Faculty Bill of Rights proposes to end adjunct labor
Following several years of work with the Colorado legislature and a thorough investigation of community college finances and employment practices, the Colorado Conference of the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) has published its Colorado Community College Faculty Bill of Rights. The document lists the faculty’s rights, according to AAUP standards, including an end to adjunct labor throughout the Colorado Community College System (CCCS).
The Colorado Conference’s 23-article Faculty Bill of Rights calls for the abolishment of the failing, two-tier faculty system that has created a type of “academic apartheid” in which the vast majority of community college teachers are not considered to be faculty, receive poverty level wages, and have no job security or assurances of academic freedom. The Faculty Bill of Rights calls for the CCCS to recommit to the principles of equitable treatment of all faculty, shared governance, and academic freedom throughout its statewide system of 13 community colleges.
“The community college system has done a fabulous job of making higher education available in nearly every corner of the state,” said Colorado Conference co-president Stephen Mumme, “and so it is essential, more than ever before, for the CCCS to maintain a stable and quality faculty and to focus on its mission of teaching.”
According to Don Eron, a member of the Colorado Conference executive committee and the national AAUP’s Committee A on Academic Freedom and Tenure, it is often said that faculty’s working conditions are students’ learning conditions. “An impoverished, demoralized faculty cannot inspire or serve well the students of Colorado. The Faculty Bill of Rights is a significant step in the direction of providing a quality education for our students.”
The 23 articles contained in the Faculty Bill of Rights address issues critical to keeping quality and experienced faculty in service to students. These issues include a united faculty, compensation, benefits, class assignments, job security, faculty governance, transparency, professional development, and academic freedom.
“We are working with our members, lawmakers, local governing boards, research organizations and think tanks around the country to help faculty at every level improve working conditions,” said Jonathan Rees, Co-President of the Colo. Conference.
The AAUP has, since 1915, set the standards for the profession of teaching and has worked to ensure higher education’s contribution to the common good. You will find the Colorado Community College Faculty Bill of Rights posted on the Colorado Conference website at