Univ. Amsterdam lecturers win contract concessions, call off grading strike
The University of Amsterdam (UvA) and protesting lecturers have reached an agreement on a new lecturer policy that improves their working conditions. The lecturers, who protested in the form of not grading papers and tests since the start of April, will pick up those duties again, Het Parool reports.
The primarily junior lecturers were unhappy with their workload and the fact that most of them worked on one-year contracts at the university. The action group Casual UvA hoped to change this by not marking exams, tests, and assignments. Because grades impact the university's money flows, they hoped to send a strong message without affecting students too much.
The agreement with the university includes no more annual contracts for junior lecturers from next year, but an appointment of 0.8 or 1 full-time job and an employment contract for at least four years. "The new policy does not solve all our concerns, but it is a step toward an improved workplace," Casual UvA said.
UvA board chairman Geert ten Dam acknowledged last month that working conditions at the universities have degraded in the past years. "The university has grown enormously in recent years without the funding growing along with it. Especially for lecturers, the workload and uncertainty have become unacceptably high. That has to change," she said.