Meeting Minutes: September 27, 2007

Attendance

Present: Doug Abrams, Edward Adelstein, Joanne Banks-Wallace, Judy Bolch, Leah Cohn, Michael Devaney, Michael Diamond, Jay Dow, Clark Gantzer, Arthur Jago, Norman Land, Carol Lazzaro-Weis, Alan Luger, Steve Neal, Tom Phillips, Leona Rubin, Frank Schmidt, Michael Taksar, Wilson Watt, Bill Wiebold, Geoffrey Swindells (Library), Edward Hunvald (Retirees), Vern Pierce (NTT), and Rebekah K. Hart (sec.). Absent: Charles Borduin, Bryan Garton, Brick Johnstone, Ken MacLeod, Rebecca McCathren, Joe Parcell, Anand Prahlad, James Tarr, Adrienne Hoard (Black Faculty & Staff), Bennett Greenspan (AAUP), Lori McKinley (NTT), and Fred Williams (NTT).

Approval of Minutes

Chair Frank Schmidt called the meeting to order at 3:30 p.m., in room S203 Memorial Union. [Schmidt announced that the order of the meeting changed to accommodate Council's guests first, then the remaining meeting would follow.]

Report of Officers

Schmidt reminded Council of two upcoming events, Faculty Council hosted Board of Curators Breakfast on Friday, October 5, and the Fall Semester General Faculty Meeting on Thursday, October 25. He encouraged each member of Council to attend these events and to forward him any questions. He announced that SPRAC (Strategic Planning & Resource Advisory Council) has been asked to develop a document for strategic planning and that on Friday, October 12 he will hold a meeting on the campus' speakers bureau.

Wilson Watt, Intercampus Faculty Council (IFC) representative, reported to Council that at our previous meeting it was agreed to send a letter of support for his comments regarding stem cell research and academic freedom made by Interim President Gordon Lamb. There was still very little or no support from any of the three other institutions in our system for our name change.

Action Items

2006-2007 Committee on Committee's Report. Schmidt called for any further discussion on this report prior to a vote of acceptance. There was no discussion, Council then voted to accept the report.

Discussion Items

Guests: Laurie Mintz, Associate Professor, Counseling Psychology Education and Investigative Officer for the Grievance Process; Robert Youngquist & Bobby Torres, Faculty Grievance Panel Co-chairs. Mintz gave her annual address to Council on the grievance process three-year pilot program. She covered the following topics: (a) there were 13 cases last year, three are in process, 1 in the investigative phase, one not accepted, and three mediated; (b) six cases went to full process.

Robert Torres, Professor in Agriculture Education and Robert S. Youngquist were present and discussed their role as chairpersons of the grievance process.

The following suggestions were made as regards the process.

  1. The Chancellor will have 70 days for a decision as there is a discrepancy in the grievance process.
  2. Add a step for the respondent to ask for reconsideration by the co-chairs to obtain more evidence.
  3. The Faculty Council chair will not be an integral part of the decision making process; that will be left to the co-chairs.
  4. Mediation is encouraged prior to filing of the grievance.
  5. The joint conference is a useless step.
  6. A formal mechanism needed is to ask for stays.
  7. To have a three member panel with adding a non-voting administrator.
  8. Exclude tenure decisions from the grievance process.
  9. In system-wide grievance issues the President rather than a Chancellor has decision authority.
  10. Have the "Collected Rules and Regulations" modified to define a hostile environment.

Outside of process, suggested remedies for a grievance.

  1. Define the purpose of a grievance.
  2. Make mandatory the process of mediation.

There were some comments from members of the Council. Abrams said they should not add administration to the grievance panel and also that mediation should be made mandatory. Phillips suggested that to shorten an already lengthy process, that a way to speed up the process is to take their case to court. Adelstein remarked that while admitting that the process was markedly improved the majority of remedies have been inadequate and unfair so that the grievant even when they win, actually lose. He sees little value in this process.

October Breakfast for the Board. Schmidt announced to Council that the Board breakfast will be Friday, October 5, 2007 at 8:00 a.m. in N201-202 Mark Twain Ballroom Memorial Union. He urges members to attend this event. Boone County ham will be featured on the breakfast buffet.

Faculty Council Endorsement of IFC Letter of Support - Schmidt. A sense vote was taken and Council approved the endorsement of the letter below to Interim President Lamb.

"September 14, 2007

Dr. Gordon Lamb President, University of Missouri System 321 University Hall, UM-Columbia

Dear Dr. Lamb,

On behalf of all the members of the UM Intercampus Faculty Council, I want to extend our sincere thanks to you for your forceful and important statement of principle of September 7th concerning the Cures without Cloning Amendment initiative. In our country, the fundamental and essential importance of academic freedom in the success of the faculty's work in teaching and research is all too often ignored or lost in the public discourse. Your statement is a clarion call to the citizens of Missouri and our elected representatives to honor and respect this core value that has served the university, the state of Missouri, and our national so well over the years.

We greatly appreciate your leadership and your strong voice on this issue.

Sincerely,

Gary L. Ebersole
Professor of History & Religious Studies
Chair, UMKC Faculty Senate
Chair, UM Intercampus Faculty Council"

Syllabus Statement - Phillips. After a couple minor changes in the wording, a motion was made to suspend the rules in order to put this item to a vote at this meeting. With rules suspended the item was passed by Council.

"Syllabus Statement

The University community welcomes intellectual diversity and respects student rights. Students who have questions concerning the quality of instruction in this class may address concerns to either the Departmental Chair or Divisional leader or Director of the Office of Students Rights and Responsibilities. All students will have the opportunity to submit an anonymous evaluation of the instructor(s) at the end of the course."

2009-2010 Academic Calendar - Phillips. There was a brief introductory comment made about the calendar however no discussion followed. This item will be an action item at our next meeting.

Standing Committee Reports

Faculty Affairs: Rubin, chair, reported that she is currently reviewing the grievance process and the impact of adding tuition waiver to retired faculty.

Student Affairs: Devaney, chair, reported that the MSA is requesting a tougher smoking policy on campus. SB389 makes mandatory a posting of teaching evaluation ten days before the course starts. It was pointed out that this may be difficult to carry out with TAs because those assignments are not often made until the course starts.

Adjournment

The meeting went into a brief closed session for committee appointments. The meeting adjourned at 5:00 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Edward Adelstein, Recorder