Faculty and staff voice concerns with the spring semester



FAMU official crest
Courtesy: famu.edu

Florida A&M University’s faculty senate meeting was held Tuesday, Oct. 20 via Zoom. The meeting, led by Faculty Senate President Professor, Ann Marie Cavazos, discussed

concerns about face-to-face classes, which are projected to begin again this spring.

FAMU plans for more face-to-face teaching to occur next semester, but still much is in the air. So far, all that is known about the 2021 semester is that it will start on Jan. 6, and the first three days of classes will be remote. In-person classes will begin the following Monday, on Jan. 11.

There is a proposal that students will have the option to choose between remote classes or face-to-face classes. This raises concerns for many professors who believe that the university will not be able to successfully track people who have contracted COVID-19.

Another major concern for the upcoming semester is government funding. With financial issues within the state of Florida, adjustments have to be made pertaining to how some schools will receive funding.

“USF has already decided to cut funding for their education department, what could that mean for us?” asked Roscoe Hightower, a professor at the FAMU School of Business and Industry.

FAMU’s administration feels confident that they will handle these hard situations in a fair way.

“We must be consistent. We are hoping that each college and school is working out what is most appropriate,” Provost Maurice Edington said.

With a lot of major concerns as the spring semester approaches, the university administration is hopeful that all faculty, staff, and students will come back to campus safely.

“We are all in this together,” says Edington.

Other topics discussed included the process of reviewing hardcopy applications that have taken longer than expected due to safety precautions with the pandemic.

Even with concerns, faculty and staff continue to prepare for the upcoming semester. The university is still working out details to ensure safety of an in-person semester. The deadline for deans, faculty, and staff to finalize their spring schedule is this Friday.