CODE Amendment: University Senate Reorganization (21-day Review)
To: KU Faculty, Staff, and Students
From: Ani Kokobobo, University Senate President
Re: 21-day Review of Amendment to the University Senate Code
The University Senate is a senate structure distinctive at KU in bringing together faculty, staff, and student senators to work collaboratively on a range of issues, including advocacy and policy matters. Our experience in this body suggests that this diversity of perspectives makes our policies stronger. After years of discussions with our staff and student senators, we developed the attached amendments to the University Senate Code to address equity of representation.
The proposal, which is informed by shared governance principles, advances equity of representation in the University Senate to ensure richness of dialogue and diversity of perspectives around policy making, while still noting that due to their academic credentials, faculty maintain roles as decision makers around specific USRR articles that pertain to academic policy. For this reason, on University Senate Rules and Regulations articles which address academic policies—Articles I, II, III, IV, VIII, and IX—we have added an approval step to the Faculty Senate that will take place concurrently with the 21-day campus review.
All other articles, which affect all of us, and do not explicitly require academic expertise to be amended, remain within the sole purview of the University Senate.
As you will note from the CODE changes, we are changing the numbers of senators in the University Senate to 18 for each constituent group—for a total of 54 members. This adjustment will expand access for the staff and student senators, while also reducing the double labor that faculty do in Faculty and University Senate. The University Senate Executive Committee has also been adjusted accordingly for equity. Finally, because the stability of the body is important, all future changes to the University Senate membership will require a 2/3 majority of each constituent group.
The University Senate had a first look at this proposal on Thursday, March 30th and voted nearly unanimously on April 13th to move forward with these changes. We are proud of the new structure we are about to become and look forward to continuing to work together in the University Senate.
Please note that it is a requirement that proposed changes to the CODE be sent to all faculty, staff, and students, but no action is required on your part unless you wish to submit a written comment. Please forward your written comments on the proposed amendments to the University Governance Office (email@example.com) by noon on May 4, 2023.
Please contact the University Governance Office, firstname.lastname@example.org, if you have any questions regarding these amendments.
Thank you for you do,
Ani Kokobobo, University Senate President