Final approved 10-18-07
Meet and Confer
october 4, 2007
Admin:† Michael Spitzer, Earl Potter, Nancy Jessee, Wanda Overland, Mitch Rubinstein, Kate Steffens, Rex Veeder, Kristi Tornquist, Steve Ludwig
Faculty:† Judy Kilborn, Annette Schoenberger, Michael Tripp, Michael Connaughton, JoAnn Gasparino, Fred Hill, John Palmer, Frances Kayona, Balsy Kasi, Bill Hudson, David Warne, Robert Johnson, Polly Chappell Ė Note taker
FA: Before we get started Iíd like to introduce our new COSS rep Robert Johnson. Do you know most of the people in this room or should we do official introductions?
FA: You donít need official introductions.
Approval of Minutes
1. September 20, 2007
FA: Iím ready to go on those.
Admin: I havenít seen the most recent, corrected version.
Note Taker: I just did your corrections today.
FA: Do you want to wait?
Admin: No, I can trust Polly made them.
FA: So weíre accepting those pending your corrections.
1. Charge to Taskforce on International Studies (FA) (08/30/07)
Admin: I gave you a copy, Judy. Sorry, wrong one. I gave you the one on the online. This is yours. You wanted a report from the International Studies Committee. We have a number of documents that weíre going to review at Academic Affairs Council and weíll come back to you with them.
FA: So should we keep that under unfinished business?
2. Return to Title Four (ADM) (08/30/07)
Admin: Last Meet and Confer we arranged a small group to look at issues regarding grading options and our grading system. The group met. It consisted of me [Mitch Rubinstein], Annette [Schoenberger], Dave Warne, Mike Uran, and Sue Bayerl. The result from that was a proposal to redraft the language on grading options that occurs in the undergraduate bulletin including explanations of the grades and when is the appropriate use of the grades. The language on that went to the Academic Policy Working Group yesterday and will be coming to Academic Affairs Council and then to Faculty Senate.
FA: Did we want to say something about the FW?
Admin: One of the changes weíre proposing is to add a grade called FW: failure for not withdrawing. When we adopt that, the FN will be used exclusively for students who never show up or participate in the course. Then the FW will be for students who stop participating and stop attending up until finals week.
FA: That is where the confusion is. They didnít actually ever attend. They stopped at some point so itís a failure to withdraw not a failure to attend. Then thereís also the discussion about---
Admin: Appropriate use of Is and IPs.
FA: ---yes, and I think the committee will take care of that. I think the other issue had to do with putting grades in and getting the instructions so that people understand that you do your FNs and FWs first, then you go put the rest of your grades in. So when reading the instructions, it wasnít clear that that was how that had to work. So, I think the instructions that are going to go out, even this semester, are going to change to try to make that more clear.
Admin: These instructions will come from the Registrarís office.
FA: Right. The other issue was that if we go to the FW that wonít be a grade people can assign until, I think, spring.
Admin: Right. That would be the earliest.
FA: Itís too late to get everybody educated on it now. So thatís part of whatís happening. I think one of the issues has to do with in order to put in the last day of attendance that has to be done on the class schedule, which is separate from where you put the grades in. And part of the reason for that has to do with the fact that the system we have, the ISRS, is antiquated. Once we get the Oracle system working, then they should be able to put the last day of attendance in at the time that they put the grade in at the same spot. But thereís no expectation that Oracle will be up and going any time soon.
FA: I have two questions. Iím wondering, when the estimated time is on having this document? Iím just wondering.
FA: Which document?
FA: Well, the explanation that he [Mitch Rubinstein] was talking about.
FA: That is with Academic Policy Working Group, it will go to our Academic Affairs committee, then it will go to the Senate, and it comes back here.
FA: Okay. So, when will it be going to Academic Affairs? In other words, when will I have it to send to them? I just need an estimated time of arrival. Thatís all. Iím trying to get a sense of the flow.
FA: It goes directly to them from the Academic Policy Working Group.
Admin: What I would like to do this year is see if we can get it through the Academic Affairs Council, Administration, to see if there are any problems before sending it to the Academic Affairs committee.
Admin: When will you have a draft for somebody to look at?
Admin: I have a copy here.
Admin: So we could look at it on Tuesday.
FA: The second question is related to this conversation weíre having here. But Iíve been thinking of this question for a while now. In Senate we have microphones. I wonder if we could possibly get microphones in this room? Something to consider, and itís not on the agenda so maybe we can talk about it.
FA: If you guys can arrange it, you can do it.
Admin: We can discuss it.
FA: Okay. We can do that on the side. Thank you for that little indulgence.
FA: I think the redrafted letter is going to go out whenever it gets signed.
Admin: So, do we leave this on?
3. Charge for Online Policy and Procedure committee (FA) (08/30/07)
Admin: I gave you a copy of that.
FA: We got this the other day, and I reviewed it briefly and we need to talk about it at EC. Iíd like to check to see if this was our understanding of what would be in it when we talked about it at Meet and Confer awhile ago. It looks to me as if it is. But, I want another set of eyes. So, can we just check on it at EC, and get back to you on this one? I donít even know if we need to keep this on the agenda. We could just tell you after EC looks at it. †
4. Article 22 Taskforce (was Tenure Calendar, now combined with FA/Administration Work-plan 2007-2008 item on More effective use of PDPs/PDRs to support faculty development) (FA) (02/01/07)
FA: I have several documents that are color-coded.
Admin: What do we do for people who are chromatically challenged?
FA: I try not to pick colors close together. Iím going to pass in one direction. We talked at the last Meet and Confer about combining the Tenure Calendar with an item on the President/FAís work plan dealing with improving professional development in the Article 22 process. The green document you have is actually an overview document that EC approved the other day. It provides an overview of the problem, the charge, a recommended configuration for the taskforce, and then thereís a description of needs that Iíve actually listed from Meet and Confer Notes since 2004. Iím going to run through what you have in the documents. The gray item provides just a short summary of actions concerning Articles 22 and 25 that are documented in EC and Senate minutes, as well as Meet and Confer Notes. Thatís intended as background for you. The yellow document is what we brought to Meet and Confer last spring from the IFO. Pat Arsenault wrote it, and itís what the Faculty Association sees as its position relative to the process of Article 22. The white document is the 2004 document that was negotiated through an ad hoc Article 22 committee who were addressing issues with professional development and evaluation procedures here at SCSU. Youíll notice on that last document under the bold-faced agreement statement, we did agree on this provisionally on September 14, 2004. Thereís an acknowledgement that this is the beginning of a process that was going to hopefully extend to the signing of an LOU that never happened. So, weíre proposing this task force charge and configuration to start addressing local confusion about the Articles 22 and 25 processes. Essentially, the IFO/MnSCU agreement mandates processes for professional development evaluation, but on our campus there are a multitude of interpretations and outright contract violations that muddy that process. At this point, I strongly believe that even if people are trying to follow the processes there is absolute confusion about what those are. We need uniform processes that are in complete conformity with the IFO/MnSCU agreement. What weíre suggesting is that this task force would start by identifying issues and problems concerning the current Articles 22 and 25 processes, come up with a plan for addressing them, and then, based on that assessment and analysis, develop a time table for Articles 22 and 25 processes that would align with the academic calendar. So, weíre not seeing that calendar piece as a small thing. Weíre seeing it as a last thing after we figure out what the issues and problems are, and come up with a plan. And the plan would be for local processes that are in conformity with the agreement. Youíll see nothing in here that suggests anything going beyond the local campus because thatís really out of our hands.
