Just days before the start of the spring semester, the Kansas Board of Regents (KBOR) authorized the “chief executive officers” of Kansas universities to dismiss employees without due process or proof of financial exigency. Five of the six CEOs of Kansas Regents’ schools refused that offer. KU’s Chancellor was not among them. Instead, he sought and obtained permission to submit an implementation plan by July 1st.
The Regents’ new policy was instantly unpopular. An open letter, “Kansas Faculty and Staff Say No to KBOR Policy,” was signed by 1,000 members of the KU community. A statement of solidarity was signed by 7,500 of our colleagues and 85 major academic bodies from around the world, including the American Academy of Religion, American Council of Learned Societies, and American Association of University Professors. When, in late May, the Faculty Senate surveyed the KU faculty to see whether we approve of the new policy, 97% said No.
That nearly unanimous response has not led Chancellor Girod to reverse course, and July 1 is now just weeks away. So far he has been consistently unresponsive to faculty, staff and student concerns. Should he now submit a plan to implement the dismissal policy – which will strip us of job protections and our tradition of shared governance – we need to be ready to push back. Pressure, broadly and steadily applied, is our only recourse.
The first Monday after the decision is announced, we will rally at 1:00 p.m. in South Park at 12th Street and Massachusetts Avenue. We ask you now to “save-the-date” and join this Resistance Rally.
The Chancellor may put a positive spin on his decision, but we cannot accept any attempt to void or weaken the established dismissal policy. KU’s future as a fair employer is at stake.
We will send you an email notification as soon as the Chancellor’s decision is publicly announced.
To receive a text message about the rally, click here.
In unity there is strength, and hope.