WCU faculty colleagues, just in case you missed this somehow–
PASSHE/APSCUF colleagues, I’d be interested in knowing how your local managers have addressed this situation with you–
WCU students, I believe the President when he says he’s committed to protecting the quality of your education, although we might disagree on how best to do that. Either way, now that he’s said publicly that this is his TOP PRIORITY, it’s incumbent on all of us to hold him to it.
TO: The Faculty of West Chester UniversityFROM: Greg Weisenstein, PresidentDATE: April 18, 2011RE: Retrenchment StatementAs we are all aware, the state budget picture for PASSHE and West Chester University is full of uncertainty. This uncertainty requires us to prepare contingency plans for the 2011-12 academic year. I want to emphasize that as we go through this process, we are focused on our number one priority: ensuring that our students continue to receive a quality educational experience.Given the current high level of budgetary uncertainty and the many issues facing us, retrenchment, layoffs, and furloughs cannot be ruled out for the 2012-13 academic year. I do want to assure each of you that we are doing all we can to avoid any of these actions. However, we need to comply with provisions in the collective bargaining agreements between PASSHE and our several unions that require various timeframes for notification of such potential actions. For example, under the requirements of the collective bargaining agreement between APSCUF and PASSHE, I have sent a letter to Dr. Clifford Johnston, president of the WCU chapter of APSCUF, notifying him of the possibility of actions affecting WCU faculty.It is very important for you to understand that no decisions have been made, nor will they be made until we know how much state funding we will receive and what the tuition rate, set by the PASSHE Board of Governors, will be. Neither of these funding amounts will be known until the end of June 2011.Even though we need to plan for every possible scenario, we are aware that all decisions we make, both operating and personnel, have an effect on the lives of valued colleagues. In this uncertain budgetary environment, people are understandably worried. At the same time, West Chester University’s reputation for excellence is directly built on your achievements and success, and we will not compromise on that excellence. I ask that we all continue to work hard at supporting our students and one another. You can be confident that the contributions of each and every one of you are recognized, appreciated, and respected.