Friday, June 9, 2017

DCCCD Trustees Approve Concealed Carry Policy

On Tuesday, June 6, 2017, the DCCCD Board of Trustees approved the recommended rules and regulations for concealed carry developed by the District Concealed Carry Committee and proposed by Dr. Joe May.

The draft copy of the policy approved at the meeting is available in the DCCCD Boardbook (https://v3.boardbook.org/Public/PublicItemDownload.aspx?ik=40634001). The new policy is to be implemented by August 1, 2017.

Trustee Phil Ritter moved to add a sunset provision the policy which will require the Board to revisit the policy on or before October 15, 2019, as further guidance and experience may dictate changes or modifications. This was also approved.

Sunset Language added to the Policy: This policy takes effect August 1, 2017. The provisions of this policy are hereby declared to be severable such that if any provision of this policy or the application thereof to any person or circumstance is declared invalid for any reason, such declaration shall not affect the validity of the remaining portions of this policy. The provisions of this policy shall be null, void and of no force and effect on or after October 15, 2019, unless the Board of Trustees has taken action before such date to renew, extend, modify or change such policy. Nothing contained herein shall prevent or prohibit the amendment, modification, suspension or repeal of this policy before such date as may be determined necessary by the College District Board of Trustees.

More detailed information on the policy and procedures for implementation has been posted in an article in MyPortal, accessible here: https://myportal.dcccd.edu/Lists/DatatelPortalNews/CustomDispForm.aspx?ID=2156

Friday, April 21, 2017

Update on Faculty Evaluation and Job Description

The Faculty Evaluation System Review Task Force met again on Wednesday, April 19, 2017, and the group spent the majority of its time reviewing, discussing, and revising a draft of a proposed revised DCCCD Faculty Job Description.

The Job Description subcommittee provided the Task Force with the following documentation:

·         the current job description;
·         benchmarking document, with information on job descriptions from 10 other colleges;
·         spreadsheet listing elements of the various job descriptions in common;
·         a preliminary draft of a revised DCCCD Faculty Job Description;

Based on the discussion, a revised draft has been prepared for the Faculty Association membership to review and comment on. This is posted as a Google Doc, so you can make comments directly on the document itself, if you like. You can also post comments in response to this blog using the comments feature below. If you prefer, you may email comments to your Faculty Association President.

P.S. Here are tips on how to comment on a Google Doc

The subcommittee and the Task Force will take all commentary into consideration in preparing a final draft of the Faculty Job Description to recommend for adoption in the District. As time is of the essence, please provide any and all feedback no later than Saturday, April 29, 2017.

Monday, April 3, 2017

Faculty Evaluation System Review Update

The Faculty Evaluation System Review Task Force, co-chaired by MVC President Bobby Garza and CVC Faculty Association President Tommy Thompson, was formed to review and update the DCCCD Faculty Evaluation System. This System includes: the Faculty Job Description, the IAP form, the Student Survey of Instruction, the Instructional Visitation Appraisal forms (face to face and online), the Faculty Appraisal Summary Report form, the Contractual Recommendation form, and the overall timeline. The System was supposed to be reviewed every five years, beginning in 2006; it was last reviewed and updated in 2002, although the Job Description was updated in 2005.

The members of the Task Force are listed in this document 
The charges to the group are in this “Guiding Principles”document
The Faculty Evaluation System packet is in this PDF file

The Task Force had its initial meeting on Feb. 22, 2017, and a second meeting on March 29, 2017. At the first meeting, the group reviewed its charges, shared thoughts and concerns about elements of the Faculty Evaluation System, and then conducted a Plus/Delta evaluation of it. At the March 29 meeting, there was some disagreement over the scope of the charges to the Task Force and, as a consequence, over how much of the System could or should be modified. In response, three subcommittees were created to conduct further research and make specific recommendations in these three areas:
  •          The Faculty Job Description
  •          Academic Forms (Instructional Visitation and SSI)
  •          Contractual Forms (IAP, Appraisal Summary, and Contractual Recommendation)

A final subcommittee will work to coordinate the compilation of recommendations and the overall revision and editing of the Faculty Evaluation System packet.

It was decided that there would be two more meetings in the Spring 2017 semester. Specific dates have yet to be determined. In the meantime, the subcommittee members should be communicating with one another and conducting their work.

