As previously reported, the SFCC Governing Board declared a financial emergency and under those constraints, approved a final budget for FY18 on May 31, which was submitted to the Higher Education Department. To respond to a changing world while maintaining our commitment to continuous quality improvement, the College must take new approaches to support our students and meet increased accountability measures. Many of the changes included in the FY18 budget are described below.
Reductions in Force and Reassignments
The new budget includes a reduction-in-force that impacted two staff members (Financial Services and Human Resources) and one temporary faculty position (Controlled Environment Agriculture). Additionally, David Markwardt will join Human Resources, focusing on professional development, while continuing his work with Teamwork in Action under Continuing Education and Contract Training.
Academic Program Closures
Gallery Management and Radiologic Technology programs are slated for closure. Both programs will require a teach out; the College will not enroll any new students in these degree or certificate programs. As I have previously noted, the College also weighed closing the Respiratory Care program. However, Christus St. Vincent Regional Medical Center has committed to providing funds that allow the program to continue. Respiratory Care will be accepting new students for its fall cohort.
Academic Affairs Restructure
In accordance with the budget approved by the Board, the management functions in academic affairs will be restructured in an effort to clearly define management roles and responsibilities and to allow faculty more time in the classroom. This restructure will also help to create a bright line between management and full-time faculty for the purposes of collective bargaining, and is being implemented in a manner that properly addresses the concerns of the New Mexico Public Employee Labor Relations Board.
As part of this restructure, the position of chair will be eliminated effective August 1, 2017. All full-time faculty currently serving as chairs will now teach a full load and fulfill all requirements defined in Policy 3-6 Faculty Workload. There will be no change in pay for faculty currently serving as chairs.
Directors of academic programs will be reclassified as managerial staff as they were before 2014. These directors may teach no more than 18 pay hours per full twelve-month academic year.
Three new positions will be created to assist the three Deans in carrying out managerial functions previously assigned to chairs and assume duties that support student success, such as developing course schedules that meet student needs, hiring and firing of adjunct faculty, evaluating both full-time and adjunct faculty, managing budgets and facilitating the resolution of student academic issues.
Lead Faculty and Program Heads will be responsible for leading departmental efforts in collaboration with their respective deans or designees to support curricular-related work, such as
- working with Curriculum Committee to develop new courses (master syllabi) and review and revise current courses;
- working with Curriculum Committee to develop new degree and certificate programs and review and revise current programs;
- collaborating with deans or their designees in assigning faculty to scheduled classes;
- participating in assessment and program review activities;
- oversight of laboratory facilities where appropriate; and
- selecting textbooks.
These initiatives allow the college to better respond to the needs of our students and community.
Randy W. Grissom