Conflicting WCC layoff information online

By Shanna O’Mara

Pink slips now sit in the offices of 30 full-time Westminster faculty members who received the layoff notice two weeks ago, but a Rider webpage still says professors will not lose their jobs as a result of the choir school sale.

Under a question about professors losing their jobs during the process, an answer has been provided that “there will be no layoffs as part of this announcement.”

This FAQ portion of the page was updated on March 28 after the Board of Trustees’ announcement to sell the choir school to a third party. Additional updates have been posted above.

The full answer also includes the following: “Our faculty will remain an integral part of Westminster and will be a key factor in the search for an institution to acquire the college. As more information becomes available, we will be working closely with any affected faculty.”

However, faculty have not yet been given the name of the buyer nor have they been invited to negotiate terms of their contract.

“Our intention is to have a successful transition to a new partner who will continue Westminster Choir College with the programs, faculty and staff,” said Rider spokeswoman Kristine Brown. “As was indicated in the notice to faculty, if the transaction is successful, the notice may not have even been necessary because people won’t be losing their job, they will be part of a transition. The notice was given to be certain that we complied with any requirement of the collective bargaining agreement.”

The page can be found at https://www.rider.edu/wccupdate/faqs.

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