Concerns about the differing perspectives of the Task Force members were discussed at the last Faculty Council meeting on Friday, March 31. In response, the Faculty Council has crafted the following statement:

The Faculty Council affirms that the Faculty Evaluation Process is designed flexibly to encourage excellence in teaching, ongoing professional development, and institutional service, and for ongoing conversations to take place between individual faculty and deans about those areas.

“One size fits all” approaches do not promote excellence in teaching and learning, as each faculty member brings unique experiences to his/her teaching environment, necessitating unique ongoing professional development for each faculty member.

The Council recognizes that some lack of clarity within the documents, and more importantly lack of consistent training in how to implement the Faculty Evaluation Process, has led to confusion and inequitable application of the process.

In addition, some believe – again, due to lack of uniform training – that the Faculty Evaluation Process document is to be used for disciplinary misconduct issues. Rather, DCCCD Board Policies DMAA (LEGAL) and DMAA (LOCAL) specify that a separate process must be followed to discipline or dismiss any contracted faculty member for misconduct.

Therefore, the Council recommends:
1.       That the Faculty Evaluation system document be reviewed and revised for clarity;
2.       That the forms be digitized into electronic documents that easily can be updated throughout the evaluation cycle;
3.       That video training modules on how to implement the Faculty Evaluation system, be written and developed by faculty and experienced instructional administrators, filmed at the LeCroy Center, and uploaded to an eCampus organization and be required training for all new instructional deans, academic vice presidents, and faculty.

Adopted via 7-0 vote by the DCCFA Faculty Council on March 31, 2017

Friday, February 24, 2017

Faculty Hiring Process Task Force Update

The DCCFA Faculty Hiring Process Task Force completed its work this month and send its final report to Susan Hall at district HR.

The Task Force initially identified six areas for research by subcommittees:

  • Recruitment
  • Search Teams
  • Credentialing
  • Internal Transfer
  • Onboarding
  • Tools and Timelines 

The subcommittees each gathered information last fall, and this provided the basis for discussion as the work of the Task Force progressed. The final report can be accessed at this link: https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B5H8D6yQDi_BVDJSOWlnM3ptXzA

The charges to the Task Force are on pages 2-3. The recommendations from the Task Force are on pages 4-12. The remainder of the document ins comprised of the research done by the various subcommittees.

The Task Force members were: Jean Conway (co-chair); Matthew Henry (co-chair), Ruben Johnson, Stephanie Scroggins, Claire Bambrough, Joan Becker, Jacqueline Bryant, Ray Canham, Ceaser Espinoza,  David Evans, Jesse Fox, Shaun Gilligan, Nicole Mabine, Brian Roffino, Kathryn Wetzel, Dawn Segroves.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Faculty Council proposes 2017-2018 compensation adjustment for preliminary budget building process



The DCCFA Faculty Council has submitted to District Talent Central, its preliminary proposal for faculty compensation adjustments for the 2017-2018 fiscal year. That document is available at this link. All faculty are encouraged and invited to review it. DCCFA members are invited to ask questions of their Welfare and Benefits representative and/or their Faculty Association president.

The first draft of the preliminary proposal was developed by the DCCFA Welfare and Benefits Committee, and then refined by the Council.

The proposal only addresses the 2017-2018 budget. The Welfare and Benefits Committee, and the Council, continue to work on a document that would address more long-term, structural issues in faculty compensation. 

Compression has been a problem 30+ years in the making, and it cannot be solved in one or two years.

In addition, our research has revealed, and Chancellor May reported to the Board last summer, that compression has been a significant drag on our efforts to increase diversity in the faculty ranks. While we have done a good job hiring diverse faculty, Board agendas/minutes back to 2006 revealed faculty resignations during that time disproportionately have been African-American and Latino faculty members.

This proposal again seeks to ameliorate compression in the 2017-2018 compensation adjustment through an across-the-board flat dollar increase, and a second flat-dollar increase for those whose salaries are compressed and who never will be able to benefit from the new three-year milestone increase. We also hope to realize an increase in the premium pay rate and hours.

The Council looks forward to productive and constructive dialogue as the 2017-2018 budget is built and figures evolve from theoretical to ballpark to actual.