Admin: In fact, thatís what happened with the agreement we reached in 2004. When it went off campus it was not acceptable at other places.
FA: This is a pretty large set of documents. I tried to provide some background in different places that people could poke around in that paper trail, if you will. I donít know if you want to take it back and think about it and talk amongst yourselves, and come back to the next Meet and Confer with sort of an idea of how you want to proceed? I donít know if you want to agree to the charge and the configuration today?
Admin: We havenít had enough time to look at all of the material in the documents, but I think we can agree to establishing a group. Then we can come back if there are issues with any of the content, and we can address those, perhaps, at the next meeting. I think overall the idea of trying to clarify our processes locally makes sense.
FA: Are we agreeing to the configuration?
Admin: Three plus three?
FA: So, we could bring back our names next time if you like.
Admin: Can I just say a couple words about the philosophy?
Admin: From my perspective, and itís obvious that we all have an interest in faculty development and its development towards the expectations that the university has for the faculty role. One of the challenges is going to be, and itís not clear to me at this point, that our expectations are clear or well defined across the campus. I expect youíll delve into things for further work. It would be friendly towards saying we have to do some more work here. The second thing, just as a general statement, is that it might beóI donít know that it is, but it might beótrue that on either side weíre unhappy with some provisions of the contract now. And I recognize the risk of folks sort of hoping they can resolve some of the problems they perceive in the contact in this working group, and I recognize we cannot do that. We work with a contract we have to do the best job we can within the boundaries of the existing contract. Then if either one of us has difficulties with the contract that goes back into a bargaining, etc. So, Iím optimistic. I appreciate the Associationís willingness to work on this. Weíre committed to work together to try to make some positive difference.
FA: I think it really is a complex situation. In framing these documents, we were seriously struck by the fact that we are limited by our circumstances here, and we have to look at whatís happening right here on our campus. As I looked back at the conversations at Meet and Confer, one really large theme was we need to put the emphasis on PDPs, we really need to do a much better job in helping faculty develop professionally. Right now weíre in a situation where weíre putting so much weight on the end part of the cycle. We certainly want to encourage our faculty to develop in ways that are useful to them professionally and to us programmatically. Thank you. This obviously is going to be a long-term item. I donít know if you want us to keep it on Unfinished Business?
Admin: Well, we can keep it there until we give a response. But once we have it established, we donít want to have to reference it every meeting. I donít think weíll have progress reports at that level of frequency.
5. Follow ups
a. Request for Academic Policy Working Group† (ADM) (08/30/07)
Admin: We have designees from the FA to the Academic Policy Working Group. This item can be taken off the agenda.
b. UDWR Assessment Committee (ADM) (08/30/07)
Admin: Work still needs to be done in the UDWR Committee.
FA: As you know, Senate voted to approve the work of the UDWR Assessment Committee, including its report, and they thanked the committee for its work, and weíre considering that committee defunct at this point. Iím assuming weíll take this off, and it comes back if it needs to.
c. Academic Policies (ADM) (08/30/07)
Admin: We have several academic policies. We reached an agreement. Those policies went into place, especially the Standards of Scholarship for Graduate Studies. Thereís another one regarding Prerequisites. That is working its way through the Academic Policy Working Group process. They reviewed it yesterday, and theyíre sending a draft forward to Academic Affairs committee.
FA: You said that was the Prerequisites policy?
FA: We passed kind of an odd motion at our last Senate regarding that. We want to table it time definite eight weeks until the Academic Policy Working Group gives a recommendation. So, weíll bring that back to the table once we get the motion from Academic Affairs on that Prerequisites policy.
Admin: I think there was a question last time whether the system can handle multiple prerequisites?
FA: And co-requisites.
Admin: And co-requisites. The answer to that is yes.
FA: So does this come off the agenda until we have some sort of report?
FA: Itís been to the Academic Policy Working Group. Our FA Academic Affairs Committee needs to say what they want.
FA: So, it will go to Academic Affairs to Senate and back here?
d. Center for International Studies (FA) (01/18/07)
FA: That was the question regarding the tuition.
Admin: Right. The folks in the center are working with putting together the recent expense and budget information and that material is being developed. I will bring that to Meet and Confer as soon as it is ready.
FA: Did you indicate that they are using a different format in trying to capture a better picture of the finances?
Admin: I believe thatís correct. And thatís why I think itís worth waiting a while for it.
FA: I would suggest that this comes off the agenda and we put it back on when that report is ready? No? You want to keep it on the agenda for a progress report or follow up?
Admin: Iíd keep it on the agenda. Iím hopeful weíll have it at the next Meet and Confer. I know itís in progress.
e. Requests for copies of replication, articulation, and transfer agreements (FA) (3/22/07)
FA: Last time we had talked about the possibility of getting the information we request on an ongoing basis, maybe up on the web. I agreed to bring in a list of what we normally request, and hereís the list. Youíll notice it gives the people we usually get the information from as well as when it usually is requested. The majority weíd like in electronic format.
Admin: I see both.
FA: Yes. We often get them in print. Itís much easier to distribute if we have them electronically. Although, if they go up on the web, we could do both.
Admin: I appreciate having this in the format itís in. That will be very helpful for us. We have a tickler file and we can have those generated on a regular basis. Here are copies of various replication agreements. There are three agreements. They are for the North Branch program, Masters of Engineering Management, and one with the Department of Corrections for our Social Development program.
FA: Iím wondering how we might keep these some place,Ö some means of collecting all of these things in one place where people have access.
FA: They could go up on the Academic Affairs website.
Admin: Weíd have to put them in PDF format. We could do that.
FA: That would be useful because I think it is one thing for me as FA President to have a copy of these in my files. Itís another thing to have these readily available. Especially, I know two years ago there was encouragement coming from Administration to do more work on articulation agreements and so on. For somebody thinking about doing one, itís valuable to have an example of what it looks like.
Admin: Those are listed, arenít they?
Admin: A couple of things. First, whenever we approve a new articulation agreement we send it down to the Office of the Chancellor, and they put it on their website. So, all of them are accessible on the MN Transfer website.
FA: Are they easy to find there? Could we link to that site and have them available, and have people be able to find them?
FA: You could have a link on the Academic Affairs website.
Admin: I could give you the website address, and if youíd like anymore informationÖ
Admin: I think we can create a link.
Admin: The other thing is I have a template for articulation agreements that I share with departments that are interested in starting an articulation agreements with two-year colleges. I readily share that, and I could send a copy to you if you would like that as well.
Admin: And put them on the website as well.
FA: It would be useful to have that on the website, and it would be useful, too, to have these items go up to help people where they can find them by sending an email. Sheís flinching and we havenít even gotten to that topic. Maybe let chairs know or something; have some way to communicate so departments know where those are and where they are readily available.
