President Debra DeSanto’s statement to the BOT on 12-18-12

Good Evening

Before I end this semester by wishing you and your families well, I want to relate a chance conversation I had with a retired NCC administrator last week.

This high-ranking former administrator applauded the PERB ruling upholding our long-standing practice of converting temporary to probationary lines once crossing over to the 5th semester. The former administrator emphasized the correctness of the decision as this practice was common knowledge and had been honored on our campus for years. I explained that John Gross had not argued “Past Practice” but rather managerial rights. The administrator looked a bit shocked and said “that would never have happened just a few years ago”. I thought about that former administrator’s comments for a long time and realized the meaning of that comment.

Just a few years ago neither the Administration nor the BOT would have ever authorized John Gross to pursue such a course of action against the faculty.

So what has changed? This administration and this BOT have decided that just because you can do something you will. This was NEVER the controlling philosophy on this campus. Instead, our campus used to be governed by common sense and a spirit that we were all in this together. The NCCFT; for example, had never filed as many grievances or sued in court as often as we could have because we had a genuine partner with which to work out any differences or issues. To truly heal this campus and see it through these tough times, we need to discard the “just because you can do something you will” and return to the philosophy of “just because you can do something doesn’t mean that you should.”

So, it is my hope that as we enter into the 2013 full-blown negotiations we use this adage as our guide post. This means that both sides will propose items that will permit NCC to remain, as it has for decades, a top ranked CC on the east coast.

I wish you and your families a happy, peaceful and healthy 2013!

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