Minutes of the
University of Texas System
Faculty Advisory Council Meeting
June 5-6, 2003
Thursday, June 5
12:00 P M Call to Order
12:10 P M Chancellor Yudof
1:00P M Dr. Geri Malandra
2:00P M Campus Reports
See Appendix for Campus Reports
2:45P M Committee Meetings
4:00P M Vice Chairman Woody L. Hunt
4:45P M M r. Carlos Martinez
Friday, June 7
8:00A M Chairman’s Report and Election
8:30A M Mr. Dan Stewart (Group Health Insurance)
9:15A M Bob Cuzner and Janet Lawrence – DRI, Faculty Satisfaction Survey
10:45A M Committee Meetings
12:00P M Lunch served
12:15P M Dr. Teresa Sullivan and Dr. James Guckian
With the departure of President Robert Witt to the University of Alabama on 1 March 2003, UTA entered receivership under UT System appointed Interim President Charles Sorber. But it was generally agreed among the faculty that an external interim president would be preferable to an internal one. It also was agreed that Dr. Sorber would not be a candidate for the permanent presidency.
Since his arrival on campus, Dr. Sorber has become quite popular among the faculty. His openness and honesty are deeply appreciated. For example, with regard to the budget crisis, he has sought to mobilize the campus community by creating five large focus groups, on which the faculty are amply represented, to help deal with future budget cutting priorities. At a time of budget cutbacks, he nevertheless instituted the first ever Service Awards Dinner, honoring those who have been at UTA for twenty-five years or more. And he has been very visible and tireless across the UTA campus and the Arlington-Fort Worth-Dallas communities.
After the Provost’s once again failing to hire one of the candidates for Dean nominated by the reconstituted search committee out of a turbulent search, the College of Liberal Arts has entered the third year of its receivership. The search committee is continuing its work and hopes to offer more viable candidates soon.
An eighteen-member presidential search committee under the leadership of Vice Chancellor Sullivan has been constituted and is hard at work screenin g applicants. The Faculty Senate has three representatives on the committee, including FAC representatives Reinhartz and Chrzanowski, and they chair the committee’s three sub-committees. This is an open search that has been widely advertised, and a search firm also has been retained. In excess of ninety nominations and applications have been received thus far.
UTA Secession Crisis:
The attempt to extract UTA from the UT System has come to an end (temporarily?) with the conclusion of an agreement (treaty?) between UT System and Arlington-Fort Worth state legislators and community leaders.
Other Items of Note:
Of twenty-promised faculty development leaves, only eight were funded for the coming year due to budget cuts.
Faculty complaints against the Office of Sponsored Projects are on the rise.
A new Ph.D. degree in nursing has been approved.
Student athletes—60% of UTA’s athletes have made the Dean’s List this year.
Faculty Senate elections have been held and new officers are now in place. The Senate now also has an office in the Main Library and part time secretarial help.
FAC To-Do List
ITE MS IN THE NEWS – UT-Austin:
1. Budget Shortfall
2. Steps taken to address Budget Shortfall
3. 78 th Legislative Actions
4. Major Faculty Council Actions 2002-2003
5. UT-Austin opens Charter School
6. Other items of interest
CO M MITTEE REQUESTS
1. SALARY REDUCTION:
2. NEW HIRES:
5. GRIEVANCE POLICIES:
In common with our colleagues across the state, we in Brownsville have found ourselves in the unpleasant position of largely adoptin g a “wait and see” posture as the legislature struggled with the budget. Of course, we knew the news would be bad, but our official administrative stance, well-founded as it turned out, has been that there is nothing to be done until firm numbers are in hand. At this writing, those numbers are slowly beginning to find their way to us.
Major faculty concerns directly related to legislative matters have centered on three issues.
The first is the legislation altering insurance rules regarding faculty who retire and faculty new to our campuses. This has caused a great deal of consternation on our campus as it evolved although it looks, at the moment, as though things may be shaking out somewhat less apocalyptically than initial projections seemed to indicate. The second matter, principally exercising our School of Education, relates to changes in the ways in which teachers are certified.
These changes revolve around degree status and could result in substantial alterations in the makeup and mission of the School of Education. The third matter is the abandonment of TASP and its replacement with the Student Success Initiative. Obviously, at an open admissions school such as ours, this is going to cause formidable changes in the that we do business.
