Needless to say, these are turbulent times. I hope all of you, and your families and loved ones, are safe and healthy.
The pace required to adapt to changing circumstances is unprecedented — many of you are having to find alternate means to deliver our courses, labs, and myriad other forms of instruction with only a few days’ notice. While many are being pressured to put their lectures online, it’s important to note what was expressed in Senate by the Provost on Monday: the changes you make should be done using your best professional judgement. Otherwise put, you have the academic freedom to modify your instruction as necessary.
Remember, you’re not delivering an ‘online course’ but finding a way to complete the term in a reasonable way, given the circumstances. Do your best, and remember that as long as this basic requirement is met, how exactly this will be done is your academic decision to make.
Recently a CATL webpage regarding alternative modes of assessment was broadcast via UM Today. I recommend you check it out – it can be found here: https://centre.cc.umanitoba.ca/assessment-alternatives/
In addition to ensuring that Members who are teaching have the necessary freedom and resources to fulfil their responsibilities, UMFA has identified many concerns that we are trying to address with the administration:
Ensuring that our Members, our students, and all the workers in the UM community are safe, that their livelihoods are protected, and that the education we provide is the best possible under the circumstances is a top priority. While there are many issues here, topmost are:
We understand that, like us, our administration is having to make many decisions quickly in a changing environment, and mistakes and errors in judgment occur. By working together, we hope to ensure that we get to the “right places” as quickly and collaboratively as possible, and we all need to be kind and supportive.
Letters to Administration:
For updates from the Administration, follow this link: http://umanitoba.ca/coronavirus
The City of Winnipeg's draft budget includes a proposal to scrap the UPASS program.
The budget is not final and there is still time to make changes.
What can I do?
For details about the Roy Vogt Memorial Award, click here: http://www.umfa.ca/who-we-are/awards/roy-vogt
For details about the Paul Fortier Prize for Student Activism, click here: http://www.umfa.ca/who-we-are/awards/paul-fortier
For details about the CAUT Dedicated Service Award, click here: http://www.umfa.ca/who-we-are/awards/caut
The bargaining survey has now been sent to all UMFA members. Please check your inbox.
The results of this survey will be used by the Collective Agreement Committee (CAC) to draft bargaining proposals, which will be presented to you for consideration at a Special General Meeting this spring. Having feedback from everyone is critical to being able to represent faculty effectively in collective bargaining.
Please complete the survey as soon as possible. More details about the process are in the survey. This survey will remain open until Monday, March 16.
Please note that the survey is anonymous – only aggregate data are presented to the CAC
Want to learn more about Bill 28, the Partnership to Defend Public Services (PDPS), and the injunction? See our Issues page on Bill 28: http://www.umfa.ca/issues/bill-28
Recent media on the legal challenge:
'Hypothetical' wage-freeze law faces real-life court test
Winnipeg Free Press - Nov. 18, 2019
Trial begins in court battle over province’s public-sector wage freeze
CTV News - Nov. 18, 2019
First alarm rings as clock ticks on Bill 28
Winnipeg Free Press - Sept. 12, 2019