Admin: I think weíve increased the number of articulation agreements from about 30 maybe two or three years ago to well over 100 today. Mitch, do you know the exact number?
Admin: No. Some of these agreements have multiple articulations, so depending upon how you count themÖ
f. Request for report on Initiative Budget Spending (FA) (12/07/06)
Admin: In the discussion last time on carry forward, I provided that document, and then the initiative budget, because thatís kind of buried in how people have expended it on in their accounts. Weíre talking to the deans and others responsible now that weíve closed the year, and so weíll have that, I would think if Michael and I can agree, by next Meet and Confer. Do you think thatís reasonable?
Admin: Yes. I think so.
Admin: I do too. So weíll have an accounting of any initiative funds that we dedicated a few years ago for the next Meet and Confer. We just finished the audit in the last day, so we canít publish that until after it is presented on the 24th of the month, I think it is, but in any case there werenít any horrendous surprisesónot really any surprises at all in that.
FA: Thank you for having Diana forward to me the list of the roughly $10,000,000 of designated carry forward from fiscal í07 to í08. It is a good starting point, but it is very difficult to tell what actually is happening because you have to guess by the title and your guess could be completely wrong.
FA: What weíre asking for is if we could have a narrative of whatís being planned and actually what occurred when the money is expended, and some sense of filling out when that money might be expended. I do see in fiscal year í08 weíre spending that balance down.
FA: But thatís not been our past practice. We seem to hold money back, and hold money back, and then the year comes to an end, and it gets carried forward again.
Admin: I agree with you. We had discussions this past week at the Budget Advisory Group. The process is not as formal as Iíd like it; in particular that document. These are funds carried forward, essentially supplies and equipment money; theyíre not salary money.
Admin: A plan and where weíre going to go should be something we do want to go forward with. People are well-intended and do good things. We just need a somewhat more formal process so we have some documentation and can look back afterwards and say, did you spend it as you intended? Did you have the desired outcome? Were there some benefits to be expected? Is there something to be learned here about our allocation that maybe should be adjusted?
Admin: I think we have incomplete information. I think that is part of the reason it came forward on the NCA report and why it resonates with us also. So, I agree with you.
FA: We are working on a document that deals with carry forward policy that would formalize it. Weíre just curious to know with that $10,000,000, whatís planned to be achieved. I trust it wouldnít be difficult if you asked the people who have it to create a little narrative that says what theyíre planning to do.
Admin: I think we can do that. Many of them do have something like that readily at hand, and some might take a little bit of looking, but I think we can put that together. Maybe not the exact plan and outcomes precisely like we would like to see, but I donít think thatís an unreasonable request.
FA: Thank you. We have the document in front of us that provided the dates when things were requested and who it was requested by. I know that we have not yet received the quarterly budget reports, nor did I expect by October 4th we would. Iím not saying that, but itís certainly something we would expect to see pretty soon. And I wonder where weíre at on the new faculty list and seniority roster.
Admin: That should come from HR. Theyíre at a conference so Iíll check with them.
Admin: Theyíre back today. Iíll check on the seniority roster. And, yes, it is about time for the quarterly budget report. We want to get through our audit. I had some inclination to get the 30th day, which is supposedly the official enrollment, which comes up in a little while, but weíll be putting it together. I jotted it down here when I saw the list here, but weíre due for a quarterly report. And now that we got people breathing easily after completing the audit, I think we can do that now for the month-end of September.
FA: Thank you.
Admin: You okay, Annette?
FA: Iím thinking the seniority roster is not due until November 1st.
FA: Less than a month.
Admin: I think it will be timely then.
g. Request for working group on new Academic Calendar (ADM) (08/30/07)
FA: We passed a motion by the EC that our representatives on that New Academic Calendar Work Group will be the Committee on the Institution. And I can provide specific names for you if you indicate who should get them.
Admin: They should go to Mitch. Do you have an idea, just off hand, how many members there are on the committee?
FA: I didnít look.
FA: There could be as many as 12.
FA: Weíre in the middle of our elections.
FA: John was pointing out that there are some people on here on this list who are---
Admin: What list are your referring to?
FA: ---the list Mitch gave us---who are faculty.
FA: Right. There are two on the list Mitch provided. There are two entities that have faculty in them, the athletic department and the undergraduate studies, both have faculty members in the bargaining group, and if theyíre going to have representation that representation should come from us. We believe the best way to represent the faculty is through our standing committees. One of the standing committees is the Committee on the Institution. And one of their responsibilities is to examine academic calendars. So when we looked at the list, we saw two problems that were there, plus we saw perhaps an imbalance in a working group that says the title is Academic Calendar but doesnít have a working majority for those who deliver the academic program. Thatís a concern. The example I provided is you donít make K-12 policy based on the bus schedule. The bus schedule surrounds what is academically correct.
Admin: I think the athletic department reference is to Intercollegiate athletics not HPERSS.
FA: Theyíre in our bargaining group.
FA: Collegiate Athletics has people in our bargaining unit.
Admin: I donít know if theyíre familiar with the overall athletics schedule.
FA: No. no.
FA: I think one difficulty with this list is that it is ambiguous. When you say even graduate studies, Iím assuming thatís coming from that office, but I donít really know. So, it would be useful to know actually what people weíre talking about and the bargaining units represented. Thatís the information weíd like to have on this. So if it is not HPERSS--- †
Admin: HPERSS is HPERSS.
FA: There is no athletic department.
FA: Yes, there is. They meet. They donít have a chair. But they do in fact meet with some regularity. All but the excluded managers are in our bargaining group; all of the coaches are in our bargaining group.
FA: Let me put it a different way. When weíre asking for membership on this, membership indicates what perspectives are being represented, and weíd really like to know what perspectives are being represented. And we donít know that unless we know specifically who is going to be on the group. Obviously by making the motion that weíre bringing to youówe include as our representation the Faculty Association Committee on the Institutionóweíre indicating that we think academic elements are the central part of an academic calendar.
Admin: I certainly donít disagree that thatís the case. I think there needs to be other perspectives as well.
FA: Weíre not saying that there shouldnít be. We would like clarity of what the other perspectives are. We might be able to suggest other perspectives that arenít on here, for example, are students represented here? I donít know if they are or not. Student Government, I guess they are; two people from Student Government?
Admin: I shared last yearís roster of the Academic Calendar Taskforce---
FA: That would be good, thank you.
FA: We asked for that last time.
Admin: I thought I distributed that at the last meeting.
FA: What we got last time was this Taskforce on Academic Calendars. I donít remember seeing another piece of paper. Itís possible my memory is flawed.
Admin: I thought I shared it. I remember there were questions about the roster; it was last yearís roster that indicated who the members were and where they came from.
Admin: Letís make sure we provide that.
Admin: Iíll give it to you, and we can move on from there.
FA: Okay, so weíll leave that one on for follow up.
h. Veterans Program Taskforce (ADM) 09/20/07)
Admin: An email went out to a group that will be receiving a letter from the President. From Faculty Senate there were three members. Then there was a request to appoint three students representing diversity, students of color, and we were able to accomplish that.
