Returning Safe and Sound Post-Fall Break: A Statement from the Faculty Leadership
In light of President’s Leahy’s announcement today that the University will resume in-person instruction after fall break, and students will remain in campus housing, the Executive Committees of the Faculty Council and FAMCO strongly recommend that the following three (3) strategies are implemented immediately to ensure that the greatest number of faculty, students, and staff feel confident that the campus is safe, and confident that sound instruction can continue to be delivered in these challenging times:
1. The release of further information to the Monmouth University community on the details of the University’s random testing program, including how many random tests will be administered per day, how many days per week, and for how long.
2. The adoption of a set of specific criteria for future safe re-openings that is comprehensive, transparent, and reported to public health officials and includes the combination of nationally-recognized standard indicators, such as positivity rates < 5%; total number of new infections over the last 5 days <20; direct contact average < 3; and isolation bed occupancy less than 50%, for example. The expansion of our data collection and reporting will allow faculty, students, and parents alike to better recognize that in-person instruction and residential living is sufficiently safe-guarded.
3. The release of a clear, written reminder from the President and the Provost to all of our students and their parents that faculty teaching in-person or hybrid courses, now and going forward, are not expected to deliver a remote version of their course(s) for students who are in isolation, quarantining, or otherwise do not feel comfortable returning to in-person instruction. This clear and direct messaging from the University will enable faculty teaching in-person and hybrid courses to feel assured that the return to campus will not come with the continued de facto pressure to accommodate students in a dual teaching modality. It will also provide an additional and necessary cultural shift in expectations among students going forward in their selection of learning modalities.
It is our belief that in continuing to work together with our dedicated partners all across campus, who are equally committed to protecting the health and safety of every member of our University community, these three additional strategies will be among those most helpful to affirm an environment in which faculty and students remain excited about returning to campus, even if in limited capacities.
We welcome the opportunity to adjust our community responses in these key ways, which we firmly submit will assist greatly in alleviating anxieties, and help engage our MU community in a transparent, if difficult, undertaking.
October 16, 2020
FAMCO Statement of Support for MU Black and African Diaspora Forum United (BADFU)
In the midst of the twin crises of COVID-19 and the plague of persistent racism that is so evident before us, FAMCO acknowledges the pain and anger expressed by our faculty, staff colleagues and students of color at Monmouth University.
We recognize that many among us are hurting in the wake of the recent racist violence, the police murders of black and brown people, the military attacks on racial justice protesters, and the latest news of racist social media attacks by members of the MU community.
As the Faculty Association of Monmouth University (FAMCO), we take the side of solidarity with our black and brown colleagues, students, and communities of color throughout the country; with all of our FAMCO members who are too often marginalized in the webs of systemic inequalities; and with all folks demanding decent livelihoods, to be free from illness, and for the basic right to live in safety and with human dignity.
In doing so, we pledge to continue the work of the FAMCO Diversity and Inclusion Committee and engage the University in immediate and long-term racial justice response planning. We welcome all of our members to join us in the necessary work to dismantle institutional, symbolic, and interpersonal racism at Monmouth University.
As part of that commitment, we affirm the recently-formed Black and African Diaspora Forum United (BADFU) at MU, an organization of Black/African American faculty, and their allies, that is particularly concerned with the challenges that Black and African Diaspora faculty, students, and staff face on our campus.
We commit to working together with BADFU as an organizational ally to identify and change institutional policies, practices, and procedures that perpetuate structural racism, and to increase participation, support, and power in all campus spaces for Black and African Diaspora faculty, students and staff.
The FAMCO Executive Committee
June 12, 2020
FAMCO – The Faculty Association of Monmouth University
The Faculty Association of Monmouth University is commonly called FAMCO, dating its name from its formation when Monmouth was a college.
FAMCO is a part of the AAUP and has been a major force in the development of professional standards and procedures at the University.
The association’s main responsibilities continue to be:
- negotiating agreements with the University that cover: salaries; benefits; procedures and standards for continuance; tenure and promotion; teaching loads; and service and scholarship requirements.
- protecting faculty members by providing interpretations of the Agreement and a grievance system.
- encouraging collegiality by holding open meetings, discussions, debates, and providing refreshments.
Monthly membership meetings are held from 2:45 p.m. to 4:10 p.m.
- Wednesday, September 16
- Wednesday, October 21
- Wednesday, November 18
- January TBA
- Wednesday, February 17
- Wednesday, March 17
- Wednesday, April 21
Why join the Union?
Because there is strength in numbers, and a strong union can …
- increase the power of faculty to bargain for better salaries, benefits, and working conditions;
- provide a powerful voice for faculty governance in university decision-making;
- protect academic freedom and ensure fair procedures for reappointment, tenure, and promotion;
- protect non-tenure track faculty against further shifts toward contingency;
- protect individual members through a formal contract grievance process;
- provide critical legal counsel on behalf of its interests in the grievance and negotiation process;
- increase our solidarity with our colleagues across campus employee unions to support equity for all;
- protect the dignity, autonomy, and status of the professoriate itself;
- push broadly for social justice in the face of troubling changes affecting higher education writ large.
The mission of the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) is to advance academic freedom and shared governance; to define fundamental professional values and standards for higher education; to promote the economic security of faculty, academic professionals, graduate students, post‐doctoral fellows, and all those engaged in teaching and research in higher education; to help the higher education community organize to make our goals a reality; and to ensure higher education’s contribution to the common good.
Executive Committee Members
June 1, 2019 – May 31, 2022
Graduate-Professional Faculty Rep
FAMCO Travel Coordinator
Wobbe F. Koning, MFA
Rebecca S. Hanly