Faculty Senate Minutes
February 21, 2008
Call to Order:
Call to order: 3:10 pm; Riggle Room; ADUC.
Senators Absent: Karen Baker, Ned Breschel, Glen Colburn, Marcia Cooper, Lynda Donathan, Cary Feria, Diana Haleman, Latonya Hesterberg, Julia Hypes, Shari Kidwell, Karen Lafferty, Sam Nataraj, Charles Patrick, David Peyton, Manuel Probst, Robert Royar, David Smith, Scott Wymer
Visitor: President Wayne D. Andrews
- Faculty Senate pictures will be taken on March 6, 2008.
- Open forums will be held on February 25, March 3, and March 4 as part of the interview process for the position of Chief of Police.
Chair Jerde informed the members that President Andrews and Dr. Hughes met with the Executive Council to discuss a proposed policy change. The proposed policy is being presented today for a first reading. The President and the Provost wanted to present the proposed policy to the Senate members as soon as possible to allow the Senate members and the faculty ample time to review the policy prior to presentation to the Board of Regents on March 13, 2008. Chair Jerde stated “that it is very important that we have this input and use today for questions and getting clarification and so on; we have discussed what will happen; if the motion is tabled without a discussion today, I will call a Senate meeting for next Thursday so that we can do this. If it is remanded to Professional Policies or any other committee, they will be returning it to us unchanged.” Chair Jerde stated that no one is trying to force the policy to be approved, but merely to have a time for questions and discussion.
President Andrews provided the members with background information on the budget situation which brought about the need for the policy revision. The Council on Post-Secondary Education informed the President over the Christmas break that the University would incur a three percent ($1.5 million) budget cut from the state for the current fiscal year. In late December, the President was notified to plan for an additional twelve percent cut. The cuts could amount to $7.3 million beginning July 1, 2008.
Since the beginning of January the Cabinet has been looking at how to manage the possible budget cuts. They are looking at:
- Reorganization in administration
- Outsourcing selected functions
- Eliminating things that are not essential to the core business of the University i.e., academic instruction
- Increasing revenue
The policies related to Financial Exigency were reviewed and it was determined that PAc-26 needed to be revised. [Copies of the existing policy (PAc-26) and the proposed new policy (PAc-35) were provided to the members.] The President asked the members to provide feedback.
PAc-35 is a new policy for termination of faculty for financial exigency or for discontinuance/reduction of program. PAc-26 would continue to be used for termination of faculty for cause until the new PAc-36, termination of faculty for cause, is completed.
The President indicated that prior to this meeting he was asked “How does this relate to the business of General Education Review and the Academic Program Audit? Is there a conspiracy here that the Administration wants to use this somehow to bring all this together?” The President said there is no relationship other than there is a possibility that the Program Audit could lead to the recommendation of discontinued programs. The President said he would be glad to answer questions about this.
Chair Jerde will send an electronic copy of PAc-35 to the Senate membership. A member suggested the Senate have a special meeting on February 28 to continue discussion of the PAc because there were several members absent. Chair Jerde reminded the members that this is a first reading for clarification and not debate on what should be in the policy and asked that suggestions for revisions be forwarded to him or Charlie Patrick prior to the next meeting.
The following items were discussed:
- Where the University would be looking to cut money from the budget
- The major problems with PAc-26
- Possibility for a person to take a leave whose position is being eliminated
- Preference to rank and years of service in determination of termination
- Interpretation of the list of items under - ORDER OF TERMINATION SEQUENCE – 2 in PAc-35
- What is meant by service and how to measure it
- Adding teaching excellence to the list of items under - ORDER OF TERMINATION SEQUENCE – 2 in PAc-35
- Interpretation of the items listed under - ORDER OF TERMINATION SEQUENCE – 2 in PAc-35 will be defined as the evaluation process is redesigned
- How the evaluation and termination process is conducted (peers/administration)
- Possible number of people or programs that may be affected
- Timeline for budget cuts and the implementation of PAc-35
- The unit of analysis for tenure is at the University level
- Possibility of leave, sabbatical or University supported retraining if termination is due to reduction of programs
A member asked if the special meeting next week would be a continuation of the first reading. Chair Jerde said the goal of the special meeting is to provide a time for input and discussion for all the members. He suggested that members provide revisions in writing to be presented to the full Senate membership. The Executive Council will determine if the special meeting on February 28 will be a continuation of the first reading or a second reading. Regent Irons moved that the Senate not move to a final vote until the March 6 meeting regardless of what happens next week. Senator Buck seconded the motion. Motion passed.
Adjournment: 4:30 p.m.