Background: The Washington State Public Employment Relations Commission (PERC) certified the American Federation of Teachers (AFT), Local 6486, to represent the English language extension lecturers in the International and English Language Programs (IELP) of UW Educational Outreach (UWEO) on March 25, 2011. This is the first time the IELP lecturers have bargained collectively.
UW Negotiations Team:
|Peter Denis||Assistant Vice President, Labor Relations (Lead Negotiator)|
|Andrew Berg||Labor Relations Specialist, Labor Relations|
|Jennifer Buck||Associate Director, UWEO HR|
|Chris Gilman||Senior Director, IELP|
|A.J. Hartman||Communications Specialist, Labor Relations|
|Shelley Kostrinsky||Assistant Vice Provost, Academic Personnel|
|Shelley Middlebrooks||Executive Director, HR Compensation|
|Anita Sokmen||Associate Director, IELP|
|Anne Winkelman||Assistant Director, Academic HR|
In an effort to reach a final agreement, UW presented AFT with its last, best, and final settlement offer. This comprehensive proposal addresses all provisions that to date remained unsettled.
Compensation - Upon ratification of the contract, all extension lecturers would receive a base salary increase of 2 percent or greater. The minimum base salary for extension lecturers would be raised to $3,600 per month for a full-time teaching load. In cases where this does not provide for an increase of 2 percent or greater, lecturers would have their base salary adjusted to be 2 percent greater than it was before ratification.
Every September during the contract term, UW would allocate for annual 2 percent salary increases, with the potential for extension lecturers to receive more or less than 2 percent based on their performance. Additionally, Lead Teacher pay would increase to $1,250 per quarter.
Priority Hiring List - Priority for class assignments as well as 9-month and 11.5-month contracts would be given to extension lecturers based on their performance and engagement in the department. Performance evaluations would guide this, and points of emphasis would include innovative teaching techniques, curricular materials, and collaboration and mentorship.
Professional Development - Professional development funds for each lecturer would not be subject to a maximum allowance. Instead, UW would fund professional development based on what each extension lecturer's approved training requires.
Probationary Period - Extension lecturers would be eligible to exit the probationary period after the sooner of two full-time quarters or six courses. IELP management would observe, guide, and mentor lecturers in the probationary period as often as is possible and appropriate.
UW recommended that AFT present this proposal to its membership for a ratification vote.
This recap details the 25th bargaining session between the UW and AFT.
UW presented a comprehensive proposal that packaged together all contract provisions that remain unsettled, including:
Management Rights - UW accepted AFT's proposal to exclude "defining criteria for performance expectations" as a management right.
Performance Evaluation - In response to AFT's concern that performance-based priority for contract assignment could compromise collaboration among extension lecturers, UW proposed language to make collaboration a key determinant in the evaluation of an extension lecturer's performance.
Compensation - UW maintained its proposal to allocate for annual 2 percent salary increases, with the potential for extension lecturers to receive more or less than 2 percent based on their performance. UW maintained its proposal to raise the minimum monthly salary to $3,600 for full-time and part-time regular extension lecturers.
AFT expressed dissatisfaction with UW's proposal, and committed to follow up with the UW regarding next steps.
This recap details the 24th bargaining session between the UW and AFT.
Union Rights UW declined AFT's proposal to omit language outlining the process by which an employee could request leaves of absence to participate in union-related activities.
Management Rights UW accepted AFT's proposed language surrounding the extent of management's decision-making authority related to maintaining program standards. UW maintained its proposal to include defining criteria for performance expectations as a management right.
Personnel Files UW proposed language to further clarify scenarios in which archived materials from an extension lecturer's personnel file may be used in any legal action.
Leaves of Absence UW declined AFT's proposal to grant extension lecturers one additional paid personal day off per quarter.
Professional Development UW proposed clarifications to the wording of its previous proposal. The parties discussed the possibility of listing a minimum allocation of professional development funds per lecturer, to accompany UW's proposal for no set maximum.
Article 22: Complete Agreement and Conformity to Law The parties tentatively agreed to language memorializing their commitment to a contract that complies with the law. The parties tentatively agreed to omit any reference to the IELP Operations Manual.
The next UW-AFT bargaining session is scheduled for August 13.
This recap details the 23rd bargaining session between the UW and AFT.
Management Rights AFT again declined UW's proposal to memorialize IELP management's right to define criteria for performance expectations. AFT proposed language memorializing IELP management's right to make final decisions to ensure that course instruction retains program standards, while omitting "academic matters" from the scope of such decisions.
Personnel Files AFT proposed language to spell out that archived materials from an extension lecturer's personnel file may be subject to public records requests as well as use in third party legal action.
AFT presented the following two proposals as a package, whereby both would need to be accepted in their entirety:
Leaves of Absence AFT maintained its proposal to grant extension lecturers one additional paid personal day off per quarter.
