Report (with some personal commentary) on The CFT 80% Resolution
By John Govsky,
CFT Part-Time Faculty Committee
Click the image to read the full CFT Resolution to raise the community college part-time faculty workload to 80%
The California Federation of Teachers (CFT), at its 2018 convention, passed a resolution stating that the CFT will work to change the California Ed. Code to raise the current cap on how much a part-timer can teach in a single community college district. The law currently sets the cap at 67% of a full-time load; the resolution would raise that limit to 80%. The resolution passed overwhelmingly, which surprised many on both sides of the debate.
Even though most of us on the CFT’s Part-Time Faculty Committee have always wanted to push the CFT to an 8o% position (and some of us feel the cap should be eliminated altogether), the CFT PT Committee did not submit this resolution. Mindful of the history of the intense battle some years ago to get the CFT to support moving from what was then the 60% law to 67%, I think that many of us, myself included, didn’t feel that the time was yet right to push such a resolution. Obviously, we were wrong.
To me, there are two takeaways from this. One, there has been a noticeable shift in the general attitude toward part-timers and part-timer issues, at least within the CFT. I would like to think that it’s due to many of the organizing efforts of all of us, but my guess is that another major factor is that many are realizing that in a post-Janus environment we need to do more to keep adjunct faculty involved and engaged, if only to stem membership losses.
Two, this demonstrates that the old hands, the vets of organizing, who have been doing this for a long time, sometimes get a bit used to the slow pace of change. Veronica Miranda, and the folks at Cerritos College Faculty Federation, submitted the resolution Seeing an injustice and deciding to do something about it, they carried the day. In organizing for social change, we need both the wisdom and experience of the “seasoned” folks, as well as the fresh perspectives and energy of those who are not burdened by the history of how difficult the challenges can be.
Now that the official position of the CFT is that the 67% cap should be changed to 80%, we need to get the other major players on board. Perhaps this new CFT position can help PT activists in CTA and FACCC to rekindle the discussion on raising the cap.