All faculty should understand that state appropriations (as determined by the Texas Legislature), the local Taxable Assessed Value (as determined by the Dallas County Tax Assessor), and the DCCCD property tax rate (as determined by the DCCCD Board of Trustees), will determine the 2017-2018 DCCCD revenue and thus the DCCCD budget, and consequently the dollars available for compensation adjustments.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

DISD Academies Update

The information below was provided by Patti Burks, the faculty representative to the DISD Collegiate Academies Steering Team, on January 30, 2017

Here are some items of interest for faculty regarding the DISD Collegiate Academies:

Cohort 1
  • Over 300 students from the cohort 1 schools were enrolled in a college course in Fall 2016. While final grades have not been tallied, preliminary indications are that over 90% successfully completed their college course. 
  • Revisions to some of the pathways are underway and DISD is working with DCCCD to identify the high school courses that correspond to each college course. The pathways should be updated on the website in the next month or so.
  • Faculty in the cohort 1 pathways should have already identified the textbooks needed for 2017-2018. You should also be communicating with the high schools to finalize schedules, software and equipment needs.
Cohort 2
  • Ten additional collegiate academies are planned to open in Fall 2017. Some of these pathways include AS or AA degrees as well as AAS degrees which include more liberal arts courses.
  • Recruitment efforts are underway now and the application process has begun. There appears to be a lot of interest in the academies and plenty of applicants.
  • Many of the cohort 2 academies only have 2 pathways rather than 3. It is not known at this time what the split of students will be at each school. Faculty are encouraged to meet with their dual credit liaisons and affiliated high schools to coordinate this effort and ensure that the colleges have the resources to support the number of students in each pathway.
  • You should receive a request for textbook, software and equipment requirements in the next 2-3 weeks for the cohort 2 academies. Our goal is to communicate the needs early enough to make sure that the courses are ready to go on day 1.
Staffing
  • The budget allocation from the District Office includes an assumption that the staffing for the academies will be 40% full-time faculty and 60% adjunct faculty.
  • Finding qualified adjunct faculty to teach in the academies is proving to be very difficult. 
    • Classes must be held during the day.
    • In several of the technical programs, the contact hours for the courses are high (6-7 hrs per week) which means that an adjunct can only teach 1 course per semester per our employment rules
    • Classes are very specialized – particularly in years 3 and 4 – which means there are fewer qualified applicants, particularly who are not already working full-time.
    • In many cases, the academies are competing with each other for the same applicants.
  • Faculty are encouraged to discuss with your VPAA and VPBS the need for full-time faculty dedicated to the academies for the programs to be successful and not negatively impact our current students.
  • We are investigating ways to help with the staffing issue including centralized advertising specifically for the academies, recruitment from DISD teachers and retirees, discussions with industry partners, etc. 
Industry Partners
  • All cohort 1 and cohort 2 schools have at least one industry partner and most have more.
  • Discussions are underway with each industry partner to fully define their role and relationship with the academy and the college.
Professional Development
  • A second dual credit professional development session was held in January prior to the semester with over 70 attendees.
  • All dual credit faculty are encouraged to join the Blackboard Early College High School Dual Credit Community site which includes many policies and procedures for dual credit, the professional development materials, etc.
    • Login to Blackboard
    • Click on Community
    • Enter Dual Credit in the search box
    • Click on “Early College High School Dual Credit” community
    • Click Enroll to self enroll
Please share with all faculty and let me know if you have any questions.

Patti

Monday, January 23, 2017

FLRG Update #7: January 2017 FLRG Status Report



The Faculty Load Review Group (FLRG) would like to provide an update to all DCCCD constituents on the work it has completed to date. To do that, it is important that we restate the purpose of our work, including the charge we received.

WHAT WAS THE CHARGE TO FLRG / WHY WAS FLRG CONVENED?

  • To identify opportunities to improve student success through consistent processes for the assignment of faculty load;
  • To document current DCCCD procedures, to research best practices, and to recommend systemic improvements;
  • While compensation methods are inherent in this review, careful consideration should be directed to the time/effort required in the instructional delivery, the formulas for calculation of load, and not to the amount of that compensation.



