Minot State University
Executive Board Meeting
July 30, 2001
1:00 pm -- Westlie Room
Bethany Andreasen Rick Barkosky
Chirstopher Keller Nancy Hall
Eric Furuseth Michael Duffy
Warren Gamas Lisa Borden-King
Members Present: Rick Barkosky, Lisa Borden-King, Bethany Andreasen, Michael Duffy, Nancy Hall, Eric Furuseth, Christopher Keller
Others present: Dr. Shaar
Members absent: Warren Gamas
Introductory Remarks by Faculty Senate President
Dr. Barkosky thanked committee members for attending this meeting despite its unusual scheduling. This will be a busy year for Faculty Senate as it is a catalog year and there are many important deadlines to be met with various committees and Faculty Senate. Dr. Barkosky outlined his perception of his role as Faculty Senate President. He sees himself as a purveyor of information, someone who asks questions faculty want answered, and someone who always uses the bylaws as his guide. He will avoid offering his opinion since he does not see this as his role.
Dr. Barkosky reminded members that it is our job to maintain Faculty Senate web site. We need to put all previous minutes on web site (some are currently missing) and new minutes need to be put up immediately after they are approved.
Nancy Hall has asked for the inclusion of the HERI project on today’s agenda. The HERI project was added under new business.
Appointments: There are still two appointments to Executive Faculty Senate that need to be forwarded to Faculty Senate (Warren Gamas and Michael Duffy).
Meeting Schedules: Dr. Barkosky handed out a list of tentative meeting times for Executive Faculty Senate and Faculty Senate. Faculty Senate may meet twice in September to facilitate the catalog process. Members were advised to let Dr. Barkosky know if there are any concerns/ideas about the meeting schedules. Dr. Andreasen mentioned that the idea surfaced to use the time set aside for faculty and meetings on Thursday afternoons (12:30) for the April all-campus faculty meeting. She didn’t want to change it last semester but would support having it in that time frame this year instead of a late afternoon meeting. The additional meeting in May would be at the 3:30 time.
Continuous service criteria for promotion : Dr. Gary Rabe will be serving this year as interim dean and had inquired about the continuous service criteria for promotion. Dr. Barkosky will write a letter to the Faculty Senate in support of Dr. Rabe’s time being counted as continuous service, and will bring the matter to the Senate for formal approval. Dr. Hall stated that there are two conditions in the by laws which allow for such a possibility. Dr. Andreasen pointed out that there are really two issues to be considered -- one concerns counting the year as service (teaching) and the other concerns allowing him to not count it as an interruption. Dr. Barkosky agreed to draft a letter to that effect.
Academic Affairs Calendar: Dr. Barkosky indicated that some dates in the Faculty Handbook don’t match the Academic Affairs calendar, in particular one concerning the due date for promotion and tenure materials. Dr. Hall suggested going with the handbook which is a Thursday. Dr. Hall said she would check the other dates included in handbook for conflicts with the Academic Affairs calendar. She also pointed out, however, that some of the dates in the Handbook are old and asked if someone reviews the handbook for dates yearly. Dr. Barkosky said he would recommend the Faculty Senate handbook committee deal with the dates.
Interim Promotion process: Dr. Barkosky indicated that there are remaining concerns from last spring about the promotion process and would like to present the Faculty Senate’s views and invited Dr. Shaar here to clarify and give background.
Dr. Shaar indicated that his memo to Stewart Kelly (the new chair of the promotion committee) contained all of the relevant information and background. He summarized the contents of the letter. Last spring there were three cases of dissatisfaction with the recommendations of 2000-2001 promotion committee. Two colleagues appealed to the special review committee and a third colleague appealed to Dr. Shaar suggesting that his application was subjected to different criteria than he understood would be used. The memo to Dr. Kelly states that Dr. Shaar understands that the process to clarify the criteria for promotion is underway. After receiving the information from the Special Review Committee, Dr. Hall and Dr. Shaar appeared before the Promotion Committee and requested a reconsideration for two individuals. The Promotion Committee voted 4-3 to reject request for reconsideration. Dr. Shaar, however, remains concerned about those two or three people. He believes in shared governance, but there are colleagues who feel mistreated by the process last year. He is strongly urging that this problem be reviewed and that these people be given an opportunity to present themselves and their cases to the committee. Dr. Hall added that she and Dr. Furuseth talked about the fact that one Faculty Senate committee was making a recommendation to another Faculty Senate committee that wasn’t being accepted.
