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More on the leisure of the theory class


Paging Russell Jacoby, historian of contemporary American academia:

Ivy Tech locations throughout the state began the process of cutting back on part-time professors’ hours in response to the federal health care law.

Students who returned to class this week at Ivy Tech Community College-Northeast aren’t likely to notice much of a change, but things will begin to shift soon, officials said.

The cuts apply to all Ivy Tech regions in the state and are in response to a federal law that will require employers to provide health insurance to part-time employees if they work 30 or more hours a week.

Tom Snyder, president of Ivy Tech Community College, said in a statement that the college has already taken steps to reduce most of the faculty’s credit hours.

Most part-time employees’ hours have been reduced to nine credit hours – a number that Snyder believes will be low enough to meet the federal requirement.

The federal health law requirement goes into effect on Jan. 1, 2015.

At Ivy Tech Community College-Northeast, between 65 percent and 70 percent of credit hours are taught by adjuncts, or part-time lecturers, according to last year’s data.

Most part-time faculty can make about $1,500 to $4,000 teaching a course and don’t usually have health insurance, according to officials.

But soon, steps will have to be taken to ensure that those part-time lecturers aren’t exceeding nine credit hours of teaching a week, said Andrew Welch, executive director of marketing and communications.

Per this insititution’s calculations, teaching 18 credit hours while being paid $9,000 to 24,000 (with no benefits) counts as part-time employment.

On the other hand full professors at Columbia make bank, while teaching two classes per year and conferencing in Tuscany. So as Zombie David Broder reminds us, the truth lies somewhere in the middle . . .

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