Adjunct faculty at community college system sue over lack of contract

  • Tori Ghanem, Josh Jacob and Devon Greer cruise through campus at NHTI on Friday afternoon in the shadow of signs directing them to several places where higher education happens or places where food is served to people between quests for higher education.

Monitor staff
Published: 8/18/2016 11:58:59 PM

Negotiations between adjunct faculty and the Community College System of New Hampshire are still stalled, six weeks after the contract ran out, and the State Employees Association has filed an unfair labor practice complaint.

The complaint was filed by SEA/SEIU Local 1984, which the union represents.

Adjunct faculty are part-time or contingent instructors, not on the track to be eligible for tenure and often hired from  class to class. Colleges throughout the country are wrestling with questions of pay and work status of such instructors, who make up about two-thirds of college and university classroom teachers according to federal figures.  

In its complaint, filed Thursday with the state’s Public Employee Labor Relations Board, SEA/SEIU Local 1984 claims that CCSNH has refused to “discuss or entertain certain mandatory subjects of bargaining” including hours of work and aspects of compensation. This includes, it says, proposals regarding conditions for the summer semester and compensation for work that falls outside of classroom lectures.

“Adjunct faculty at CCSNH are paid substantially less than our counterparts at Keene State and Plymouth State, and adjunct faculty at CCSNH greatly outnumber full-time faculty,” said Arthur Slotnick, chairman of the SEA/SEIU Local 1984 bargaining team, who teaches anatomy and physiology at Manchester Community College.

The adjunct faculty of CCSNH’s first contract expired June 30. Mediation has been scheduled, the union said, but it claimed the Community College System was not participating in good faith by scheduling meetings during faculty working hours.

David Brooks bio photo

David Brooks is a reporter and the writer of the sci/tech column Granite Geek and blog, as well as moderator of Science Cafe Concord events. After obtaining a bachelor’s degree in mathematics he became a newspaperman, working in Virginia and Tennessee before spending 28 years at the Nashua Telegraph . He joined the Monitor in 2015.

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