Membership FAQ

Basic Eligibility Summer Terms Retirement & Return
Maintaining  Eligibility ESL Classes Local Membership
Re-eligibility Continuing Ed Classes Fair Share vs. Active Membership
Miscellaneous Questions

Basic Eligibility

  • According to the 2011-2015 contract, you must be a part-time instructor, counselor, or adviser who teaches credit courses.
  • Additionally, you must have 3 years of back-to-back teaching with 12 credit hours spread over both semesters in the 3rd academic year, exclusive of Summers.  The number of hours taught in the 1st and 2nd year do not matter.

Maintaining Eligibility

  • In order to maintain your eligibility in the union, you must teach at least 6 eligible credit hours per year, excluding Summers.


  • In order to re-qualify for union membership after having failed to meet the above maintenance requirements, you must teach at least 6 eligible credit hours each year for one academic year (excluding Summers).

Teaching During Summer Semesters

  • Unfortunately, teaching during the summer does not count towards union eligibility and instructors who teach exclusively during the Summer term are not eligible for union membership.  Our contract specifies the academic year, and Summers are not included.

ESL/Developmental Courses

  • These courses are credit generating classes.  They count toward eligibility.

Continuing Education Courses

  • Most of these courses do not generate credit hours.  If you teach these courses, the chances are you will be denied union eligibility, unless you also teach credit classes.  These courses will NOT count toward the hours needed for eligibility if you also teach credit classes.  They will, however, count as part of your PT load.

Retirement & Return

Common retirement questions:

Q: I was a full-time faculty member, and have retired.  I am now back, or coming back next term, to teach part-time.  When can I expect to be part of the union?
A: According to HR, in a decision made by our former HR director several years ago, you are treated as a new hire, and must go through the eligibility period just like a new hire.

Q: What happens if I retire and come back?  Do I still have membership?
The best scenario is to do your retirement to correspond to the Summer, since Summers are not counted as part of the academic year, and the eligibility list comes to us on Aug. 1st.  Because you retired, your name will not appear on the list.  However, if you teach in the Fall term, and notify both Human Resources and your CODAA Membership Committee Chair, we can get your name re-included on the list.  The list comes out only once a year.

Q: What if I retire during the Fall Semester?
A: Make sure you’ve had enough hours the previous Spring/year for your name to be on that list mentioned above.  Then, if in Spring term you teach 6 hours, you may continue your membership.  Again, contact both Human Resources and your CODAA Membership Committee Chair.  We would also recommend letting HR know you are returning for Spring; it is not a foregone conclusion that they will include your name on the list otherwise.

Local Association Membership

  • PT faculty that do not qualify for membership in the bargaining unit can still join the local association.  Local members are not covered by the union contract, nor do they pay IEA/NEA dues – just local dues.  Additionally, local members can take part in association meetings and serve on non-contract covered committees.  They may vote on non-contract issues, however, they may not vote for IEA/NEA representatives, nor hold Executive Board positions, per IEA/NEA regulations.  Click here for a Local Association Membership Form.

Fair Share (Agency) vs. Active (IEA/NEA) Membership

  • Faculty covered under CODAA’s contract fall into two categories: agency and active.  Agency is the classification given to those people who decide not to join the IEA/NEA.  Such local members pay 80% of the regular dues, or their “fair share” of the cost of the contract coverage.  This includes anything covered by the contract.  It does not include voting privileges, NEA dues, TAB insurance, or IEA/NEA benefits. What the agency member is not paying for is the Political Action Fee, half of which is given to our unit when we want it, for such things as Board of Trustee elections.  Agency (fair share) members also cannot hold Local positions, such as any of the Executive Board of the Local, nor can they represent the Local for any conference or Representative Assembly.

Miscellaneous Membership Questions

Q I have taught at COD for a number of years, and assumed I was a member of CODAA.  How can I find out if I am?
A:  Two ways: 1) Look at your pay advice (available via MyAccess under the Employee Menu).  If you see the deduction “Union Dues PT Fac” or something very similar to that, then you are indeed a member of the unit.  Your pay advice should also indicate if you are paying dues as an Active/Full or Fair Share member.  2) If you are still in doubt, or can’t find your pay advice on MyAccess, simply contact your CODAA Membership Committee Chair.

Q I don’t know if I am an active member or a fair share one.   How can I find out?
A:  If you were an IEA/NEA member from the previous year, you should have gotten your annual IEA/NEA membership card by Fall midterm.  This card has you IEA/NEA ID number, which is used to gain access to benefits on the websites.  Secondly, contact the CODAA Membership Committee Chair of your local unit, who can check our local listing.

Q:  Card?  What card?  I’ve never gotten a card.
A:  Adjunct locals have a unique problem; we can alternate between being employed and unemployed.  As such, we send the names to Springfield twice a year: September and January.  Dues are deducted on a semester basis, so if you don’t teach one of the terms, you don’t pay back dues. Sometimes names get deleted, or are overlooked, or even applications lost.  Bottom line:  if you filled out an application, and you never get your card, we don’t always know it! Contact the CODAA Membership Committee Chair ASAP!

(By the way, the IEA is working on fixing this problem.  They have invested in a new system, and according to comments from other adjunct locals, CODAA enjoys a better than average history concerning this problem.)

Q: I want to join as an active (IEA/NEA) member, but I don’t like contributing to a political action fund.  Is there anything I can do?
A:  Yes, you can still join as an active member. The amount for the Political Action Fund will still be deducted.  Then, YOU must write to Springfield (the address is on the application form) and request a refund of that money.  Don’t let this fee keep you from joining and participating in our union and local.

Q I teach at another school that is also IEA/NEA union.  Do I have to pay dues twice?
A:  No, absolutely not.  Wherever your primary membership is, the dues are taken out there.  The only thing you pay at the secondary location is the local dues.  However, the CODAA Membership Committee Chair needs to be notified. You will be asked to verify this other membership for our records. We will not submit your name to Springfield, as your IEA/NEA voting privileges, per federal election law, can only be from one spot. You local dues will be deducted from your paycheck.  We will count you as an active member for local voting privileges, such as voting on our contract, unit officers, and such.

Q Are union dues tax deductible?
A:  Union dues may be listed under itemized deductions on the Schedule A attachment to form 1040. Union dues can be added in the Job Expenses and Certain Miscellaneous Expenses Deductions category,  which is subject to the 2% adjusted gross income (AGI) limit. Please note that CODAA is not qualified to provide tax advice; consult a tax preparation professional to determine your particular case..

Q I really, really can’t countenance unions…I have moral issues against them.  What do I do?
A:  The dues will still be deducted from your check, and you will still enjoy contract coverage, such as salary, grievance, etc.  However, you must write a letter to Human Resources and to CODAA, and name a charity to which the entire deducted amount will be given.  CODAA will send the letter to membership processing in Springfield, who will reply to you, as well as send a check for the amount to your specified charity. Your status in the local is that of an agency member.

Q I am being called in to an investigatory meeting with my dean.  What rights do I have?
A: You have the right to have a union representative present if you believe that the meeting may lead to disciplinary action. See the article on Weingarten Rights on the IEA/NEA web site.