Minot State University
Executive Board Meeting
November 8, 2001
3:30 pm -- Conference Room in CMSC
President: Rick Barkosky
Vice President: Christopher Keller
Secretary: Lisa Borden-King
Parliamentarian: Bethany Andreasen
Bethany Andreasen Rick Barkosky
Lisa Borden-King Nancy Hall
Christopher Keller Warren Gamas
Michael Duffy Eric Furuseth
Members present: Warren Gamas, Rick Barkosky, Christopher Keller, Michael Duffy, Bethany Andreasen , Eric Furuseth, Lisa Borden-King
Guests: Dr. Shaar, Wes Matthews, Pat Lomire, Steve Huenneke
1. Announcements/Review Agenda
a) additions to agenda -- Dr. Barkosky requested the addition of items relative to the minimum credits required in a major from MSU and the sick leave policy. Additions were accepted.
2. Minutes from the previous meeting.
a) Dr. Borden-King requested clarification concerning the discussion concerning the Honors Program. Minutes will be revised to indicate that the Faculty Senate committee responsible for the Honors Program will be meeting to consider the issues.
b)Dr. Huenneke stated that 33 states have collective bargaining not 43
c)minutes were approved as revised
3. Sick Leave policy -- The discussion concerning the sick leave policy was moved up on agenda due to Mr. Matthews needing to teach class at 4:00.
a)Mr. Matthews began with an overview of the background concerning the development of a sick leave policy. Last July it was determined by the State Board that each campus would determine their own sick leave policy. The campuses are looking at each other asking what each will do. NDSU does have a policy which rewards a certain number of days in relation to length of time at the University. The need for a policy is the need for consistency so policy is fairly applied to those in similar circumstances. A policy is a good thing but we don’t want to be quick to have a policy that isn’t a good policy. So, even thought the policy should have been in place already, MSU will take time to construct a good policy. Mr. Matthews was asked to draft a sick leave policy a couple of months ago. He shared this draft with the Deans. The Deans shared it in varying degrees with faculty and/or Chairs. The policy was shared enough that his phone rang continuously. Mr. Matthews received all kinds of input which was a good thing. Since the first draft, he is looking at other issues raised during the feedback process so the policy isn’t really in a good condition to look at right now. One of the primary concerns raised focused on short term disability insurance If we have such insurance then the sick leave policy could be more liberal because the funds would already be there. In September, Mr. Matthews asked TIAA CREF for information on short term disability insurance. This has led to some system wide questions about the whole system having such insurance. We will look at those costs, and look at the costs we have had in recent history dealing with sick leave. We are not looking at an accrual system like we do with staff. Nobody wants to lose the freedom we have for the common cold. We are trying to address extended illness -- illness which creates the need to find adjunct faculty to fill in or colleagues to pitch in and help. If we aren’t going to look at an accrual method, then we are looking at a stated amount of time for a specific contract. The feedback Mr. Matthews has received so far indicates that people would be more comfortable seeing a graduated scale in relation to time at MSU. We also need to define what an extended illness is, so that it is not ambiguous. The history has been that the definition has been fairly liberal -- if someone has had to take off, they were paid. Eventually, someone might have to be dismissed. Whatever we do, it will seem as less than what we had just because the policy will have boundaries on it. In some discussions, with NDSU for example, the end was six months because at that point long term disability would be activated. We also have to look at the fact that not everyone follows the traditional model of teaching four in campus classes and that is 80 percent of work load. Some people’s work load includes online classes and they can continue to work in some instances when unable to attend on campus classes. Maternity leave as a specific issue is also something we want to look at. We want to come up with the assurance statements as well -- a tenured faculty member would certainly have the right to return. Once the short term disability insurance information comes in, it may help us out but it may not. Once we get that question answered we will go back to the books and start again.
Dr. Barkosky read the NDSU policy which indicates that after six months the TIAA CREF will kick in. Mr. Matthews stated that policy does not address issues such as someone who is here for ten years, and uses twenty weeks due to a heart attack, then next year (year 11) has another heart attack -- does he get 22 weeks then? After awhile even the most liberal definition would be abused. NDSU also doesn’t address maternity leave. When it comes to the federal family leave act, illnesses of member’s spouse, children and parents are covered, up to twelve weeks in a year. The North Dakota Family Leave Act doesn’t cover the employee but does grant up to four months. We use the more liberal definition: for family members you get the four months, but member gets only the twelve weeks. Another issue is does the local policy go first and then the family leave act begins or are they concurrent? The family leave act only guarantees you a job, not paid leave.
