Faculty Equity Increase Update Sep 25

September 21, 2017 / Phil Lesch

On September 8 we reported that we were focusing on what we believed were the seven remaining points in the methods. On September 20 we expected to to resolve any remaining disputes and start working on the MOU. 

That is not what happened.

Administration presented a new proposal which contained a number of surprises:

  1. Introduced the need to comply with House Bill 2005 as a basis for their proposal. HB 2005 has an initial implementation date of January 1, 2018. While it is unclear what the impact of House Bill 2005 will be at Portland State, we do acknowledge that it will require change. That said, we do not find that the requirements of the Section cited preclude equity adjustments, including those addressing inversion and/or compression, based on the criteria we have been discussing for nearly a year.
  2. Introduction of definitions for compression/inversion that varied markedly from the definitions we had been using to define the models. These definitions does not allow for addressing compression and inversion between ranks.
  3. A continued departure from the commonly accepted range for compa-ratios (top at 112%)  that appear to "split the difference" between the model (top at 120%), which we believe should be applied intact, and their initial proposal of 104%
  4. An order of operations that is illogical, and not likely to equitably or fairly address most compression/inversion issues in the bargaining unit. We do not know what would be happening in each step because the definitions for compression and inversion  upon which the model is based has substantively changed. We believe the distribution from this model would likely concentrate equity increases in the very few senior faculty members who were the most severely inverted and leave the rest of the bargaining unit with little to no equity adjustment. We do not believe this would be acceptable to the membership.
  5. Regression model for each department. We shared this proposal with a statistician and were told this approach is neither feasible nor statistically supportable. Additionally, this misapplication of regression analysis does not allow for differentiation among academic disciplines. 

The AAUP members of the faculty equity workgroup will meet soon to determine how to counter this proposal.

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