During the ensuing discussion, the following issues were raised:
1) The bylaws provide no clear authorization for the establishment of an interim promotion process.
2)There are some discrepancies in bylaws about the process. In one place in the bylaws, the special review committee is supposed to refer to the faculty rights committee but instead they made recommendations. In another place it indicates that making recommendations is within their purview. The conflicts occur in Article III, Section 3.0 and Article VIII, Section 2.A.
3) Although there is nothing in bylaws that allows the implementation of an interim promotion process, they do clearly state that Dr. Shaar can overrule the Promotion Committee’s recommendations. It is unclear, however, whether this overruling applies only to the actions taken by Faculty Senate (in this case via the promotion committee the decision to not recommend promotion) OR if it includes the ability to overrule decisions concerning process.
4)There is a need to resolve this quickly as the faculty in question are expecting to be able to pursue an interim process.
5)Some concern was expressed about Dr. Shaar indicating to a Faculty Senate committee what action to pursue.
6) Others suggested that since the special review committee recommended this interim process, it isn’t Dr. Shaar telling the committee what to do, it is one Faculty Senate committee telling another Faculty Senate committee.
7) The special review committee found flaws in the promotion process -- which is their charge.
8) If the special review committee can work out something with all parties then that is good. They can make a recommendation but they can not require something. Perhaps they should have made their recommendation to Dr. Furuseth, not to President Shaar.
9)In constitutional law, one looks at the spirit of the law. Just because the bylaws do not directly allow for an interim process, doesn’t mean such a process CAN’T be done.
10) Given the conflict in the bylaws, perhaps it is the President’s decision.
11) Perhaps Faculty Senate needs to clarify their bylaws.
12) We should, perhaps, err on the side of giving the faculty an opportunity to address the committee’s concerns given what a messy process this has been.
13) The question seems to be what action can the President take when given the Special Review committee’s recommendations? Can he only choose to promote or not promote or can he choose to require follow through on the committee’s recommendations?
After much discussion, there appeared to be two choices: One, refer the conflict in bylaws and lack of clarity in evaluation guidelines back to Faculty Senate and have THEM charge the promotion committee with the interim process; or, two, have the President make the decision (which he feels he has) to charge the promotion committee.
There was also discussion concerning whether or not the Executive Faculty Senate had the power to decide this question. A motion was made by Dr. Barkosky.
Motion: The issue of the interim promotion process should be brought up to the whole Faculty Senate at their first meeting in September. The motion was passed by a vote of four to two.
Dr. Barkosky indicated that Executive Faculty Senate members should continue to think about this and we will reexamine it during our next meeting on August 30th.
Dr. Hall indicated two concerns with the results of our discussion. First, the names of these individuals need to be kept out of the discussion of the process. Secondly, someone needs to let the individuals involved know what is going on as they are operating under the assumption that an interim process is moving forward.
Other Business: Dr. Hall just wanted to bring our attention to the possibility of using the HERI project to replace our faculty satisfaction surveys. HERI stands for Higher Education Research Institute. Faculty Senate conducts a faculty satisfaction survey every year. She recently received a letter from HERI asking if we wanted to participate in their process (for norming). In the new accountability measures in ND, the Board wants a sense of faculty satisfaction on each campus. They directed Dr. Hall to find out if this instrument would meet our needs. Dr. Hall indicated that when she and Harry Hoffman were working on the student surveys, they never knew what they had because it was not normed.
Dr. Barkosky recommended that Dr. Hall distribute the information to members of Executive Faculty Senate and we will consider it at our next meeting.
Other Business: Dr. Andreasen mentioned that there are other questions about the Faculty Handbook. For example, anyone can now take continuing education courses for free as well as regular on-campus courses. Also, we need a more current version of the organizational chart. Dr. Hall indicated that Cassie Artz recently updated that chart. Dr. Andreasen also pointed out that the name change for EHS should be voted on and then changed in the Faculty Handbook as well.
The meeting was adjourned at 2:30.
Lisa L. Borden-King