The Best Little Whore House in Texas

Ruben Flores is, one might say, developmentally delayed. Flores works as the dean of the evening and weekend division at San Antonio College. Unless you have been busy hiding from desperate students who need to add your course to their schedules, you’ve heard about San Antonio College. That’s where the part-timers were asked to teach 12 credit hours, and asked to sign a waiver stating that they would accept pay for teaching 11 hours, giving up their right to a higher salary and benefits made available to faculty who teach 12 hours.

A piece from the San Antonio News outlines a complete picture of the practice.

In the meantime, we have Reuben Flores—Dean Reuben Flores. When asked about the waiver, he replied that the college had been using it for years. “If they [part-time faculty] don’t want to do it, we don’t push them,” Flores said. “No one has ever told us it’s not right.”

Uh huh. I am going to go out on a limb here and assume Reuben Flores is over the age of 12, when, developmentally, children can be counted on to be able to know the difference between right and wrong. Not all children develop psychologically at the same rate, of course. Reuben Flores is a phenomenon, however. He is a graduate-degree wielding college administrator who, it would appear, needed someone to tell him that cheating employees out of pay and benefits is, well, wrong.

Then again, he was in good company. This is a quote about the college’s waiver from a graduate-degree wielding college faculty member, Donnie Meals, who signed one. “I do not think that it’s right.” Meals, an adjunct instructor, has taught in SAC’s radio, television and film department for 25 years and signed the waiver in August. “They respect me, I respect them, but I was just like, ‘This sucks.’.”

“They respect me?” Who is Meals kidding? And “This sucks?” WTF?!?!

Someone treats you like a court jester, cheats you out of pay and benefits, and your response is to go along with the scheme and say, “This sucks?” The smart part-timers, I have to imagine, realized long ago that with a graduate degree in San Antonio, Texas, there are options other than letting Reuben Flores screw you out of your pay and benefits semester after semester.

A representative from the AAUP suggested that job security resulting from union contract or union representation would have eliminated the practice of using the waivers. No doubt. However, since there are few, if any, AAUP union affiliates that offer their part-time faculty contractual job security, it’s rather a moot point. An AAUP affiliated union would certainly have capped the number of hours San Antonio College could offer part-time faculty each semester. AAUP affiliates across the country have done that to their part-time members. In truth, faculty unions cap the number of hours temporary faculty are allowed to work all the time. However, does job security address the sheer buffoonery of faculty with graduate degrees who will sign a piece of paper that robs them of their dignity, self-respect, pay and benefits just to keep teaching at a two-bit community college campus?

Yes, it simply boggles the mind that Reuben Flores could do what he did year after year because no one told him it was wrong. However, that the college graduates who signed those forms did so year after year is equally mind-boggling. If you ask me, it looks suspiciously like part-timers are screwing themselves at San Antonio College.

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