FA: So you have four students?
Admin: Three students. One is a graduate student, two are undergraduate students. One of the undergraduates is president of Veteran Students. One of the undergraduates is a student of color. All are veterans. †
FA: I appreciate that information. I know that Senate was very concerned that veterans be represented who are students on this campus. So that will be helpful information for them.
FA: They also thought it was an awfully large committee. How are you going to get a time when they can all meet?
Admin: Weíll have some organizing meetings and then probably break into some subgroups. What I will do now that we have the three students, is send you a complete membership list.
FA: Thank you.
Admin: Just a comment, Annette, the size of the committee reflects some of the problems there areóso many pieces scattered all over the placeóand this is an effort to bring them altogether in the same room.
FA: I think we understand that, but I think the concern was that they would never be able to meet and that would delay their activities.
Admin: I understand, but if we donít get them all together we will never bring processes and practices together. So itís really sort of essential.
FA: I understand that.
Admin: Thank you.
Admin: I recognize that, too. But we should be able to make that work.
FA: And we recognize that it was your call. We just made the observation: you have a challenge.
FA: We didnít see anybody that you could take off it. Itís not like weíre saying you have people on there that donít have to be on there. Weíre just saying, wow, itís large.
1. MnTC (MN Transfer Curriculum) Review (ADM) (9/20/07)
Admin: Weíre in the process of gatheringÖ we have a mandate directed from the Office of the Chancellor to review all the courses we list in the MN Transfer Curriculum. There are 158 courses, and this is a process that started last year. Weíre at the stage now we are receiving reports on each course from the respective departments. Once we have all these, we intend to review them. The folks reviewing them will be on a working group to include Judy, Annette, Jean Hoff, and me, and possibly others. We plan to review these on November 2nd. We received 105 of the 158 courses. Judy is passing around a chart showing the status of the courses, the indication whether the department has completed submission, partial submission, or has not submitted. †
FA: Iím planning on distributing this list in Senate on Tuesday.
Admin: Iíll simply comment that weíre expected to report to MnSCU on the outcome of this review by January 2008. So, we have until then to finish this process.
Admin: Our plan is to have a report internally by December for submission in January.
FA: Did you get any more yesterday? Remember we thought you were going to have one? It didnít come in the mail?
Admin: No, not yet. I had one more come in today.
FA: We actually think that this is a pretty good number. Itís 2/3.
Admin: That would give me a D in a course.
FA: Well, it might give you a C-, but I think Mitch was going to send out another reminder to the ones who havenít sent them in. They have until November 1st?
Admin: October 22nd.
Admin: Iím thinking weíll get all these.
2. Community Parking Permit Costs (FA) (10/04/07)
FA: The Faculty Senate passed a motion asking that the current fees on community parking be rescinded and that the old policy of issuing parking permits be reinstated.
Admin: Weíre willing to do that with a couple of understandings. One, there isnít the same amount of visitor parking that we had on campus due to the construction of the parking ramp. That took about 180 stalls out of service, 30 of which we were using for visitor locations. So thereís a little bit of a shortage right now. And weíre also proposing to give some permits, in particular to the deans or whatever, two or three permits that they can use for guest lecturers or whatever on a regular basis. In the meantime, weíll try to accommodate guests as we did in the past. There are some events that are very difficult to accommodate, if itís the middle of the day during the school year and someone is having 100, 200, 300 people, there arenít parking stalls for them near the buildings here on campus. So that will remain. Our proposal is that next year visitors would be encouraged to park in the parking ramp when itís completed next July, and pay as they would any place else that they would go to visitÖ other universities. We also made a request for some folks to serve on a Parking Procedures and Policies Taskforce so we could work that out for next year and have a little discussion. So we hope to have that and arrive at a good spot for next year that will cover the cost of parking fairly across the users, and go from there. Weíre willing to make the change that you suggest.
FA: How soon?
Admin: Within a day or two.
FA: Weíre not talking about availability of parking spots. Thatís a whole other issue. What weíre talking about is charging fees for guests when we used to be able to get guest parking permits. Thatís seriously affected budgets of academic programs that rely upon community connections with the university. So, for example, I have an email here, which you received a copy, from Community Studies writing about how this is impacting their programs because they didnít know it was going to happen, there wasnít consultation about this, and all of sudden programs that rely upon community input are having to figure out how to pay for guest permits. It may not sound like much, $3 per day, but this one email mentions ď11 permits for $33 for two panels of service learning agency representatives.Ē Thatís for one event. For the one faculty weíre talking about costs easily reaching $60. Now that doesnít sound like much, but you ďmultiply this cost by the number of faculty in our department who rely on community speakers and community partners and this cost will be significant.Ē We had no warning this was coming. None.
Admin: Iím sympathetic to your argument. Weíll make the change to be as it was last year. My only relation of the supply relative to that is it wonít be quite as convenient as it was last year because we donítí have the same number of stalls available on campus. We left about 30 stalls designated for visitors and that was called Y lot. I think there were 25 or 30 stalls and that worked well most times. Weíll certainly make a change, and do what we can. Iím sympathetic to your argument.
FA: Thank you for rescinding. Within a day or two, I heard you say?
FA: Now, another request. The departments that have already paid money, can they be reimbursed? Thatís already $60 out of their accounts.
Admin: Precluding some bookkeeping disaster. Sure.
FA: Okay, so what Iím hearing is two things. I want just want to be very clear that Iím hearing what I think Iím hearing. Iím hearing that we are going back to the old policy of not paying for guest permits?
Admin: Guests for classes and things like that as you described as the issue. People that come to campus will still, itís hard to define guest, but we still have pay lots available for folks that are coming. But for designated guests that departments are bringing for things that you described, sure, weíll provide permits. And weíll provide permits that can be available through Public Safety. Weíll also provide permits to deans to use that might be more convenient some times. You know, two or three of those. And for departments that have paid for guests for the department we would reimburse the departments for those.
FA: And that was the second thing I wanted to verify that I had heard. Thank you very much.
FA: I think when the President came, he talked about having community relationships, and Iím not sure that if we want to have a good relationship with the community, that we would have this policy. Thatís my intent. We ought to have a policy that promotes community.
FA: My comment was that most of the deans have multiple buildings that they serve. If the dean has a permit and is in a remote building and the guest is coming, it can be problematic. I think what used to be the policy was that there were be some departments that had the permits themselves. In other words, in my case in N lot, so guests coming into Hallenbeck Hall wouldnít have to go all the way across campus and get the permit from the deanís office.
Admin: We would leave it to the discretion of the deans. They can make similar arrangements as they have before. Those permits, as I recall, were available to be used in many lots. We did restrict some. Particularly I, D, and F lane because there are so few stalls and just a couple uses of a permit would preclude people who paid for a permit from having reliable parking. They were not broadly restricted, but there were some restrictions. We have to continue that; otherwise, it wouldnít work.
FA: At what percent are the lots oversold?
