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Executive Order Concerning Campus Free Speech Issued

On March 21, President Trump delivered on his plan to issue an executive order that would withhold federal research funding to colleges that do not allow free speech on their campuses. It is uncertain how the executive order will be enforced, but it requires a dozen federal agencies to work with the Office of Management and Budget to ensure colleges that receive federal research funds conform to current federal law and regulations regarding free speech. The Department of Education must also release program-level data in the College Scorecard on information like student outcomes. Critics of the order call it unnecessary and say it is a solution in search of a problem.. Read More.

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College Faculty Salaries See Slight Gains

Despite full-time college faculty members’ salaries increasing two percent this academic year, inflation tells another story. When factoring in inflation to data from the American Association of University Professors’ (“AAUP”) latest compensation report, faculty salaries nearly remained the same from last year. The AAUP’s findings also reflect the CUPA-HR’s recent report, which says median faculty salaries jumped approximately 1.7 percent this year without inflation factored in. Results from the American Association of University Professors Faculty Compensation Survey are available on the Inside Higher Ed website. For guidance with your institution’s tax and accounting needs, check out Cherry Bekaert’s Education industry group .

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Elon University Adjuncts Unionize

In an effort to improve working conditions, adjunct professors at Elon University voted this week to form a union. The second of its kind among faculty members in North Carolina, the union aims to negotiate pay raises, benefits, and other work-related matters for adjuncts at the private university. Many Elon adjunct professors supported creating a union because they had to take part-time jobs to make ends meet, and having a class canceled would cause a financial setback. While adjuncts await the National Labor Relations Board to conduct a formal review, Elon University said it is currently gathering information about the. Read More.

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FBI Investigation Uncovers Major College Admissions Scheme

Over 50 indictments were announced Tuesday related to an alleged scheme aimed to help college applicants gain admission to elite schools. According to an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation called “Operation Varsity Blues”, the scheme involved wealthy parents paying bribes of up to $6.5 million to college coaches to place their children on the lists of recruited athletes. Some bribes enlisted proctors to help the applicants take their SAT or ACT. It stunned several admissions leaders to hear about the allegations, and some college counselors noted they had been approached before about related schemes. More on Operation Varsity Blues is available. Read More.

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President May Soon Issue Executive Order on Campus Free Speech

President Trump announced over the weekend plans to issue an executive order that would withhold federal research funds to colleges that do not support free speech. The president did not offer details on how the executive order would work or who will determine whether an institution violated free speech, but he referenced incidents at the University of California, Berkeley for declaring the order. In response to the proposed executive order, the American Council on Education’s Terry Hartle said he was curious how a federal agency would try to enforce the order and suggested that some people may create incidents just. Read More.

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Provosts Survey Covers Impact of Me Too Movement on Campuses

This year’s Inside Higher Ed Survey of Chief Academic Officers marks the first time the survey features questions concerning the Me Too movement. The 2019 edition reflects answers from 475 provosts and chief academic officers while they face pressure to address harassment issues on college campuses. Some survey’s highlights include: 46 percent of provosts reported having at least one faculty member facing harassment allegations in the past year. 69 percent of provosts agree that higher education has tolerated harassment by faculty members for far too long. Click here for more on the 2019 Inside Higher Ed Survey of Chief Academic Officers.

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