Prep for prob­lems

The Coast - - THIS WEEK -

Uni­ver­si­ties are not the only ed­u­ca­tional in­sti­tu­tions in Nova Sco­tia ex­ploit­ing aca­demic staff (“Pre­car­i­ous labour is ex­ploit­ing ed­u­ca­tors,” BTS guide by Ju­lia-Si­mone Rut­gers). Be­gin­ning this Septem­ber, the newly named NSCC Ivany cam­pus is en­forc­ing a pol­icy of not pay­ing prep time to its “pre­car­i­ous aca­demic staff”–the ca­sual and aux­il­iary fac­ulty work­ing for hourly wages. What mes­sage does this send to these teach­ers? That NSCC does not value the time you spend pre­par­ing lessons and eval­u­a­tions for its stu­dents?

How will this im­pact the stu­dents’ ed­u­ca­tion? Teach­ers will need to com­pro­mise on the qual­ity of ed­u­ca­tion they can pro­vide. This pol­icy is not only off-brand from the NSCC’s her­alded Strive cam­paign—strive for what, lower ed­u­ca­tion stan­dards?—it coun­ters its own mis­sion, vi­sion and val­ues.

If en­forced prov­ince-wide, the “no paid prep time” pol­icy could po­ten­tially frac­ture the very foun­da­tion the Ivany Re­port claims to need to suc­ceed. We are al­ready see­ing the im­pact of this de­ci­sion in the mu­sic busi­ness pro­gram, where this year al­most all the ca­sual fac­ulty chose not to re­turn. For the new hires and aca­demic staff paid hourly wages, they will be at­tempt­ing the big­gest jug­gling act of what may be the be­gin­ning or end of their teach­ing ca­reer. —Krista Keough, ca­sual fac­ulty at NSCC Ivany Cam­pus

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