ASCSU January 2021 Plenary Update

The ASCSU January 2021 plenary convened virtually January 21-22, 2021. The plenary agenda is attached to this report.

The following information is a brief overview of the plenary.

Plenary Resolutions

AS-3455 Protecting Fair Workload for Faculty in the CSU APPROVED

  • The ASCSU recognizes that it is detrimental to quality of education in the CSU and a violation of the Collective Bargaining Agreement to increase faculty workload as a remedy for budget cuts. 
  • This resolution acknowledges that increases in course benchmark enrollments and elimination or reduction of reassigned units constitute increases in faculty workload.
  • This resolution also asserts that reassigned units should be provided for faculty for vital work, including supervision of student research, scholarly, and creative activities, academic advising, coordination of programs, faculty roles in shared governance, and other tasks, duties, and responsibilities, and that an increase in workload degrades the quality of the faculty input / supervision. The ASCSU strongly urges the Chancellor’s Office and campuses to stop efforts by CSU Administrators to increase course benchmark enrollments and eliminate or reduce reassigned units received for supervision of student research and scholarly activities, roles in shared governance, and other work.

AS-3458 Disparate Impact of Technology on Underserved Students APPROVED

  • The ASCSU recognizes that the use of digital technologies at the CSU is likely to remain at an increased level following the end of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • The ASCSU asks that the CSU System and individual campuses work together to ensure all students have equivalent access to all technologies needed for them to succeed.
  • We also ask the CSU, as a system, to work to find a solution that does not place the burden on students and their families, that does not place further burdens on faculty and staff, and that does not place additional burdens on individual campuses. The CSU system is the largest university system in the nation and should be able to leverage its largess to work with internet providers, computer manufacturers, and software developers to provide equitable access to all CSU students.
  • Related resolution calling for implementation of the California Broadband Action Plan, which proposes that “all Californians have high-performance broadband available at home, schools, libraries, and businesses; all Californians have access to affordable broadband and the devices necessary to access the internet; and all Californians can access training and support to enable digital inclusion … also requests that the ASCSU recommend that the Chancellor’s Office continues in its efforts to ensure that those students, faculty, staff, and administrators who (for example, currently during the COVID–19 pandemic of 2020–21) do not have adequate equipment or access to engage in successful education, whether due to geographical location or inequitable circumstances, be provided with such equipment and access in whatever ways deemed appropriate.

AS-3461 Ongoing Collaboration on Ethnic Studies APPROVED

  • The ASCSU notes that because the Core Competences will be instantiated in student learning outcomes, campuses, guided by appropriate disciplinary deference to Ethnic Studies faculty, may implement the Core Competences through student learning outcomes appropriate to their campus, and using campuses’ established curricular approval processes, without negating the spirit and intent of the Core Competences or AB 1460.
  • The intent of this resolution is to institutionalize the collaboration between the Ethnic Studies faculty, the ASCSU and Chancellor’s Office, establishing an ongoing collaboration rather than it being the ‘one-off’ consultation called for in AB 1460 and in so doing, goes beyond the requirement of AB 1460.
  • It was also noted that the language of AB 1460 calls for a collaboration between the CSU Council of Ethnic Studies (CSUCES), the Chancellor’s Office and the ASCSU to establish system-wide core competences, not student learning outcomes. That distinction is important in that it affords a degree of campus flexibility that many campuses have been requesting in the campus Senate resolutions, passed and shared with the ACSCU in the run-up to its November 2020 meeting. 
  • It should also be noted that flexibility does not impede student transfer between the Community Colleges and the CSU or between CSU campuses since that “interoperability” will be determined by the adherence to the system-wide core competences. So long as campus adaptations remain within the spirit and intent of the core competences and approved by Ethnic Studies disciplinary experts, a course with slightly different learning outcomes on one campus can be reliably construed as meeting the intent of the Ethnic  Studies requirement and AB 1460 at all CSU campuses.

AS-3471 Communications with the Board of Trustees of the California State University System APPROVED

  • Current Board practice is to allot 90 minutes to “Public Comment” at Board meetings. Any faculty wishing to address the Board are put into that period as well. Typically, this allows each speaker 1 minute to speak.  It should be abundantly clear that the complex issues often at play in BOT decisions cannot be addressed in that time. 
  • The ASCSU urges the Chancellor, Trustees, and the Trustee Secretariat to seek mechanisms that would provide increased opportunity for members of the public to speak to the Trustees.

AS-3463 Resolution Welcoming Joseph I. Castro and Mary G. Castro as Eighth Chancellor and First Lady of the California State University (CSU) APPROVED

AS-3464 Apportionment of Academic Senate CSU (ASCSU) Seats APPROVED

AS-3466 Call for Internet Bandwidth Expansion for CSU Students, Faculty APPROVED

AS-3467 ASCSU Condemnation of the Events on January 6, 2021 in Washington, D.C. First Reading/Waiver APPROVED

AS-3468 Commendation for Executive Vice Chancellor Loren J. Blanchard APPROVED

AS-3470 Addressing the Need for Compassionate Treatment of California State University Employees During the COVID-10 Pandemic APPROVED

For additional information or questions, please contact Ryne Leuzinger or Vanessa Lopez-Littleton.

Author: Stirring up Trouble by DrVLoLil

I am a social justice educator sharing my perspectives on issues affecting Black folks in the U.S. These issues are important to me, not simply because I am a Black woman, but because disparities are manifestations of deeper societal ills. So, if keeping racial justice issues in the mouths of many yields any reduction, I am delighted to stir up a little bit of trouble. Good trouble. Necessary trouble.