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No. 13 5 April 2004


New salary proposals
The University will hold an open forum on 14 April (LT2, 1-2:30 pm, staff card required) on the new salary proposals, to be implemented 1 July 2004 after Council approval.

The salient points of the new proposal are:

  1. A new set of revised salary scales will be implemented for those new academic staff and non-academic staff appointed on and after 1 July 2004.

  2. The new salary scale for each grade of staff, academic (except for chair professors) or non-academic, shall specify a range with fixed incremental steps. There will be no automatic increments, however.

  3. A new pay raise system will be introduced, based on the budgetary situation of the University and taking into account "good" or "outstanding" performance of the staff. Half or one increment of the salary scale may be awarded.

  4. All current staff will remain on the existing scales of their respective grades, but they will be subject to a new pay raise system (and a common incremental date of 1 July). Serving staff on gratuity-bearing contracts can normally retain their existing salary scales corresponding to their grades, when their contracts are renewed.

  5. For those serving staff whose current salary has reached the maximum point of their respective scale, there will be no increment/pay raise, except promotion to a higher grade.

  6. Two new post titles: Senior Instructor I and II will be introduced for those staff members who wish to focus on teaching.

  7. Associate Professor Scale B and Scale A will be merged into one scale. The Lecturer and the Tutor/Senior Tutor grades will be phased out, with no new appointments to be made in the future.

  8. If the Government allocates additional money for cost-of-living adjustment purposes, the University will apply such an adjustment accordingly.

The aim of the proposals is to achieve a balance between budget savings while retaining salary competitiveness in retaining and recruiting staff. A consultation paper has been sent to all staff.

College developments
The Council, on 22 March, approved the incorporation of a new company, under the leadership of Council member Mr Vincent Chow, to take charge of the business and financial arrangements of the new College. Recruitment of a new Principal is also under way. Two days later, Council Chairman Sir Gordon Wu told the press that the University may seek Government approval for constructing a designated College building on campus by 2008. The proposed building could be located on the hill next to Nam Shan Yuen. Mr S M Chung, Chairman of the Council Working Group on Associate Degree Programmes, pointed out that the recommendation for a 20% salary adjustment for College employees during the 2004-08 transitional period, (effective 1 July 2004), was arrived at after conducting a thorough financial analysis and viability study of the College. The group had never taken into account the sector-wide funding cut 2005-08. He also said that no ex-gratia compensation would be provided in June 2008 because "it is clearly not a case of genuine redundancy." The staff representatives, in a letter signed by Dr John Tse addressed to the University Management, threatened to take industrial or legal action against the University. On 29 March, Sir Gordon Wu met with representatives of the Staff Association and heard their concerns. The Chairman told the staff representatives that the Council had approved the Working Groups' recommendations and these will not be revisited. The Council has made its decision and he hoped that the parties concerned can be forward looking and focus their effort in making the College a success.


Follow-up on TLQPR
At a workshop "Towards a Learner-centred Undergraduate Education," co-organized by the Education Development Office and the Quality Assurance Committee (QAC) on 26 March, 50 staff members from the academic departments and academic support offices met to discuss the importance and significance of aligning learning outcomes, teaching and learning activities, and assessment. Participants reviewed the current practices, identified issues that need to be addressed, and proposed action plans. The input of the participants will be considered in a policy paper for the QAC.


Teaching Excellence Awards
Eight candidates have been short-listed for the final selection exercise to take place on 28 April. They are Prof Paul Chu (AP), Dr Andy Chun (CS), Dr Kevin Downing (DSS), Dr Mohamed Khalifa (IS), Dr Joan Leung (SA), Dr Lim Chee-wah (BC), Mr David Santandreu (LS), and Prof Lilian Vrijmoed (BCH). Meanwhile, the TEA Plaque will be moved to Level 3, Academic Building, near the "Red Door" entrance.


In the latest round of the Innovation and Technology Fund, three CityU researchers received support. Prof Horace Ip, Chair Professor of Computer Science, has been awarded over HK$1 million, for his project on using body-driven computer multimedia technology psychotherapy. Dr Cheng Shuk-han, (BCH), received HK$2.5 million for her project on developing a system to test traditional Chinese medicine. Prof Lilian Vrijmoed, (BCH) also received support for a joint project with Hong Kong University on developing photocatalytic disinfection technology for air quality improvement.

Ms Caroline Hu Yee-man, second-year student in the Master of Fine Arts in Media Design and Technology programme, has been invited to the Cannes Film Festival in France, 9 May, under Kodak's "Emerging Filmmakers Programme."

Four students in the Division of Language Studies, Tracy Yeung, Morning Leung, Jessie Lee and Wang Jing have won prizes in the first French speech-writing contest organized by the Consulate-General of France in Hong Kong.

"Symposium on the Celebration of the 600th Anniversary of Zheng He's Maritime Expedition," organized by the Centre for Cross-Cultural Studies, 14-16 April, CCIV AV Room.


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