150 more job cuts at Canterbury University

Posted By TEU on Aug 2, 2012 |

Tertiary Update Vol 15 No 26

Canterbury University’s decision to cut 150 staff over the next three years is a grave mistake says TEU national president Sandra Grey.

Her comments follow an announcement from the university’s vice-chancellor Rod Carr that his management team will cut staff numbers by 50 each year for the next three years.

Rod Carr told the Press the university will post a $38m loss this year and continue to face deficits for the next four years before reaching a predicted surplus in 2017. It also has to find an estimated $150m to repair and improve its earthquake-damaged buildings over and above insurance proceeds. He said the university has asked the Government to help pay those capital costs.

”It’s a case of the university becoming leaner.”

Rod Carr told the Press he would achieve the job losses by not filling some vacant positions, using fewer casual and fixed term staff and retirements.

He said the university was Christchurch’s third largest employer with more than 2000 staff, so 50 each year was not a big figure.

Tertiary Update Vol 15 No

However Sandra Grey disagrees.

“There is no doubt that the government is making deliberate financial choices to compel the university to cut good quality jobs out of a region that desperately needs those jobs,” said Dr Grey. “But the university also needs to take responsibility for its own actions. It needs to choose to face up to its duty to be a leader in its community.”

“The current university management team, both before and after the earthquakes, has unleashed a seemingly endless string of reviews and restructuring that, every time, results in job losses.  Each time it confronts a problem its solution is to cut more jobs.”

Also in Tertiary Update this week:

  1. [email protected]
  2. Bill to restore community voice to polytechnic councils
  3. Joyce plots future Olympic glory
  4. Govt has no data on postgrad funding
  5. UN Committee warns Government against employment law changes

Other news

The Government is planning changes to the industry training system to boost the number of apprentices in training and increase the support for apprenticeship training, Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment Minister Steven Joyce announced today. The changes aim to improve the performance of the Government’s existing investment in industry training by extending the modern apprenticeship support scheme to all apprentices, regardless of age, clarifying the roles of industry training organisations (ITOs), increasing the performance expected from ITOs, enabling learners to transition easily between workplace based and non-workplace based training and ensuring a sustainable funding regime is in place for results-focused industry training – Steven Joyce

In the USA the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) is asking ‘are graduate students who work as teaching assistants and research assistants at private universities entitled to collective bargaining?’ The answer depends on whether these graduate student employees should be seen primarily as students or employees. If the former, the NLRB would have a tough time saying that they have unionization rights. If the latter, the NLRB could easily say that they are entitled to unions – Inside Higher Ed

The University of Otago is cutting both its secondary education programme on the Southland campus of the College of Education and the Invercargill graduation ceremony from next year. The decision comes ahead of a review of the entire College of Education, to be held later this year. Pro-vice-chancellor division of humanities Professor Brian Moloughney said yesterday that the decision to suspend the one-year full- time education programme next year was based on financial considerations. It currently has 10 students enrolled – Southland Times

Should a professor who talked in class about shooting his students with an AK-47 assault rifle been suspended without pay from his university? An Ohio appeal court doesn’t seem to think so, and has ordered Bowling Green State University to give him back pay for the time he was suspended –Inside Higher Ed

U.S. for-profit colleges care more about how much they earn than about their students and need more rules to govern them, according to a U.S. Senate report published on Sunday – Reuters

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