CronkNews Satire: Controversial Move Ensures Adjuncts Comply With Obamacare Regs.

by Monty Tufnel and Leah Wescott

“Professor Regins used to be really cool. I looked forward to his lively class discussions,” said one student. “Now he just stares at his feet and lectures from old PowerPoint slides. Our Provosts calls that a ‘best practice.’”

In an effort to meet the demands of the Affordable Care Act, affectionately known as Obamacare, Smothers University announced today that it will require adjunct faculty to use electrified ankle bracelets to keep their hours under 30 hours a week. The Affordable Care Act requires businesses, including institutions of higher education, to provide health benefits to all full-time employees, who are defined by working 30 hours a week or less.

For colleges and universities who rely so heavily on part-time faculty, this could add several million dollars to the institution’s budget. While some, such as Youngstown State and Community College of Allegheny County, in Pennsylvania, have responded by immediately reducing and capping adjunct loads, Smothers University has taken a radically different tactic.

“Going to a ankle tracers has been a recommendation for tracking all faculty workloads for quite awhile now,” said Smothers Provost Lyle Hedgerow. “With Obamacare going into effect, we figured this was the opportunity to use anklets to help track, and thus control, our adjunct workloads.”

Explained Hedgerow, “Our concern with the legislation was that it assumed a one-size fits all model for adjunct work hours. A twelve-credit load for a Phys Ed instructor is not at all comparable to a twelve-credit load for an English instructor.”

According to the Smothers press release, adjuncts will actually clock in before teaching a class, clock out when done teaching a course, use an electronic pin number to access the time clock from home so that they can record the time actually spent grading or prepping for class, as well as punch in and punch out for department meetings.

“Whether we like it or not, many instructors don’t keep their classes for the whole time,” said Hedgerow. “They might take a break to go to the bathroom without letting their department chairs know, or blow off our faculty meetings. In classes that involve a lot of discussion, we have adjuncts who don’t even teach for full minutes at a time. Why should Smothers have to pay health benefits to this ‘full-timer’ who really is only working 26 hours a week? Our trackers will record every second of an adjunct’s experience, just like the black box on an airplane.”

Smothers promises to release any adjunct caught padding hours. Around the Smothers campus, anonymous writers to the college newspaper have labeled this action as a misguided response to “Obamascare.”

“We’re convinced that when the full calendar year is complete, we can show that none of our adjunct faculty ever achieved this mythical full-time status of 30 hours a week for every week of the year,” said Smothers Director of Public Relations Clive Sallow. “If executed properly, we could even increase adjuncts’ visibility on campus while reducing our teaching expenditures by up to 50 percent.”

“I put in over 50 hours on campus last week but really only worked about 23, according to my anklet,” said one instructor. “I’ve eliminated class discussions and I don’t call on students with raised hands anymore. The Provost says that I’m a model instructor and may even recommend me for another course next semester. If I keep this up, I might earn enough to cover gas money for my commute.”

This originally appeared on It is used here with permission.


Short URL:

3 Comments for “CronkNews Satire: Controversial Move Ensures Adjuncts Comply With Obamacare Regs.”

  1. i m also quiting 😛

  2. Hmmm.. And I thought that the well intended Obamacare made only our college do crazy things. Our college has a success center where tutors help students with any issues, such as homework, studying for the test, writing papers, etc. To spend most of my time helping students as well as supplement my adjunct salary, I used to work as a tutor at the tutoring center (this work is paid hourly). Unfortunately, the college, very pro-actively, decided that because some of the tutors were adjuncts and we should not work more than 30 hours a week, our tutoring jobs were taken from us over night with no explanation, no clarification, no time to adjust to losing 1/3 of a monthly salary. In the middle of a semester! How that makes me feel? The same as the teacher from the story above: unappreciated, disrespected, and used. However, I am absolutely positive that if someone would want to make me wear an ankle bracelet, I would just quit as such approach is absolutely unethical and dehumanizing.

Leave a Reply

Keep in Touch With AdjunctNation

Graphic Graphic Graphic


Want to see your advertisement on Click here.


Want to see your advertisement on Click here.



From the Archive

  • DC Adjuncts Aiming to Bargain Unprecedented Citywide Contract

    George Washington University adjuncts and their D.C. colleagues could earn more if they succeed in creating a city-wide contract, which local faculty leaders have proposed for the past two years. Adjunct professors’ plans to negotiate a city-wide contract have dragged on because leaders must first wait for adjunct faculty at every university to form unions. But they […]

  • A review of Reclaiming the Ivory Tower

    reviewed by Silvia Foti For those who are skeptical of any one book’s ability to help adjuncts organize to improve their working conditions in higher education, Reclaiming the Ivory Tower may provide hope. While author Joe Berry doesn’t promise an easy path, he provides a reliable map and points out obstacles that adjuncts might meet […]

  • University of La Verne Adjuncts’ NLRB Complaints Dismissed for Lack of Merit

    by Imani Tate A union’s failed attempt to organize University of La Verne adjunct professors has prompted increased dialogue and let university officials resume projects that had to be halted when the union began its organizing efforts on the main campus last fall. On Aug. 1, the national office of the National Labor Relations Board formally […]

  • Why Not Every Student (or Prof) Deserves a Letter of Recommendation

    Jackie Jones is an associate professor and chair of the Department of Multimedia Journalism at Morgan State University’s School of Global Journalism. In her essay for the Morgan Global Journalism Review, Jones tackles the subject of letters of recommendation. She writes, “My decision about whether to write a recommendation is also guided by the four […]

  • Moving Your Course Online

    by Evelyn Beck It will take longer than you think. That’s some of the wisdom offered by one course designer about the process of moving your traditional classroom on-line. Cynthia McIntyre, an on-line designer and instructor for The Concord Consortium in Concord, Mass., finds that new on-line teachers are surprised by the amount of time […]

    This article is available for purchase for $1.00 if you do not have a subscription. If you do have a subscription, please [login] here to read the entire piece. If you do NOT have a subscription, please 
    Authorize.Net processes AMEX, Visa, Mastercard and Discover credit card payments made online securely and safely. 
    Paypal Standard
    You do NOT need a PayPal account to use this payment method. PayPal allows credit card payments to be processed safely and securely. PayPal operates with credit cards, debit cards, bank accounts and PayPal accounts to make safe purchases online, without disclosing your credit card number or financial information. 

     Subscribe to our newsletter

    to create an account which you will use to access the article you wish to purchase and read.

Want to see your advertisement on Click here.


Want to see your advertisement on Click here.

Recently Commented

  • Scott: I believe Sami is correct in that this no reasonable assurance language will allow adjuncts continuing access...
  • Nancy West-Diangelo: It’s as if we’ve lost the ability to listen critically. If the point of the work we...
  • Freddi-Jo Bruschke: An excellent description of this editorial.
  • Julia Holcomb: Tolerance certainly doesn’t mean you get to say things you cannot prove, about things that ought...
  • Michele Spino Martindill: White supremacy has had hundreds of years to dominate campus environments and doesn’t...