Faculty Senate Meeting Minutes


Meeting Details:

Fiscal Year: FY2024
Date:
Time: 3:15 p.m.
Location: Zoom
Minutes Recorded By: Suzanne Scales
Minutes Approved on:

Attendance

Attending Members

  • Amanda Mollet
  • Andi Back
  • Becci Akin
  • Ben Chappell
  • Betsy Barnhart
  • Betsy Barnhart
  • Bozenna Pasik-Duncan
  • Brad Osborn
  • Colin McRoberts
  • Joe Walden
  • Josh Arpin
  • Kristi Neufeld
  • Marike Janzen
  • Mat Johnson
  • Matt Jacobson
  • Maya Stiller
  • Muhammad Raza
  • Rafael Acosta
  • Roberta Schwartz
  • Sam Brody
  • Stacey Vanderhurst
  • Tim Hossler
  • Victor H. Gonzalez

Other Attendees

  • Abby Ropes
  • Caty Movich
  • Jeff Chasen
  • Namisha Ajit
  • Rita Pham
  • Suzanne Scales

Approval of Previous Minutes

The minutes from the December 7, 2023, meeting were distributed prior to the meeting. Victor Gonzalez asked if there were any corrections. Hearing none, he approved the minutes.

Reports

Faculty Senate Report

Reporter: Victor Gonzalez (Faculty Senate President)

Participation in the Provost’s Annual Strategic Planning. The goal of the meetings is the deans present an overview of each School and the plans for the next couple of years. These meetings are informative and connect the schools.

Victor met with Amy Mendenhall, Faculty Affairs. Victor pasted a link in the chat for teaching awards and distinguished professors and asked all to nominate someone. The Excused Absences Policy faculty survey was discussed with the VP of Faculty Affairs. In coordination with AP&P, the results will be shared soon. Ad hoc groups will work on the COACHE survey. There are two groups. One will review the policies of non-tenure positions and the other is for review of remote work.

Victor gave an update on the KBOR award. They have been working on a template for the guidelines for the awards. The only requirement is that faculty senate will do the nominations. Victor shared the guidelines. Faculty Senate needs to provide the names by March 15. 

We will need to create an ad hoc committee to review the applications. The survey will be an uncomplicated process.

Question about the ad hoc committee through Faculty Affairs on non-tenure track. Did Amy provide a timeline for the completion of the previous committees’ work?

Answer. They are taking it back up.

University Senate Report

No University Senate President

New Business

Stacey Vanderhurst commented that she wants to raise the issue on Core 34 again. The following remarks were made. Stacey has been in many meetings at the undergraduate level. Jon Brumberg was here in December. All seem to agree this is a real usurping of faculty authority to set the curriculum.  Faculty Senate is the body that should have a more meaningful response to this as our role in setting curriculum is being diminished. What could this response be? Advocating to those bodies interested in higher education? This body is responsible for mounting some sort of response. A discussion followed with the following comments.

  • From comments in strategic meetings with the deans, it seems this could impact enrollment and the units.  The initial intention was good, but there are ramifications for the faculty and institutions. We could bring Jon back for another discussion.
  • The list that is on the website to CORE 34, does not align with the list we have. We are not sure what the classes are, and we need to institute this in the fall.
  • Administrators are frustrated and dissatisfied. Faculty Senate is the body that is to act. KBOR Systemwide general education and Core 34 are two separate entities. They are trying to merge the two. There are concerns about the systemwide general education. Academic freedom is when faculty control the curriculum. Does Regents know what they are doing violates academic freedom? It would be helpful to state these things. We can ask for direct communications with KBOR. Or we can let the Provost and Chancellor know what we want to tell them. We could start by letting the Regents know we have something to tell them.
  • An added concern is accreditation. HLC standards have something about “faculty controlling the curriculum”.  The Chancellor’s Office understands this. This is on the Chancellor’s radar--leveraging HLC with KBOR. Having direct communication with KBOR is good. It could either be a meeting or a statement. We need to collect incidences of the impact of this. We can compile this into a list. These comments can be used for a statement or as notes in discussions with KBOR.
  • Can we have someone who is well versed in this come speak to us and inform us of the details?  We have heard a lot from others that there is nothing they can do.
  • Can we reach out by email message to all faculty to get feedback on how the systemwide general education is affecting their work?
  • Implementation of this has been a disaster. Faculty Senate needs to focus on the fact that faculty set the curriculum.
  • There is a KBOR meeting in mid-February. We can bring the concern to the faculty senate president who will bring the concerns to KBOR.
  • Can we send an email to every faculty member? Yes, Governance can send a message on behalf of Victor Gonzalez to the faculty distribution list that is moderated.
  • These are two separate but related projects. The principle is stated in AAUP documents. Hearing from faculty is the gathering of evidence to support we are not controlling the curriculum.
  • There could be an ad hoc committee to create a message. Faculty senators volunteered for the ad hoc committee.
  • We can give the ethics course issue as an example of one of the ways this is causing concern.

Meeting adjourned.


Faculty Senate - Jan. 25, 2024


Member for

1 year 7 months
Submitted by Caty Movich on