July 22, 2002

 

 

The Honorable Virginia Strom-Martin

California State Assembly

State Capital, Room 3146

Sacramento, CA 95814

 

Dear Assembly Member Strom-Martin,

 

In September 2001, the Legislature adopted ACR 73 (Strom-Martin) as follows:

 

         Resolved by the Assembly of the State of California, the Senate thereof concurring, That the Legislature of the State of California urges the Trustees of the California State University to study its faculty hiring practices over the past decade in order to effectuate improvements in those practices; and be it further

         Resolved, That the Legislature urges the Trustees of the California State University, the Academic Senate of the California State University, and the California Faculty Association to jointly develop a plan that will accomplish all of the following:

(a)       Raise the percentage of tenured and tenure-track faculty to at least 75 percent, with the unit of measurement to be developed jointly by the entities described in this resolved clause.

(b)       Provide that no lecturers currently employed by the university will lose their jobs as a result of implementing the plan.

(c)        Provide that qualified lecturers will be seriously considered for tenure-track positions.

(d)      Provide for the continued improvement of faculty diversity; and be it further

         Resolved, That the California State University is urged to provide a report outlining the plans developed by the entities described in the previous resolved clause to the Legislature by May 1, 2002; and be it further

         Resolved, That the Chief Clerk of the Assembly transmit copies of this resolution to the Trustees of the California State University, the Academic Senate of the California State University, and the California Faculty Association.

 

The attached report addresses the second resolved clause of the resolution. It presents a plan, along with implementation cost projections, to increase the percentage of tenured and tenure-track faculty in the CSU to 75 percent. The plan was developed jointly by the Academic Senate, CSU; the California Faculty Association; and the CSU ChancellorÕs Office. After vigorous and open discussion of many issues, the enclosed report represents a consensus of the groups involved. Further, while each organizational group may address the goal of ACR 73 and of this report in additional ways given the different charge of each organization, each of the three parties is committed to the recommendations contained in this report and to facilitating their implementation. We firmly believe that it is necessary to achieve a reasonable balance between tenured/tenure-track faculty and lecturer faculty. We also believe that this is the joint responsibility of the CSU administration, the CSU faculty, and the state.

 

Lecturers play an important role in the education of CSU students. However, lecturer faculty members generally do not serve as academic advisors and generally do not participate on university committees. Thus as the proportion of the permanent (tenured/tenure-track) faculty declines, the weight of these non-teaching duties falls upon fewer permanent faculty with negative implications for educational quality.

 

Currently, the proportion of permanent faculty has declined to approximately 63 percent of the total full-time equivalent faculty (FTEF) positions. (FTEF is the unit of measure most typically used to express this ratio; it is the standard used by the California community colleges in achieving their target ratio.) The plan presented would increase this proportion to 75 percent over an eight-year period. To achieve this goal without jeopardizing the employment status of current lecturers, the CSU will need to add new positions devoted to hiring tenure-track faculty beyond those required by projected enrollment growth. Thus the proposed plan creates the need for expanded state funding on an annual basis ranging from $4.8M to $35.6M per year. Most of this funding would cover the compensation costs of new, permanent faculty positions and the recruitment and hiring costs associated with these new positions.

 

This plan will require eight years to accomplish. Although we would like to be able to move faster, the number of individual search processes that can be reasonably managed in an academic year is limited. In the past year, the CSU conducted slightly over 1,150 faculty searches. The recently concluded collective bargaining agreement between the CSU and the CFA commits the parties to conduct 1,200 faculty searches in the current year. Our proposed plan would require that we conduct between 1,800 and 2,000 annual searches Š a significant challenge given the already heavy workload of CSU faculty and academic administrators.

 

We believe that this plan is vital to the maintenance of educational quality in the CSU. We commend the Legislature for understanding the relationship between quality and a reasonable proportion of tenured and tenure-track faculty, and for requesting a plan to increase this proportion. We hope this plan will receive serious consideration.

 

 

Sincerely,

 

 

 

 

Jacquelyn Kegley                       Susan Meisenhelder                  David S. Spence                                     

Chair, Academic                        President, California                                                      Executive Vice Chancellor

Senate, CSU                                Faculty Association                   Chief Academic Officer

 

 

DSS/gah

 

 

c:      Members, California State Senate

         Members, California State Assembly

         Governor Gray Davis

         Tim Gage, Director, Department of Finance

         Elizabeth Hill, Legislative Analyst

         Robert Moore, Interim Executive Director, California Postsecondary Education Commission

         Charles B. Reed, Chancellor, California State University

         Members, ACR 73 Study Group