Dear FUNSCAD members,
Thank you to all those who filled out the recent surveys about workload. This information is important as we have entered discussions with the employer about collective agreement issues affected by Covid-19.
The Employer has been collaborative thus far in an effort to meet this unprecedented challenge collectively. We are hopeful that this collaborative spirit will continue as we negotiate a Letter of Understanding regarding the pandemic.
Teaching During the Summer and Fall
At this point it looks like the Administration is asking us to plan for online courses during the second half of the Summer and online or blended learning in the Fall. The first half of the Summer semester is being cancelled. Courses that would have run in the first half of the Summer may run in the second half, if they can be adapted for online delivery. Faculty with questions should contact the Chair of their Division for more information about ongoing planning for the Summer.
The Administration has indicated that there will be expert help for faculty to adapt their courses, if possible, for online delivery. We have no details yet about who this will be or how the process will be implemented.
If you are an RPT or ICA faculty member who was scheduled to teach during the Summer and are interested in trying to redesign your course for online delivery but lack the technology to do so, please get in touch with the Union. The Union is also continuing to monitor workload increases from moving to remote/online/blended teaching models.
Unit I members, please do not hesitate to get in touch with the Union if you have any questions about Covid-19’s effect on terms and conditions of work by emailing [email protected].
It is clear that the inability to run face to face classes based on requirements from Federal and Provincial Covid-19 responses could negatively affect enrolment. At this point there has been no announcement from the Province or the Federal Government concerning support for universities during Covid-19. The Employer has shared no financial plans with the Union at this point. Federally, the Canadian Association of University Teachers is lobbying the Federal Government to come up with plans to help provinces support universities through the pandemic and, provincially, The Association of Nova Scotia University Teachers, along with faculty unions and other stockholder unions (CUPE and NSGEU) from universities across the province, are meeting to discuss these issues.
Unit II Technicians
FUNSCAD is aware that prolonged enrolment decreases related to Covid-19 without governmental support could have an impact on Unit II job security. At this point, when asked directly, the Employer has shared no plans involving potential layoffs. If this changes, we will let you know as soon as we do.
Unit II members, if you are experiencing increases to workload because of the move to remote working or have concerns about carrying out your technician duties, please do not hesitate to contact the Union by emailing [email protected]
Mathew ReichertzPresident FUNSCAD