Meeting Minutes: May 6, 2010

Attendance

Members Present: Clyde Bentley, Michael Diamond, Ann Harrell, Rebecca Johnson, Victoria Johnson, Jonathan Krieckhaus, John Lande, April Langley, Kenneth MacLeod, Joseph Parcell, Leona Rubin, Stephen Sayers, James Tarr, Harry Tyrer, Douglas Wakefield, J. Wilson Watt, Adam Whaley-Connell, Bill Wiebold, Shelley Worden (Librarians), Edward Hunvald (MURA), Stephen Montgomery-Smith (AAUP), Rebekah K. Hart (sec.). Members Absent: Leah Cohn, John Dwyer, Arthur Jago, Kattesh Katti, Norman Land, Tom Marrero, Rebecca McCathren, Xiaoguang Ni, Johannes Schul, Michael Taksar, Ronald Wheeland, Fred Williams (NTT), Sam White (NTT), Charles Nilon (Black Faculty & Staff), Nicole Monnier (NTT), Jason Aubrey (NTT).

Approval of Minutes

Chair Leona Rubin called the meeting to order at 3:30 p.m., in S203 Memorial Union. The 4-22-10 Faculty Council minutes were approved as submitted. The agenda order was suspended in order to take our guests first.

Report of Officers

Rubin briefly reported that pre-enrollment figures for fall 2010 are currently available and our campus is anticipating the largest freshman class on record.  Further, ACT scores and graduate school applications are both rising.

Action Items

Service Award Plaques.  Service award plaques were presented to Michael Diamond, J. Wilson Watt, Kenneth MacLeod, and Adam Whaley-Connell for their service on Faculty Council.

Discussion Items

Faculty Grievance Process. Guests: Grievance Review Panel and Grievance Oversight Committee.  Lori Mintz of the Grievance Review Panel reported to Council on the first year of the new process.  There are two faculty on the GRP and one administrator. There are five faculty on the Oversight Committee.  Mintz said that so far there have been four cases under the new process.  One was completed on time, one case was not accepted by the GRP, one case was withdrawn, and one case is in process, having asked for an eight week extension because another grievance was added to it.  Historically the old (or previous) process was slow typically two to three years in duration.  The new process is much more timely and seems to be working well within a shorter timeframe.  There are many concerns about the addition of an administrator to the GRP especially in instances when the administrator had to recuse themselves.  The replacement administrators didn't realize that they were full participants and not observers.  There were other problems associated with the administrator member in most instances they had pre-knowledge of the cases and thus needed to be replaced; therefore, it was problematic to find an effectual administrative replacement.  Another new aspect was the granting of release time to the GRP members, unfortunately no release time was granted to the OC, and further on some of the other campuses no release time was granted at all.  Some other problematic areas have been identified as: communication between GRP and OC; committee charges need to be refined; keeping members informed; defining conflicts of interest and how that impacts the current membership; pre-filing instruction process needs to change where it conflicts with divisional grievance processes; and a follow-up of purpose to the completion of the process on resolution of problematic and systemic issues.  The non tenure track faculty and other unranked contingent faculty are covered under this process, however only tenured faculty can serve on the two committees.  A report will be prepared upon receiving additional statements from the other campuses provided to the Intercampus Faculty Council (IFC).  This is the first year of a two year pilot of this program.

Year-end Reports.  Council subcommittee chairs were reminded that committee reports will be due at our next meeting in June.

Students with Excessive Absences - Sayers.  Student Affairs committee chair Sayers met with the Registrar's Office to discuss student absences that occur at the beginning of the semester and the practice of over-enrolling.  Sayers recommended some language changes that would take the registrar out of the process and leaves policy about student attendance to the faculty.  This will be an action item at the next Council meeting in June.

Standing Committee Reports

Academic Affairs:   Parcell, chair, reported that at the next Council meeting in June his committee will be bringing forward some changes to incomplete grade (I) policy for Council's review.

Any Other Business

Faculty Council voted to support the students in their participation in the Campus Conservation Nationals "Compete to Reduce Letter of Commitment".

Adjournment

In closed session the second 2010-2011 Council election was held and the results are: Stephen Sayers, chair, Student Affairs; Leah Cohn, chair, Diversity Enhancement; Harry Tyrer, chair, Fiscal Affairs; Victoria Johnson, chair, Academic Affairs; and the election for Faculty Affairs chair will take place at the July meeting.  The meeting adjourned at 4:45 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Shelley Worden,  Recorder