Full-Time Faculty Folly

In Israel, as I wrote earlier this month, tenured and tenure-line faculty have been on strike since the first day of classes. The strike, now in its eighth week, isn’t producing quite the effect the faculty union intended. A quick look at this piece from the student newspaper at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem will illustrate exactly why an eight week strike by all of the country’s senior college faculty has not paralyzed higher education in the country.

While the senior faculty lobby for higher pay and irk the Israeli public, who don’t understand why the profs. just don’t go back to work already, the adjunct faculty, who teach 40 percent of the classes at Israel’s five universities, and whom the faculty union chose to not represent, are still teaching.

There are so many adjunct faculty teaching at Israel’s universities, the unionized faculty strike can’t stop their employers from offering courses. Excluding the adjuncts from the union was, one must conclude, a very stupid move on the part of some very smart people. Perhaps when the strike is settled, union leaders will organize the part-time faculty, as well, and then all faculty can strike in support of higher pay and benefits for Israel’s adjuncts.

Yeah. Yeah. I’m holding my breath, too.

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