Senate to make Canvas mandatory for instructors beginning in 2021


Rodrigo Hernandez, News Editor

Academic Senate President Raeanne Napoleon will be sending an announcement to faculty, strongly recommending instructors to use Canvas as their online learning platform. 

Although many teachers have been using Canvas as a learning tool, students have raised concerns about the lack of consistency in which different classes are taught since the transition to online learning.

“It’s unacceptable to teach class through email,” said Napoleon, “We all went through training this summer…If you weren’t already a distance education instructor you spent hours learning it.”

In response, the senate will be adding two updated lines to administrative procedures, which would require all instructors to learn and use Canvas as the primary system for instruction and grading in the future.

“We don’t teach in pig Latin. We don’t do lectures at IHOP,” said Senate Vice President Robbie Fischer.

Over the summer instructors were trained to properly teach and conduct online classes, but since the semester has begun, the senate cannot require instructors to start teaching using Canvas at this time.

City College has gone through immense downsizing due to the transitioning to online learning. A deficit of $4.9 million and a steep drop-off in enrollment has brought about a host of obstacles.

There are currently 22 faculty proposals to be reviewed and ranked, though Superintendent-President Utpal Goswami has only confirmed two new positions.

With 22 applications from 17 departments it appears that the City College is preparing to reshape as a smaller institution. The senate hopes to raise the number of positions to be confirmed as part of their negotiations with Goswami.

President Napoleon explained the criteria for ranking faculty proposals and the method in which they will be ranked.

Senators would also have access to look over each proposal beforehand. Departments that are requesting a single position will be allotted eight minutes to present, with an additional four minutes for each additional position requested.

Although they are elected as representatives for each individual department, senators must also keep in mind the greater context in which their decisions will affect City College as a whole.

“It is entirely possible to use your ranking to come to a combination of serving your division and serving the greater good of the college,” said Senator Patricia Stark.

The senate will reconvene on Oct. 14.