Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Tony Palmeri's Letter

This letter comes by way of

Was it really necessary to take a cheap and borderline libelous shot at me in order to make your point that UWO teachers should teach more classes? You write:

"Any full-time UWO teacher
who has the ability to teach,
write, conduct research, host
a radio program, participate
in a weekly public affairs
cable television show, support
a Web site, be active in the
community issues, work as a
political activist and run for
office almost certainly has
time to teach another class."

I'm assuming you are talking about me, since I don't know of anyone else on our campus meeting that description. The issue on our campus is whether Ph.D faculty on a 3 course load to support professional and scholarly activities should be on a 4 course load. Had you bothered to ask me, you would have found out that I am already on a 4 course per semester teaching load, the maximum load for Ph.D faculty in the UW System. NO ONE, not even the staunchest enemies of the UW in the state legislature, has suggested that the standard teaching load for Ph.D faculty should be more than 4
courses per semester. Surely you are not suggesting that I should be teaching 5 courses per semester because I make time to meet my citizenship obligations?

Your editorial implies that I am on a reduced teaching load in order to support extra-curricular activities including political work, which is borderline libelous. The fact of the matter is that I am NOT on a reduced teaching load. I regularly put in 70-80 hour weeks to be able maintain teaching excellence while participating in the activities you mention and many others. I do not miss my classes ,my office hours, my advising appointments, faculty meetings, or any other UW responsibilities because of these activities. Last year the Wisconsin Communication Association gave me a Distinguished Teacher Award, in large part because they appreciate how I am a model of the citizen-educator for my students.

Finally, your editorial also implies that I am one of the faculty who signed the petition complaint. Take a look at it and you will not find my name.

Best, -Tony

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