Lookin g at basic faculty concerns rooted in the budget problems, we are working on the assumptions that only one level of our two tier merit system will be funded next year. This, in turn, provoked a modest crisis since the level to be funded is Level II, and there is a longstandin g agreement between the Academic Senate and the campus administration that Level II merit will never be funded unless adequate funds are first channeled to Level I. In a spirit of compromise, and recognizing the dire fiscal constraints administration is laboring under, the Senate, in a hotly contested debate, passed a resolution agreeing to this for one year only with the stipulation that the next year for which any funding is available must see all funding go to Level I. This sets the stage for a possible crisis next year since the Senate informed the administration that any move to collect materials used to evaluate faculty for Level II in the fall of 2004 would be seen as a breach of faith and an assault on our basic merit structure (which we jealously guard). Of course, the resolution I am speaking of would “kick in” only if no Level I fundin g appears for next year (this is our understanding, but it is not “official”yet).
In another interesting development, the campus administration is offerin g all faculty and staff who are eligible for retirement a lump sum payment of 2/3 of their base salary should they elect to retire by August 30. This move is predicated on the desire to avoid a RIF (Reduction in Force) and to provide some relief to aging faculty trapped by the collapsing economy and their status in the ORP. It appears that as much as one tenth of our campus faculty and staff may be eligible to take advantage of this, and there is much interest. Needless to say, when paired with the insurance bill mentioned earlier, there is some reason for people to treat this offer very seriously.
Finally, this writer must note that new officers have been elected in our Senate. Next year, Ethel Cantu, from Behavioral Sciences, will serve as our President. She is an old friend and a long time faculty member, and I am confident that she will represent us well. For my part, I have had a good run, and I feel as though it is time to let someone else handle things. I suspect that I won’t be a stranger to the FAC in the future, but for now, I wish you all the best and urge you to stay in touch.
TO DO LIST:
1. Salary Reduction: no policy exists.
2. Our new hires are, unfortunately, treated to the old “sink or swim” approach. Reduced loads
tenure track people are unheard of.
3. Travel, we don’t need no stinkin’ travel.
4. Budget Woes (pernicious effects)
A. Rising class sizes.
B. Rising tuition.
C. The already yawning gap between our salaries and other component’s salary schedules
5. In our HOOP, the phrase is “no reasonable basis” (sweet reason is, of course, something we
all associate with administration).
Bill Harris, Academic Senate President
UT El Paso
Definition and Purpose
Academic centers or institutes may be established at UTEP for the support and facilitation of research, service, or instructional outreach when there is a clear need for a formal organization to bring faculty and staff together to more effectively carry out a long term, focused program. They may be supported by state funds or sponsored projects or a combination of financial sources. There is not distinction made at UTEP between the use of the term “center” versus ‘institute”.
Centers and Institutes whose missions cannot be fully addressed without substantial participation by faculty/staff from more than one college are designated as University Centers or Institutes. These report directly to the Vice President for Research and Sponsored Projects. Other centers whose missions fall primarily within single departments or colleges report to the department chairpersons or deans as appropriate. The Office of Research and Sponsored Projects supervise policy and procedures for establishment and evaluation of centers and institutes.
Approval of any new center or institute is made by the President of UTEP after receipt of a detailed recommendation and plan forwarded through appropriate channels, regardless of the source of financial support or level of reporting, and whether or not establishment of the center or institute would require a budget change. Plans for new University centers must be approved by the Vice President for Research and Sponsored Projects and the vice President for Academic Affairs.
The written request for establishment of a new center or institute must address:
a. purpose, need, and importance in relation to the University’s mission
b. the proposed center or institute’s mission, goals and programs to meet the goals;
c. cooperation and support of relevant faculty, administrators and potential external partners or constituents;
d. administrative organization, and
e. financial support required and anticipated source(s), both immediate and long term.
The written proposal for establishment of a new center or institute may be in the form of a grant proposal developed in cooperation with and forwarded through the Office of Research and Sponsored Projects, or it may be presented at any time; but centers or institutes requiring state budget support are generally considered in accord with state budget cycles.
All centers and institutes at UTEP are reviewed annually. The center or institute director must submit no less frequently than annually an activity report reviewing for that reporting period:
a. the unit’s mission, goals, programs;
b. organization and staffing;
c. participants, including faculty, students, and other;
d. activity summaries in succinct format;
e. outstandin g accomplishments or outcomes;
f. external funding or other support initiatives;
g. plans for major initiatives in the upcoming year.
