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Faculty grow uneasy as universities scramble to bring students back to campus

Faculty rebellions are simmering on campuses across the country, said Walter Benn Michaels, a member of the academic freedom committee at the American Association of University Professors and a professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Longtime professors fear that their age makes them more susceptible to the more serious effects of the virus. Younger professors worry about having child care options if schools and day cares aren’t fully in session.

And professors without tenure or employment protections worry that if they don’t come to class, they could lose their jobs, he said.

“People are upset,” Michaels said. “People get tired of being told by deans and provosts what the best thing to do is. If there’s anything we should be consulted about, it is how we do teaching.”