FacEx Minutes January 25, 2022

Faculty Senate Executive Committee – FacEx January 25, 2022 Minutes

Approved February 8, 2022


Approval of November 30, 2021, Minutes: Approved


University Senate President Report: Hossein Saiedian

Saiedian reported that the Provost will be attending the February 3, 2022 University Senate meeting. 


  • This might be a good opportunity to ask questions regarding the status of program discontinuance.
  • Saiedian had a meeting with Vice Provost for Academic Affairs and Graduate Studies, regarding programs that are still in question. They are still discussing ways that that they can possibly restructure some.  They are not going to be continued as recommended.
  • The Athletic Director is also a speak at the next University Senate meeting.



Question: Will the University Senate meeting be open, share the zoom link?    

Reply: We can discuss at SenEx next week.



Faculty Senate President Report: Rémy Lequesne:

See report at end of minutes.



Faculty Senate Town Hall, January 27, 2022

Open with meeting decorum, Foster will give an update on COVID.  Then it will be opened for questions.   

Maclean will note any questions that require follow-up.

Kokobobo will review the chat and raised hands, to make sure everyone can ask questions. 


Proposed Task Group on Data Analytics

Data Analytics: Lequesne is recommending a group of four or five faculty, people from the Provost Office, including Chris Brown, Jennifer Ng, Nick Stephens, and Corrine Bannon. This group will discuss how the data collected from Data Analytics, is used, what are the guidelines, and general principles. 

Currently Sean Alexander, Amalia Monroe-Gulick, a person from the Law School, who does data privacy work. 


Kokobobo suggested there be a wide range of disciplines represented.


Old Business –
Program Discontinuance – Saiedian/Lequesne - See reports


Procedures for Policy Development – Lequesne: There is a policy regarding how new policies are developed, the primary contact of the policy development identifies stakeholders.  When a draft is completed, it is sent out for review and comment.   The current procedure says that the policy office determines whether governance review is appropriate.  The change I'm proposing is that governance should decide whether governance review is appropriate.  If everyone is supportive of this, I going to continue to work on who needs to be involved in adding governance. 

Brown suggested John Curran, Vice Chancellor and Chief Risk Officer. 


Lequesne will move forward, possibly meeting with John Curran. 


Sexual assault prevention/accommodations – Kokobobo reported that the group had not yet met, but they would be scheduling a meeting in mid to late February.


USRR Article VIII – Program Discontinuance – Kokobobo reported that any changes to the current rules, do require KBOR approval.  They are discussing the draft.


General Education policy – No update. 


The meeting was adjourned.




Faculty Senate President’s Report to the University Senate 2022.02.03 (Updates since 2022.01.27 Faculty Senate meeting are underlined)

The following is a partial list of ongoing issues, with brief status updates on each

  1. COVID

    1. VP Brown, VP Roberts, and A. Foster will take questions from faculty and staff during the 2022.01.27 Faculty Senate meeting.
    2. The Provost’s Office issued guidance for the spring on 2022.01.10, with more detailed directions sent to deans/directors later that week.
    3. Governance leaders have been meeting with VP Brown and A. Foster weekly to receive updates and advocate for changes to the plans for spring, but Governance leaders had no role in determining the plans for spring.
  2. Program discontinuance:
    1. For programs that the Provost and University Senate agreed to discontinue, final recommendations to discontinue have been forwarded to the Chancellor. As of 2022.01.31, final recommendations for the remaining programs have not been issued.
  3. Financial Situation
    1. Governor’s budget includes increased support for higher education, including raises and increased need-based support for students. This is great news, but it is still early in the legislative session.
  4. Email communications from governance leaders
    1. The Chancellor and Provost have said there will be a reworking of campus communication strategies this spring, and that governance messages will be part of the new system. It is not clear to me exactly what is being proposed or how it will work.
    2. My position is that governance must have the right to email constituents directly regardless of the new campus-wide communications strategy.
  5. Policies and Procedures
    1. Policies/Procedures Previously Approved by Faculty Senate