Union Rights AFT proposed to remove language that would assign a process by which employees could request leaves of absence to participate in union-related activities. AFT withdrew its proposal to require management to provide the union with a locked filing cabinet.
UW acknowledged both parties' interest in reaching a deal as soon as possible, and pointed out that wage increases for the current year have been secured by all other union-represented UW employees. UW emphasized the importance of wages increases becoming available to extension lecturers, too, as a matter of fairness as well as broader institutional policy.
UW indicated that most provisions that remain open have been discussed at length, and suggested that the parties consider utilizing more comprehensive offers in an effort to reach a final settlement sooner.
The next UW-AFT bargaining session is scheduled for July 29.
This recap details the 22nd bargaining session between the UW and AFT.
Hiring List UW proposed allowing for the number of annual (11.5 month) and academic year (nine month) contracts to comprise a combined 33 percent or more of the extension lecturer pool. UW maintained its proposal to use recent performance evaluation indicators to determine an extension lecturer's placement on the Hiring List.
Personnel Files UW proposed that materials in an employee's annual file be returned to the employee after three years, understanding that copies of such materials may be archived elsewhere for longer, according to applicable records retention schedules.
Professional Development UW proposed funding professional development for each extension lecturer based on the amount necessary for their approved training, and thus the professional development funds available to each lecturer would not be subject to a maximum allowance.
Performance Evaluation UW proposed language to further clarify courses for which an extension lecturer does not need to conduct a course evaluation.
Compensation UW maintained its proposal to allocate for annual 2 percent performance-based salary increases, and proposed further raising the minimum monthly salary to $3,600 for full-time and part-time regular extension lecturers.
The next UW-AFT bargaining session is scheduled for July 22.
This recap details the 21st bargaining session between the UW and AFT.
Management Rights UW proposed memorializing management's right to make final decisions involving academic matters in order to ensure that courses are taught in a way that retains curriculum integrity and program standards.
Professional Development AFT proposed allowing for extension lecturers to receive tuition waivers, with management approval, for courses taken within UW Educational Outreach.
Article 6: Probationary Period The parties tentatively agreed that lecturers will be eligible to exit the probationary period after two quarters at full-time or six courses, whichever is sooner. The language provides for management to observe, guide, and mentor employees in the probationary period as often as is possible and appropriate.
Article 7: Grievance and Arbitration Procedures The parties tentatively agreed to language detailing the definitions, timelines, and processes pertaining to employee grievances, up to and including arbitration.
Article 14: Corrective Action/Formal Discipline The parties tentatively agreed that corrective action will only be administered for just cause, and that the University will determine the specific step at which the process begins based on the nature and severity of the problem.
The language allows for an extension lecturer to request the early removal of disciplinary materials from their department annual file, and once removed, such materials will not be used in subsequent adverse action against the lecturer.
Article 17: Benefits The parties tentatively agreed on language memorializing that employee health care benefits are determined by the Washington Health Care Authority. The language includes links to online benefits and eligibility information for academic staff.
Article 27: Academic Freedom The parties tentatively agreed to define academic freedom as freedom of discussion and teaching methods in the classroom. The language memorializes the UW's support for academic freedom within the law, and speaks to extension lecturers' responsibility to ensure that course content and in-class conduct is appropriate and respects the needs of international students.
The next UW-AFT bargaining session is scheduled for July 8.
This recap details the 20th bargaining session between the UW and AFT.
Probationary Period – AFT maintained its proposal to prescribe how and when management conducts observations and provides feedback and mentoring throughout the probationary period.
Grievance and Arbitration Procedures – AFT proposed omitting examples of management rights that are not subject to grievance and arbitration procedures. AFT again declined UW’s proposal to prohibit the union from bringing a claim to additional legal forums after arbitrating it.
Management Rights – AFT proposed to further abbreviate the language outlining management rights regarding academic matters as well as performance evaluations. AFT maintained its proposed language memorializing UW’s obligation to bargain over mandatory subjects of bargaining.
Personnel Files – AFT maintained its proposal for files to be returned to extension lecturers after three years, and proposed that documented disciplinary action that may be subject to future legal action may be archived according to applicable retention schedules.
Corrective Action – AFT proposed allowing for extension lecturers to request the early removal of disciplinary materials from their annual file at any time. AFT proposed that if management does not begin investigating an incident within 30 days of becoming aware of it, the incident will be dismissed.
Benefits – AFT proposed modified language to memorialize that health care benefits will be determined by the Washington Health Care Authority, and proposed that the online benefits summaries applicable to extension lecturers be replicated in hard copy in the contract.
Academic Freedom – AFT maintained its proposal to guarantee that no restrictions could be placed on the content taught by each extension lecturer or on the conduct of their class, while recognizing that class conduct and content should be appropriate and respect the needs of international students.
