Ferris State University facing faculty strike as students return to class

BIG RAPIDS, Mich. - Administrators at Ferris State University say fall semester classes will be starting as scheduled even though many faculty members are going on strike.

The strike by tenured teachers at the university in Big Rapids was beginning Monday after a Sunday negotiating session didn't result in a new contract agreement with the Ferris Faculty Association, which represents tenured teachers.

The 14,000-student school says on its website that some professors might not be present for classes but that students should attend as scheduled.

Faculty union President Charles Bacon tells The Detroit News that he's frustrated with lack of progress. The union represents some 450 full-time faculty members.

School spokeswoman Michelle Rasmussen says declining enrollment has reduced tuition revenue.

Bacon says non-tenured teachers have a contract through 2020.

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