SenEx - University Senate Executive Committee 9/30/14
(This meeting may be electronically recorded.)
II. Approval of minutes from September 16, 2014
III. Standing Reports
A. University Senate President Jonathan Mayhew
B. Faculty Senate President Jim Carothers
C. Student Senate President Miranda Wagner
D. Unclassified Senate President Amanda Ostreko
E. University Support Staff President Chris Wallace
IV. Proposed USRR amendment regarding short-term military leave
V. Social Media Policy Procedures
VI. Old Business
VII. New Business
University Senate Executive Committee – SenEx
September 30, 2014 – 3:00 p.m.
Provost Conference Room
Approved November 4, 2014
MEMBERS PRESENT: Faculty – Jonathan Mayhew, Jim Carothers, Mike Williams, Katherine Clark, Jeremy Martin. Students – Miranda Wagner, Alex Montgomery, Michael Walker. Unclassified Staff – Mike Krings, Amanda Ostreko. University Support Staff – Charlotte Goodman, Chris Wallace.
EXCUSED: Faculty – Lisa Friis. Students – Emma Halling.
ALSO PRESENT: Tom Beisecker, Faculty Senate President Elect; Mohamed El-Hodiri, AAUP; Amy Smith, Policy Office; Kathleen Levy, University Governance
University Senate President and SenEx Chair Jonathan Mayhew called the meeting to order.
SenEx approved the minutes for September 16, 2014.
University Senate President – Mayhew reported that the agenda items for next week’s University Senate meeting are election of the Vice President (a student), USRR amendments concerning short-term military leave, and inactive program discontinuances.
Faculty Senate President – Carothers reported that he and Mayhew met with the Provost and Acting Vice Provost Marta Caminero-Santangelo. They discussed Faculty Code issues and the Social Media Policy Procedures. They offered Governance’s participation in the continuing discussion of sexual assault issues. They also raised the issue of the problems faculty are experiencing with the Shared Service Centers. The Provost responded that he has been informed that the Shared Service Centers are working well. Carothers announced that Nancy Kinnersley has agreed to be the Faculty Senate representative to Unclassified Senate. Julie Petr has agreed to represent faculty on the task group on diversity issues recently formed by Nate Thomas, Vice Provost for Diversity and Equity.
Student Senate President – Wagner reported that Student Senate had their first “business as usual” meeting last week. She introduced the new student representative to SenEx, Alex Montgomery. She noted that Student Senate is working on adding the position of Social Equity Director. She also noted that the Chancellor has formed a Sexual Assault Task Force. The Task Force meetings are open to the public and it will present proposals to Student Senate.
Unclassified Senate – Ostreko reported that Unclassified Senate has several events coming up including a writing group, KU Hunger Awareness Summit, a staff mixer Halloween lunch, and a stress management workshop. Ola Faucher shared Human Resources (HR) updates with them. Employees in Phase III of the Market Study will receive notices of new job titles and salary adjustments soon. Phase IV will begin on October 1. HR will be revisiting the idea of a tobacco-free campus. Krings reported that he attended the KBOR Unclassified Council which met in Topeka at the Regents meeting. The Social Media Policy was the main topic. He noted that Wichita State has developed procedures similar to KU’s procedures, and some schools are not developing procedures beyond what is contained in the BOR Social Media Policy. He reported that Kansas State and Emporia are also looking at the possibility of expanding domestic partner benefits.
University Support Staff – Wallace reported that he met with representatives from other Regents schools. The main issue was leave, which is accrued differently from unclassified staff. He also noted that KU has a somewhat different position from the other schools because KU has a support staff whereas the other schools have classified staff.
SHORT-TERM MILITARY LEAVE – Mayhew called on Williams to explain the proposed amendments which appear at the end of the minutes. Williams briefly related the history of the proposed changes. Last spring students proposed the addition of USRR 1.3.9 and 1.4.5. University Senate decided to refer the amendments to AP & P. AP & P made minor revisions to the original proposal. Montgomery/Walker moved that the USRR amendments and additions be referred to University Senate. Passed unanimously.
SOCIAL MEDIA POLICY PROCEDURES – Mayhew noted that he met with Caminero-Santangelo and Rachel Rolf from General Counsel’s Office. He went over the changes that had been made. The most recent version of the policy appears at the end of the minutes. Rachel Rolf from General Counsel’s Office answered questions and explained that the Initial Review Panel (IRP) is an idea borrowed from the KUMC procedures and is not meant to duplicate the Substantive Review Board (SRB) phase.
SenEx members discussed several new points. First, members suggested that the phrase “the Trigger” is inappropriate and that it be removed from the document and either replaced with “reasonable grounds” or eliminated entirely along with the other parenthetical.
Second, members reexamined the section titled “Initial Review Panel.” It was pointed out that a decision by the IRP that the case should go to the next level creates a presumption that there is “something there.” The language currently in the policy says “reasonable grounds to believe that the member . . . improperly used social media. . . .” The idea of the IRP is to determine whether there are “grounds to investigate” (which would be done by the SRB), but the current language does not say this. Members agreed that they would prefer that “grounds to believe that” be changed to “grounds to investigate whether.” It was suggested that perhaps the IRP stage is not necessary. Most members want to retain this phase but with protections for the accused person, specifically, the right to address the panel. Members indicated that they wanted specific language allowing the accused person to address the panel in some form. Montgomery/Martin moved that the following sentence or something similar be added: The accused person shall have the right to address or submit a statement to the IRP. Passed.
Third, members discussed the section titled “Appeal Rights.” This section of the Social Media Policy procedures provides that disciplinary action, if any, would be in accordance with existing policy. Williams/Montgomery moved that the heading be changed to read “Disciplinary Action and Appeal Rights.” Passed.
In addition, members concluded that the changes regarding conflict of interest and time frame adequately addressed their concerns. A member would like a provision that the decision of the SRB is binding. Finally, a member requested a specific provision providing for notice to the parties of the SRB’s decision. Mayhew will take these concerns and suggestions to Caminero-Santangelo.
NEW BUSINESS – Martin reported that he has spoken with Applied English Center (AEC) employees regarding their concerns about Shorelight and the Academic Accelerator Program. The main concern is that the students who have been recruited to participate in this program do not have the language skills for which the program is designed. AEC employees are concerned about the ethics of putting students and faculty in a situation in which students cannot succeed. It was noted that the AEC Director recently resigned but his departure is not related to this situation. Two committees – International Affairs and Planning and Resources – have charges relating to Shorelight. These concerns will be referred to these committees.
Mayhew announced that the BOR will visit the KU campus on November 13 and 14 and would like to meet with SenEx members on Friday, November 14.
No further business. The meeting was adjourned.