Uproar over Curtin Uni staff cuts

The Curtin Student Guild claimed to have been inundated with letters and emails from students stating their favourite lecturers, supervisors and tutors had lost their jobs.

Guild president Sam Cavallaro said Curtin University had made lecturers redundant during the middle of semester.

‘Curtin is taking more and more resources away from students,’ he said.

‘We stand shoulder to shoulder with the National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU) in their campaign over this issue’

NTEU branch president Tony Snow said there would be a net loss in traditional academic staff roles, which include both teaching and research, as the university introduced specialised teaching-focused and research-focused roles instead.

Mr Snow said a lot of staff, who enjoy research and teaching, decided to take redundancy because they would no longer be able to do both. He also raised concerns about the ‘intensive’ teaching-focused affecting students’ education.

Curtin University vice chancellor professor Deborah Terry said a ‘reshaping process’ was under way at Curtin, with the creation of new specialist academic roles, which Curtin was filling from existing staff and through international recruitment.

‘The overall number of academic staff at Curtin will not reduce, but we do expect some reduction in the number of traditional academic roles required as the new specialist roles are introduced,’ she said.

Professor Terry said a number of staff had elected to voluntarily leave or not sought or been successful in selection for the new specialist positions on offer. She said the academic reshaping process would ensure the university had the staff best suited to design and deliver innovative and engaging courses for students.

Education vice-president Miranda Wood said the Guild would be doing everything it can to fight the changes.

The protest will take place at the Rainbow Hexagon, outside Robertson Library on Curtin University’s Bentley campus, at 12.30pm on Wednesday. The protest will be part of the National Union of Students (NUS) day of action for education rights.