Reassigned Time – UW proposed language to memorialize that barring rare exceptions, any reassignment work will be limited to half of an extension lecturer’s full-time load. UW proposed clarifying that the IELP Senior Director may revoke reassigned positions at the end of any quarter, and that all management-directed reassignment positions will be advertised.
University Suspended Operations – UW proposed to change the article title to “Suspended Operations,” to better reflect the University’s policies and practices.
In an effort to settle several outstanding issues, UW put forth a package proposal affecting provisions on probationary period, grievance and arbitration procedures, management rights, corrective action, and academic freedom. The package would require various compromises by both parties, and would need to be accepted in its entirety.
AFT proposed that UW standardize its terminology in reference to management throughout the contract, instead of using distinct and specific management titles in different provisions.
UW agreed to use one consistent, more broadly applicable term such as “Management” or “Employer” throughout the contract.
The next UW-AFT bargaining session is currently being determined.
This recap details the 19th bargaining session between the UW and AFT.
AFT brought questions on employee benefits for Katy Dwyer, executive director of Benefits at the UW. AFT stated that the UW Benefits website does not reference benefits specific to extension lecturers.
Ms. Dwyer explained that the Washington Health Care Authority groups academic staff, which includes extension lecturers, into a broad “Faculty” category. The UW Benefits website reflects this, and therefore the “Faculty” benefits detailed in the online benefits summaries are those which apply to extension lecturers.
In order to clarify that these benefits apply not only to faculty, but also to other academic personnel such as extension lecturers, UW agreed to add “Academic Staff” to the “Faculty” heading on the benefits summaries website.
Reassigned Time, Lead Teacher, and Specialist Positions – AFT proposed that reassignment work be based on the equivalent percentage of a full-time load of 40 hours per week. AFT declined UW’s proposal to allow for the IELP senior director to revoke reassigned positions at any time, and proposed a requirement that managers provide advance notice of employee reassignment to the union.
University Closure – AFT proposed that if a client contract requires the University to perform a defined amount of in-class time, the parties would jointly discuss whether classes in such programs must be made up if missed due to suspended University operations.
The next UW-AFT bargaining session is scheduled for June 7.
This recap details the 18th bargaining session between the UW and AFT.
Management Rights – UW revised its proposed language to clarify management’s right to schedule teaching assignments and to define criteria for performance expectations.
UW accepted AFT’s removal of some of the more prescriptive language surrounding management rights related to academic matters. UW proposed language to preserve management’s right to ensure that courses are taught in alignment with appropriate and intended learning outcomes.
Separations – UW proposed that in the event of a layoff, management would provide a notification to impacted extension lecturers with a copy to the union. UW also proposed language to memorialize that impacted extension lecturers would be paid through the end of the quarter in which the layoff occurred.
UW withdrew its proposed language defining an emergency layoff and accepted AFT’s proposal to allow for withdrawal of a resignation within 10 calendar days of its submission.
University Closure – UW proposed language to clarify that if a client contract requires the University to perform a defined amount of in-class time, classes in such programs must be made up if missed due to University closure.
Job Descriptions/Workload – UW maintained its proposal to require that extension lecturers use their UWEO-provided account for work-related emails. UW maintained its proposal to not include language detailing benefits eligibility for summer quarter in the contract.
The parties have reached tentative agreement on much of what constitutes “core job responsibilities.”
Academic Freedom – UW revised its previous proposal to memorialize extension lecturers’ relationship with the University as one of honesty and integrity.
Compensation – AFT maintained its previous compensation proposal.
The next UW-AFT bargaining session is scheduled for May 31.
This recap details the 17th bargaining session between the UW and AFT.
Grievance and Arbitration Procedures UW maintained its proposal to prohibit the union from bringing a claim to additional legal forums after arbitrating it, but clarified that an extension lecturer's use of the grievance process would not preclude them from asserting a legally actionable claim.
University Closure UW proposed language establishing that if the University closed due to a "force majeure" such as a natural disaster, the parties would jointly discuss the appropriate course of action with regard to making up class.
Corrective Action UW proposed language that would allow for an employee to request removal of disciplinary materials from their department personnel file after five years. If removed, such materials would not be used in subsequent adverse action against the employee.
Personnel Files UW proposed language to memorialize that materials will be subject to applicable retention schedules, and thus disciplinary materials removed from a personnel file may still be archived.
Benefits UW proposed language memorializing that health care benefits for extension lecturers will be subject to the agreement reached at the State bargaining table.
Complete Agreement and Conformity to Law UW proposed that all subjects not covered by the collective bargaining agreement be removed from the IELP Operations Manual, but that IELP may continue to publish the manual for use by staff and extension lecturers.
Academic Freedom UW proposed language declaring its support for academic freedom, to the extent that it complies with legal precedent. In addition, UW proposed language establishing that course content and in-class conduct should be appropriate and respect the needs of international students.
