Thursday, May 7, 2009

From sprint to headlong dash....

So I have been reading press reports about the Board's selection of our next chief administrator. I say administrator because there is nothing in his bio that tells me he knows anything about educational leadership in doctoral degree granting institutions. One piece from yesterday's Chicago Tribune is particularly troubling. "...He also said he'd focus on helping CSU professors improve their teaching skills..." This is a person who taught for three years in the 1970s, at a small private college, never did academic research beyond a short dissertation, never published, never earned tenure and now he's going to help us improve our teaching skills??? In another story in the Chitown Daily News the applicant opines "...You've go to change people's behavior or you've got to fire them, 'Watson says. While that goes especially for administrators and staff, Watson says, it doesn't mean the faculty is immune. If for any reason they refuse to do their job and to do research, then those faculty have defined their future status,' he says." What behavior are we talking about? Is it the belligerent behavior of a small minority or behavior that says faculty are the core of the university and if you don't understand that your time here will be short and unpleasant? In 17 years I have not ever seen faculty refuse to do their job. And an unpublished political insider given the job by a group of incompetent and malfeasant board members, talking about academic research is just a bit disingenuous. I guess he hopes that if he talks tough maybe we will overlook his lack of experience at this level, temperament and predilection for retaliation. I would hope that our union is paying attention to these comments as they seem to me to be meant as intimidation. Already coming in under a cloud, fighting words won't help his landing here.

And this from Peter Sachs, education reporter from the Chitown Daily News:

"I just wanted to let you know that the Daily News will be hosting a live, online chat at 12 p.m. Friday with George Providence, the editor of the student paper. We'll be talking about the controversy surrounding the shutdown of Tempo, the presidential search process and what the future holds for CSU. The chat is open to everyone to ask questions and submit comments. You'll just need to go to our homepage,, when the chat starts. The chat box will appear at noon-- there's nothing else you need to do to join."

Finally, the Faculty Senate is scheduling an educational forum for Tuesday May 12th, time and place to be announced for all faculty, tenured, tenure track, and adjuncts. We realize this is during finals and there is critical information that faculty need to know. There will be discussion of the presidential search process, the applicant selection process, shared governance and the implications for the faculty at the university.


  1. Reading the Tribune article, I continue to be stunned by the level of arrogance that this Board of Trustees appointed administrator continues to show (not to mention the BOT themselves). I will be there on Tuesday, May 12! This is a great idea for getting all faculty involved in our struggle for our university.

    Also, please see the comments by Paul and myself to the previous blog entry. We are discussing organizing a teach-in for the start of the fall semester. I think this would be another excellent way to get widespread faculty and student participation in the process of taking control of our university. It would also help us build on our momentum from this semester over the summer and into the fall.

  2. Also Tuesday May 12 is still during class time, not finals. Finals do not begin until Thursday. But we should make every effort to be there.