      1. Academic workload policy:

        1. On 2021.11.18, the Faculty Senate voted in support of a draft academic workload policy. It was then sent for public comment, and the only comment received prompted no revisions. The draft will next be sent to the Provost and Chancellor.
      2. Hearings on Dismissal of Tenured Faculty:
        1. Faculty Senate passed an amendment to FSRR Article 7 on 2021.11.18. No comments were received during the public comment period, so the amendment has been sent to the Provost and Chancellor for approval.
    2. Faculty Senate Policies/Procedures
      1. FRB Procedures for Dismissal of Tenured faculty:

        1. Ad-hoc committee chair L. Mulligan and member R. Lequesne met with VP Brown and M. Taylor, Associate General Counsel, to discuss the ad-hoc committee’s draft. Although there is much agreement, substantive unresolved issues remain.
        2. These procedures cannot be changed without the support of the faculty senate, so no changes will be made unless they are a net positive for faculty. It is not clear whether consensus will be reached in time for the senate to vote on the draft this term. FSRR 2.5 – KBOR redefinition of a baccalaureate degree (so-called “credit cap”
          1. In response to changes to the KBOR definition of a Baccalaureate degree, revisions to FSRR 2.5 have been proposed and are being reviewed by AP&P. The changes concern the maximum number of credits that may be transferred to KU from a community college.
    3. University Senate Policies/Procedures
      1. USRR 2.1.1 – Excused absence policy:

        1. A proposal to revise USRR 2.1.1 has been reviewed by AP&P and FRPR. AP&P supports the draft but FRPR was divided. FacEx discussed the draft on 2021.11.30 and asked K. Reed, C. Maley, and S. Williams to revise the draft and bring it back to FacEx/FRPR.
      2. USRR 2.3.3 – Medical or compassionate retroactive withdrawals:
        1. Revisions passed SenEx on 2021.12.07. It will be on an upcoming University Senate agenda.
      3. USRR Article VIII – Program discontinuance
        1. The Ad-hoc committee drafted a substantially revised Article VIII that was sent to the Provost’s and General Counsel’s Offices for review. Ad-hoc committee chair H. Feldman and members R. Levy and A. Kokobobo met with VP Roberts, VP Brown, and M. Taylor, Associate General Counsel, to discuss the draft. Discussions are ongoing.
        2. These procedures cannot be changed without the support of the University Senate, so no changes will be made unless they are a net positive for campus. It is not clear whether consensus will be reached in time for the senate to vote on the draft this term.
      4. USRR XX – Accommodations for students victimized by sexual assault
        1. A. Kokobobo is working with a group to draft rules that would articulate that faculty are to provide reasonable accommodations for students victimized by sexual assault.
    4. Other/Misc.
      1. Policy Development

        1. Governance leaders discussed revising the policy on policy development (https://policy.ku.edu/university-policy-program) with Provost Bichelmeyer. The Provost will not change the policy, but suggested maybe changing the procedures.
        2. We proposed changes to the procedures (https://policy.ku.edu/policy-development-process) that would give the Governance Office authority to determine whether University Governance must review a draft policy. Currently the authority to determine whether governance must review a draft lies with the Policy Office (see step 1d of procedures). Discussions are ongoing.
  6. KBOR
    1. Extra ‘tenure-clock’ year for tenure-track faculty who began at KU in Fall 2020