UW proposed a performance-based compensation structure, which included:
Wage Increases IELP would allocate for 2 percent performance-based salary increases once per year during the contract. Such increases would be subject to contingencies, including other academic personnel and professional staff on campus receiving salary increases, and the extension lecturer having met performance-based standards.
The proposed language provides for extension lecturers who have not met the established standards to receive a lower wage increase of 0-1 percent , while allowing for the possibility of wage increases higher than 2 percent for lecturers with outstanding performance at the discretion of UWEO.
Initial Salary Determination UW proposed that the salary for a new extension lecturer be based on the instructor's training and experience, and proposed establishing a minimum monthly salary of $3,500 for full-time and part-time regular extension lecturers.
Retention Salary Adjustments UW proposed language to memorialize that salary adjustments may be made to address retention-related issues.
University Closure AFT maintained its rejection of UW's proposal to require extension lecturers in programs with defined class-time requirements to make up classes missed due to University closure.
Job Descriptions/Workload AFT maintained its rejection of UW's proposal to require that extension lecturers use their UWEO-provided email account for work-related emails and their UWEO-provided calendar system to reflect their availability.
AFT maintained its proposal for lecturers opting to not work during summer quarter to still have benefits paid during summer quarter.
The next UW/AFT bargaining session is scheduled for May 17.
This recap details the 16th bargaining session between the UW and AFT.
AFT delivered several counter-proposals at the end of the last bargaining session, which it discussed in further detail at this meeting:
Union Rights – AFT proposed that UW send the union an employee roster on the date of the first final payroll calculation after the start of each quarter, and that employees may print a hard copy of the contract at UW’s expense.
Probationary Period – AFT proposed that lecturers be eligible to exit the probationary period after either two quarters at full-time or six courses, or the equivalent thereof – whichever is sooner. AFT proposed that the supervising director meet with lecturers in the probationary period quarterly to provide guidance and mentoring.
Grievance and Arbitration Procedures – AFT proposed that UW inform the union before a grievance meeting of management’s anticipated attendees. AFT declined UW’s language stipulating that a claim brought to arbitration could not subsequently be brought before additional judicial or administrative law forums.
Management Rights – AFT declined UW’s proposed language delineating the right of management to schedule hours of work, to recruit as well as lay off, and to make decisions involving course content and instruction. AFT proposed language memorializing UW’s obligation to bargain over mandatory subjects.
Separations – AFT proposed to allow for withdrawal of a resignation within 10 calendar days of its submission, as opposed to the UW’s proposed five calendar days.
Personnel Files – AFT agreed in concept with UW’s proposal to forward a copy of any adverse material placed in an extension lecturer’s personnel file to the employee, but proposed a requirement that management secure a signature of receipt from the employee for any such material.
Corrective Action – AFT proposed that if an employee is not informed of an investigation within 30 days of the date management learns of the incident in question, it would cease to be grounds for discipline.
AFT maintained its previous proposals on articles pertaining to University closure, performance evaluation, and agreement and conformity to law.
Union Rights – UW tentatively agreed to AFT’s proposal to send the union an employee roster on the date of the first final payroll calculation after the start of each quarter. UW proposed language to memorialize that when AFT rents a room at the University, it is responsible for paying any applicable fees.
Probationary Period – UW tentatively agreed to AFT’s proposal that lecturers be eligible to exit the probationary period after the sooner of two quarters at full-time or six courses. UW proposed that management observe, guide, and mentor employees in the probationary period as often as is possible and appropriate.
University Closure – UW maintained its proposal to require extension lecturers in programs that have defined requirements for days or hours taught to make up classes missed due to University closure.
Personnel Files – UW declined AFT’s proposal to require management to secure a signature of receipt on materials forwarded to an extension lecturer, and proposed language to memorialize that personnel files will be subject to applicable records retention schedules.
Article 1: Recognition – The parties tentatively agreed to language recognizing AFT as the exclusive bargaining representative for all full-time and regular part time IELP extension lecturers, excluding other employees such as supervisors and hourly and confidential employees.
UW presented a cost estimate of AFT’s initial proposal on compensation, put forth at the bargaining session on February 8, 2013.
Based on the information available, UW approximated the costs associated with placing employees on a higher initial step and providing automatic step increases, cost of living adjustments, and merit increases, as well as paying employees for equivalent prior experience outside the UW.
UW estimated that AFT’s compensation proposal could cost IELP an additional $1.2 million for the first year of the contract alone, representing an increase to base wage of more than 39 percent.
UW emphasized that its response to AFT’s compensation proposal will align with the University’s overall goal of providing realistic general wage increases as part of an institution-wide reemergence from the recession. UW explained that this will likely be in the form of 2 percent wage increases each year for the 2013-2015 biennium, contingent upon legislative approval and appropriation of funds.
