Faculty from Across America Launch Bold Effort to Restore Investments in the Classroom

Set a National Standard of $15,000 in Total Course Compensation

Building off the national movement to form unions, faculty from 20 states joined a teleconference call on February 5 to call for transformative change that will reset priorities in higher education and focus on student learning.

As the Washington Post reported:

It’s been true for a long time now that academia — or at least the part of it that teaches students — relies heavily on the labor of adjunct faculty. As the number of tenured professors has fallen, universities have filled more than half of their schedules with teachers who work on contract. And no wonder: They’ll work for less than half what a full-time professor makes, at a median wage of just $2,700 per course, with scant benefits, if any.

Now, a union that’s been rapidly organizing adjuncts around the country thinks that number should quintuple. Last night, on a conference call with organizers across the country, the SEIU decided to extend the franchise with a similar aspirational benchmark: A “new minimum compensation standard” of $15,000. Per course. Including benefits.

Raising faculty pay is not a school by school issue. It is a national issue. As Faculty Forward, full and part-time faculty from across the country have decided to come together to right the disparities that have lowered the bar in higher education by:

  • Demanding $15,000 per course in total compensation: Faculty are putting forward a bold demand for higher pay that ensures proportionate and fair compensation for all faculty by establishing a national standard of $15,000 per course – total compensation including both salary and benefits. This returns the emphasis in higher education to instruction and student learning, core missions of our higher education system.
  • Ensuring accountability at for-profit colleges:  They will work to hold  for-profits accountable at the state and national level when they prey on low income students and saddle them with crushing debt without delivering the quality education students deserve.
  • Making quality higher education affordable and accessible for all students: Together, faculty will work to create a higher education system that prioritizes student learning, invests in educators and reduces student debt to build a 21st century workforce.

So let’s get started by sharing the need for dramatic change to our classrooms, campuses and communities. Here are some ideas and resources to get going.

Sign up your colleagues:

Share this link with friends and colleagues and invite them to be part of the movement changing higher eduation: http://facultyforward.adjunctaction.org/

Share the Facts:

The realities are stunning. Here’s one fact: Over the last 35 years, top administrators’ pay increased at 3 times the rate of faculty. Information like this will help your colleagues, students, and supporters better understand why we’re fighting for change in higher education. Get the facts here and share them widely.

Stay tuned for more ways to get involved at SEIUfacultyforward.org.