Welcome to Fall 2023 Semester AVC Faculty!

All faculty, welcome to the fall 2023 semester!

As we stand on the threshold of another academic year, we want to extend a warm welcome to all of you on behalf of the Faculty Union. Fall 2023 promises to be a time of growth, challenges, and continued commitment to academic excellence.

It never ceases to amaze us how resilient and adaptable our community is. Your dedication to teaching, research, and service, especially in the ever-evolving landscape of higher education, is truly commendable. It’s a privilege to represent such a dynamic group of professionals.

This semester, let’s remember to support one another, share our experiences, and continue to foster a collaborative spirit that defines our institution. Challenges are bound to be ahead, but we can face them together and emerge even stronger.

To our returning faculty, welcome back! And to those joining us for the first time, we’re delighted to have you as part of our academic family.

Let’s embark on this journey together with enthusiasm and a shared vision. Here’s to a fulfilling and successful Fall 2023 semester!

-Dr. Jason Bowen (Union President) and Your Union Team.

Contract Ratification Vote (Dues-paying members)

From Dr. Scott Lee (Political Director):

The Federation has reached Tentative Agreements (TA’s) with the District on the faculty collective bargaining agreement.  We now need our dues-paying members to decide whether to ratify these agreements, so be sure to check your AVC e-mails from Dr. Scott Lee. This ratification vote will be open until Thursday, July 13th, 2023 at 8pm.

Here are some highlights of the agreed changes:

Article IX

  1. 8% of base salary, one-time off-schedule stipend for the 2022 – 23 academic year.
    1. Note: The 8% base salary goes to all unit members employed as of May 6, 2023.
  2. 13% raise will be added to all faculty salary schedules for 2023 – 2024 academic year.
  3. 4% raise will be added to all faculty salary schedules for 2024 – 2025 academic year.
    1. Note: For point (2), the effective date is July 1, 2023, and for (3), the effective is July 1, 2024.
  4. “Effective retroactive to October 1, 2022 the health and welfare benefit cap shall be $17,500 per year through September 30, 2025.” Note: The previous benefit cap was $14,500.
    1. Anthem Blue Cross PPO (4046B) plan prescription cost will now be $10/$35 (previously $5/$20) [generic name drug/brand name drug]. Rationale: There will be a $95/month savings with this change unless more than 19 prescriptions are purchased every month.
    2. The Vision Plan will have an additional $3/month cost. Rationale: The extra cost will include an extra pair of glasses within a year.
  5. Added trigger language to re-open Article IX section 1.2.2.3 for part-time health care if any of the following events take place:
    1. Note on the trigger language:
      1. The California Community College Chancellor’s Office implements a benefit pool for part-time faculty;
      2. The multi-district adjunct faculty eligibility requirements change; or
      3. The insurance provider’s eligibility requirements change.
  6. Teaching independent study/work study courses shall be paid at the rate of $100 per student per unit. Note: The rate was previously $75 per student per unit
  7. Coaching Compensation: Stipends have been increased for both adjunct faculty and full-time faculty. See Article IX, Section 9.1, subsection 9.1.2, and Section 9.2 (c), (b), and (d). Note on stipends referred to in this area: “Effective July 1, 2023,

Article I

The new contract shall be in effect until June 30, 2025.

Article V

  • Update leave language/definitions based on FMLA, etc.
  • The reduced minimum contribution to catastrophic leave bank to one (1) day for full-time faculty and four (4) hours for part-time faculty. 
  • Bereavement Leave language now states that a unit member “of the District is entitled to a leave of absence not to exceed five (5) days because of the death of any member’s immediate family.”
  • Unit members MUST contribute to catastrophic leave in order to request use. 
  • Updated the catastrophic leave form.

These are not the only changes.  Links to the new contract language and the current contract can be found on the ballot and by going to Newsletter – June 27 Edition. (Copy and paste the following website in case the link above is not working: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1sJIMcbmhRUiQ5tCzIVOgCU9N5N6ESyw58622uRcJvvs/edit?usp=sharing).  
If you have questions, contact Federation Presdient, Dr. Jason Bowen, at president@avcft.org or Dr. Cindy Hendrix, Lead Negotiator, at secretary@avc.edu.

Thank you for your continued support.

In Solidarity . . . For All! 

AVCFT Logo in blue and white

Agreement Between the Federation and the District

AVCFT logo in blue and white

Dear colleagues!