UW explained that such increases would be determined by merit, while incorporating some recognition of seniority, and could potentially provide for increases of higher or lower than 2 percent depending on a lecturer’s performance.
The next UW-AFT bargaining session is scheduled for May 10.
This recap details the 15th bargaining session between the UW and AFT.
Leaves of Absence – UW proposed various language changes, including clarification that sick leave may only be taken in whole-day increments. UW declined AFT’s proposal to add a paid personal day off per quarter for extension lecturers.
Job Descriptions/Workload – UW proposed limiting class size to 19 students, except when an extension lecturer and IELP management jointly agree to more. UW declined AFT’s proposal to require IELP management to seek union approval before setting the dates of new programs, and instead proposed to notify the union of the dates in advance.
Outsourcing – UW proposed language to memorialize that on matters of outsourcing or contracting out, the parties would follow applicable state law.
Outsourcing – The parties tentatively agreed to omit any provision pertaining to outsourcing.
AFT remarked over amount of time that it has taken to negotiate this initial contract.
UW acknowledged that both sides have progressed carefully and thoughtfully, due to the complexity of negotiating a new contract and the uniqueness of this bargaining unit.
In response to AFT’s initial compensation proposal, put forth at the previous bargaining session, UW floated some potential compromises.
UW discussed paying extension lecturers for one additional pay period during summer quarter, which would equate to a 4 percent increase in overall pay for the year. IELP would ask in return that lecturers remain accessible by phone or email for one week following the end of each quarter, to allow for IELP management to follow up on any urgent matters such as grade issues or student inquiries.
UW also discussed raising base wages and addressing any compression issues, while gaining greater flexibility in setting starting salaries. UW explained how hiring all lecturers in at a standard rate hinders IELP’s competitiveness in the market, and how hiring lecturers in at a rate reflective of their past experience would greatly benefit IELP’s ability to recruit and retain.
AFT expressed interest in further discussing these potential compromises raised by UW.
AFT distributed several counter-proposals at the end of the bargaining session, to be discussed at the next meeting.
The next UW/AFT bargaining session is scheduled for April 26.
This recap details the 14th bargaining session between the UW and AFT.
AFT put forth its initial proposal on compensation, which among other things would provide for salary increases based on seniority, while making lecturers eligible for merit-based increases as well.
AFT proposed a step-based salary schedule on which lecturers' salaries would advance annually, and proposed that all existing lecturers receive an immediate salary increase of at least $256 per month.
Salary Schedule Initial Placement AFT proposed that new and existing extension lecturers be placed on the salary schedule based on their equivalent teaching experience. Those with between five and nine years of equivalent experience would receive an additional step, and those with over 10 years would receive two additional steps.
Grievance and Arbitration Procedures UW proposed that if a lecturer enters into an informal discussion on the resolution of an issue without the union's involvement, AFT would be made aware of the settlement and given the chance to weigh in.
Personnel Files UW proposed that if adverse material that is placed in a lecturer's personnel file does not have the lecturer 's signature or initials, it will be simultaneously forwarded to them.
Corrective Action UW proposed language memorializing that corrective action is meant to be a positive method for improvement rather than punitive action, and that it will only be administered for just cause.
UW addressed AFT's proposed method for placing lecturers on the salary schedule, requesting clarification on how lecturers' equivalent teaching experience could be measured and verified objectively.
AFT suggested that the duration and extent of a lecturer's past teaching experience could be derived from what is listed on their rιsumι.
The next UW/AFT bargaining session is scheduled for February 22.
This recap details the 13th bargaining session between the UW and AFT.
Benefits UW maintained its proposal to not include language detailing employee benefits in the contract. UW explained that because its employee benefits are negotiated at the state level, any language would simply reiterate the University's existing statutory obligations.
UW Policy Directory UW withdrew its proposed language to memorialize the University's right to makes changes to its policy directory.
To address AFT's concern over not limiting probationary periods to a standard amount of time, UW presented a graphic demonstrating how an employee could exit the probationary period after teaching their 12th course without being unduly delayed.
UW explained that its goal is to ensure that lecturers emerge from the probationary period prepared, acknowledging that while some people require less time, some need all 12 courses to fully demonstrate their abilities and readiness to exit probation.
UW described how relying on a standard timeline could create inconsistencies, as lecturers may teach a different number of courses within the same time period.
AFT requested clarity on the motivation behind UW's proposal to change the current seniority-based method of assigning IELP teaching contracts to a system that gives preference based on merit.
UW explained that the seniority-based system has driven talented instructors away from IELP, because newer employees are automatically placed at the bottom of a long list in terms of opportunity, regardless of their merits.
AFT expressed that ranking employees by merit would disadvantage employees at the bottom of the list by potentially decreasing their job stability.
UW pointed out that this is what employees at the bottom of the seniority list experience already, and noted that a merit-based system gives all employees a greater degree of control in ascending the list.