Admin: The smaller the lot, the less. The faculty/staff lots almost none. The student daily parking lot, like K lot, is oversold. Q lot is not at full capacity because we expanded it. Thatís the overnight parking. But, we generally donít oversell faculty/staff lots.
Admin: Can I take this one off?
Admin: I still want to establish this taskforce to work through the whole process for next year.
FA: For Parking? Can you send me a charge for this committee and a list of what you would like in terms of committee membership? Are you saying you want me to populate a committee for you with faculty representatives?
Admin: Yes. Michael, I thought that you were doing that.
Admin: You just did it.
Admin: I will send you the charge tomorrow. Iím sorry it didnít get to you sooner. It also has a list for the population. As I recall I asked for two faculty members.
Admin: This is something we wanted to put on the agenda last time, but it came in too late.
FA: Oh, so it does relate to what weíre talking about. Can you include in that list what the other make up of the committee is?
Admin: Oh, yes. Itís all on there.
FA: Given the discussion we had last time at Senate regarding this issue, weíll have more than two people who want to serve. Iím sure weíll be able to populate it quickly.
FA: I think you need to take into account what percentage of the employees on this campus are faculty, and what it is, who brings the people onto campus. You know without faculty, there wouldnít be students. You populate these committees, and you look at them, and you think thereís no respect for faculty on any of these.
Admin: Wait a minute. Come on. Thatís excessive.
FA: I look at this, and it ends up being like the calendar committee.
Admin: With the 1B.1, for example, we looked at the number of Administrators. We said balance it as you like. Thereís a very great interest in appropriate balance that feels fair and represented. If we make a mistake in one, say you made a mistake, and weíll get it right. Please donít declare that we have no interest. Iím very much interested in doing this correctly. But we need your help sometimes in getting it right.
FA: Thank you.
Admin: If I recall, I donít have the list in front of me, it was two faculty members appointed by the Faculty Association. I wanted the dean of Fine Arts to appoint a faculty member, preferably from one of the performing arts because they have a particular interest in the guests coming to campus. Also, one from each of the other major bargaining units: MAPE, MSUAASF, MMA, AFSCME, two students, and I hope that they might represent Residence Life and other students that have daily parking, Miles Heckendorn to convene it together with Diana Burlison, so they could answer questions and work through it. I donít recall if there was anotherÖ there was someone from athletics because they are a big player in parking on campus and also I think, I canít recall, Rec Sports or Atwood, which both have a lot interest in guests coming to campus. Frankly, it was broad and represented the people who have an interest in the taskforce. I needed to get it going. I will get the list to Judy tomorrow.
FA: Two questions. One, is there a committee that already deals with parkingÖ
Admin: There is a parking appeals committee.
FA: Is this something different?
Admin: They handle the appeal to parking tickets. With Skip and others there will be people represented that are familiar with the ticketing problems, but that committee is incomplete, I think, to give this broader discussion of policy and procedure.
FA: The second question was youíre asking the Dean of Fine Arts to appoint a faculty member?
Admin: That was my hope, yes, for particular expertise.
Admin: This, as a point of philosophy, if I may? Please consider each one of these things that comes forward as a suggestion for the way we build this. And letís work together and make sure that we get it correctly.
Admin: Any other comments?
3. Changes to web registration and web course schedule (FA) (10/04/07)
FA: This has not been met and conferred at the state level. I would like to say that I understand the appeal to students of having a shopping cart, but a web interface isnít neutral, and Iím very concerned about the kind of interface that enables people to go pick major courses from any institution that enables them to fill out their schedule in a way that could lead to a MnSCU degree eventually. And I simply want to go on record as saying that. And I know that you donít have anything to do with the fact that it wasnít met and conferred at the state, level but weíll be talking about it tomorrow.
FA: Iíd also like to point out that it might be misleading to students. They select classes assuming that they will be qualified for majors at particular universities, and they do not meet those requirements of the program.
FA: Thatís a really serious concern. It might over complicate things when you think of students transferring in, and think this course is the same as that course, and itís not. You know, something agreed upon by the transfer agreements. Thatís complicated enough sometimes: to explain to them that this accounting course isnít the same as that accounting course. And I think this is going to magnify expectations that students have in a way that may make it difficult for us to help them understand our core requirements for our majors. So we may hear rumblings from that, and if we do, weíll bring them back here.
FA: Itís going to be an advising nightmare. We started in undergraduate studies, and weíre making so much progress. And this is just going to put usÖ itís going to be an advising nightmare... if the descriptions, the advertisements for it are actually what happens.
FA: Weíll bring those concerns to appropriate communication kinds of venues. And hopefully it will be smoother than I suspect it might be.
Admin: I hope so too. It just got announced. I thought it was something where this is what weíre going to do. No, itís already been implemented.
FA: Thank you, for letting me say my piece.
Admin: Youíre welcome.
4. Administrative Searches (ADM) (10/04/07)
Admin: I wanted to inform you at Meet and Confer that weíre resuming the search for the AVP in Faculty Relations, and that is underway at the moment. I would like as well to begin the search for the COSS Dean position. My recommendation would be that we revive the committee that was involved in the search last year so we can move forward and conduct this.
FA: I simply wanted to ask a question about the AVP for Faculty Relations. Whatís the timeline on that? Iíve had several faculty ask me.
Admin: October 15 is the deadline for application. The announcement went out.
FA: It probably went out on Announce.
Admin: It went out on Aannounce, and it went out on each college list serve as well.
FA: And then it probably got forwarded from the dean---
FA: Okay, Annette.
Admin: I was being extremely cautious to make sure that everybody was informed.
FA: I know.
Admin: So if you got a duplicate message, I apologize. I didnít want anyone to have the opportunity to come and say I didnít know that. So, that position is scheduled to begin January 2nd.
FA: Thank you for the clarification about that.
FA: What was your recommendation for the COSS?
Admin: To use the same search committee that was in place for the last search.
FA: Weíll take that under advisement, and get back to you. Several questions or concerns have been raised within the college. Another question, are there other vacant interim positions that are unsearched? Any plans for other positions?
Admin: Yes. Theyíll be presented to Meet and Confer shortly.
FA: I think our intent is to try and get feedback from the COSS and Senate, and ideally bring something to you next time.
Progress Reports on Long-term Concerns
1. Taskforce on Diversity (a.k.a. Motion from Teacher Development) (FA) (9/22/05)
Admin: As we discussed, we have a meeting coming up of a coordination committee whose responsibility is to coordinate the activities and provide access and influence across campus. That meeting is to be held October 8th with a pretty much full contingency. We still need AFSCME, MAPE, and student representatives; weíll be asking student government. But Iím asking again.
Admin: Have those been requested?
Admin: I donít believe the student has, butÖ never mind weíll talk later. If you have an official way to do it; otherwise, Iíll send it out.
Admin: Iíll get it going tomorrow, MAPE.
