The union for nontenured instructors at the University of Chicago has reached a tentative agreement with school administration that secures a 7.5% raise through 2024 and expands paid parental leave days before the new academic term begins.
Members of Faculty Forward, which represents more than 300 full- and part-time instructors, must vote to ratify the contract before it takes effect, meetings that are expected to happen within the next month. The group’s first contract expired April 30 and was extended through September during about six months of bargaining, according to Jason Grunebaum, a union leader and instructor of South Asian Languages and Civilizations.
The new contract would increase pay for all instructors by at least 2% this year, then at least 2.5% and 3% in subsequent school years, according to Faculty Forward. The agreement also extends paid parental leave to salaried part-time faculty, increases professional development funding in certain disciplines and adds promotional opportunities for lecturers who teach three courses per year for two consecutive academic years.
Faculty Forward organized in 2015 under the Service Employees International Union Local 73, which launched similar campaigns at other local campuses, including Loyola University Chicago. The University of Chicago union ratified its first three-year contract in 2018.
“The agreement reflects our core principles and achieves many of our most important bargaining aims,” the union’s bargaining committee said in emailed update to members.
The University of Chicago issued a statement about the agreement, saying it “deeply values the important contributions that lecturers and professors of the practice in the arts make to the University’s distinctive educational experience.”