Faculty Association-Administration Meet and Confer Notes

April 19, 2001

 

Faculty Association:† Judy Foster, Theresia Fisher, David Mork, Andrew Larkin, Terry Peterson, Jayantha Herath, Ravi Kalia†††

Sunshine Shaney, Notetaker

Guests:†† Geoffrey Tabakin, Ralph Carr, Judith Dorn, Mark Nook, Robert Johnson, Margaret Villanueva, Luke Tripp

 

Administration:†† Lin Holder, John Burgeson, Gene Gilchrist, Richard Rotthaus, Joann McKay, Larry Chambers, Roy Saigo††††††††

Jackie Zieglmeier, Notetaker

 

Office of Clinical Experiences

 

FA:† I believe I will start with ITP [Interdisciplinary Teacher Preparation]. We spoke of that at the last Meet and Confer.† We took the information that Suzie [Williams] provided us and we understand that ITP is important to the University as it is a moneymaker. Other people have looked at the numbers and their analysis is different.† In fact, when you choose to fund grad classes at the expense of undergrad classes --there are undergrad classes that are un-funded.†† If those same funds that are directed to ITP were directed to undergrad classes it would in fact generate more money.† I guess it needs to be discussed with people directly involved to figure out exactly what the numbers are.†† Thatís our concern.

 

ADM:† I think you are right but in part this is about numbers.† I donít think we accept the analysis that somehow there are un-funded undergrad classes. Every college is struggling to figure out how to offer enough classes with the budget restrictions we are facing.† I think we need to discuss the basis of our analysis and the basis of yours.† Every class for this academic year was funded and we had money left over.† To my knowledge that money has not been requested for any other use and thatís how ITP is funded.

 

FA:† As I understand it those funds were directed toward providing the regular undergrad programs and all of those classes would fill.† In fact, we are not gaining by having those additional sections.† We all know this fall will be tighter than last fall.†† If you are willing to continue discussion of our numbers and your numbers and what the needs are that would be very helpful.

 

ADM: At the DAC we had 100 percent for focus on graduate programs.† Iíd like to see the analysis.† MnSCU sets a definition of what constitutes a full time student: 20 for graduate students and 32 for undergraduates. The ITP program will work on a cohort which is different from the way most of our programs work. With a cohort we can predict very accurately how many students will take the program and how long it will take them to complete the program.† There are only two other graduate programs that have been approved in the last five years.†† There is a good chunk of students who are moving very slowly. This program will help them move relatively quickly.

 

FA:† The analogies you are using are to programs that have been through the curriculum process and ITP has not.

 

ADM:† We agree that if this program is going to continue it needs to go through the curriculum process.† At any point that this becomes a permanent program it needs to go through that process.

 

FA:† Was this being promoted because of revenue?

 

ADM:† It has to do with the condition of the college.† Every group talked to their departments and said that if we were going to have a number one priority we would like to look at grad programs.† This program received more attention than anything else we were doing.†

 

FA:† I wonder if part of the problem is the chairs getting the information out to the faculty and their departments.† I have signatures from four different departments in the College of Education signifying their concern.† Maybe it is a communication problem or numbers problem.† I would hope more communication could go on.

 

ADM:†† I think there have been good discussions about how we could have substantial graduate programs, because I donít believe we have enough for the size of our college.

 

FA:† You make it sound like we have reached an agreement as a community.† I donít believe we have.

 

ADM:† We have four graduate programs that were proposed.† We discussed them here.† I could argue also that we, as a campus, did discuss those programs and came to some sort of an agreement.

 

FA:† Iím wondering if a pilot program couldnít go through the curriculum process as a pilot program and if not, are there some modifications we could make to the curriculum process so that it can?

 

ADM:† Mankato has something like 80 grad programs and we have 40.† Of the graduate programs that came up for this year, all of those came out of strategic plans for each individual college.

 

FA:† The concerns in terms of OCE [Office of Clinical Experiences] are not around the idea of OCE.† However, it is more in the implementation where I think people are having problems with this.† It is something that is new and that may be a part of it. †I know when you create something new the contract doesnít always flow smoothly.† The OCE and the responsibility for supervising teaching rests in Teacher Development.† The possibility that there is a need for adjuncts is a regular issue in this and the concern is who should hire those people.† These people have been hired into Teacher Development without Teacher Development having anything to say about it.† The other issue is who supervises the supervisors.† Some people feel the OCE has taken over some of the role of supervising these people who are supervising teaching.† I think there is some concern also as to whether weíre being efficient in terms of expenditures in OCE and the way we did things in the past.† Again my thought is that this is something that needs some communication.† There have been some attempts at having a sanctioned meeting, but it hasnít happened up to this point.