Dr. Barkosky indicated that he has asked Mr. Matthews to come to Faculty Senate’s next meeting. He has also asked Tom Seymour to lead the discussion. Dr. Barkosky hopes to gather even more feedback for Mr. Matthews through the structures of faculty governance.
4. CCF report:
Dr. Huenneke’s report will be an overview of 3 major items currently being discussed in CCF. He distributed the resolution regarding presidential searches, the revised policy statement for presidential searches and the objectives for SBHE.
a)CCF is working on a final resolution regarding changes in compensation packages for presidents. Dr. Huenneke will give us the final resolution after the CCF meeting. Our Faculty Senate has already said that those funds should come from Board funds not campuses.
b)CCF is working on a statement of principle regarding compensation. They are revitalizing the compensation committee. Dr. Kibler will be on the committee, appointed by Faculty Senate.
c)There have been changes in policy 601.1 concerning presidential searches. The document provided by Dr. Huenneke indicates five changes to the policy, including the elimination of faculty from presidential search committees. Dickinson State University Faculty Senate president has distributed their resolution. The resolution from UND is also provided and urges Board to reconsider the changes to 601.1. Dr. Barkoksy stated that we could decide to have Dr. Huenneke bring this to Faculty Senate at the next meeting. We could then decide to do nothing, approve one of the two existing resolutions or write our own resolution. There was general agreement to this course of action.
e) Dr. Huenneke also provided a brief update on the academic freedom issue. In the October meeting, a draft of the 400 section was reviewed. Most of the changes were non controversial. On section 401 dealing with academic freedom and political activity there were no suggested changes. There was, however, one academic affairs officer who spoke of recent court cases that would cause the Board to need to revise the ideas on academic freedom. In a gist, the argument was that these court cases applied to institutions not to faculty. The document for the October meeting did not have the language regarding academic freedom crossed out, but the material for the November meeting did have the language crossed out. Despite this, Dr. Huenneke has received assurances that there are no intended changes. Dr. Keller asked if the Chancellor is not proposing any changes to this section, who had stroked out the paragraphs? Dr. Huenneke replied that the editing was done by Pat Seaworth, the board attorney.
4. Administrative report
a)Dr. Shaar indicated that all items of importance were covered at the last Senate meeting.
5. Old Business
a)Ad hoc committee on promotion, tenure and evaluation criteria:
Faulty Senate voted to support the composition of the committee as currently formulated, after some lively discussion. Right now a draft of the work they have been doing is being circulated but is not ready for general consumption.
Dr. Andreasen reminded members that the break in service and eligibility for tenure policy still needs to be drafted as a policy statement. This committee could do that OR another committee could. We should bring it up to Faculty Senate and see which way they want to go.
6. New Business
a) Shared governance: Dr. Barkosky began the discussion concerning shared governance by reading from the Constitution. He read Section 3 of Article 4:
“Section 3. Subject to Board policy, the faculty through the Faculty Senate has responsibility for all academic matters and for certain non-academic matters of the University. The faculty shall recommend:
1) any changes, deletions, or additions of courses for classroom instruction or of major, minor or their requirements for graduation, such as standards of grading; 2) any matters affecting faculty welfare;
3) any change in scheme of faculty organization or of chain-of-command involving faculty; and 4) this Constitution and Bylaws and any subsequent changes.”
Dr. Barkosky then read Section 5 of Article 6:
“Section 5. The purpose of the Faculty Senate shall be:
A. To examine any action taken by any committee, academic unit, or administrative office of the University which modifies policies or regulations of the University academic program.
B. To act upon matters relating to curriculum and instruction, including Continuing Education, within the limits established by the Board.
C. To cooperate with the President in determining policies pertaining to faculty relations, organization of the University academic programs, and student participation in the control of student affairs.
D. To establish, to determine the method of personnel selection, to determine the functions, and to supervise and review the proceedings and recommendations of all Senate committees.”
Dr. Barkosky stated that there have been a couple of instances which have sparked the need to have this conversation concerning shared governance with this group and potentially with Faculty Senate as a whole. It seems that faculty need to reassert their presences in shared governance. The current situation is undermining our relationship with the administration. The two recent faculty surveys also indicate that the relationship between the administration and faculty should be strengthened. Evidence from the faculty surveys shows that faculty perceive they are not playing a big enough role in shared governance. One example of this is the recent move of the political science program to the criminal justice program. This event shows contrasting views of shared governance. Another recent example is the sick leave policy which is clearly relevant to welfare of faculty. We have involved ourselves in the sick leave policy issue by asking Mr. Matthews to come here but this is only after much of the work has been done already. The bachelors degree in power plant management is another example of something in which we have not been asked to be involved. Some of this is the result of the administrative reports we have been getting in which we have not received important information. There are some examples of working well together such as the collaboration concerning the twelve credits in a major requirement.