Admin: If I may. Some history, some reflections on some conversations that have taken place this last week. Weíve put the development of a comprehensive diversity plan into the work plan weíre developing for this year, and working with Strategic Planning Committee on it. Seeing that, Susan Moss, assuming that might be her responsibility, started to talk with some folks. The Color Caucus, I think, became aware of Susanís conversations and worried that we were about to commission a group to work on the diversity plan that didnít include representation of the Color Caucus. In fact, the intent is to ask that we agree to charging the Taskforce on Diversity with the responsibility for the development of a comprehensive diversity plan this year. Since then, if the Association agrees, we ought to look at the membership of that taskforce, because we didnít have a specific charge before. We have to look at the membership and make sure that itís appropriate for that task. Affirm the membership, then review the charge, which weíll develop in consultation. There is a MnSCU template for a diversity plans, but frankly, itís unlikely that that template will include all the things we should. For example, itís very unlikely that the MnSCU template includes anything having to do with partnerships with the community to work towards a community environment that supports our diversity objectives. There is an affirmative action plan and there are lots of things going on. The plan would have to embrace current activities, assess our current standing, and lay out plans and budgets for moving forward. So thereís budget expertise required, knowledge of whatís going on, Student Affairs, Academic Affairs, and multiple units. And thatís the expertise weíre going to need. Iíve asked Susan Moss to do some homework. And we can talk about what to bring and what form to bring it in to Meet and Confer to ratify or affirm our shared understanding of what weíre going to do, and then they can get going. Thatís my understanding of where we are now.
FA: This task force being referred to, is that not special or a specific ad hoc committee that was set up at another point in time as opposed to being university wide?
Admin: There is a college one, too.
FA: There are two separate ones. We actually were lumping them together under one name, and the college committee has asked that they be called COE Climate Taskforce and thatís separate from this one, which is more university-wide.
FA: At one point I thought we had two different committees. What Iím getting at is that given the charge from MnSCU for universities to present a work plan for diversity, is that not different from the other things weíve done? Because weíve never really had a university-wide group to respond to that. If someone has put something together and sent it down to MnSCU, it is unbeknownst to others on campus. Is there not a need for a third group to be put in place to really address these issues? That sounds much broader than anything we have currently.
Admin: Itís much broader than anything we have currently. There has been a MnSCU request that was answered essentially with an affirmative action plan and very narrowly defined, which is part of the reason I say that I understand there is a template from MnSCU, but I doubt it is adequate to embrace all the elements we want in a diversity plan.
FA: I hear that and understand that. I support that 100%. But what Iím getting at is that the manner to develop or implement or respond to that charge doesnít appear to be in the existing committees. Thatís the point Iím making.
Admin: I understand.
FA: I think a new structure needs to do what youíre asking to be done.
Admin: Thatís why I said weíre going to have to look at the composition of the taskforce with the charge in mind to see if this appropriately comprised.
FA: One of the issues is going back to the original formation of this diversity taskforce. What we had originally proposed from Senate was to have kind of this committee that would be comprised of people who were doing work on campus on diversity issues and anti-racism issues, and itíd be kind of a coordinating body. The problem was that we were having trouble getting anything to happen with that. I think Rex has been working for awhile trying to jump start it. It seems to me that President Potter said when we first talked about this in Meet and Confer, that that is really not acceptable to have no movement on this. Iím hopeful that this diversity plan will help us clarify our understanding of what needs to happen.
Admin: We had so many members that we couldnít get them together.
FA: One of the reasons Senate set it up that way was because we knew that there were people who were doing that kind of work already, and we didnít want to discount what they were doing. So we thought maybe we can just get them together, and they can somehow coordinate their activities and that was really the motivation for it. It was a great idea.
FA: If we look at our agenda, the motivation was a motion that came from Teacher Development from a very specific incident. It is true that there is a long history of recommendations for taskforces to address issues like this. But I think if you look and see, itís been two years since the motion was passed, and as far as I know having sat through last yearís Meet and Confer after the initial problems of trying to form the group, the momentum was lost, and we donít have a group. What we have is a President who has come in and said we need a diversity plan. So, letís figure out a way to get a diversity plan, and acknowledge that whatever we tried to do starting in September of 2005 didnít work. Letís have a fresh start.
Admin: I donít think we want to redouble our efforts to try and do the same thing we were trying to do. Plus itís a different direction. I would suggest, that given the circumstances, that I get in touch with the people who are planning on meeting on Monday, and say, wait until we hear from Meet and Confer, unless we want to have some other people come to that meeting and have some sort of discussion of these issues.
Admin: It is my intent to simply honor the work that has been done in the past, taking Robertís point and with Johnís emphasis, maybe we should just wipe the slate clean and create a new taskforce labeled differently to avoid confusion, but that will accept the charge of creating a diversity plan. I understand your point. But I want something to happen. I know what it will look like if we get it done right.
Admin: Do you want to do that? Start over?
FA: Absolutely. Iím seeing nods of agreement all the way around the table.
Admin: Well, Iíll send the email.
Admin: So our work together is to shape the charge and populate the committee with all the appropriate input from around the table.
Admin: By the way, folks, the irony is that we finally have a meeting with the whole group. (Laughter)
Admin: People are going to say, see that, we finally got together, and theyíre walking away from it.
Admin: Be careful that doesnít happen.
FA: It wasnít my recommendation to wipe the slate clean. My point was that this committee was created to address some issues. But we have a different charge here. My point was that we really need to structure a committee to meet that charge with MnSCU. Thatís my point. Itís not my suggestion that it comes from this body to wipe the slate clean, and then we offend a lot of people. Iím simply asking we have a charge from MnSCU to develop a diversity plan; we need to put a group together to deal with that. These other groups can remain. Thatís a local issue. I think they should be distinct and separate.
Admin: The question is do we charge this new group that weíre talking about simply to create a diversity plan for MnSCU, or is it more expansive than that?
Admin: Itís more expansive.
FA: I agree that the whole thing from MnSCU can be more expansive than what they ask for. It could be a real plan for the campus community. But thatís not what any of these other committees have been charged with. Itís a totally different mission. I think we have enough smart people on this campus to set something up.
Admin: The suggestion underlying is that we keep this taskforce and have that meeting take place?
FA: Have it take place and have them do whatever theyíve been charged to do.
Admin: I think itís a good idea to have this meeting thatís been scheduled so it doesnít seem like they finally have the act together, and theyíre canceling it.
Admin: I think we will need to have some discussions about the specific parameters in the charge to that committee because there was talk of websites. Itís expansive and itís broad. I think this group deserves a shot at something manageable. I think we need something specific to do. Iím requesting that from somebody. We can have a meeting on Monday and try to come up with some suggestions.
Admin: What Robertís presumption is, there was a charge to this committee; they had been asked to do something. Iím hearing from you, well, not really. It was kind of fuzzy. †
Admin: It was pretty fuzzy.
Admin: So they donít really have a task to pursue.
FA: It was to coordinate the diversity efforts on campus.
Admin: Itís very hard to coordinate if you donít have a plan from which you are working.
FA: Part of the difficulty is when they started the committee on diversity education out of FA, was that it had so many cross purposes they couldnít get anything done. What eventually came was a focus on what resulted in the CARE Initiative, because then it was focused on just a particular type of diversity and issues of aggression. So the other type of issues of discrimination were dropped off. Because we did have a focus in terms of what we wanted to do with the subcommittee, we did wind up with having the CARE Initiative. But as long as it was cross purposes, the people who had particular interest they were bogged down and most of the people eventually stopped coming. But then there were some of us that stayed and did have enough commitment at least for that part in dealing with racism.