 

ADM:† Thank you for putting this on the table.† Sanctioned meetings are held at the presidential level.† The policy is that anybody who needs to meet with the dean is welcome.†† I think the other issue is couching this in terms of Teacher Development.† Teacher Development is one department in the College, the OCE serves the entire College.† You might know that most of the people who have served as director of OCE have either left with a nervous breakdown or lasted about a year. The implementation has been very difficult because of finances.† There might be some common market people who are people from other colleges who would be supervising.† Thereís also an issue of setting the dates of when student teaching would happen.† Let me have you imagine if schools are told when the student will be in the schools about the issue of telling them the students will be arriving at different times that are coming from different departments.† OCE was created by a think tank, that was approved by the FA, in 1998.

 

FA:† How do you create a think tank?

 

ADM:† They were all elected.

 

FA:† I think the suggestion that we made to you previously is maybe resubmitting that to and through departments for their current approval.† There are things in there that I think people donít approve and some that people would.† My suggestion to you in the fall was that it would be helpful to send the report from the think tank back through the departments now.† Thatís still a suggestion.† As far as some of the details, I have a form in front of me that hired a person for student teaching supervisor, and it does not have the signature from the chair on it.

 

ADM: Yeah, you can find one or two out there without it.

 

FA:† I have a document with signatures from three different departments with questions about the hiring and also curricular decisions coming out of this office.† It feels to me that we might be getting hung up on some technicalities.† We have had some sanctioned meetings held before.† We have agreed at this meeting to hold sanctioned meetings outside of this meeting.† It is an accepted practice.† I made an effort to set up an informal meeting with the Chair of Teacher Development).† I received no response from the dean.† Again, if we could do a better job to facilitate communication, maybe we wouldnít have to do it at meet and confer.† Also it is part of the contract.† We have not been going to the President; we have been going to the administration to set up meetings.

 

ADM: Is there anything else we need to say about this issue?

 

ADM: My door is open.† I donít have any interest in sanctioned meetings because I donít care whoís there.

 

FA:† I believe the request was to have a representative from each department at the meeting.† I think we could still get that.

ADM:† I donít like the idea of one person.† I donít think that one person from each department represents the voice of that whole department.

 

FA:† Sanctioned meetings are open to anyone.

 

ADM:† Iíll meet with anybody, anytime, anywhere.

 

Mediation Proposal

 

ADM:† Some time ago you proposed to us that we have a mediation. While we very much want to respond in the affirmative to your proposal, we had problems with taking the grievance process into a mediation.† From my conversations with the president-elect came a sense that what we would like to do is have a mediation on a general topic of the ďappearanceĒ that we have more grievances than other MnSCU Universities.† We would like to do that.† I think it would be helpful to us if you wold submit something to us as we stated.† I think we have elements in our culture that lead to more grievances.† So if you are amenable to that let us get together and do that.† There are other issues.† I think we need to work through some kind of process to be sure that it is a structured meeting.

 

FA:† That sounds very good; thank you.† It is certainly not our intention to modify Article 28.† Thank you very much for supporting us.

 

ADM:† I will get together as soon as possible to discuss language for the mediation.

 

Academic Misconduct Policy

 

FA:† I have two motions that Iíd like to pass out and read and then we have a guest who would like to speak on this issue.† The first motion was passed in the Senate on April 10; the second motion was passed April 17.†

ďThe FA demands that the administration immediately stop current internal proceedings against faculty charged with academic fraud during the course of non-renewal proceedings and turn processing of those charges over to an external impartial review.Ē

ďThe Executive Committee [shall] work with President Saigo to end the current inquiry into allegations of academic or research fraud and serious misconduct against Dr. Stryker.Ē

With that I would like to turn it over to our guests.†

 

