Weekly Update – November 19, 2021
November 19, 2021
Weekly Update – November 19, 2021
Save the Date: CUASA Fall GMM
CUASA’s Fall 2021 General Membership Meeting will be held on Tuesday, November 30, from 2:00-4:00pm. The GMM will take place online over Zoom.
The agenda and connection details will be released soon.
Course Delivery for Winter 2022
CUASA has been actively monitoring recent media publications through which Carleton students have been expressing concern regarding changes to course delivery options for the Winter 2022 term. In particular, students have been reporting a dramatic increase in courses being switched from a planned in-person delivery to online instead.
Despite these reports, the University has been quoted as planning to increase in-person course sections in order to meet demand. The Association is very concerned about any plans to increase in-person course sections without the proper consultation of all necessary bodies, including CUASA and the University Senate.
As mentioned last week, CUASA remains concerned that decisions are being made without any consultation with your Union, or with the Senate. For months, the Association has been asking to be properly consulted regarding any changes to the working conditions of its members during this pandemic.
CUASA agrees with students about the need for more transparency from Carleton. If proper consultation was had, transparency would be more naturally experienced. It would avoid confusion and disappointment. It would also make for a less jarring experience when decisions about how to keep everyone safe on campus need to be made.
The Association is also concerned about increased reports from members that they are being told that they are required to teach in-person or offer HyFlex course options without being asked what their preferences are for the Winter term.
While the Association appreciates the desire for students to see more in-person course options, it is essential that any decisions regarding course delivery be made in consultation with the faculty and instructors who will be teaching those courses and that any necessary accommodation requests be taken into consideration.
Despite what is being said in news articles or online petitions, the pandemic is not over; just today, Ontario reported its highest single-day case count in nearly two months. Any substantive changes to course delivery, including any increases to in-person course sections, must be made with proper consideration of the current COVID-19 situation.
CUASA’s Participation at the Digital Learning Committee
The Association had previously filed a grievance regarding the University’s launch of a Digital Strategy, as CUASA felt that this was a subject that should have been brought to the parties’ joint Digital Learning Committee (DLC) for consultation. CUASA also grieved the University’s introduction of a new “web-based course development form” that members were being asked to sign without the Association having been consulted on the implementation of this form. As a result of these issues, CUASA suspended its participation at the DLC as the grievance process unfolded.
The University has confirmed it will no longer use the web-based course development form, effective immediately. Should any agreements on copyright be required where the University is commissioning a CUASA member to prepare a particular work for the University, they will be made in accordance with Article 14.4(c)(iii) of the collective agreement. As such, the Association has declared this grievance to be partially resolved.
The University has said it disagrees with the Association’s position that Carleton’s launch of the Digital Strategy is in contravention of the collective agreement and the mandate of the DLC. The University has indicated that it hopes to resume the work of the DLC and continue discussions with CUASA.
At its meeting this past Wednesday, November 17, CUASA’s Grievance Policy and Administration Committee decided to lift the Association’s boycott of the DLC. The committee also decided to refer the grievance on the Digital Strategy to arbitration to maintain the timelines mandated by the grievance process. However, the committee also decided to hold the scheduling of arbitration dates in abeyance in order to allow the University a good faith opportunity to consult with CUASA at the DLC on the Digital Strategy and other digital learning issues including, but not limited to, HyFlex courses, and to complete the DLC’s mandate as outlined in the collective agreement.
Carleton Cases on Campus Webpage
As mentioned in previous updates, the Association has been seeking more information on the COVID-19 situation on campus, including pressing the University to release both current and historical case count data on its “Cases on Campus” webpage.
That webpage has now been updated and includes historical case data for Fall 2021. To view the webpage, click here.
Support for Scholars at Risk
Giving Tuesday will take place this year on November 30. CUASA hopes its members will consider supporting Scholars at Risk at Carleton University. The Scholars at Risk program protects scholars suffering grave threats to their lives and liberty by arranging temporary research and teaching positions and providing advisory services.
On November 30, gifts made through FutureFunder.ca will be matched dollar-for-dollar on a first come, first-served basis. This year the SAR committee is giving priority to two Afghani scholars at risk, given the present situation in Afghanistan. We need your financial support in order to help them establish themselves and their research here, at Carleton.
Faculty Consultations on Sexual Violence Policy Review
The University is reviewing its Sexual Violence Policy throughout the 2021-2022 academic year. As part of this process, it will be offering information and feedback sessions to solicit input from the campus community.
The objective of these sessions is to host a supportive, creative space wherein members of the community can provide their feedback on the Sexual Violence Policy.
There are faculty sessions scheduled for the following dates and times:
- Wednesday January 12, 10am-11am
- Tuesday January 18, 1pm-2pm
Participants are recommended to read the policy ahead of the sessions and review the considerations outlined in the Sexual Violence Review Work Plan. For more information or to register for one of the faculty sessions, click here.