The next UW-AFT bargaining session is scheduled for February 8.
This recap details the 12th bargaining session between the UW and AFT.
Probationary Period – UW proposed that employees in the probationary period be notified of their probationary status before the publication of the teaching schedule for the quarter following their “Probation Completion Meeting.”
UW accepted AFT’s proposal for “teaching in at least two different programs” to constitute one way for an extension lecturer to demonstrate their qualifications to exit the probationary period.
Separations – UW moved previously proposed language on “emergency layoff” to this article. UW also further defined it, clarifying that a financial emergency comprises a drop in IELP’s enrollment of 33 percent or more.
Reassigned Time, Lead Teacher, and Specialist Positions – UW upheld its proposed language, clarifying that time in reassignment positions is to be teaching-related. UW agreed to increase its previously proposed limit on reassignment time from one-third of a full-time load to one-half.
UW maintained its proposed examples of reassignment, and put forth language clarifying that reassigned positions can be revoked at the discretion of the IELP Senior Director.
Personnel Files – AFT upheld its proposal granting extension lecturers the right to see and initial all documents and materials before they are put in their personnel file.
Leaves of Absence – AFT proposed integrating language on bereavement leave from the IELP Operations Manual. AFT also maintained its proposal to grant extension lecturers one additional paid day off per quarter for autumn, winter, and spring quarters.
Job Descriptions/Workload – AFT rejected UW’s proposal to establish the use of UWEO-provided email accounts for work-related correspondence as a core job responsibility, and the UW’s proposed notion of “advanced-level contributions.”
AFT also proposed that extension lecturers no longer be required to prepare tests or conduct their own instructor/course evaluations.
Academic Freedom – AFT maintained its proposal to guarantee that no restrictions could be placed on the content taught by each extension lecturer or on the conduct of their class.
The next UW-AFT bargaining session is scheduled for January 25.
This recap details the eleventh bargaining session between the UW and AFT.
Probationary Period AFT proposed that decisions regarding the non-renewal of an appointment during the probationary period not be subject to grievance and arbitration.
AFT proposed that extension lecturers who return to IELP after an absence of more than two years, but who have previously completed their probationary period, be placed in a shortened probationary period of no more than three quarters.
Grievance & Arbitration Procedures AFT declined UW's proposal to prevent the same grievance from being submitted more than once, and proposed that prior to a grievance meeting, IELP management notify the union of who will be in attendance.
AFT also proposed language stipulating that while an extension lecturer could enter into discussion of problem resolution without the union, AFT would still be notified and given the opportunity to be present at the settlement.
Reassigned Time Lead Assignment and Specialist Positions AFT declined UW's proposed language stating that reassigned time is intended to be teaching-related.
AFT proposed language memorializing the role of Lead Teachers and Specialists, two existing fixed-term positions that extension lecturers may assume. Lead Teachers provide instructional support and contribute to curriculum development for one or more courses, while Specialist positions fill special needs within IELP.
Article 5: Non-Discrimination The parties tentatively agreed to language that affirms their mutual commitment to not discriminate against any employee based on specified demographics, which includes discrimination in the form of sexual harassment.
The language also highlights resources available to any employee in need of filing a discrimination complaint.
AFT voiced concern that UW's proposal to not count summer-only instruction toward completion of the probationary period could be exclusionary.
UW explained that occasionally incoming instructors intend to only work summer quarters at the IELP until they complete their probationary period, all the while holding a "primary" job elsewhere during the rest of the year. UW clarified that its proposal is intended to prevent this scenario from occurring.
This recap details the tenth bargaining session between the UW and AFT.
UW put forth counter-proposals on various contract articles.
Union Recognition UW proposed language to specify which employees are not included in the bargaining unit.
Probationary Period UW tentatively agreed to AFT's proposal to begin the probationary period when an extension lecturer is hired on at one-third of a full-time equivalent. UW proposed that courses taught as a summer-only instructor not count toward the probationary period.
UW maintained its previous proposal for the remainder of the article.
Contract Interpretation UW upheld its proposal to allow the IELP Operations Manual to govern in cases where contract is vague or silent, pointing out that it details many policies and procedures that are often not covered in union contracts.
Seniority List AFT maintained its originally proposed language surrounding the IELP Seniority List.
Benefits AFT maintained its originally proposed language outlining the benefits available to extension lecturers.
Article 26: Joint-Union Management Committee A committee consisting of up to three representatives designated by the union and three designated by UW will convene quarterly to discuss labor issues. This committee may meet more or less frequently as mutually agreed by the parties.
AFT voiced concern over UW's proposal for IELP to utilize a merit-based "Hiring List" instead of the existing "Seniority List" as a means to assign teaching hours. AFT expressed that this could create instability by encouraging competition, and that it would be difficult to track.