FA:† Our biggest concern actually is looking directly at the [Academic Misconduct] policy.† We want to make sure that in this particular fraud investigation we do everything to guarantee impartiality and to avoid the problems of conflict of interest.† The person at whom the allegation is raised is from a department in which it appears is having most of the problems revolve around personalities.† We believe that it is going to be hard to truly be impartial if anyone from the history department is involved in the investigation.† The Dean is supposed to act as counsel for this person and the Dean in this case has already given written notice of non- renewal.† That makes it difficult to avoid conflict of interests.† We feel it would be better to just move the process out of those hands so that if anyone comes in and looks at it, it will be easy to prove it was done with impartiality.† In support of that the intro to the policy itself recognizes that this policy is limited.† Most of this policy appears to be written from Federal guidelines to address issues of research fraud that are associated with grants outside of the University.† The Ad-hoc Committee thinks for all of those reasons it would be in the best of interest of this University to apply a different process.†† We think that would be the best for all parties involved.† The policy states that if any sanctions are to be made they are to be made by the Dean.††

 

ADM:† Thereís not much I can say.† The policy calls for strict confidentiality in each and every case.† We will not confirm or deny.† The policy that we have is based on Federal guidelines.† It does allow for addressing things other than research fraud.† We are more than willing to discuss the process.†

 

FA:† Did you choose the committee?

 

ADM:† I canít respond to that question

 

FA:† Do you know who the committee is?

 

ADM:† I canít comment on that.

 

FA:† Who appoints the committee?

 

ADM:† The Dean.

 

FA:† What happens if the dean has a conflict of interest?

 

ADM:† The policy allows for the removal of the dean whose place is taken by the Assistant Vice President for Research.

 

FA: What if the Assistant Vice President has a conflict?

 

ADM: The policy does not address that.

 

FA:†† The policy states that all academic issues will be addressed.† It is clear that we could move outside of this policy in the event of conflict of interests such as this.

ADM:† Go to ori.dhhs.gov.† You can find model policies there.†

 

FA:† Wouldnít it be possible to move the issue to another policy since this one does not encompass everything?

 

ADM:† If you read through the policy youíll find that once a complaint is registered the policy has to be followed through to the end regardless of any situation.

 

FA:† Does the policy forbid you from recusing yourself?

 

ADM:† No.

 

FA:† We think of the Dean as an Attorney General who wants to fire an employee.† Then he hires a prosecuting attorney who shares his interests.† Then the prosecuting attorney chooses a jury without the knowledge of the defense.

 

ADM:† Both sides know of the jury being chosen.

FA:† The Attorney General is the boss of all jury members and the jury asks the prosecuting attorney to collect the data for them.† This doesnít seem like it is up to national standards.

 

ADM:† In any investigation where we want to take responsibility of investigating our own issues there are certain public issues that need to be addressed.† How could it be any other way?

 

FA:† Have a Dean completely outside of the department.† The Dean that appoints the committee should not be the Dean of the department.† We have to find a way to make sure there isnít a conflict of interest at the level of the final arbitrator.

 

ADM:† Your analogy is perfectly relevant to some potential flaws of the policy.† By all means we can address that and submit it to the feds for review.† Under this policy as it exists we have to follow it all the way through.

 

FA:† Conflict of interest is mentioned three times in the policy.† It is a strong vein within this policy that a Committee of Inquiry be formed without a conflict of interest.† You read this policy and the intent of the conflict of interest is crystal clear.† We think that what we have here is certainly at least the apparent conflict of interest.† It may not be real but the perception we think this is a concern for us both.† The Committee of Inquiry is supposed to be made up of tenured faculty.† What we were told from the Office of Academic Affairs was that administration was conducting those.† Which is a major violation of the policy.† The accused has evidence that the research integrity officer has put out inquires to other people requesting information regarding the accusedís past practice in terms of integrity.

 

ADM:† We cannot comment in any way on the things you are saying.† We are constrained by the policy to complete confidentiality.

 

FA:† We believe that the way that this policy is being implemented in this case has led to the process having no integrity in the eyes of the faculty.† We would strongly urge that we convene some kind of discussions on this and there are serious implications here.

 

ADM:† I agree.† Confidentiality is the first rule of thumb.† If the FA would like to suggest some way of reviewing the policy, we would be open to that.

 

FA:† It is not the policy, it is the implementation of this policy.

 

FA:† One of the points in the document says that all parties shall be treated with justiceÖ.. One of the people is extremely vulnerable, especially if the Dean has a conflict of interest.† We put our Assistant Vice President in an extremely awkward position.† Negative reports open us up to all kinds of lawsuits because we did not adhere to our policy in regards to conflict of interest.† The Assistant Vice President is trapped and so is the accused faculty member.† This process canít work if the Assistant Vice President and the Dean have a conflict of interest.† There is nowhere to go unless there is intervention from somewhere above.

