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MRFA Executive Retreat. 25 September 2010 Adapted from 6 January 2010 Retreat. The MRFA. Created by the Post-secondary Learning Act as a corporation to consist of all academic staff members

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Mrfa executive retreat

MRFA Executive Retreat

25 September 2010

Adapted from 6 January 2010 Retreat


The mrfa
The MRFA

  • Created by the Post-secondary Learning Act as a corporation to consist of all academic staff members

  • PSLA gives the Board the power of designation by “shall employ any persons it considers necessary to serve as academic staff members”

  • Collective Agreement applies to all employees as defined by Article 1.14, but this is only a definition and has no legal status


The mrfa1
The MRFA

The PSLA requires that we:

  • have an elected executive to manage our business and affairs

  • develop bylaws governing our affairs

  • negotiate an agreement with the Board containing provisions for at least:

    • the terms and conditions of employment

    • teaching responsibilities

    • vacation and leaves


The mrfa2
The MRFA

  • salaries

  • a grievance procedure

  • conditions and procedures for reassignment, suspension or dismissal by the Board

  • negotiations, including procedures for final resolution by compulsory binding arbitration (there is no binding arbitration provision in the university section)

  • The PSLA also stipulates that the Employment Standards Code and the Labour Relations Code do not apply to us


  • Our responsibilities
    Our Responsibilities

    • Bylaws give all principal responsibilities to the Executive Board, but make the President the CEO

      • fiduciary responsibility for assets of members

      • duty of representation to act in the interest of members

    • Aim for consensus; if not, support majority

    • Respectful debate

    • Confidentiality when required

    • Approximately 900 members, over 400 FT

    • 11 standing committees


    Key documents
    Key Documents

    Available on mrfa.net:

    • MRFA At-a-glance 2010-2011

    • Collective Agreement

    • Bylaws (revised May 2010)

    • MRFA Policies and Procedures Manual


    Mrfa vision statement and bylaw objectives
    MRFA Vision Statement and Bylaw Objectives

    • The MRFA is a proud community of dynamic and progressive professionals.

    • The objectives of the Association are:

      • To be the representative of its members in negotiations with the Mount Royal University Administration and Board of Governors with respect to salary matters, working conditions and other terms of employment;

      • To promote, maintain and improve the professional standing of its members and the quality of education at Mount Royal University;

      • To maintain the right of its members to exercise independent judgment in the planning and execution of their educational responsibilities;

      • To advocate for access to and the enhancement of postsecondary education; and

      • To provide a collective voice and group representation for the views of the faculty in all matters affecting the Mount Royal University community.


    MRFA Roles

    • Negotiations

    • Contract Administration

    • Communications

      • Web

      • Newsletter

    • Academic affairs and governance

    • Strategic task forces

    • Joint committees

    • MRU committees

    • Senior selection committees

    • Budget

    • Finances

    • Internal lobbying

    • Facilities maintenance

    • Faculty conflict resolution

    • Ethics

    • Professionalism

    • Professional development

    • Leadership development

    • Celebration of career milestones

    • Institutional relations

    • Faculty welfare

    • External relations

    • FC staff management

    • FC management

    • Strategic vision of nature of association


    The mrfa 2004 2009
    The MRFA 2004-2009

    • Collective Agreement

      • Binding arbitration replaces strike as final dispute resolution because of a change to the PSLA

      • Workload adjustment

      • Extended part-time contracts

      • Establishment of two work patterns

      • Establishment of academic rank

      • Revisions to the tenure system

      • Elimination of mandatory retirement

      • Phased retirement

      • Part-time service honoraria

      • Health spending accounts

      • Chair’s sabbaticals

      • Enhancements to PD

      • Performance review of faculty


    The mrfa 2010
    The MRFA 2010

    • Collective Agreement

      • Separate processes for PT appointment, reappointment and workload allocation

      • Fixed-term part-time appointments with optional pension

      • Cross-appointments article

      • Laboratory instructor article

      • Incorporation of APTC criteria for promotion

      • Separate grids for each rank

      • Possibility of increment on maternity leave

      • Professional Development Re-allocation Fund for FT

      • Changes to the grievance procedure with a view to more effective processing of grievances

      • Joint committee for review and interpretation of CA

      • Pilot on tenurable 75% professional practitioner appointments


    The mrfa 2004 2010
    The MRFA 2004-2010

    • Internal Relationships

      • Interest-focused bargaining

      • Working dynamic with senior administration

      • Joint Task Forces on transition issues relevant to faculty life

      • Budget process transparency

      • Defining boundaries with Board of Governors and GFC


    The mrfa 2004 20101
    The MRFA 2004-2010

    • External Relationships

      • University Faculty Associations

        • CAUT membership application was unsuccessful Fall 2005

        • Thaw in relations with some Alberta university faculty associations, but only person-to-person

        • Currently no relationship with University of Calgary Faculty Association

      • College Faculty Associations

        • Membership divided on whether to remain in ACIFA

        • ACIFA seems less anxious about our transition intentions, eased by MacEwan’s status

        • Initial liaison work with MacEwan and Red Deer in 2006-2007, ongoing with MacEwan

        • MRU will be establishing collaborative programs and transfer arrangements with Alberta colleges; have asked VP Academic for early involvement in discussions of related faculty issues


    The mrfa 2004 20102
    The MRFA 2004-2010

    • MRFA Governance and Services

      • Growth from 625 to approximately 900 members

      • Faculty Centre Renovation 2007

        • Upgrading of kitchen, meeting, social spaces and technology

      • Formalization and professionalization of internal Human Resources functions

        • Position descriptions, employment contracts, periodic evaluation, contract negotiations

      • Broadening of MRFA committee structure re: strategic gaps

      • Comprehensive Bylaw review in 2008


    The mrfa 2004 20091
    The MRFA 2004-2009

    • MRFA Governance and Services

      • Expansion and realignment of the MRFA Executive positions re: strategic gaps and governance change

      • Exec Representation (5 year average)

        • Arts 46%

        • Business 18%

        • Conservatory 5%

        • Library 3%

        • Science and Tech 13%

        • Teaching and Learning 15%


    Mrfa issues 2010 2015
    MRFA Issues 2010-2015

    • Integration of new faculty, including an orientation to governance at MRU

    • Implementation of Tenure System II and promotion to Professor

    • Balance between teaching and scholarship

    • Part-time faculty issues

    • Changes in administrative personnel and effectively representing faculty interests on selection committees

    • Approach to collective bargaining


    Mrfa issues 2010 20151
    MRFA Issues 2010-2015

    • Potential GFC/Collective Agreement conflicts

    • Relationships with ACIFA, CAUT and other faculty associations

    • Relationships with support staff and students’ associations

    • MRFA budget planning

    • SAIT designation charter challenge

    • Equitable participation in MRFA

    • Teaching assistants

    • Open studies


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