Admin: I think your point is well taken. Part of the dynamic here is, what do we do with the other interest groups on campus like anti-Semitism, GLBT, and all the issues on campus? How do they share resources and what is the coordination of those groups? But Iím not sure thatís something a task force can do.
FA: Part of the diversity committeeís detail was meeting with the IFO that also responded to MnSCUís diversity plan, which was actually rather short-sighted, very narrow. Our response at that time, a couple years ago, was that it needed to be revised and that it was insufficient. So, when you talk about having a broader approach, I think it seems appropriate. Otherwise thereís always going to be, in a certain sense, itís a disingenuous effort, if you have objectives that are falling short of what we really want to try to achieve.
FA: So itís my understanding then that youíre going to have the meeting and talk with the committee?
Admin: I think Iíll have the meeting and have a sit-down with the people that are coming, and talk through this with them, so that we do all this face-to-face. Iíll get some feed back.
FA: Certainly weíre going to be populating another committee along the same lines.
Admin: I think there are people who would show up on this committee that would probably be interested.
Admin: I have a recommendation youíd be sympathetic to, so we can move to planning something rather than planning on how to plan it, and I think the people in the group would feel badly if they were disenfranchised from the committee. So it is my suggestion that on the agenda of items for Rexís group is, are you interested in serving on this committee thatís being formed? And generally the committee is going to be about developing a comprehensive diversity plan that includes what MnSCU wants but broader. In the meantime, we can develop a charge for this other committee so it can be defined a little more carefully. If you bring back the interest of those people in their membership, presumably we can use that as a basis. And that will inform all of us as we search for other membership for the committee on the plan. So, if you can at least find out if theyíre interested in serving, and if there are issues that they believe are independent of this broader committee, then with that information and the charge, pretty quickly we could form the committee to do this and get on with it. Thatís my suggestion.
FA: And, of course, if the members are faculty, assuming I know you Rex, would you say that when the call comes out from the Faculty Association, please respond?
FA: I would appreciate that.
2. COE Climate Taskforce (separated from Taskforce on Diversity at the 8/30/07 Meet and Confer) (FA) (9/22/05)
FA: As you know, the co-coordinators of that group were two faculty members who were from outside of the COE: Frankie Condon and Jeanne Lacourt. Since neither one of them can continue in those roles, the EC asked and I went to the COE Climate Taskforceís first meeting and I gave them the charge from EC to make a recommendation to us of how the co-chairs would be selected. Iím a little concerned about what happened, in fact more than a little concerned. What happened instead was that I received information from members of the committee that people had been elected as co-chairs who are actually members in the COE. I wanted to say a few things regarding this. First of all a committee does not have the ability to re-configure itself, especially when that committee configuration has been agreed upon by Meet and Confer. There were particular situational concerns that led to the formation of the committee in the first place. As you may remember when that committee was formed, Senate came forward with a recommendation that we respond to the EEOC recommendation concerning climate in the COE by forming a COE Climate Taskforce. The Senate recommendation that came forward to Meet and Confer and was agreed upon was that the co-chairs would be external to that college, and that was a purposeful choice. It wasnít something that we just made up on the fly. It may be that there are reasons now for reconsidering that agreementóif there have been changes in circumstances, that might be a reason to reconsider the configuration of the committee. But, I havenít seen any evidence that that committee is ready to be on its own. I think it still needs to have people external to that college, coordinating the efforts, so that they have help from outside in working through some thorny issues with climate in that college. Iím requesting that that process that we requested be followed. I let people know on that committee that we expect a recommendation on how to fill those co-chair positions and we will follow our normal process, which is EC will bring that to Senate for Senate action, and weíll bring that back to Meet and Confer.
Admin: Did the members present any reasons why they wantÖ
FA: I got an email from somebody who had been asked to be a co-chair and she didnít know the process, so she asked me, and this was a person internal to the COE. She had been asked by an excluded manager to do that. I donít think thatís how it is supposed to work when we have representation from the Faculty Association. As you know, we appoint those people, and we go through a process where there are nominations that come forward to FA. We go through an election process, and excluded management canít appoint co-chairs inÖ
Admin: Was there an implication that someone was appointed?
FA: Yes, or had been asked to serve.
Admin: That person could have been asked to become chair?
FA: For the record, my reading of what taskforce means is that these groups come together, and they do their work, and they finish it in a timely way. Two years, to me, is an awful long time to achieve that which should have and could have been achieved more expeditiously.
FA: I do want to put on the record that the faculty member did ask about the process. I explained the process to the faculty member, who said she was going to take it back to the taskforce. Iím assuming what will happen will be that the appropriate processes will be followed, and that the request that I made to EC on the COE Climate Taskforce was that they make a recommendation about replacing the co-chairs will happen. But, itís very troubling that we set up the committee that particular way based upon situational difficulties in that college and that it is reconfiguring itself without any kind of consultation.
Admin: Itís an entirely faculty group.
FA: But itís dealing with serious issues in the COE.
FA: There was an excluded manager at the meeting, and that person said we want you to be a chair. They go to the meeting and they donít understand, and they donít leave. And then they do something like this where they tell someone, well, youíre on this committee, and we want you to be the chair, and thatís not how itís supposed to happen. Iím confused about if this is an entirely faculty committee, why was this excluded manager even there?
Admin: Iím not sure.
Admin: The issue is that there has clearly been a violation of this process. At some time, somebody is going to have to tell who said what.
FA: Can we turn the tape off?
Admin: Whatever you like.
TAPE WAS TURNED OFF BRIEFLY
FA: One of the disadvantages of being educated is that youíre obliged to use what youíve been taught. The first principle of managerial conduct is that you donít let a taskforce live forever. You give it a charge, a timeline, and when they do their work, thank you very much, we appreciate that, and on you go. I donít know that this group ever understood or embraced what its charge was. I did sit in that group as an alternate for one semester, so I was there at the table. It might be mission creep. You know, what happens over time: you get new people, they get a different mission, they get a different idea and that happens. Then all kinds of other strange things happen. It seems to me itís not unlike this university-wide taskforce that sprang from an obvious anti-Semitic event in the COE. Letís get back to what happened. Two years ago in September, there was a horrible anti-Semitic episode that occurred in the COE and the response was that we were going to do something about it. And Senate said go back to what the EEOC report said that pre-dated it, form a taskforce. There were problems from the get-go that are associated with denial that there is anti-Semitism on this campus and that there is racism on this campus and that there are all of the other discriminatory things that are there, and we have all failed. All of us have failed in having that focus. The symptom of the failure is what we talked about here; itís a symptom of mission creep. The faculty let a taskforce go on for two years. Thatís what my fundamental teaching would say, was that the charge was faulty, the supervision of the taskforce was faulty. Now we are two years down the road and weíre talking about whoís going to chair it. I live in that college. And when people in my building refuse to make eye contact with me, refuse to acknowledge my presence, and I say hello to them every day, you canít tell me that Iím living in a healthy environment, because I am not living in a healthy environment, and I am not alone. I would say itís time to solve the problem. And the problem isnít the process. The problem is to recognize and honor a process that honors people, and to label the behavior that occurs what it is. Thereís been a reluctance to do that on this campus, in my college. So we can talk, and Iíll sit back, and a year from now Iím not in that college. A year from now Iím University because of my role as President-elect of the Faculty Association. But as I said, education is a dangerous thing because you learn the proper way to do things and then you speak. Good intentions donít make for good results. I think [he] had good intentions. The problem is that the whole thing is screwed up.
