Statement of GSU-Perimeter Issues:
We acknowledge the historic role that discrimination based on race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, and class have played in institutions of higher education, including Georgia State University and Georgia Perimeter College. We seek to serve as an advocate and ally for all higher education workers and students who have suffered the effects of these toxic policies and practices.
We believe that our workplaces should be safe, and that no worker or student should face undue risk while performing their job, attending class, or studying on campus. Therefore we support policies that require faculty, students, and staff to be vaccinated against COVID-19 unless they have documented health issues or legitimate religious objections. We also support mandatory masking indoors and in enclosed spaces for everyone on Perimeter College campuses. For those who are unvaccinated, we support policies that require regular COVID-19 testing so that the risk of spreading the virus can be minimized. These policies should be in effect until the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention declares the pandemic has ended in the United States.
We believe that academic freedom is a core principle of higher education. Therefore we oppose all attempts to restrict the teaching of the role that structural or institutional racism has played, and continues to play, in the United States and elsewhere (this is sometimes popularly known as Critical Race Theory). We furthermore believe that faculty, and not administrators or political appointees with the University System of Georgia, should control curriculum.
We believe that Perimeter College students, staff, and faculty who have children face an undue burden as they attempt to study and work at our institution. Therefore we support the establishment of low- or no-cost day care facilities on all Perimeter Campuses.
Further, we believe that many of our students, staff, and faculty shoulder a heavy burden when they use our region’s public transit to access our campuses. We call on the leaders of Georgia State University and Perimeter College to develop a comprehensive transportation plan so that students, staff, and faculty can utilize convenient and low-cost public transportation to access all our campuses. There is no reason why Perimeter College students, staff and faculty do not have the same access to public transportation enjoyed by their peers at Emory University, the institutions at the Atlanta University Center, and even Georgia State’s Downtown Campus.
Student retention and performance are key concerns of the members of our union. Research has shown that reducing faculty course loads and class sizes can improve both. Therefore we support reducing the standard 6-6 course load for lecturers and term to term faculty to a more manageable 5-5 level. We also support reducing tenure-track course loads from a 5-4 level to a 4-4 load. We also believe that Perimeter College faculty salaries should be equal to faculty salaries at the Downtown Campus.
Finally, we believe that Perimeter College needs to do a better job of ensuring that faculty can meet their teaching loads every semester.
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