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2500 CUNY students, faculty, staff: Don’t cancel Fall ’22 classes

Aug 23, 2022

PSC President James Davis sent the Don’t Cancel Fall 2022 Classes Petition and the following message to CUNY Chancellor Matos Rodriguez and the college presidents on August 15, 2022. The petition had over 1700 signatures when it was delivered. It now has 2500+

See the petition that was delivered today.
Add your name to the ongoing petition.

Chancellor Matos and College Presidents,

We are deeply concerned that some CUNY colleges are in the process of canceling classes, even as the Fall semester is nearly here. More than 1,700 CUNY students, faculty, and staff have signed the attached petition, urging you to maintain the Fall schedule intact. The semester starts in 10 days; classes should run even if they don’t fill to or near enrollment caps. Retention is just as important as new enrollment, and canceling classes at this late stage is terrible for retention. It impedes students’ academic momentum and may deprive them of a class needed for a major or general education requirement. It also deprives our members of the opportunity to teach the classes they have been scheduled to teach for many months and prepared accordingly.

A vivid illustration of the problem: we learned last week of a directive from one college Provost to the Registrar to cancel 10 sections with lower enrollments than expected in one humanities department. These cancellations alone will make 70 students scramble to identify another section of the same course that fits their busy schedules, without which they will not fulfill the general education requirement that these classes satisfy. These cancellations also mean 8 adjunct faculty members, the instructors who prepared this summer to teach these classes, will lose their income and continuity of employment. Some of these sections had double-digit rosters! They should be kept open and available. This is just one instance among others in which colleges are not prioritizing the welfare of students and employees.

These are exactly the scenarios that the Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds were intended to prevent. Using the federal stimulus funds allocated to CUNY is one of several ways to keep classes open for students and keep employees on payroll. Please heed the caution of the 1,700+ attached signatures and do not cancel any more Fall 2022 classes.

James Davis

Published: August 23, 2022 | Last Modified: August 24, 2022

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