Admin: Many of our problems that youíre talking about, it was very clearly requested that administrators not be presentóand so we havenít been part of the process. We need another way to address that.
FA: Maybe we should just ask the questionóand maybe we donít have to answer todayóis John right that maybe we should rethink whether we even have this taskforce at this point? Maybe we need to try another strategy. I donít know if we have any answers today. Iím not firmly convinced that Administration has been totally hands off with this process.
FA: We need to ask the taskforce to review where they are and recommend to us some kind of action if they want to go forward or to revise it or to cease it. We need to ask them to evaluate themselves at this point and get some feed back.
Admin: Last year, as you recall, the taskforce did put together a plan of action for this year. And I thought that was a strong step forward that they disseminated to the college and actually received some feedback. So, that idea might be a good one in terms of trying to get feedback from the committee.
Admin: I only have a history second-hand. I think that makes sense, but let me point out that there is no element of the university that I can say that Iím not responsible for. I can agree with the Association to create a process from which we will stand back for a period of time, but Johnís point that by standing back from a process and allowing a conversation to take place does not mean that I can abandon my responsibility for the management of the university. And if by standing back, we create a situation that might self-destruct, then that is an abdication of my responsibility to the university. So thereís a balance between an agreement to allow processes to take place that is managed by the faculty, and there should be the kind of interaction and holding accountable to the charge that John describes. There should be some shared understanding about how much weíre going to stand back. If through lack of knowledge or a mistake, somebody intervenes inappropriately, weíll get right on it and fix that. But, I think that Robertís suggestion of getting chairs in place and getting some assessment, but then coming back here together to review what is our responsibility to support the progress towards in this situation, is really essential.
FA: I donít see any disagreement about that. Iím wondering, how we should proceed with letting the committee know that?
FA: Well, if itís a proper faculty committee, bring forward the charge. Unless they have a strong disagreement regarding external chairs, in light of what weíve been hearing, there is still a need for external chairs. Put them in place and have them report to us where they are with their charge and give us an assessment of what needs to happen in the taskforce and we will consider their report at Meet and Confer.
Admin: It is a fiction to imagine that managers responsible for a college can just go away while this conversation takes place. And the people that the dean, associate deans, and the Provost are going to have to interact with are the same people that are the subject of the conversation of this group. So one of the things we have to understand is whatís happening within the taskforce. How do we manage our hands-off commitment to that process while discharging responsibility to manage at the same time? Those are delicate and difficult. Far be it from allowing us to assign it and turn away, which actually makes it more difficult, because we have a delicate management dance to do around this to support the work that will move them forward.
FA: I will communicate with that group, let them know the will of this body, and encourage them to get back to us.
FA: This item has been on many agendas. I wasnít here last year, but it was here the year before.
3. Announce, Discuss, and Bulletin Boards (FA) (09/07/06)
FA: This is another issue thatís been around for quite some time. I thought we solved the discuss problem a number of years ago when we created an opt-in for Discuss, and it fundamentally changed then. So itís interesting that it continues to be listed. There are still problems with Announce, whether they are problems in learning curve, enforcement of standards, or clear articulation of standards. We need to acknowledge that the purpose of a mass-equipped means to communicate to the entire campus with a message that gets attention remains. Iím of the opinion that the way things are today, an urgent and important message that would go out to the full campus could be easily missed because of the volume of non-important messages. Iíve only been on M&C for a little over a year, and weíve been talking about this, and we did get a bulletin board up. It seems to me we need to drive the business to the bulletin and clearly state what are the things that are worthy and rising high enough in status to be communicated to every one of our members of the community. I think that standard needs to be very high, because I donít want to be in a circumstance where we have a reported criminal on campus with a weapon and our folks are off Announce, and our folks donít see it because their mailbox is filled. There are people that if you send a message to them, it automatically bounces back because their mailbox is full. I wasnít naming names. (Laughter) The point is why should somebody have to take proactive action to get rid of all of that garbage that ends up in the mailbox that shouldnít come at the same time. So, the FA stands ready to work to solve these problems. Maybe Iím wrong, and there isnít a problem.
Admin: Two or three weeks ago, the President charged a small group to review this situation, namely Nancy, Jill Rudnitski, and me [Kristi Tornquist]. We met last week and put together a set of action items that we thought needed to be addressed. One of the first of those was that the VPs would need to review that policy that has been under discussion for several years. My understanding is that that group met and has done some major revisions on that document. And that will be coming forward to be edited and reviewed. Is that correct?
Admin: Yes. We did do that. But it was an alternative to what was earlier presented in terms of using email as an official means of communication, but it was a way of talking about getting out information to the entire campus by specific subgroups as necessaryóeither to the campus as a whole, the faculty in their entirety, the staff in their entirety, depending on the nature of the message. Thatís what we were working on.
FA: Iím confused about what document youíre talking about. Are we talking about the email as official means of communication document? We presented a motion from Senate thatís very simple: except for confidential materials, the Office of Academic Affairs and the Office of the President may communicate with faculty individually or in groups or as a whole by email.
FA: We havenít received an official response to our nice, brief statement thatís so clear.
FA: And youíre missingÖ By concentrating on thatÖ
Admin: Weíre not concentrating on that. Weíre revising that significantly. And we werenít using it in terms of calling it official, but we were trying to come up with some parameters as to who would have access to send those messages in that way.
FA: Oh, okay.
Admin: Thatís one of the primary issues that weíre talking about here. What offices can send a message to all faculty? Because if you make it available to everyone then itís just another version of the old Announce.
Admin: Which we donít want. So there would have to be some process. The sender of the message would have to channel through a means where it was authorized.
FA: So everything else would go on the bulletin board?
Admin: Johnís assessment is exactly correct, to be blunt. We had a conversation at the Presidentís Council about implementation of the bulletin board, and the response I got was like this. And I asked folks to sit down and talk through how we handle the list. Thatís going to result in the document we bring to Meet and Confer that addresses Johnís concerns.
Admin: One other thing the President charged us to do was sending out a reminder notice every week, so you will be seeing that come out about the bulletin board, announce, and discuss.
FA: Iím so tired of seeing copies of that. Canít you send that out to individuals who put announcements on that arenít appropriate instead of to everybody? (Laughter)
4. Intellectual property and releases from PR (FA) (08/30/07)ónot discussed.
MEETING ADJOURNED AT 5:02 PM
Submitted by Polly Chappell, Faculty Association Administrative Assistant