We hope that your summer is going well and that the news in this update will make it better for you and your loved ones.
In this email is a newsletter providing you with essential and historic updates!
In it, you will find updates to the recent union election, negotiations update, PERB update, and an update on new reasons to join as a dues-paying member.
The newsletter is a Google Doc so, use the following Google Doc link: Newsletter – June 27 Edition. 

(Copy and paste the following website in case the link above is not working: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1sJIMcbmhRUiQ5tCzIVOgCU9N5N6ESyw58622uRcJvvs/edit?usp=sharing)

Thank you, colleagues, for all your hard work. We are ecstatic to unveil the challenging yet crucial tasks we have accomplished for the collective good. Please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions or comments at contact@avcft.org

-Your Union Team

Negotiations Update (Spring 2023)

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Your AVCFT negotiating team has been meeting once or twice weekly throughout the semester. We have also sought input from members and will continue to do so. We heard a presentation by one of our members regarding salary concerns and will be utilizing the information provided. We intend to ask for a substantial increase, both in salary and in benefits, as part of our ongoing negotiations.

We know people are wondering about negotiations, and we want to provide an update on our progress. Negotiations with the District have been a slow and frustrating process. Here is an update on our progress.

We have met with the District eight times since the semester started. The Federation has been presenting proposals for different articles; unfortunately, the District has been slow to respond. We submitted two articles to the district in October and did not receive a counter-proposal on the first until February and we just received a counter-proposal to the second article last week.

We have tentatively agreed to language on Articles I-V.

Additionally, we signed an MOU on a new block schedule to increase the number of classes offered, which will begin this summer. In this new schedule, faculty who teach a 6:30 am class will receive a $500 stipend. 

Last fall, we proposed an MOU for adjunct faculty health care. Unfortunately, the District refused to even entertain our proposal, despite the fact that there would have been NO additional cost to them.

We will be meeting with the District again this Friday, April 14th. We are hoping to get the contract settled this summer.

If you would like to support our efforts and join the AVCFT (Your Union), please use the link below and complete the online membership form.

Join AVCFT

Click here to join the union as a dues-paying member: AVCFT (4383A) Membership Form.
Should the link not work, copy and paste the following link to your browser: https://leadernet.aft.org/webform/antelope-valley-college-federation-teachers

AVCFT Website & Social Media

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AVCFT Website

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This message is brought to you by Your Union Team:

Dr. Jason Bowen, President/Negotiations MemberPRESIDENT@AVCFT.ORG
Ms. Kathy Osburn, Vice-President/Negotiations MemberVPRESIDENT@AVCFT.ORG
Mr. Kent Moser, TreasurerTREASURER@AVCFT.ORG
Dr. Cindy Hendrix, Secretary/Lead NegotiatorSECRETARY@AVCFT.ORG
Ms. Carla Corona, Adjunct VPADJVP@AVCFT.ORG
Dr. Scott Lee, Political DirectorPOLITICALDIR@AVCFT.ORG
Mr. Alberto Mendoza González Larreynaga, Membership/Communications Director/Negotiations MemberMEMBERSHIP@AVCFT.ORG
Ms. Tamira Palmetto Despain, Negotiations MemberNEGOTIATIONS_MEMBER1@AVCFT.ORG
Mr. Eugene Siegel, Negotiations MemberNEGOTIATIONS_MEMBER2@AVCFT.ORG

Mr. Ahrien Johnson, CFT Field Representative

Academic Calendar Feedback Survey

AVCFT (Your Faculty Union)

AVC Academic Calendar Survey

FEEDBACK REQUESTED

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Survey Information

Your union leadership is asking for feedback on future academic calendars, especially on the winter intersession, the start of the spring semester, and summer semester lengths. 

This feedback comes from the great responses we have received from you. Remember that this is your union and is always open to receiving feedback. 

SurveyMonkey Link

Click the following link to access the survey: AVC Academic Calendar Faculty Feedback.
Should the link not work, copy and paste the following to your web browser: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/avcacademiccalendar

Deadline

This survey will be open for two weeks. It will close on April 25th at 11:59 PM (PST).

We thank you and look forward to reading your feedback.

NEED TO TALK TO YOUR UNION? 

General Inquiries/Feedback (including becoming a dues-paying member) – contact@avcft.org 

Grievancesgrievance@avcft.org 

Press Releases and Publicationscommunications@avcft.org

-Your Union Team-

A Communication From Your Union Regarding Winter Intersession

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The return next year to the traditional academic calendar is a legal requirement placed on the District.  When the current calendar was implemented in 2019, it was done so in violation of the faculty contract, board policy, and, ultimately, state and federal law.  The District is being ordered by the state to come into compliance with the law and the contract, so that is why the return.  If the District wishes to reexamine a return to the current academic calendar and does so in a manner compliant with the faculty contract, board policy, and state and federal law, the union is not opposing those reexaminations.

