Clark College’s Instructional Council has voted to defer professors’ sabbaticals by another year due to funding issues.
The anticipated budget decrease in the Instructional Department for the 2021-22 school year led to Vice President Sachi Horback and her department making this decision.
“The college is anticipating a $2 million budget deficit at the end of this fiscal year, in addition to decreases in revenue from the state and decreases in enrollment that will impact Clark’s budget in the upcoming year,” said Horback. “Putting sabbaticals on hold would provide $90,000 in temporary dollars that could be utilized to address some of the anticipated reductions in our revenue, enabling the college to have the resources to provide financial stability and continued support for our college community.”
Sabbaticals are usually available to allow faculty to deepen their understanding of their field, and therefore benefit the student body in some way, such as redesigned coursework and curriculum.
This deferment is one of many problems that have arisen in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. While sabbaticals can be beneficial for the college and professors’ careers, the cost necessary is projected to be too much for the budget to handle, as Horback explained in the email that was sent out to faculty describing the situation.
It may be possible for sabbaticals to return next year, but the effects of them being missed two years in a row may arise in the future.