ADM:† I appreciate you pointing out the spot this puts the Assistant Vice President in.† Let us get back to you on this.

 

Budget

 

ADM:† We are at that point in time that we are at every two years where we do not know what the legislature will appropriate in terms of our budget, the Governor, MnSCU.† MnSCU has proposed an additional allocation for this year.† It is somewhat difficult for us to project this coming year.† We do need to consult with you and others.† For those of you who are looking on this document, I hope you will check essentially what we have done is assumed 20 million to the Governorís allocation and that MnSCU will use the new formula.† For those of you who watch these things, that is 107 million from the Legislature to MnSCU.† We have indicated what we will do with the additional money.† We will take all additional money and put it toward instruction.† So on the reduction side we are having a reallocation from everything else to instruction.† The reason for that is to protect the projection of core sections for new students coming in this year.† We are attempting to be sure that we have those 2400 core sections for those incoming students.† The third page shows you a balance sheet.† Our projected expendituresÖÖ.† You will see that we talk about core offerings for 65FTE.† These monies will be designed to make sure the core sections are there for those students as well. Notice that under projected revenue additional projected carry forward is FTE 950,000.† Since it is not clear what will be allocated, we will do what you recommended and take the additional money from students coming in this year, transfer it to the next year until we see what the allocation is.† Less projected reductions; you will see that we generate projected reductions so you will see that we are off balance at this point and that is fine.† If in fact we are over in the fall, we will need to go back and figure out a way to save that money.† In order to be able to do the best job we would in getting that one time money out we will give it to the Deans for searches for adjunct positions.††† The next few pages show you the proposed reductions you have already seen.† You have not seen the rest.† You see that we will make a permanent reduction in the salary reduction of manager.† Student life will have vacancies and will eliminate two positions.† Presidentís office will increase athletics income by $50,000.† We will do so by increasing ticket prices.† Academic Affairs will have some reductions. You see a change to reducing temporary help in those three offices.† You then see a reduction to the repair and betterment account.† Specific reductions will need to be discussed with individuals in those departments over the next two weeks.† We will increase the cost of students for residence halls by 10%.† There are questions that if positions are lost will we get them back when new have the money again.† These are the budget cuts that we proposed based on our best guess of what the Legislature will do.

 

FA:† You are going to increase mileage charge in motor pools?

 

ADM:† Yes that is correct.† We have not raised those rates in a long time.

 

FA:† How is our anticipated enrollment?

 

ADM:† Right now we are projecting that we will be slightly lower than 2400 and 1300 students.† But it is very early in that arena.† On the upside we have seven National Merit Scholars signed up for the fall, whereas before we struggled to have three.

 

ADM:† There are a lot of ifís right now and a lot of bad publicity that has affected all of us. You folks in faculty have done a great job in keeping that rate up.† Anything else you can do would be greatly appreciated.† I ask you all as faculty to do whatever you can to make those calls when you get sent the information of majors who have been admitted.

 

FA:† This 107 million is that your best guess.

 

ADM:† Yes

 

Nursing program

 

FA:† I have these documents which were given to the UCC committee by the Dean of the College of Science and Engineering.† I think you are aware that the FA strongly supports the need for the program, we support the curriculum and we support any efforts to get external funding for the program.† The concerns as we understand them relate to the long term funding issues and how that will be addressed.† If we understand this document correctly, we are looking at the third year budget.† If these figures are correct, the way the FA is understanding this is that there are going to be approximately 64 students in the nursing program and an additional 100 pre-nursing students.

 

ADM:† We have about 50 right now.† That means 50 brand new students who would come because of the program.

 

FA:† The concern is that this budget is for the nursing program not for the nursing plus the pre-nursing programs.† And yes the revenue coming in is serving both programs.

 

ADM:† Every time I propose a program we discuss the budget.† Every program that has been approved, that is how the budget procedure is done.

 

FA:†† It appears to us that the program costs $18,000 a year per student and if you divide that by the total, we came up with a $700,000 deficit that the faculty is concerned about.

 

ADM:† In the first year we are dividing by the new juniors and seniors.† The 50 new students coming in are part of the 2400 that we predict this year.† I understand what youíre saying.† The perspective we are taking is looking at this the same way we have for the other 11 programs that have been approved in the last 5 years.

 

FA:† We understand that new programs may have this as their budgeting procedures.† But there is a difference between a program that costs $6,000 per student as opposed to† $18,000 per student.† Is the budget here the money that is going to be expended on all four years?† Or is it going to be expended on the last two years?

