Minutes - September 19, 2007

Minutes - September 19, 2007

The Faculty Senate of Southeast Missouri State University met on Wednesday, September 19, 2007, in the University Center Party Room. The following Senators were present: Martha Zlokovich (Chair), Mary Elizabeth Ambery (Chair-Elect), Jim McGill (Membership Committee Chair), Rick Althaus, Julie Banks, David Briggs, Stephanie Chamberlain, Michael Cobb, Kathy Conway, Kim Dillivan, Marc Fulgham, Benjie Heu, Priscilla Hornby, Daniel MacLeay, Jayanti Ray, Willie Redmond, Albie Sautter, Sophia Scott, David Smith, Marc Strauss, Lucinda Swatzell, Larry Underberg, Carol Veneziano, Haohao Wang, Janice Ward, Debbie Beard (Alternate), and Xuesong Zhang. Provost Stephens and special guests David Starrett and Brian Smentkowski were also in attendance.

Absent, and not represented by their Alternates, were Elaine Jackson and Seidu Sofo.

Approval of the Minutes
Approval of minutes Volume XLII-04 was moved by Senator MacLeay and seconded by Senator Ambery. The motion carried.
Approval of minutes Volume XLII-05 was moved by Senator Dillivan and seconded by Senator Ambery. The motion carried.

Report from the Chair
Chair Zlokovich reported that Alissa VanDeven would not be speaking to the Senate about health care savings accounts because the changes had not yet been determined and approved by the Board of Regents. Ms. VanDeven will stop by the Johnson Faculty Center next Wednesday to talk to Compensation and other Senate committees about what health care changes have been proposed.

Chair Zlokovich reported that there has been no word of any kind from the President regarding Resolution 07-04. This was the Resolution that was approved by the Senate in response to the President's letter regarding combining promotion and tenure. Chair Zlokovich asked the Provost to report on the President's reaction during her report today. Chair Zlokovich indicated that quite a few faculty have contacted her with very positive comments about the Faculty Senate's action and the need to protect the legislative process. She added that she has heard no negative comments about the Resolution. Chair Zlokovich indicated that she has heard from a couple of senators who were concerned that collegiality and civility need to be maintained in Faculty Senate deliberations. Chair Zlokovich asked the Senators to please remember to follow Roberts Rules of Order. She indicated that she may need to revert to more formal procedures, such as acknowledging each senator, for the meetings when debate is lengthy.

Chair Zlokovich reported that the President suggested that the Faculty Senate submit all the names of the Intellectual Property Rights Task Force members to him. Those members will be included on the University Committee considering the issue. Chair Zlokovich reported that she believes this may be a good idea; however, the Senate also needs to have its own task force or ad hoc committee. The Committee needs to consider the faculty and student side and suggest policy change to the Faculty Handbook. The Faculty Senate Committee should meet and work with the University Committee. The Provost explained that there would be one comprehensive bill that would be put in the Faculty Handbook and the University Business Policy and Procedures Manual.

Chair Zlokovich reported that the Higher Education Research Institute (HERI) survey of faculty will be conducted in November. The last time it was conducted on campus the Faculty Senate was able to add questions. Chair Zlokovich indicated that the Faculty Senate can add questions again this year. She indicated that the Faculty Senate will need to decide on those questions fairly quickly. Chair Zlokovich added that she will send Senators the questions that the Faculty Senate added last time.

Chair Zlokovich indicated that she believes the Senate needs to define tenure and promotion. She added that the Senate needs to articulate the difference between the two and identify the value and purpose of tenure from an academic standpoint. She added that she would like each Senator to research this and forward their findings to the rest of the Senators. She believed that background would help the Senate with deliberations on these topics.

Special Guests

Dr. Dave Starrett, Director of the Center for Scholarship in Teaching and Learning
Dr. Brian Smentkowski, CSTL Faculty Associate

Dr. Starrett indicated that he was there to speak about the IDEA evaluations and how they could be used to meet the requirements mandated by SB389. Senate Bill 389 was passed August 23, 2007. It requires that all universities post the ratings of their instructors. Dr. Starrett discussed what the numbers mean on the IDEA evaluations and how those numbers could be calculated for that use. Dr. Starrett distributed a sample copy of the results from an IDEA evaluation. Discussion was held by the Senate, and ideas were exchanged on the many ways the numbers could be compiled to meet the requirements of SB389. Dr. Zlokovich indicated that she and Senator Ambery would be attending the Missouri Association of Faculty Senates (MAFS) conference. She indicated that they will bring back ideas from other Faculty Senates on how they are addressing this issue. Provost Stephens indicated that there were three questions from IDEA that the Student Government picked that they would like to see posted. The Provost suggested keeping the questions non-threatening and not impose more on faculty than what the bill requires. The Provost indicated that she will represent the Faculty Senate and the questions decided upon as long as they are feasible. It was recommended that the Senators discuss this issue with the faculty in their department and report back to the Senate. Senator MacLeay indicated that he would add the topic to the faculty forum. Chair Zlokovich asked who was interested in being the Faculty Senate liaison to Student Government. Senator Scott volunteered to be the Faculty Senate Liaison to the Student Government.

Report from the Administrative Liaison
Provost Stephens reported that the President has not decided on an action to take concerning Resolution 07-04. The President is scheduled to meet with the Faculty Senate Executive Committee Monday, September 24.

