Minutes - September 10, 2003
Approved by the Faculty Senate October 1, 2003
Vol. XXXVIII, No. 4
MINUTES OF THE FACULTY SENATE MEETING
September 10, 2003
The Faculty Senate of Southeast Missouri State University met on Wednesday, September 10, 2003, in the Party Room of the University Center. The following Senators were present: Paul Lloyd (presiding), Susan Swartwout, Rusty Curtis, Rick Althaus, Warren Anderson, Janice Chadha, Jim Champine, Mike Cobb, Dan Dunavan, Roy Farris, Bruce Hathaway, Al Hayward, Linda Heitman, Ted Loso, Anne Marietta, Cheryl Milde, Bruce Mims, David Naugler, Winfred Pitts, Craig Roberts, Nicholas Tibbs, Mohan Tikoo, Larry Underberg, and Min Zou. Senate Alternate Craig Elder, non-voting Senate representative Michael Best from the Department of Agriculture, and Senate Secretary Paula Cunningham also were present. President Dobbins, Provost Stephens and Martha Zlokovich also attended.
Chair Paul Lloyd announced that Dr. Dean Shackelford, Alternate Senator representing the Department of English, had recently passed away. Senator Swartwout, a colleague of Dr. Shackelford’s in the Department of English, emphasized the significant contributions that he had made to his students and the University and noted that he will be greatly missed. Chair Lloyd then asked for a moment of silence in remembrance of Dr. Shackelford.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
The Minutes of September 3, 2003 (Vol. XXXVIII, No. 3) were approved as written.
REPORT FROM THE CHAIR
The Student Government Representative to the Faculty Senate will be Ryan Kloeppel. Michael Best of the Department of Agriculture has agreed to be the Faculty Senate Representative to the Student Government Association.
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Chair Lloyd also mentioned the following items:
Student Government will be asking for Faculty Senate feedback about a change from six-week interim grades to eight-week grades.
The Board of Regents September 12, 2003 agenda includes action items of interest to the Faculty Senate: the Program Review Processes and Timelines, and the Tenure/Non-Tenure Track Faculty Ratio.
As a result of Senate concerns about the short amount of time for departments to submit written responses for the program review, the due date for the departmental responses has been extended until October 23.
REPORT FROM THE ADMINSTRATIVE LISASION:
The Provost asked to move her report to later in the meeting when President Dobbins would join us.
In response to the question, whether faculty members were notified of eligibility to stand for tenure by the July 1 deadline given in the recently-approved Tenure Policy. Provost Stephens said a list had been sent to deans in early July. It was noted that some faculty members were not subsequently notified by their respective deans or chairs. Provost Stephens said she would send the list to the deans again.
Senator Curtis, chair of the committee, reported that additional calls are going out to fill a few open positions on Senate committees. Several positions are available on the Commencement Committee. Also, the Membership Committee will be addressing the issue of Membership Committee members serving on other committees.
Senator Curtis stated that the Department of Agriculture has requested that Michael Best, a first year faculty member, represent their views on the Faculty Senate as a non-voting member.
Senator Althaus, chair of the Committee, reported information about the tenure/non-tenure track faculty ratio indicating that Southeast’s current ratio of 88% is not atypical when compared to AAUP data. Also, the Committee requests feedback on how the Promotion and Tenure bills are working.
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Senator Tibbs, chair of the committee, indicated the committee will be considering health care benefits, the level of recent raises, and retirement incentive options. Senator Heitman reviewed concerns about the health care consortium and indicated it was not feasible to leave the consortium before July 2004. The Committee requests feedback about positive and negative experiences that faculty have had in regard to claims submitted to the consortium.
Senator Tikoo, chair of the committee, reported that the committee will meet September 17, at the Johnson Faculty Centre. The Committee will discuss whether or not and how the Academic Dishonesty Policy should be added to syllabi, the Five-Year Academic Calendar and the issue of six-week interim grades versus eight-week grades.
Senator Marietta, chair of the committee, reported that the committee will meet September 17, at the Johnson Faculty Centre to discuss updates to the Faculty Handbook and the Kent Library archives. It was recommended that earlier versions of the Faculty Handbook in the Archives would be useful for making comparisons.
Senator Roberts, chair of the committee, reported that the committee will meet September 17, at the Johnson Faculty Centre. Items for consideration will include the use of appropriate procedures and committees for making decisions during the financial emergency, the voting status of ex-officio committee members, and graduate student representation in student governance.
Senator Underberg, chair of the committee, reported that the committee has met. The issues are planning a time to hear grievances and standardizing the form used for grievances.
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REPORT FROM THE PRESIDENT AND PROVOST
As part of the one-year reporting process required by the financial emergency bill, President Dobbins distributed for discussion an article from the Kansas City Star about the current program review throughout the University of Missouri system and the program eliminations that have already occurred at Central Missouri State University.
President Dobbins also distributed a revised draft for the Program Review Process. He noted that the written responses from departments with programs under review had been extended until October 23 because of Senate concerns.
Provost Stephens said that she needs to inform the Board of Regents on Thursday, September 11, of a suggested limit for the tenure/non-tenure track faculty ratio. If the Faculty Senate does not take action on this issue, she believes the Board is ready to set the non-tenure track limit for faculty themselves.
Senator Naugler suggested that a careful analysis of the use of part-time faculty in some departments, most notably in the Departments of Mathematics and English, to teach remedial courses may provide an alternative means to achieve savings without raising the limit for non-tenure track faculty above the current 15%.
Senator Althaus, chair of the Professional Affairs Committee, presented an argument and statistics that he had researched on national faculty tenure ratios. The AAUP says that in public universities, 84% are tenured or tenure-track faculty. In 1998, the US Department of Education figures showed that 81.4% are tenure/tenure-track. It was suggested that we get better data and understand the ramifications to both the university and the professoriate before we proceed to change the tenure ratio. A breakdown of how many tenure positions would be forfeited if we went ahead with a projected 75%/25% ratio was distributed.
Senator Curtis asked why part-time faculty numbers aren’t included, since they are a large group. Stephens answered that 12% of our classes are taught by part-time faculty, with the national average at 30%, and that part-time is already flexible in times of emergency.
Senator Swartwout asked how many universities are cutting tenure positions, and pointed out that in-city urban institutions always have a lower tenure ration than do rural institutions, since rural has less of a guaranteed pool of instructors. The President said that he didn’t know.
President Dobbins said that the ratio will set a top limit to non-tenured positions, not a goal. He stated, “As far as I’m concerned, 80/20 would be sufficient.”
Senator Tibbs moved that we suspend the rules to vote on the faculty profile issue. Bruce Hathaway seconded. The motion passed.
Senator Roberts moved that the Faculty Handbook be changed to allow an upper limit of 20% of the faculty to be non-tenure track. The motion was seconded by Senator Hathaway. The motion passed
The meeting was adjourned at 5:20 p.m.
The next Faculty Senate meeting will be Wednesday, October 1, in the Indian Room of the University Center.