own physical, emotional, and mental health.  Also, remember that if you need to take sick leave for a COVID related reason, you may be able to take COVID sick leave which will not deduct from your regular sick leave.  Please click on the link below for more information on COVID-19 Emergency Paid Sick Leave.

https://info.montgomerycollege.edu/offices/human-resources/covid-19-emergency-paid-sick-leave-request.html

On behalf of the Chapter,

Harry Z.

AAUP Update: Tentative Agreement and More

Colleagues:

I hope that all of you read the e-mail Sharon Piper, our Chief Negotiator, sent out last Friday.  In that e-mail she outlined the tentative agreements we negotiated with Management for the 2020-2021 academic year.  In order to answer your questions and provide you with some additional information, we have arranged to hold faculty forums on each campus this week.  Members of the Executive Committee and the Negotiating Team will be in attendance at each meeting.  I encourage you to come to one of these meetings so that you may ask your questions and hear our presentation about the items we negotiated. 

The ratification vote will take place next week, it will be an electronic vote, and only dues paying members of the Chapter will be allowed to vote on the ratification of the tentative agreement. 

The meeting schedule is as follows:

  • Rockville forum-Tuesday February 18, 2-3:30 p.m. location SC462.
  • Germantown forum-Thursday February 20, 2:30-4 p.m. location BE 165
  • TP/SS forum-Friday February 21, 12-1:30 p.m. location SN 105

We look forward to seeing many of you at one of these meetings. 

On behalf of the Chapter,

Harry Z.

Memorandum of Agreement- AAUP and Management for AY20-21

Dear Colleagues:

Attached you will find the Memorandum of Agreement between the MC AAUP chapter representing the FT faculty, and MC Management. This agreement represents a one year contract and if ratified will be in effect for the 2020-21 academic year. The fall 2019 negotiation session focused on financials, which include salary and overload pay, as well as EAP funds. Additionally, insurance coverage for FT faculty on reduced work load, and short term disability were discussed. 

Based on input from FT faculty, our analysis of the faculty salary study data, and the county fiscal situation, our goals for negotiating this contract related to salary were four-fold. They included:

  • Preventing of red-lining of FT faculty salaries
  • Providing a general wage adjustment that tracked with current inflation (moves the scale up)
  • Providing an increment to those FT faculty below the top of the scale (moves individuals up the salary scale)
  • Providing compensation to those FT faculty below the top of the scale, who were employed as FT faculty here at MC during the 2011-12 AY, when our negotiated pay increases for that AY were revoked and furloughs were implemented as a result of the recession.

The compensation adjustments negotiated for next year meet our stated goals. The GWA tracks with current inflation and prevents redlining of our salary scale. The flat dollar increment provides parity for all FT faculty below the top of the scale in terms of movement up the scale. The recession adjustment to the salary base provides recognition of the sacrifices made by faculty here during the 2011 AY when negotiated compensation adjustments were eliminated.

The specifics are summarized below:

Salary:

Compensation adjustments include the following-

  • A two and three tenths percent (2.3%) general wage adjustment for faculty members who have been in the bargaining unit for at least one semester as of the beginning of the fiscal 2021 academic year.  The salary range for the fiscal 2021 academic year shall be $62,319.00 to $116,847.00
  • An increment of $650.00 will be added to the salary of any faculty member who is not at the top of the fiscal 2020 academic year salary range
  • An adjustment of $250.00 will be made to the salary of any faculty member hired by Management before August 1, 2012, and who is not at the top of the fiscal 2020 academic year salary range. 

EAP:

The total sum of the AY2020 EAP funds will be increased by 3.0%. This 3.0% dollar amount will be applied fully to the EAP travel fund for AY20-21. EAP dollar amounts for individuals (both EAP general and EAP travel monies) will be increased by 3.0% for the AY20-21. 

Reduced load insurance costs:

For FT faculty who are on reduced load, and who purchase their health insurance through the college, management will cover the college’s full portion of the insurance costs during the time of the reduced load. Previously, management covered a reduced portion of their insurance costs, and billed FT faculty for the remainder during the time reduced load was taken.

Short term disability:

FT faculty who have exhausted their sick leave will now have the option of requesting an advance of 10 days of sick leave prior to taking short term disability, or not taking a sick leave advance and going straight into short term disability usage. Previous agreements required FT faculty to take the 10 days advance on their sick leave prior to using short term disability. This change now gives us parity with staff and administrators regarding this issue.

As your negotiating team, we ask that you ratify this agreement for AY20-21. We appreciate the faith that you put in us, and the support and input that you provide to us. We will be holding forums to discuss the MOA on all three campuses the week of 2/17-2/21 and will hold the ratification vote electronically the following week.

  • Rockville forum– Tuesday February 18, 2-3:30 p.m. location SC462.
  • Germantown forum– Thursday February 20, 2:30-4 p.m. location BE 165
  • TP/SS forum– Friday February 21, 12-1:30 p.m. location SN 105

Please come and ask questions on this MOA and any other issues of interest. Specific information on the campus forums will be provided in a later email.

For the Chapter,

Sharon Piper, Lead Negotiator

Tito Baca

Robin Flanary

Michael Gurevitz

Rick Penn

Ginger Robinson

AAUP Update: Elimination of the 4th Year Evaluation Requirement, Annual and Semester ESH Limits and More

I hope that all of you are healthy and that you are having a good semester. Now that the Nationals season is over we can all go back to getting some sleep by going to bed at an earlier hour.

Here are some updates that I would like you to be aware of as the semester progresses. 

