Colleges must put more emphasis on classroom learning, union saysTuesday, August 27, 2013 by: SooToday.com Staff
ONTARIO PUBLIC SERVICE EMPLOYEES UNION
OPSEU and Minister Duguid agree: Quality education is the priority
TORONTO (August 27, 2013) - OPSEU's Colleges Academic Divisional Executive met with Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities, Brad Duguid, on Monday, August 26, 2013. Ministry roundtables are ongoing regarding changes to the delivery of education in Ontario Colleges and Universities.
Faculty were informed that system changes could be coming soon with regards to differentiation of college programs, delivery of online learning and the application of transfer credits.
The Divisional Executive shared with the Minister their concerns that quality not be sacrificed in their effort to bring about rapid change. They also asked that further consultation with college faculty be forthcoming,
"This is an important process, and deserves to be taken seriously. We ask that it slow down so that appropriate consultation can occur," said OPSEU President, Warren (Smokey) Thomas.
"Earlier integration of frontline workers into the process would have been helpful. We have asked that the Ministry extend the timeframes," said Thomas.
The Divisional Executive presented Minister Duguid with a document that addresses key issues including sustainable funding, academic freedom and the growing prevalence of precarious work in the Ontario college system.
"The current funding model is not sustainable," said Benoit Dupuis, Colleges Academic Divisional Executive Chair. "There is disproportionate investment in infrastructure and administration, when it is badly needed to support classroom learning."
"While the Minister and OPSEU agree that quality education is the priority, we look forward to seeing the Ontario government follow through," said Dupuis.
College faculty are gearing up for negotiations for a new collective agreement. They are at the table in 2014.
OPSEU represents more than 7300 professors, librarians and counselors in Ontario's 24 colleges.