The CFA strike ends as it should


Photo credit: Helen Suh

California State University faculty members and students who stress about class recently received some good news: The CFA strike for a 5 percent pay increase has been averted.

As many students have learned, union faculty members working for all CSUs organized to walk out on classes April 13-15 and 18-19 to demand a 5 percent increase in yearly salaries. This plan worked out terrifically for the union as the administration offered incremental increases to faculty pay last week which would add up to 10.5 percent by 2017.

This development is great news for our teachers who desperately deserve it. Many teachers here work incredibly hard for their students, and I have had some of the best teachers I have ever worked with here at Chico State.

I especially hoped the strike would work for them when I found the average salary for CSU faculty totaled about $45,000.

Anyone who’s passion drives them through so much school themselves, along with having the patience to transform often pesky, unappreciative students into the future of this country deserves much more than this pay and recognition as a hero.

Hopefully they keep fighting for fair wages because their motivation paves the way for our future.

The administration gave little input regarding the issue until they agreed to increase faculty pay. This successful threat to the administration means definite change to their future though.

The premise of the CFA strike showed that administration heads were appropriating astronomically higher funds from tuition to themselves than the faculty. The administration couldn’t even hold out until the week of the strike before giving in to faculty demands. This victory for the teachers changes the game for the administration who will have to give in to future faculty demands.

Finally, the students ultimately win because going to class helps their grades. This disappointing result of what many (including I) thought would be a second spring break will pay off in a crucial time for determining final grades.

Many students were looking forward to this strike as either relaxation or vacation time. This is fair because most students work hard in school for good grades and a degree that will help them find jobs. But they will realize they aren’t doomed educationally by a week of dropped classes.

These students work diligently each semester and savor any break they get, whether summer vacation or a surprise faculty strike, so they can focus on school when necessary.

Other students planned on joining teachers at the strike to help their cause — an admirable but excessive act as individuals of a third-party intruding on an argument between two large, organizational entities. We can and should express our opinions on the subject but don’t need to pretend our participation decides our fate.

The conflict has now settled with this resolution with which no one can complain. Teachers are happy with this concession and can teach their classes, salary negotiations will continue between both of the legitimate parties and students will receive world-class education from terrific teachers.

Sean Daly can be reached at [email protected] or @sdaly3orion on Twitter.