Some Facts and Figures about the State of Laurier that you might like to know
When we bring together the Administration’s personnel and enrollment reports and Bill Salatka’s analysis of Laurier’s financial statements, the numbers reveal an interesting picture of priorities.
Over the last 4 years (2008-2012), there was a 23% increase in student enrollment, more than 3 times the 7% increase in Full-Time Faculty (FTF) (including LTAs), and almost half of the 44% increase in management. Support staff increased by 12%, almost one-fourth of the management’s massive increase.
Other groups had an increase of zero.
At the same time, WLUFA hired a researcher to analyze the number of courses, labs, tutorials and seminars taught by CAS as opposed to FT Faculty and identified an increase from 38% of all students taught by CAS in 2008 to 52% in 2012. Allowing for the tutorials, labs and courses that could not be identified as either FTF or CAS, that number 52% could increase or decrease by about 2%.
In addition, during negotiations, the Administration claimed that the FTF Collective Agreement meant it was limited to 35% of courses but eventually admitted that this equalled 45% of students. However, it has conveniently ignored all the courses exempted from the ‘35%’ (e.g. online courses; all courses taught in Sprummer except for SBE). How much higher would the percentage be?
Any way you look at it, students at Laurier spend about 50% of their class, lab and tutorial time with CAS faculty. (One person suggested it might also indicate an increase in class sizes. Individual departments and programs should be able to answer this.)
Why is this important? Let’s look at some other figures.
Total costs for ALL salaries at Laurier, from the occasional part-time worker to the president, have actually decreased as a total proportion of expenditures at Laurier from 51% in 2008 to 47% in 2012 (and that’s including, I assume, the 44% increase in management –at nearly double the increase in student enrollment of 23% – and six times the rate of increase in FTF hiring). These numbers fly in the face of ‘public perception’ that the biggest cost is faculty salaries.
Student tuition increased by 19.2% from 2008 to 2012. If the proportion of students taught by CAS increases and they cost only 3.4% of revenue in 2012, this tuition increase is surely not for those courses?
The cost for all CAS faculty is approximately $9 million per year (averaged over the last three years, 2010-2012). For comparison, WLUFA was told that the Administration had to pay $11 million to renovate the 12 student apartment buildings purchased (for $68 million) in March 2012, which is significantly more than the total income for one year for all CAS.
Are students (and the public) paying more for larger class sizes, limited course choices and restricted program offerings?
Arguably, those programs that rely heavily on CAS faculty are probably the least expensive of any unit at Laurier.
If the Strategic Mandate Agreement and/or the IPRM have anything to do with cutting academic programs (and faculty positions too?) and increasing class sizes, one has to begin to wonder whether the Administration’s present trajectory is in the ’best interests’ of Laurier?