There remains the option of a settlement agreement with the District that could allow for retaining the current calendar schedule. Some faculty have expressed a preference for this option. Though we maintain an open mind and are not opposed to any settlement talks, this is not the direction we wish to go at the moment. The reasons are several. First, considerable time and expense were expended seeking the current remedy, including legal costs and testimony. In 2019, at the December 9 Board meeting, the Board of Trustees voted unanimously to approve an illegal calendar, and this was despite the input of constituent groups. The students, at that time, overwhelmingly supported keeping Winter Intersession (only 9% of students were dissatisfied with the calendar), and 83% of faculty supported retaining the winter intersession. The District argued that summer enrollments/FTES would increase and those course offerings in the sciences would increase in the summer session due to the 12-week option. FTES in Summer 2019 was 1036. Last summer it was 1029. The peak in summer FTES occurred, ironically, during the summer at the height of the pandemic when FTES was 1059. There has been no growth in summer FTES, despite the loss of Winter Intersession and summer expanding by 50%. Moreover, retention and success rates have plummeted in the 6-week summer courses, and it has been challenging to find faculty who will teach the 12-week sessions. Additionally, high school students cannot attend the 6-week and 12-week summer sessions because the high school schedule overlaps the start of the summer session. Lastly, Winter Intercession allowed students to complete course requirements for transfer at the end of Spring and opened up summer for employment and internship opportunities for our students.

Compared to 2020, we lost over 1800 FTES in 2022.  Over 80% of that loss came from Intersession and Spring, the two most affected semesters by the calendar change.  Summer overall had a much smaller loss (only 1.5%), but given it was expanded by 50% it’s clearly not giving us much of a boost in numbers. Winter Intercession FTES in 2020 was 414. That’s 23%, almost a quarter, of all FTES losses. We believe, separately from the legal issue, that the restoration of Winter Intersession will better serve our students, the college, and the community. Serving better during Winter Intersession can also come by serving our students through modalities that were not offered before. 

In closing, some may have found a way to compensate for Intersession course losses in their area, but that is not a guarantee of all areas doing so.  As the implementation of the current calendar was illegal, the District has a responsibility to identify who did lose and compensate them, as ordered by the state in their “make whole” provision of the judgment.  Additionally, make whole encompasses more than just lost courses, but also faculty who lost outside income opportunities due to not having January available to them anymore.

In solidarity,

Your Union Team.

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FPD Event: AVCFT Workshop: Weingarten 101

From Vice-President of AVCFT, Kathy Osburn:

Colleagues,

Please join AVCFT President, Dr. Jason Bowen, for an informative FPD event on Thursday, February 16, at 6:30 p.m.:

Weingarten 101

Weingarten rights are vital to every employee. Join AVCFT leadership to discuss the process laid out by the collective bargaining agreement (CBA/contract) to cover cases of alleged performance or disciplinary problems. Included will be a discussion of faculty’s Weingarten rights. There will be time for questions.

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Click on the zoom icon below to be taken to the event, or click on the following address: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/82037219060?pwd=T0dzd0NTRi9kUm44bU1VVHpZWnFydz09

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[IMPORTANT] AVCFT Faculty Survey of the Proposed Changes to the Block Schedule

Dear AVC Faculty,

Per President Zellet’s recent Town Hall and Coffee Chat, she is proposing two revisions to the current block schedule. The proposals are:

1. Adding a block to begin at 6:30 AM

2. Adding a block to begin at 12:30 PM

Here are some resources for review:

President’s Slide from Scheduling Forum:

https://www.avc.edu/sites/default/files/aboutavc/Coffee%20Chat%201%2012%202023.pdf

Forum Video:

https://www.avc.edu/node/7076

Current AVC Block Schedule

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1rzRUFXDhFXE8NstUZMGQbGIIUQzLznE4/edit#gid=1469371324

Proposed New AVC Block Schedule (Draft)

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1VrdSXDppa-colRhKHBgQhXkgXsKvxf6B/edit#gid=1469371324

The Faculty Union would like to hear from you regarding this proposal. The information gathered will be useful in our conversations with Administration.

Please review the materials prior to responding to the survey. Please complete the survey by Monday, January 30th at 12:00 PM.

The survey can also be accessed by clicking on the following link or copying and pasting it into your browser:

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/blockschedule

In solidarity,
Alberto Mendoza González Larreynaga
AVCFT Membership/Communications Director