The delay, announced last month, of the next transition round for luckless PLs facing demotion raises one or two questions. Are the reasons given the whole story? It would appear that the UCU is at last having some impact on this dishonest business. There is to be “improved guidance” on how to meet the criteria, although this is unlikely to help much when the criteria have shifted faster and more unpredictably than dunes in the Sahara. There are to be extra KAPS panels to get more PLs through CHERP’s cheerless writing competition, yet several people have reported feedback that states fellowship of the HEA is not necessarily one of the criteria. Or maybe it is? Who knows?
Introducing mentors for the transition process is likely to be as useful as mentors for KAPS: not much use at all. But the suggestion that there will be more rounds indicates an interest of the University to get its beleagured grade 10s into the more secure position of AP. Or does it? Might we assume that the University has suddenly realised that threatening its staff with demotion and a financially catastrophic pay cut undermines their self esteem, their motivation, their mental health, their enthusiasm for the job and the future of Kingston University? Has the University realised it may have legal cases and bad publicity on its hands. Has Ratty come to understand the way people react to bullying?