Provost Stephens reported that the University hired two new full-time faculty as a result of the increase in freshmen. She reported that $250,000.00 has been budgeted that will allow for an additional five new faculty to be hired.

Senator Cobb asked if the Provost would be willing to confirm or negate a rumor. He asked if the Provost had overturned a grade appeal. The Provost indicated that she did grant a grade appeal because of confusion of the appropriate syllabus for the course. The instructor submitted a grade change.
The Provost stressed that there was not a committee on campus that has final decision making authority. That power lies with the Board of Regents.

Legislative Committee Reports

Academic Affairs
Senator Cobb reported that Academic Affairs extended an invitation to the Student Government to meet with them next week to discuss Common Hour, free speech for students, intellectual property rights, and grade inflation.

Senator Dillivan reported that the Compensation Committee will be reviewing base merit pay and funding sources, post-professorial merit equity adjustments, market pay adjustments, and extended and continuing education incentives.

Senator Ward reported that the Documents Committee has rescheduled their meeting for September 26, 2007.

Senator Swatzell reported that the Governance Committee is continuing to review the Faculty Senate Survey.

Senator Swatzell reported that after talking with the Senate officers, she realized that the Senate probably should have considered the vote on the 5th to be a vote agreeing to the revisions requested by the President. Because the original bill came from the 2006-2007 Senate, the 2007-2008 Senate should now pass the entire bill, which now incorporates the provisions approved on the 5th as amendments. Senator Swatzell made a motion to accept the Grievance Policy which was seconded by Senator Fulgham. The motion passed unanimously.

Senator McGill reported that all of the Faculty Senate vacancies are filled. There are still a few alternate positions that are vacant. Senator McGill reported that the Membership Committee is still under current efforts to populate the University Standing and Faculty Senate Committees. Senator McGill explained that the Faculty Compensation Committee currently has four Senators and five non-Senators. This is in violation of Section 7.5504 of the Faculty Senate Bylaws. There is only one Senator who is presently not fully assigned to committee duties, and that is Senator Julie Banks from Kent Library. Placing Senator Banks on the Faculty Compensation Committee would correct the discrepancy. However, in so doing, a seat on the Governance Committee representing Kent Library would remain vacant. This vacancy on the Governance Committee can only be filled by a Senator; otherwise the Governance Committee will also fall out of compliance with 7.5504. However, Kent Library's only Senator, Senator Banks, would be constitutionally ineligible to serve on the Governance Committee if she were already serving on the Faculty Compensation Committee. Thus, in this scenario, Kent Library would forfeit their representation on the Governance Committee, dropping the membership of the Governance Committee from nine to eight. This is not a desirable outcome. He indicated that the two most expedient solutions for this problem are: 1) decreasing the number of non-Senators on the Faculty Compensation Committee by one to correct the imbalance; or 2) reassigning one Senator from the Professional Affairs Committee to the Faculty Compensation Committee to restore the balance. Solution 1 would decrease the membership of the Faculty Compensation Committee from ten to nine. Both Science and Mathematics and Liberal Arts have two representatives on Compensation; so these would be the two colleges most likely to take a hit in dropping a non-Senator. Solution 2 would decrease the membership of the Professional Affairs Committee from eleven to ten, with a new Senator/non-Senator ratio of 7:3. Both Science and Mathematics and Liberal arts have three representatives on Professional Affairs; so these would be the two colleges most likely to take a hit in moving a Senator to Compensation. Professional Affairs is the only Legislative Committee in the Senate that has a surplus of Senators relative to the number of non-Senators. In either case, Senator Banks would represent Kent Library on the Governance Committee, which is ideal. Senator McGill urged the chairpersons of the Faculty Compensation Committee and the Professional Affairs Committee to consider whether their committees can be a part of the solution to this problem.

Professional Affairs
Senator Althaus reported that the Professional Affairs Committee still has not heard a response from the President regarding its February 2007 memo to him concerning the nondiscrimination policy.

New Business

Senator Cobb distributed five resolutions for the Faculty Senate to review titled, Eliminating Snacks for All Committees, Holiday Reception, Nominations for University Committees, Board of Regents to Explain Budget Cuts, and Investigating Collective Bargaining. The Provost stated that the resolutions were an embarrassment to the faculty and made the Faculty Senate appear unprofessional. She stated that she would no longer feel that she was an effective liaison for faculty and would reconsider attending Faculty Senate meetings if the resolutions were approved. She left the meeting at that time. Brief discussion was held by the Senate. Chair Zlokovich asked that all comments regarding the resolutions be forwarded to Senator Cobb. Senator Swatzell addressed the issue of the Holiday Reception. She indicated that the Johnson Faculty Center Governing Board will be discussing whether to have the reception. If it is held, it will be in the Johnson Faculty Center and will be for the faculty. Senator Cobb withdrew the resolution titled, Holiday Reception.

Old Business

There was no old business to consider.

Executive Session

Senator Althaus made a motion to approve a bill seconded by Senator Underberg to grant Emeritus Status to Larry J. Easley. The motion passed unanimously.


The motion to adjourn (Scott/Swatzell) was recognized and approved at 5:00 p.m.

The next Faculty Senate Meeting will be October 3, 2007, in the University Center Party Room at 3:00 p.m.

Approved October 3, 2007