WHO ARE THE MEMBERS OF FLRG?
Tri-chairs: Ken Alfers (MVC faculty), Zarina Blankenbaker (RLC VP), Matt Hinckley (EFC, DCCFA president)

Members: Audra Barrett (CVC VP), Shawnda Floyd (NLC dean), Michael Gutierrez (EFC VP), Bill Hammerschlag (BHC faculty, BHCFA president), Vernon Hawkins (BHC dean), Greg Morris (ECC VP), Fred Newbury (RLC faculty), Richard Plott (DO, data analytics), Jamie Templeton (DO, Colleague/IT), Margo Silva (MVC faculty, MVCFA president), Eddie Tealer (NLC VP), Shirley Thompson (NLC faculty, NLCFA president).

HOW HAS FLRG PROCEEDED IN ITS WORK?
FLRG members unanimously agreed that the largest and most systemic improvements in faculty load could be gained by addressing how lab instruction is calculated relative to lecture instruction. Current practice counts each lab hour as 2/3rds of a lecture hour in full-time faculty load, even though lecture and lab hours are considered equal in both premium pay and extra service/adjunct pay. Therefore, faculty who teach labs must spend more hours teaching within their 30 hour work week than faculty who do not teach labs. Faculty Climate Survey data, and information gathered by the DCCFA Welfare and Benefits Committee, further supports the claim that the lecture/lab inequity is one of the most prevalent and persistent concerns of faculty. In addition, the current lecture/lab calculation negatively impacts faculty who teach in the STEM and CTE fields where it can be most difficult to find qualified faculty. Finally, FLRG determined that the lecture/lab disparity was both cleanly different from, and yet logically the first step that needed to be addressed before considering, other aspects of faculty load such as class size and modality issues.

Consequently, FLRG developed three-sub groups: ALPHA, BRAVO, and CHARLIE. ALPHA Group, co-chaired by Fred Newbury and Michael Gutierrez, was charged to investigate and recommend possible solutions to the lecture/lab inequity. After much benchmarking and study, ALPHA Group is bringing forward a recommendation to treat lecture and lab instruction the same – one lab hour is equal to one lecture hour. In addition, the ALHPA Group is bringing forward a corollary recommendation to allow Continuing Education contact hours to count toward full-time faculty load. BRAVO Group, co-chaired by Shirley Thompson and Eddie Tealer, is learning more about our modality and class size practices across the District. Based on data BRAVO is gathering from stakeholders, and student success and other relevant data to be gathered by the CHARLIE group, co-chaired by Shawnda Floyd and Bill Hammerschlag, FLRG hopes to make additional recommendations to Chief Talent Officer (CTO) Susan Hall and Chancellor May.

WHY SHOULD WE SUPPORT THIS PROCESS?
In addition to FLRG, Chancellor May and Talent Central commissioned other task forces to review other areas where inequities may exist across the District. The work of the Chancellors Faculty Fellows Task Force (which was comprised of faculty and instructional leaders across the District) was submitted to CTO Hall and Chancellor May in November. Chancellor May has agreed with most recommendations from the Task Force, and has directed CTO Hall to develop policy and procedure guidelines to implement them. The Chancellors Faculty Fellows Program will be paused temporarily to allow these recommendations to be operationalized. Similarly, the Performance Pay Incentive Task Force (which likewise was comprised of faculty and instructional leaders across the District) submitted recommendations to CTO Hall and Chancellor May, who has agreed with all of the recommendations and has directed them to be operationalized immediately. The work of the Faculty Hiring Process Task Force is ongoing, and a task force to undertake the periodic scheduled review of the Faculty Evaluation Process will launch in early Spring 2017. Both of these task forces also will be led and populated by faculty and instructional leaders.

WHAT IS THE RECOMMENDATION PROCESS?
It is important to understand that the Board of Trustees is the only entity which makes policy, and it is the role of the Chancellor both to recommend policies to the Board, and to enforce them by establishing and enacting guidelines and processes. In that regard, FLRG is an advisory task force, not a decision-making task force. Nevertheless, FLRG neither has suggested, nor been directed to consider, any proposals not within the scope of our work or documented in our reports and updates. There are no suggestions that faculty be required to teach more sections to make load. There are no suggestions that faculty be required to teach more students in each section. There are no suggestions that large group instruction – or any other modality – should be eliminated. There are no suggestions that extra service limits be changed. Lending credence to other possibilities not mentioned in our charges, reports, and updates may undermine the careful work that faculty and instructional leaders are doing to make recommendations that would increase equity, fairness, and transparency, in faculty load.

UPDATE: Please see this link for notes taken during the FLRG meetings of Dec. 9, 2016, and Jan. 20, 2017.