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IN BRIEF...

By Amy Agronis on June 6, 2003 in University

Davis Senate holds year-end meeting

Announcement of the four recipients of UC Davis Distinguished Teaching Awards for 2003 will be among the business conducted as the Represen-tative Assembly of the Davis Academic Senate concludes its academic year of meetings 3-5 p.m. Tuesday in MU II.

Up to two recipients of the 2003 Distinguished Graduate Mentoring Award also are set to be named.

Annual reports of standing committees will be presented and members will consider a change in the use of the "Enrolled-No Work Submitted" (E-NWS) transcript designation to a grade of "F."

UC reaches tentative agreement with AFT, UPTE

UC announced May 29 that it has reached tentative agreement in separate negotiations the university has been conducting with the American Federation of Teachers and the University Professional and Technical Employees unions.

Negotiations for a new labor contract with UC Lecturers began in spring 2000. Once approved, the new AFT contract will run through June 30, 2006.

The tentative agreement calls for increased salary minimums for all lecturers, enhanced job security in the form of career-like status for lecturers with six or more years of experience who are rated "excellent," improved benefits eligibility for part-time lecturers, additional prohibitions against strikes, and a commitment to review workload issues in targeted programs.

UC employs approximately 1,600 lecturers systemwide, representing roughly 12 percent of UC's total faculty.

Also on May 29, UC came to a tentative agreement on two new labor contracts with UC research support professionals and technical employees. Once the UPTE agreements are formalized -- expected at the end of June -- the university will pay retroactive salary increases. Both contracts will run through Sept. 30, 2004.

The final key issue in the negotiations concerned a laid-off employee's options for severance pay and preferential status for being rehired. UC had been offering employees a choice between severance pay and preferential rehire/recall status; UPTE had been insisting on both. The tentative agreements allow employees to choose either a full severance package in lieu of preferential rehire/recall rights (similar to the policy being proposed to non-unionized staff) or a "combination" package containing some severance pay and limited preferential rehire/recall rights.

Wages were also a key issue throughout the talks, which began in spring 2002.

A detailed summary of the agreements is available at http://atyourservice.ucop.edu/ employees/policies/labor_relations/index.html

Faculty ratify testing, code-of-conduct changes

The Assembly of the Academic Senate for UC approved changes to UC's admissions test requirements and voted to update policies regarding romantic relationships between faculty members and students at a May 28 meeting.

With the admissions test action -- and an expected approval by UC Regents -- UC will formally amend its test requirements to include a core test of mathematics, language arts and writing, along with two supplementary subject-matter tests. The new requirements would take effect for undergraduates entering UC in fall 2006.

The ACT and College Board, in collaboration with UC, are working to provide tests that meet these requirements. The College Board voted last June to make a series of changes to the SAT I that include adding a writing component, eliminating analogies and adding more math reasoning.

Under UC's new admissions test requirements, in addition to taking an approved core test of mathematics, language arts and writing, each applicant would submit scores from subject-matter tests in two of the following areas: history/social science, English, mathematics, laboratory science, or language other than English.

UC will accept the new ACT and SAT as the core examination on an interim basis and will evaluate the new tests after a two-year period. This evaluation will determine longer-term acceptability and should be completed by 2008.

The proposed change in UC test requirements is expected to be presented to the regents at their July 16-17 meeting.

Also to go before the regents for approval is the Assembly's May 28 vote to change the systemwide Faculty Code of Conduct to effectively prohibit faculty from entering into a romantic or sexual relationship with any student for whom the faculty member has academic responsibility or should reasonably expect to have such responsibility in the future.

Although the Academic Assembly passed a resolution in 1983 that strongly discouraged faculty-student relationships, the updated systemwide Faculty Code of Conduct would set a clear and enforceable standard for faculty conduct on all 10 UC campuses.

A faculty member found in violation of the new policy would face any of six different disciplinary sanctions, ranging from a letter of censure to dismissal from the university. The Code of Conduct only applies to Senate faculty members; however, it is ex-pected that if this policy change is approved by the regents, UC will also modify its academic personnel policies so that a similar prohibition will apply to other university instructors such as teaching assistants.

For the full text of the changes, see http://www.universityofcalifornia.edu/senate/assembly/may2003/may2003vii....

Media contact(s)

Amy Agronis, Dateline, (530) 752-1932, abagronis@ucdavis.edu

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