Thursday, March 30, 2023
March 30, 2023

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Clark College, faculty union reach tentative contract deal

By , Columbian Education Reporter

Clark College and its faculty union have reached a tentative agreement in contract negotiations.

The Association for Higher Education, which represents full- and part-time faculty at the Vancouver community college, announced the news Tuesday evening after a full day of bargaining.

Classes will be canceled Wednesday so the union can vote on the contract. Details of the deal will not be announced by either side until after membership has voted.

Faculty were on strike for two days over salary negotiations. The union and college have been in bargaining for 15 months.

“It was our unity and strength and solidarity that got us our agreement,” said Suzanne Southerland, union president and a professor in the communications department.

“In reaching an agreement, Clark College can get back to what we do best: serving students,” Clark College Interim President Sandra A. Fowler-Hill said in a statement Tuesday night. “We welcome our faculty and our students back to school.”

The Association is affiliated with the Washington Education Association, which also represents K-12 faculty in the state. WEA members from area school districts, as well as members from other unions, joined faculty on the picket lines Tuesday.

“We had so much support,” Southerland said.

The union will hold a general membership meeting at 1 p.m. Wednesday to review and hold a ratification vote on the proposed contract.

The Association for Higher Education represents more than 400 faculty. Clark College has 9,186 students.

Columbian Education Reporter