GLEN ELLYN – This afternoon, hundreds of College of DuPage Faculty Association (CODFA) members, students and community members will wear red and rally on the College of DuPage (COD) campus. The rally begins at 1 p.m. and will help send off the CODFA bargaining team as they enter their final scheduled mediation session with the COD Board of Trustees (BOT).
“This is about coming to a fair agreement and avoiding a strike,” CODFA President Shannon Toler said. “We are using our collective voice to demand better for our students. We want to be heard. Our message is simple: teaching matters. Our students succeed when we invest in our faculty. We need a fair contract, and we need it now.”
CODFA and the BOT have been negotiating since March 2019. CODFA’s current contract expired on Aug. 14, which means full-time faculty are working without a contract. Last week, CODFA voted overwhelmingly to authorize a strike. The vote gives the CODFA bargaining team the authority to call a strike. It was the first time CODFA has taken a strike vote in 25 years.
“The professors I have had during my time at the College of DuPage have supported and encouraged me. They have instituted new and exciting curricula and ways to educate students that truly foster excitement in the classrooms and support further thought on the topics discussed beyond what may be relevant for a test,” COD student James-Oliver Mack said. “These educators deserve fair compensation for their tireless efforts in supporting students’ pursuit of knowledge. Without fair compensation, these exemplary and devoted professors will have no choice but to leave this institution for one that will fairly and adequately compensate them for everything they do for the institution, their students and the community.”
CODFA represents 304 full-time, COD faculty. COD serves more than 26,000 students and is a designated Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI).
The rally will begin today at 1 p.m. at the Chappy statue on the COD campus (425 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn). At about 1:30 p.m., rally-goers will march with the CODFA bargaining team as they head into their last mediation session. For more information on CODFA and negotiations, please visit this website.
The 135,000 member Illinois Education Association (IEA-NEA) is the state’s largest education employee’s organization. IEA represents preK-12 teachers outside of the city of Chicago and education support staff, higher education faculty, retired education employees and students preparing to become teachers, statewide.