Dr. Shaar indicated a willingness to report on the power plant management degree if committee members wished. He suggested that if this is an issue of concern on campus then there must be hundreds of other examples as well. Dr. Andreasen indicated that the issue with the new degree concerns stepping into a joint degree with another institution which seems to merit discussion. There will always be an issue concerning how much information to share during administrative reports but right now, erring on the side of too much information is the way to go.
Shaar: A two year applied science degree offered entirely over the internet in power plant management program is going now. There are many two year institutions that envision themselves becoming four year institutions. At a meeting of North Central Dr. Shaar sat with the President of BSC. The issue at hand was how does a two year institution begin offering four year programs? The accrediting agency concluded that as long as there were four year institutions conveniently located and able to participate in a joint relationship, that two year institutions would not be granted the option to offer four year programs. Those of you who have been here awhile have heard rumors for a long time about BSC wanting to be a four year institution. Donna Thigpen said we can’t find anybody to cooperate with us in providing our students the opportunity to move into a baccalaureate degree. Dr. Shaar indicated that nobody asked us. On Tuesday there was a meeting, and this idea was explored. He thinks it is important that we explore it. But it is also important that before we offer any program like this there needs to be involvement from faculty recommending to the president that a program go or not go. Dr. Shaar believes it would be wrong for us to say no guys we are not interested, because then, that is when BSC will be a four year institution, and we will be competing with them for students. Dr. Shaar wants to protect us from that kind of a thing. We should discuss this issue again when there is something to discuss but nothing is at a point where it can be discussed yet.
Dr. Furuseth asserted that it is our responsibility to ask the administration if there is something we are interested in. Dr. Barkosky expressed his confidence that Dr. Shaar recognizes that it is important we be included in these kinds of decisions.
Dr. Keller suggested that the power plant issue is clearly something that is down the road, but the political science move is a fait accompli which is a better example of this kind of lack of communication. Dr. Shaar indicated that this issue has been treated as a resource allocation issue. Dr. Andreasen reiterated that it is also a curriculum issue and not just a resource allocation issue.
Dr. Duffy returned to the power plant management issue, saying that the faculty members thought they were blind sided by the appearance of this program on an agenda. But when it appeared on the next agenda, they had a good discussion. The most common thread was concern over resources -- who is going to do it? Who will get credit? The most interesting discussion was what is the effect on image. Dr. Duffy believes that we should be looking at consequences and not just the immediate effect. Would MSU be perceived as lowering its standards to become a junior college? This could potentially affect the whole university.
Dr. Barkosky stated that by having this discussion, we are starting down the right path. He simply wanted it out in the open that faculty are feeling this way. Dr. Huenneke expressed his concern over the fact that if he or his colleagues want to change the name of a course they have to go to a committee but in this instance an entire instructional unit was moved from one department to another without anyone being involved. This is, in part, a resource allocation decision but then everything is in some ways.
Discussion continued for quite some time over the issue of shared governance and the specific events of this semester that have created some concern. Dr. Andreasen indicated towards the end of the discussion that we have been focusing on what has happened up to this point and that we need to be looking at what we want to have happen in the future.
b) Committees: Dr. Andreasen has given Dr. Barkosky some work to do. Two positions in Faculty Senate are empty, the Arts and Sciences position and an “at large” position. There have been other changes as well, members can see the handout from Dr. Andreasen for all committee changes.
c)Student Activity Fee: Dick Jenkins and Bruce Haskins are proposing an increase in fees. We should bring up this issue in front of the student senators so they can bring it back to Student Senate. The committee would like Student Senate to give input to them.
d)12 credit minimum to graduate: Do we want to charge the Academic Policy committee to deal with the 12 credit minimum to count towards a degree? The feeling in Chairs council is that 12 credits is not really enough. Dr. Andreasen suggested that this body can not charge them, but Faculty Senate could. Dr. Barkosky said he would do some research and get back to EFS members on this issue.
e)Tuition waiver: Dr. Kibler won’t be at Faculty Senate next week so he wants Dr. Barkosky to bring up some issues at next meeting. Dr. Kibler has contacted people from other institutions and is also working with Mr. Matthews to develop a survey that will help to determine the interest in this issue. Dr. Shaar indicated that the next stage of this is actuarial studies. He has had conversations with Mr. Haskins about that. Dr. Shaar is confident they will come up with data that will enable us to make decisions. Dr. Barkosky expressed his confidence that the draft will be a combination of ideas from administration and Faculty Senate.
Meeting adjourned at 5: 05
Lisa Borden-King, Faculty Senate secretary