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Monday, May 20

Brookdale Newsroom

LETTER: Faculty at Brookdale refuse to quiet down

By: Barbara Gonos, APP.com

College presidents come and go, largely unnoticed by students. What makes a college great, one worth attending? From a student’s perspective, it’s simple —it’s the faculty. It’s the faculty that motivate and inspire them. It’s the faculty that support and counsel them. It’s the faculty that create academic programs leading them to success. Faculty are beacons of light in an otherwise dark world; come, we care about you and we’re here to help.

The tide of so-called “education reform,” which is less about education and more about profit, originated in Texas and is energized by corporate giants like Pearson. It swallows up community colleges nationwide unabated, ignoring the cries of faculty. The pesky faculty, with their concerns about maintaining truly quality education, are dismissed and denigrated by the reformers.

At Brookdale Community College, faculty who have kept the college on an even keel for almost 50 years despite presidents coming and going, refused to quiet down. Faculty took concerns about compromising quality education to the Monmouth County Board of Freeholders, and endured the incessant banging gavel of the chair of the College Board of Trustees attempting to silence them.

Reportedly, one more Brookdale college president will go. What will determine whether Brookdale remains great, a college worth attending? It’s the faculty, but Brookdale’s battle-weary faculty must have the support of a new president and board that care first and foremost about the people of Monmouth County, and take cues about the quality of education, not from Texas, not from Pearson, but from those who know and care about Monmouth County’s students the most — the faculty.

Barbara Gonos

West Long Branch