Questions of shared governance at PCC was the main talking point when President Mark Rocha and AS President Simon Fraser went head to head on Larry Mantle’s show on KPCC on Monday.

The original reason for the radio interview was the sudden removal of the campus newspaper adviser Warren Swil, who was placed on administrative leave last Thursday. But the discussion quickly changed to the cancellation of the winter intersession at the beginning of the fall semester and problems with shared governance.

Fraser also discussed the problem students are having with of the cancellation of winter. When winter was cancelled, the classes were moved to summer, but four-year colleges do not accept summer classes for concurrent enrollment.

According to Fraser, some PCC students are receiving rejection letters from four-year colleges who did not know of the calendar change, despite the official name change of the first summer semester to ‘Spring’ in February, “The problem we are running into now is that we don’t know whether or not it’s too late for the [four-year] colleges to change their minds on rejections.”

Rocha said that the Board of Trustees has added 810 classes and “there is not a single student at PCC who is unable to get his or her classes,” said Rocha.  “Some of the issues Simon [Fraser] referred to do exist and the administration is working hard.”

In the radio interview, Rocha stated that the decision to remove winter was made through shared governance. “The record will show that the decision made by the board of trustees, was fully consulted and went through the proper shared governance processes,” said Rocha.

Fraser responded by saying, “The AS tried to get this through a shared governance committee,” said Fraser. “The administrative response to this was that it wasn’t our purview to do that, it was a union issue. Our attempts to get it through these processes were rebuffed.”

Rocha discussed how the change in the calendar was not an issue for the faculty or the AS but it was only between the union and the district. Rocha said “the calendar was not an issue for the Academic Senate/Faculty Senate but was an issue for negotiation between the district and the union.”

Professor Daniel Hamman, spoke later on Monday at the Academic Senate, about the comments made my Rocha in the radio interview, “I have been on the Academic Senate for six years; I am the co-lead negotiator with the Faculty Association. [And] I am not aware of that issue ever being turned over by the Faculty Association.”

In the radio interview, Fraser said that even if the Academic Senate said that it was a union issue, “that does not make it exclusively a union issue,” he went on to paraphrase from the California Code of Regulations Title V.  “These are the elements that students have to be consulted on, any change in the college that affects students.”

In the interview Rocha also discussed the administrative leave of the newspaper adviser Warren Swil. “The publication of the Courier will go on as usual, as it has for decades,” said Rocha. “The Board, I, Dr. Bell, the entire administration, support the Courier. It will go on business as usual. There is a complete firewall between the administration and the newspaper.”

When asked if the stories in the Courier were an accurate depiction of the climate on campus, Rocha answered with, ““I do not. I don’t think [the Courier] has taken in the entire context of a labor dispute with the teachers union,” into consideration.

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