 

ADM:† There are some pre-nursing students on campus now.† We are creating an opportunity for them to enter the upper-level nursing program.† This budget is designed to pay for both programs.

 

ADM:† I would like to wait until the Dean is here to verify that, but I believe that is the way it is.† Again this is the same budgeting procedure that has been used for eleven programs that were approved in the last five years.† We are attributing the full income of students to allocate a position of staffing a new line to that program.† I understand that you are trying to work through this.

 

†FA:†† We understand there are additional funding packages from outside sources.† Can you give us as faculty an idea what those are?

 

ADM:† Iím not sure what restrictions we have on responding to that.

 

FA:† We have heard that one public grant source from Washington D.C. is hoping to fund it over three years and that looks very favorable.

 

FA:† I think there is a lot of confusion over the funding of this program.† I donít know what we can do to provide clearer information to faculty but we would support any effort made to get out more and better information to faculty.

ADM:† Maybe what would be possible would be if you could give us a series of questions and maybe we could put out a white paper addressing those issues.

 

FA:† Thank you

 

Smoking Committee policy

 

ADM:† The committee did a nice job on their research.† They have proposed to leave residence halls as they are.† Continue the Apocalypse room downstairs.† We would like to pursue a change to smoking in entryways.† We would create a smoking area in each building.† We would then add a $.10 or $.20 surcharge on every pack of cigarettes to keep up those shelters and keep them clean. We would pursue promotion and encouragement and support not too eliminate smoking, but to get it away from the entryways.

 

FA:† I would like to have something more specific on the buildings when you get it.

 

ADM:† There is some research that needs to be done for locations and when we get that† we will certainly let you know.

 

Racial Issues Courses

 

FA:† We are projecting a shortage of seats for the racial issues courses for next year.† We have a guest to discuss this issue.† This got started by a chair who contacted the other four department chairs, compiled all their available seats, and found out there is going to be a shortage of seats for racial issues courses.†† The question is what are we going to do about staffing our racial issues courses.† We also have an issue of being able to offer courses within those departments.†

 

ADM:† Keep in mind that some of these are electives.

 

ADM:† I want to stress again that all of us committed to this process.† I think the unfortunate element is that Chair of the Human Relations Department contacted four other department chairs but didnít contact her Dean.† We have, in fact, reallocated six positions to racial issues courses.† I donít know where else we would go.† The deans have worked out a plan that would provide the amount of necessary seats.† I donít know why there is any conflict.

 

FA:† That Chair sent her memo to all affected department chairs, the Academic Vice President, and both deans so that anyone could comment on the numbers.

 

ADM:† And to my knowledge they did. We met yesterday with Human Relations and the outcome is that I have taken a line away from another department and given it to Human Relations for a permanent tenure track line.† There is misunderstanding about class size.† I have been informed that the priority will be racial issues.† We will only offer the courses required for the teacher education and required for social responsibility.† It is no longer an elective for teachers.

 

FA:† Since the schedule has already been put out, does that mean that courses that have already been put out may have to be taken off?

 

ADM:† I believe that could happen.

 

FA:† What happens after that?


ADM:† I imagine our allocation would be once a fixed term becomes a tenured track line but the issue is weíre going through our entire curriculum and saying no electives.† We have asked to Deans to start with required courses for a major, required courses to get into a major, and only after those needs have been met may a department offer an elective.

 

FA:† At the last meeting no one was aware of those priorities

 

ADM:† I think in fairness we have tried every way possible to come to a different resolution.† We allowed the absolute maximum time we could to come out with the fall schedule in hopes that we could find another way and essentially this is the best we could do.

 

FA:† There is going to have to be some meeting of the minds to ascertain where we are because students are already calling us saying we canít get into classes.

 

ADM:† The only seats that are being held are the seats in racial issues.† Other seats are gradually being opened for returning students.† But we are holding all seats in racial issues for transfer students and first year students.† I think that in every discussion Iíve had weíve said these seats must be held for first year and transfer students.† If we can offer more great, but I donít see how we can do that if we canít meet the needs of transfer and first year students.

 

FA:†† I didnít know about this until this morning.

 

ADM:† Iím not sure why you didnít find out.† Like I said, it has been discussed for quite a while.

 

FA:† The problem is there is not enough communication.

 

President Saigo:† I am going to call a close to this meeting.† I would like to thank everyone for their time and patience.† Thank you