UW explained that such a shift would more likely increase stability, as it would promote annual contracts for people who teach through the whole year. Also, by incorporating summer quarter into an annual contract, IELP could avoid the consistent shortage of instructors each summer.
Regarding tracking, UW explained that IELP already conducts annual merit assessments of all extension lecturers, and thus it would not create additional work.
The scheduling of the next UW/AFT bargaining session is currently being determined by the parties.
This recap details the ninth bargaining session between the UW and AFT.
AFT put forth several counter-proposals, which included alternative language surrounding the sexual harassment policy, bargaining unit description, and contract duration, among others.
Union Rights – AFT proposed that one extension lecturer receive 33 percent paid reassigned time each quarter to act as a union representative. AFT also proposed that in cases where a substitute is necessary because an extension lecturer plans to be absent due to union-related activities, the union would reimburse IELP for a substitute.
University Closure – AFT declined UW’s proposal to require extension lecturers in certain programs to make up classes missed due to University closure, specifically those programs which have defined requirements for days or hours taught.
Outsourcing – AFT declined UW’s language affirming its commitment to bargain the impacts of outsourcing should it ever occur, and maintained its original proposal to prohibit IELP from outsourcing any programs or courses.
Contract Interpretation – AFT declined UW’s proposal to allow the IELP Operations Manual to govern in cases where contract is vague or silent.
UW Policy Directory – AFT proposed language clarifying that if a change to the UW Policy Directory alters a mandatory subject of bargaining, the effects of this change must be bargained with the union.
Article 3: Union Security – The parties tentatively agreed to language surrounding the payment of union dues and fees. Within 30 days of employment, extension lecturers must initiate payment to the union either in the form of dues for members, or a representation fee of equal value.
Article 23: Successor Agreement – The parties tentatively agreed to language outlining the process by which either party may initiate negotiations for a successor agreement.
AFT asked why UW has proposed sending the union its extension lecturer roster after the third pay period of each quarter instead of after the second, as the union proposed.
UW explained that this accounts for changes that are common early in the quarter and gives time for the roster to settle, which typically yields the most accurate information. This is consistent with the UW’s contract with UAW, representing academic student employees at the University.
AFT requested the rationale behind UW’s proposal to require extension lecturers to teach one quarter in the Campus Intensive English Program (IEP) in order to complete their probationary period.
UW explained that Campus IEP constitutes half of IELP’s activity. Given this, IELP is greatly disadvantaged if extension lecturers are not confident and competent teaching academic English in this setting.
The next UW/AFT bargaining session is scheduled for November 16.
This recap details the eighth bargaining session between the UW and AFT.
UW presented counter-proposals addressing the remainder of AFT's outstanding contract proposals. This included articles on definitions, leaves of absence, and layoff and resignation, among others.
Probationary Period UW proposed renaming the "New Instructor Period" to the "Probationary Period," and that this period begin when an extension lecturer is hired on at two-thirds of a full-time equivalent. Also, courses taught as a TA or an hourly instructor would not count toward the probationary period.
Grievance and Arbitration Procedures UW proposed that it not be required to contact the union every time informal coaching occurs. UW also proposed language consistent with other union contracts, whereby if a claim is brought to arbitration, it could not subsequently be brought before another judicial or administrative law forum.
Hiring List UW proposed creating an IELP merit-based "Hiring List" to replace the existing "Seniority List" as a means to determine the order of how teaching hours are assigned. Extension lecturers would be ranked annually based on their merit; the ranking would subsequently determine priority order for lecturers to select their preferred appointments.
UW also proposed definitions for different extension lecturer appointment terms. Annual contracts would span 11.5 months (all four quarters, including summer), academic-year contracts would span the nine-month academic year, and quarterly contracts would continue to span one quarter at a time.
Performance Evaluation UW proposed that the outcome of an extension lecturer's performance evaluation be used to determine their placement on the Hiring List. Ninety percent of an extension lecturer's merit ranking would be based on their teaching and teaching-related responsibilities, including course and extension lecturer evaluations and fulfillment of teaching-related responsibilities.
Corrective Action UW proposed language upholding the preference for progressive discipline, while allowing for IELP management to determine the appropriate level at which discipline may begin in the case of more severe offenses.
AFT requested the rationale behind UW's proposal to create a merit-based Hiring List, as well as an 11.5-month annual contract term.
UW explained that currently it is extremely difficult for IELP to retain talented new instructors, because they are hired on at the bottom of a very long seniority list. In this way, they are typically subjected to lower pay regardless of their merits, and often leave to pursue work elsewhere.
Regarding annual contracts, UW pointed out that IELP is consistently confronted with the problem of not having enough extension lecturers during summer quarter, and that incorporating it into the annual contracts will provide necessary predictability throughout the year.
