LETTER OF UNDERSTANDING #6: SABBATICALS/UPPER LEVEL RELEASE/WORKLOAD
It is agreed that a Joint Committee of representatives of Vancouver Island University (“VIU”) and Vancouver Island University Faculty Association (“VIUFA”) will be established to review and make recommendations to VIU and VIUFA on revisions to the current provisions in the Collective Agreement related to assisted professional development leave, upper level release and workload in accordance with the provisions of the following Letter of Understanding:
It is agreed as follows:
- The parties are committed to develop positive changes/modifications to the current contractual provisions related to assisted professional development leave, upper level release and workload in ways that would be of benefit to all faculty and the institution as a whole. To this end, such changes/modifications to the current collective agreement provisions may provide:
(a) the replacement of upper level release with a more comprehensive approach to scholarly activity in the form of guaranteed sabbaticals
(b) more flexible workload arrangements
(c) simplification of workload reporting
- A Joint Committee shall be established comprised of eight (8) representatives, four (4) appointed by the VIUFA and four (4) appointed by the VIU. This Committee shall be established as soon as possible.
- This Joint Committee shall commence its deliberations as soon as practicable following August 15, 2001 and shall make recommendations to both parties by no later than December 31, 2001.
- The recommendations of the Joint Committee shall include specific changes to the Collective Agreement which are necessary in order to give effect to its recommendations.
- The deliberations of the Joint Committee and its recommendations shall be guided by and be made in accordance with the following terms of reference:
(a) The effect of the proposed changes to the Collective Agreement will not increase net costs attributable to direct instruction. In addition, delivery of FTE students contained in the 2001/02 Program Profile will be maintained, as much as is practicable.
(b) The focus of proposed changes should be on fairness, simplicity, flexibility and transparency.
(c) The intent is to change the current system of leaves and releases to a system of sabbatical leaves applicable to all regular instructional faculty.
(d) It is intended that non-instructional faculty would continue to have the opportunity for Professional Development leaves on the same general proportional basis as they would have under the Collective Agreement replacing the one expiring on March 31, 2001.
(e) It is recognized that consequential changes to provisions of the Collective Agreement may be recommended in order to give effect to the Joint Committee’s recommendations.
(f) The recommendations shall include, if possible, recommendations to implement the proposed changes to commence in the 2002/2003 academic year but in no event later than the 2003/2004 academic year.
(g) In the event that the recommendations contemplate implementation for the 2002/2003 academic year, the recommendations shall include proposed ways to implement the transition.
(h) Every reasonable effort shall be made to achieve a consensus on the Joint Committee’s recommendations.
- The Joint Committee shall, no later than December 31, 2001, either:
(a) Present its recommendations to the VIU and VIUFA on the proposed changes to the Collective Agreement; or
(b) In the absence of a consensus on all proposed changes, present to the VIU and VIUFA those proposed changes on which consensus was reached and outline the areas or issues on which full consensus was not reached.
- In the event that the Joint Committee’s report to the parties is made in accordance with 5(b) above, it is agreed that a mutually agreeable mediator/facilitator from the academic community will be requested to assist the Joint Committee to arrive at a consensus on the outstanding issues.
- The role of the mediator shall be to:
(a) Meet and confer with the Joint Committee within the 30 calendar day period immediately following the Joint Committee’s report made in accordance with 5(b) above.
(b) Assist the Joint Committee in arriving at a consensus on the outstanding issues.
(c) If unable to assist the Joint Committee achieve a consensus on proposed changes to make non-binding recommendations to the VIU and VIUFA on proposed changes to the Collective Agreement on the outstanding issues. These recommendations are to be made within 10 days of the mediator/facilitator concluding his/her their conferring with the Joint Committee.
- Recommendations made by the Joint Committee in accordance with 5(a) or recommendations of the mediator/facilitator made in accordance with 7(c) shall be considered by the VIUFA and the VIU and if accepted by both parties shall be implemented as recommended. It is agreed that recommendations made by the Joint Committee in accordance with 5(a) or by the mediator/facilitator in accordance with 7(c) shall be put to a vote of the members of the VIUFA bargaining unit once approved by the Vancouver Island University Board and if accepted by a majority of those voting shall be considered approved by the VIUFA.
- Each party shall advise the other within 10 days whether or not the recommendations are accepted or not.
- In the event that either party does not accept the recommendations made to it in accordance with this Letter of Understanding, the provisions of the 1998-2001 Collective Agreement including all letters of agreement related to workload will continue to apply.
Signed: May 29, 2001