The Court Case:

As I stated in my September update, our case was heard by a three-judge panel in the Maryland Court of Special appeals in September.  I need to inform you that, unfortunately, the decision of the Court of Special Appeals did not go our way. We on the Executive Committee have been in contact with the Chapter’s attorneys and another outside labor attorney, regarding the decision of the COSA and about our options for moving forward.  There are several options that we could pursue regarding our case.  One could make an argument for and against each option and this is what we are in discussion about with our attorneys.

By the time we meet at the January opening meeting we should be able to share with you the decision we have made on your behalf. I want as many full-time faculty as possible to attend the January opening meeting. At the meeting, we will lay out the reasons for our decision.

A copy of the Court’s decision is posted in the court documents section of the Chapter website for your review.

Below are some important reminders that you should keep in mind as the fall semester winds down and we move into our winter and spring semesters.

Elimination of the 4th Year Evaluation Requirement-Article 4 Section 4.2

The fall semester is a busy time for all of us, and it is an especially busy time for those who are scheduled to be evaluated this semester. For a number of years, all full-time faculty members were required to be evaluated during their first 5 years of employment at Montgomery College.  I wanted to remind all of you that as of the fall of 2015, the required 4th year of employment evaluation was eliminated.  All full-time faculty are required to be evaluated during years one, two, three, and five.  After that all full-time faculty are scheduled to be evaluated every 5 years.  More information regarding the evaluation cycle can be found in the Collective Bargaining Agreement-Article 4.

Semester and Annual ESH Requirements and Limits-Article 5:

Here are some important ESH reminders which are covered in Article 5 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement.

All full-time faculty members are required to work a minimum of thirty (30) ESH per academic year. 

No faculty member can be required to work in excess of thirty-two (32) ESH per academic year without consent of the faculty member, or eighteen (18) ESH per semester without consent of the faculty member.

Extended winter session and winter session ESH counts towards your spring ESH totals.

Full-time faculty may work up to twenty (20) ESH in any given semester.

No faculty member may work in excess of thirty-six (36) ESH per academic year.

Educational Assistance Program (EAP)-Article 9 Section 9.4 (A) and (B):

The FY2020 maximum individual benefit for tuition, fees, and conferences=$3,030.00

The FY 2020 maximum for travel related to professional development=$1,334.00

EAP may now be used to cover more than one professional membership.  This change in the Policies and Procedures at MC has been approved and the changes will be reflected in the on-line Policies and Procedures in the near future.  I have been informed that there is no limit to the number of professional memberships that may be covered by your individual EAP.  It is always best to see if multiple faculty in the same department would benefit more from an institutional membership paid out of the Department’s funds. If you plan to join/renew multiple professional memberships, doing so at one time helps with college-wide annual spending projections.

Encumber early – Once the funds are gone, they are gone.

Encumber accurately so MC can accurately project total funds that will be spent. This ensures as many requests as possible can be honored.

Let your Dean and HR know right away if you cannot travel as anticipated if funds were encumbered. This is an important action and your responsibility, as released unused encumbered funds can then be used by other full-time faculty for their professional development travel.

Bereavement Leave-Article 6 Section 6.4

The number of days you can take for bereavement leave was increased to a maximum of 5 days as of the start of the 2019-2020 academic year

Negotiations:

There is little I can say about negotiations other than they have begun.  We are working on negotiating increases in salary, overload pay, and EAP as well as an issue related to faculty short-term disability.  Once tentative agreements have been reached and both sides agree, we will issue a statement that outlines the terms and conditions of each tentative agreement.  We will also provide you with information on the voting process that will be needed to ratify the agreements. 

Membership Drive:

Michael LeBlanc- English TP/SS is leading a Chapter organizing group. One of the goals of the group is to help increase our membership.  Those of you who are not members of the Chapter or who are not paying the voluntary collective bargaining support fee will probably be receiving, or have received, a visit, phone call, or e-mail communication about the benefits of supporting out Chapter.  Those of us on the Executive Committee appreciate the efforts of this group of faculty and are hopeful that many of you will heed the advice of this group and either join the Chapter or support our efforts by deciding to pay the voluntary collective bargaining support fee.

Initial Salary Placement Review:

This is an on-going issue that is taking much longer than any of us anticipated.  We have been in contact with Santo Scrimenti in the Employee and Labor Relations Office and he has assured us that his intention is to communicate directly with the faculty who requested a review/reevaluation of their initial salary placement.  I have heard from some faculty who received an e-mail which stated that a review of their file resulted in no increase in salary. Many faculty who requested a review, as far back as May 2019, have heard nothing other than receiving an e-mail that the process is complex and we will be in touch. No faculty members who have been in touch with the Chapter have indicated that they were part of the review/reevaluation process. How do you conduct a review/reevaluation and not contact the individual faculty members?  I’m not sure but this is the process that those in the Employee and Labor Relations Office have decided to undertake. 

Several of us on the Executive Committee have spoken with several members of the Administration, including Donna Schena, about the length of this review process, that the individual faculty members are apparently not part of the review process, and the lack of communication with the individual faculty members. We will continue to pursue this issue and work towards an expeditious resolution of this seemingly endless process.

Thank you for taking the time to read this update. Again, I encourage all of you to attend the January opening meeting.  This is one of the few times each year when we as a group of full-time faulty can meet and discuss issues that are of interest to all of us.

I hope you have an enjoyable and safe Thanksgiving holiday.

On behalf of the Chapter,

Harry Z.