Twenty Rock Valley College teachers are back at work following their lay-offs in March. But, what does the future hold for the remaining seven?
Rock Valley College is still in the process of getting its faculty rehired and ready in time for the fall semester.
Twenty-eight faculty members were laid off from their teaching positions at Rock Valley College. Two months later, the Rock College’s board was able to rehire 20 of those instructors. One retired, but seven others still waiting by the phone for that call.
Vice President of Finance at Rock Valley College Beth Young says the school is taking a systematic approach to their rehiring process.
“We were looking at the the enrollment of classes on a day to day basis to determine the enrollment,” said Young. “If there is demand there to open additional classes [we’ll] bring back the faculty that we had let go back in March.”
Faculty Union leader Rodger Hergert says the entire situation has been a roller coaster of emotions.
“It’s nice to have such a large majority [back],” said Hergert. “We feel awful for those seven that are still on the list waiting for a call back.”
Students were especially upset when the layoffs happened. Not only were they against the teachers being let go. Hergert says it also left them in the dark as to who would teach their classes.
“During the beginning of the registration for fall semester, there were a lot of ‘TBA’ in the teacher column on the schedule,” said Hergert. “So, that just made the students uncertain on who was going to be teaching their classes.”
Despite bringing back a majority of the teachers, Hergert says the wounds of their layoffs are still fresh in many people’s minds.
“It leaves a bitter taste in some folks’ mouths,” said Hergert. “I think that they’re happy to be employed, but it has had a negative effect on not only those 28 folks, but there have been a number of faculty that left the college.”
Business and nursing were the departments that had the most instructor lay-offs. There is a possibility that the seven teachers do get a call, but it depends on the enrollment rate for certain classes before Fall Semester Start date of August 21.