Faculty anti-racist, equity mandate pushed to fall 2021

The Academic Senate pushed back its mandate for anti-racist/equity professional development for all faculty to fall 2021 during their Nov. 17 meeting.

The negotiating teams and the district requested that the mandate begin in fall 2021 instead of this spring because of the COVID-19 Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), according to the Academic Senate (AS) meeting agenda.

Darcie McClelland, Academic Senate president, said that most faculty have already completed their professional development requirements for this year.

McClelland also said the AS is trying to incorporate specific language into faculty contracts to create an MOU that states racial equity training will account for four of the 24 hours required of professional development, and ideally three hours for part-time faculty.

Kelsey Iino, counselor and faculty union president, is working on an MOU committee to meet with the district and negotiate the language into the working contract for full and part-time faculty.

Iino said that part-time faculty have not been paid for professional development in the past and that this needs to be negotiated into the MOU.

“If we’re going to require them to participate, we want them to be paid,” Iino said.

The anti-racist/equity professional development is strongly encouraged for faculty this spring but is not mandated until fall 2021.

McClelland said that professional development is incentivized because faculty lose pay if they do not complete the required training.

“Right now, if you don’t do your professional development, you lose pay for those days, or you have to either take a personal day,” McClelland said.

Faculty members can complete their required professional development through ECC events and any outside events that meet requirements.

On the ECC website, the faculty professional development page shows events that qualify for different areas of professional development.

McClelland said that there is also a faculty website called Cornerstone that shows a calendar of ECC events that qualify for professional development.

There are also two campus-wide professional development days during the fall, and two in the spring that faculty are required to go to.

“Spring’s going to be dedicated to a lot of education around it for everybody on campus, and then in fall we’re going to put the system in place,” McClelland said. “Hopefully making a more positive campus climate for everyone.”

Stacy Allen, vice president of faculty development on the Academic Senate, said most professional development opportunities currently offered are focused on developing racial equity.

“I would venture to guess even the majority of our faculty are already engaging in this type of professional development because it is what we are offering right now,” Allen said.

Allen said that professional development is easier to complete this year because meetings, classes and events are all online.

McClelland also said the AS is working on a new system through a website for reporting and avoiding microaggressions that will begin in fall 2021.

“Microaggressions [are] one of those things that unless you’ve actually gone to training and learned about it, you probably don’t know they exist,” she said. “We’re going to educate and try to get everyone on the same page.”