CCFT News Letter September 2020

From President/COPE Chair, Debra Stakes:

  • Board Election: There is an election warming up! CCFT has been focused on the one contested Board of Trustees seat in Area 5. CCFT and CCCUE interviewed the two candidates: incumbent Mary Strobridge and challenger Brian Kennerlly.  We unanimously endorsed Mary Strobridge for re-election to this position.  CCFT and CCCUE have made contributions to her campaign. We encourage those of you who live in Atascadero  to vote for Mary, and to and encourage your neighbors to do so also.
  • State Assembly Endorsement: CCFT and CFT have also endorsed Dawn Addiss for the State Assembly in District 35. She brings experience as an educator to this position. We urge you to also vote for Dawn so an educator will have a voice at the State level.
  • Effects of COVID-19 on class offerings: COVID-19 is impacting faculty by limiting class offerings.  This has overloaded faculty in some areas and led to course cancellations in others. The Covid -19 Task Force is doing what it can to ameliorate the load losses. Questions should about load can be directed to Greg Baxley or Heather Tucker. Remember that your Dean is officially responsible for loading and class assignment. CCFT can only confirm that the assignment rules in the CBA have been adhered to.


From Vice President, Heather Tucker:

  • Thank You New Members! Welcome our new CCFT members Belen Butragueno, Alex Espinoza-Kulick, Emily Resner, Scott Ferree, Syl Arena, Alyssa Espinola, Rachel Pass, Mark Stengel, Robin Dungan, Solina Lindahl and Cyrus Saatsaz. Please reach out to any of us on the council or executive board with questions or concerns you have. Hearing from you helps working conditions for everyone!
  • Catastrophic Leave Bank: Please remember to sign up for the CLB if you are not already a member. You can contact me (Heather Tucker) if you need help with that.
  • Covid- 19 Planning Team: Myself, Greg Baxely and Roland Finger continue to serve on the emergency planning team for the college. You can always contact us directly if you would like us to bring up a related issue.
  • Retun to Campus Task Force:  A big thank you to these faculty members who volunteerd to help our college community plan our safe return to campus by serving on this taskforce: Alexandra Kahane, Allison Head, Beth Johnson, Bret Clark, Brittany Mojo, Dean Harrell, Gary Rubin, Heather Tucker, Jennifer Martin, Jodi Meyer, John Marsh, Monica Millard, Rachel Kovach, Roland Finger, Greg Baxley.


From Treasurer, Elizabeth Lobo:

  • Healthy Budget: The CCFT budget is looking healthier than it has in years primarily because of our lower use of legal services. This is a consequence of having experienced and hard working Grievance Officers and EB members on your side. Of course, this is also because of the professionalism displayed by you, our faculty.
  • 10K Donation: Our healthy financial circumstance allowed CCFT to generously donate $10,000 to help our students in crisis during the COVID-19 pandemic. We also continue to fund $500 scholarships for three Cuesta students annually. This is one example of your dues at work!
  • Legal Fees Fund: This academic year we hope to put a substantial amount of money into a legal emergency savings fund. The final number planned will be determined during the budget approval process at the Council meeting in September.
  • Dues Decrease: CCFT dues are a fraction lower this year with the new dues rate at 1.300919%.  Your dues help us advocate for faculty and to improve working conditions for everyone.


From Secretary/Communications Chair, Julie Hoffman Rose:

  • CCFT Website: I’m looking for cool pictures for our website. If you have something you would like to share, please send it along to my email,
  • Congrats to Debra: Although Debra will be retiring as a faculty member and our CCFT president, she will bring her wealth of experience to the Cuesta College Board of Trustees, starting January 2020. Debra has served as president for almost seven years, guided CCFT to improvements in compensation, and helped bring new faculty into the leadership ranks. She has also been a very important presence in local politics. We will miss her leadership on the E.B.
  • Thanks to Greg:  We are very grateful that Greg has agreed to step in to finish Debra’s term as CCFT president. He has been truly extraordinary in getting all the crazy work issues resulting from the pandemic properly resolved with the district – a situation that has doubled his workload since March! He will pass off his duties as chief negotiator to Heather Tucker and provide a seamless leadership transition for CCFT.

From Part-time Faculty Committee Chair/Negotiations Team Member Nancy Steinmaus:

  • Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF):  Information is posted on the CCFT web page. Last year, CCFT and our parent unions CFT and AFT conducted a workshop on Cuesta’s Campus regarding this program. It is very complicated but PT faculty MAY qualify if they have a load of 30 hours a week which can be complied from multiple public service jobs. Opening this up to PT faculty was due to advocacy from CFT.
  • Advocacy: CCFT has been continuing to advocate for faculty, from saving a job, to pushing for PPE, to getting paid to take the DE certification. We may be grateful that in this time of record unemployment, we have jobs, though the enormous effort of teaching emergency DE and now “real” DE is overwhelming. I have contact from PT faculty from around Cuesta and I am proud of what PT faculty do, their professionalism, and their dedication.

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