I’m having a bad service/interpersonal-dynamics-in-the-department day.
Part 1: Being a course coordinator sucks donkey balls.
Note: There is flexibility in when we offer most upper-level and graduate courses. There is a sequence, but you can offer these out of sequence.
I am coordinating teaching assignments within the area, which was three days of being the mediator between some people fighting over a fave graduate course. That got settled.
I thought I had everyone’s preferences accommodated well. One faculty requested a higher-level upper grad course, and was assigned it. When the assignments were shared, three other “elders” from the area came to scold me for assigning this person that course off cycle. I said fine, we’ll find something else, but he did request it and we do offer higher-level courses off cycle.
No, that was not the end. One of them (a dude, of course, and one junior to me at that) came back to mansplain to me how I can avoid such mistakes in the future.
Well, fuck you and your mansplaining email.
Part 2: I was reminded that I had two children in the 13+ years since I’ve been employed here, and have never had any teaching release of any kind for either.
I had my second kid (first as faculty) midway through the tenure track, in May 200x. I accelerated the teaching to be done two weeks early and the baby was kind enough to wait after the final, so I taught the spring in full. I was back teaching in the fall. The “teaching release” amounted to not making me teach two but one course in that fall (woo-hoo!) and not even on account of “let’s help women in science because sometimes they procreate” but by using my one-course release promised in the chair’s letter when I applied (and got) an NSF grant some time before that. Woo-hoo! So basically nothing was done that was different for a woman with a small child versus just about anyone else. (We have changed the numbers of required courses since then, but at that point everyone who was research active and not brand new on the tenure track was supposed to teach three per year or buy out.)
I had my third kid (second as faculty) after tenure, in 201x. This is what this is about. He was born in late June on 201x. I didn’t teach in fall of 201x or spring 201(x+1). I was asked today by our admin how exactly I did that, because they don’t keep records and apparently it’s retroactively somehow fishy. Thank god for my annual reports, where I could go look and it’s all nicely written down. The way I did it is through academic-year buyout + teaching overload in the preceding academic year to take care of the fall, and I was actually formally on sabbatical in the spring (during that spring I organized a major conference here on campus, for which of course I got squat in credit even though it was a soul-crushing amount of extra work, but whatever).
I am so fuckin’ pissed right now.