      1. KBOR voted 8-0 in favor of extending by one year the probationary period for tenure-track faculty who started in Fall 2020. I’m told VP Brown’s office will issue revised guidance this term.
      2. This is the same extension previously approved for tenure-track faculty who were in their probationary period during the spring of 2020.
      3. No extension was requested for faculty who started in Spring of 2021, as their ‘clock’ starts the following fall (fall 2021) by rule.
    2. AP Cut-scores review
      1. By rule, the Council of Faculty Senate Presidents is to engage with chairs every five years to review the minimum AP score accepted for each topic area. The review is required this spring.
      2. If your unit wants to change the currently-accepted minimum AP score (a so-called ‘cut-score’) for a course taught in your department, please contact your chair. K. Reed is sending the request for review to chairs during the week of 2022.01.24. We hope to receive responses by mid-February.
    3. KBOR General education policy
      1. There is a statewide effort to create a general education transfer system, wherein designated courses are guaranteed to transfer freely within the Kansas system.
      2. A framework has been mostly established, and an implementation committee consisting largely of registrars and advisors has been assembled. I have not seen the proposed framework.
      3. Later this spring a statewide committee of faculty will be assembled to write learning outcomes for affected general education courses. I will share whatever I learn about this.
    4. KBOR-mandated program review
      1. In a meeting on 2021.11.23, VP Roberts shared that KU is working on a data-driven approach for program assessment founded on Academic Analytics data compiled in an rpk-assembled dashboard available to campus administrators. The stated goal is to reduce the workload on chairs associated with the 8-year program review required by KBOR and to provide more frequent assessments of program performance throughout the review cycle.
      2. KU’s efforts seem aligned with KBOR’s desire to move the KBOR system towards ROI-based program review. It appears KBOR might also hire rpk to lead a statewide look at program review.
      3. Governance leaders raised concerns about accuracy of data and emphasized the need to contextualize the data before making inferences about program value, quality, or performance.
  7. Data analytics on campus
    1. In Jan. 2022, Governance leaders proposed forming a task group of faculty and administrators to discuss the increased use of quantitative data and metrics to inform campus decisions. The aim of the proposed effort is to “Agree to a set of principles that inform the role of data analytics in decision making processes at The University of Kansas. The aim is to increase trust and openness, and also to guide appropriate and fair use of data in decision making. These principles should be written into policy and reassessed periodically.”
    2. Discussions with the Provost’s Office are ongoing. I aim to get this moving early this term.
  8. CLAS Dean Search
    1. Search committee was named, but I am not aware of a position description.
  9. DEIB VP Search
    1. We have been told a search will be announced in the spring.





Proposal for Establishing Guiding Principles for Data Analytics at KU



Campus leaders increasingly rely on quantitative data and metrics to inform decisions including, but not limited to, faculty evaluation and retention, program review, and budget allocations. These data include those obtained from outside vendors like Academic Analytics, which contain productivity metrics for individual faculty and can be compiled to obtain metrics for academic units and used for comparisons against other institutions.



Faculty have concerns about the administration’s reliance on these data, including: (1) lack of openness, and thus uncertainty, about how the data are collected and used, (2) the validity and lack of procedures for validating the data, (3) inadequate processes for ensuring that units and/or individual faculty have opportunities to contextualize the data before they are used to inform decisions (e.g., having relevant discipline-specific or historical context can dramatically affect the implications of quantitative data), and (4) inadequate processes for ensuring that units and/or individual faculty have a role in selecting which metrics inform decisions (e.g., metrics that may reflect performance in one discipline may not meaningfully measure performance in another).


Aim of this Proposal:

Faculty and campus leaders should agree to a set of principles that inform the role of data analytics in decision making processes at The University of Kansas. The aim is to increase trust and openness, and also to guide appropriate and fair use of data in decision making. These principles should be written into policy and reassessed periodically.



We propose that Faculty Senate leaders and the Provost’s Office jointly appoint representatives, including representatives from Analytics, Institutional Research, & Effectiveness (“AIRE”), to a small committee that will meet during the Spring 2022 term to:

  1. Discuss and understand:

    1. The scope of the issue – which data are available and how are they being used?
    2. Which principles currently guide the use of data analytics at KU?
    3. The core concerns of the faculty.
  2. Submit to FacEx by May 2022:
    1. A report summarizing the items above: scope, principles, and core concerns.
    2. Draft principles that would increase openness and accountability regarding use of data, so data are most informative in decision making but also address core faculty concerns.
    3. Recommendations for where these principles be codified, e.g., in a new policy, in the Faculty Code, or elsewhere.
    4. Recommendations for who should lead the effort to codify these principles, e.g., an ad-hoc committee, a standing committee of the Faculty Senate, or something else.