Fired Alberta College of Art and Design professor reinstated

OTTAWA, May 15, 2013 /CNW/ - The Canadian Association of University Teachers (CAUT) is pleased that the Alberta College of Art and Design (ACAD) has reinstated a professor fired last week following a controversial student art performance.

"We are delighted that the ACAD administration has reinstated Gordon Ferguson, one of the most senior members of the faculty at the art college," said James L. Turk, executive director of CAUT.

In a statement issued jointly by the College and the Alberta College of Art and Design Faculty Association, the College indicated that the termination was never intended to be about academic or artistic freedom, but acknowledged that is the perception its action may have created.

Both parties recognized that this incident raised important issues about the relationship between a teacher and student, and a student's work, and announced that they would co-sponsor a symposium in the coming academic year to openly explore the many dimensions of the performance and the issues it has raised.

"Although we were deeply troubled by the actions of the College administration in terminating an instructor because of its displeasure with a student's project, we give them credit for now doing the right thing and for agreeing to turn this unfortunate incident into an educational opportunity," said Turk.

The Canadian Association of University Teachers represents 68,000 academic and general staff at over 120 universities and colleges across Canada.

SOURCE: Canadian Association of University Teachers (CAUT)

For further information:

James L. Turk, Executive Director
(613) 277-0488 (c)

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Canadian Association of University Teachers (CAUT)

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