AFT questioned why the UW had stricken the union's proposal to allow for a union representative to attend an extension lecturer's investigatory meeting even when the employee decides against it.
UW expressed that the employee should be allowed to choose whether or not they want a union representative present at their own investigatory meeting, and that the parties should respect the employee's decision.
AFT countered that the union has a right to be present regardless of what the employee wants.
The next UW/AFT bargaining session is scheduled for November 9.
This recap details the seventh bargaining session between the UW and AFT.
UW presented a package counter-proposal, addressing the majority of AFTs contract proposals.
Paid Reassigned Time UW proposed providing 25 percent paid reassigned time for one union representative per academic quarter.
Job Responsibilities UW proposed expanding AFTs proposed list of extension lecturer core job responsibilities. This included adding the evaluation of student progress, the use of the UWEO-provided email account for work-related correspondence, and the provision of information for administrative reports.
UW also proposed a list delineating advanced-level contributions extension lecturers are encouraged to make, including mentoring new instructors, serving as lead instructors, and teaching across the curriculum and in different programs.
Daily Schedules UW proposed scheduling classes each day such that no more than eight hours elapse between the beginning of the first class and the end of the last class taught by an extension lecturer. This would include the option of extending the hours and/or the number of courses taught per day upon mutual agreement between the extension lecturer and management.
Benefits UW proposed omitting AFTs proposed contract article pertaining to benefits, explaining that benefits are negotiated elsewhere and are beyond the scope of the parties collective bargaining.
Professional Development Funds In response to AFTs proposal for each extension lecturer to receive $1,000 per year for professional development purposes, UW proposed that extension lecturers adopt and have access to the same professional development program available to UWEO staff.
Contract Interpretation UW proposed language clarifying that the IELP Operations Manual will govern any contract-related subject not covered in the collective bargaining agreement.
Duration UW proposed language to memorialize that no provisions negotiated in this contract will be applied retroactively for time prior to the effective date.
The next UW/AFT bargaining session is scheduled for October 26.
This recap details the sixth bargaining session between the UW and AFT.
AFT provided a review of all of its proposals to date.
AFT expressed again that the majority of its overall contract proposal is simply a single collection of existing policies and procedures, both in the IELP operations manual and at the University as a whole.
AFT presented two new articles:
AFT also presented revisions to Articles 4 and 16:
The date of the next UW/AFT bargaining session is currently being determined by both teams.
This recap details the fifth bargaining session held between the UW and AFT.
AFT presented several contract proposals, and expressed that the majority mirrored existing policies in the IELP operations manual, with only minor changes. These provisions included:
AFT's proposed Articles 16 and 18 were discussed at greater length:
Finally, AFT put forth additional standard contract provisions:
UW voiced concern for having not yet received AFT's entire proposal, emphasizing that it will soon be immersed in simultaneous bargaining with many different unions.
AFT replied that it would complete and submit its final contract proposals promptly.
The next UW/AFT bargaining session is scheduled for May 21.
This recap details the fourth bargaining session held between the UW and the AFT.
UWEO delivered a presentation outlining the financial structure of IELP, organized around questions asked previously by AFT. The presentation detailed the following key topics:
UWEO went on to summarize how and where IELP gross revenues are primarily distributed.
This means that all net revenue totals for the past five years stayed within projected ranges, with four out of five being positive.
The next UW/AFT bargaining session is scheduled for May 14.
This recap details the third bargaining session held between the UW and the AFT.
UW began by establishing that one of its guiding principles is to ensure that the University emerges from the recession in a way that benefits all employees.
UW noted that no academic personnel have received merit wage increases in four years, and that many of the UW's nearly 20,000 union-represented employees are interlinked by "me-too" agreements, whereby a pay raise for one union triggers an equivalent raise for another.
AFT presented three new contract article proposals:
Both parties agreed to delay the next meeting, allowing AFT more time to complete its proposal.
The next UW/AFT bargaining session is scheduled for May 7.
This recap details the second bargaining session held between the UW and the AFT.
UW began by explaining that it had reviewed AFT's initial proposals thoroughly, and looks forward to seeing a more comprehensive version of the proposed contract before responding to specific provisions.
AFT requested detailed financial information regarding the distribution of IELP revenues. In response, the UW renewed its offer to arrange a meeting between AFT and Assistant Vice Provost Clark Westmoreland to provide insight into the financial structure of IELP and UW Educational Outreach as a whole.
AFT presented three articles standard to collective bargaining agreements, outlining union rights, employee rights, and personnel files.
AFT committed to sending more proposed contract materials prior to the next scheduled session.
The next UW/AFT bargaining session is scheduled for April 23.
The first bargaining session between the University of Washington and the AFT focused on laying the groundwork for the future negotiation sessions and providing AFT an overview of the IELP academic and business models.
The session began with UW explaining the history and structures of UW Educational Outreach and the International and English Language Programs unit.