The Center Director through the appropriate reporting channels submits the annual activity report for that unit to the vice President for Research and Sponsored Projects.
On the basis of these reports, the administrator responsible for the unit works with the Center Director on strategic plannin g and administrative or programmatic changes to enhance performance. In addition, the Provost and the Vice President review the centers and institutes for Research and Sponsored Projects in consultation with the appropriate dean to determine whether their continued existence is justified and in the interest of the University.
UT Health Science Center at San Antonio
Faculty development has been a topic of concern in the Faculty Senate. The Faculty Status & Welfare Senate Committee is developin g a faculty needs assessment survey concerning development issues. This committee plans to make recommendations and plans for faculty development workshops/programs. President Cigarroa has encouraged the Senate to plan a development workshop and expressed plans to provide financial support for a workshop. A newly created position of the Director of Academic Support has been a topic of concern for faculty. The position appears to have numerous duties and may not adequately cover faculty development in the university. The Senate has expressed concern about the position.
The Senate is making strides in the development of the processes needed to run the Senate and communicate with the faculty and the administration. Our Faculty Governance committee is near completion of a web-based tracking system for the issues that are taken to the Senate. Communications through the Senate meetings and minutes and the monthly meetings with the President have resulted in administrative actions and conversations with the faculty. Though, faculty representation on the Executive Committee has not always resulted in communication to the general faculty concerning important policies and procedures.
A promotion, tenure and appointment Ad Hoc Work Group has been formed to “evaluate and assess the promotion, tenure & appointment process and to make recommendations, if indicated, to the Executive VP for Academic and Health Affairs.” This 11-member committee is chaired by a Faculty Senate member.
Faculty and staff have expressed a need to have a distributed summary of changes in the HOP. Brief summaries of changes would alert faculty and staff about those new policies that should be read. Currently, there is no way to compare old and new policies on the electronic HOP.
Financial and secretarial support for the Senate has been an expressed need. The topic was recently discussed with the President and he asked that we survey the other UT components about their support.
Eleven component universities responded:
6 had budgets
2 had funds as needed for Senate operations and refreshments.
8 had secretarial support for minutes, emails and clerical support.
To Do List
1.Has anything happened on your campus regarding the proposed Executive Plannin g and Leadership Councils? Have you been in contact with the Staff Council and Student Leadership on your campus regarding the proposed EPLC?
These have not been accomplished yet.
2.Does your campus have any policies regarding the establishment of centers and institutes? If so, are there built-in sunset provisions for these centers and institutes?
From what I could tell, there are not policies regarding the establishment of centers and institutes. However, in the HOP there are sections that describe the purposes and missions of specific centers.
4. Have the faculty been actively consulted with regard to both this year and next year’s budget cuts? In what forums and in what way has such consultation taken place?
At UTHSCSA, each of the five schools has obtained faculty input in varying degrees and methods. In the Dental School, the departmental chairs and division heads have worked together on the budget issues and the faculty have been informed about their decisions and in some departments the faculty have provided input. In the School of Allied Health, an ad hoc committee of 4 faculty and all 5 chairs met to develop a budgetary advisory report to the Dean. In the School of Nursing, there have been general faculty meetings in which the budget cuts have been discussed and faculty have provided input concerning the type of cuts. In the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, faculty members have been informed of the budgetary problems and processes. In the School of Medicine, some departments have had faculty discussions and input to the processes; however, it appears that clinical faculty have had minimal input in the discussions. Additionally the VP for Governmental Relations and the Executive VP for Academic and Health Affairs have addressed the Senate concerning the budgetary reduction plans.
5.How many classes may a faculty member teach in the summer, and how is compensation determined for teaching in the summer?
At UTHSCSA, most of the faculty members are on 12-month contracts (except for some faculty in the School of Nursing), so this question is not applicable.
Do faculty get paid for independent studies, dissertation hours, or other non-formal class related teaching responsibilities?
UT Medical Branch
GENERAL INFOR MATION TO BE ADDRESSED IN CA MPUS REPORTS
SALARY REDUCTION: Does your institution have any policies or practices regarding the reduction of salary? And/or does your institution have any policies or practices that require that a certain percentage of salary must come from extramural sources? [These questions pertain to all campuses, but especially to medical components.] (If there are policies, please bring them for the Health Affairs Committee.) [ Taglialatela, Giulio] Each department has its own policiy (established by the Chair) regarding fix and variable components of faculty salary. There are no campus-wide policies. Variable (incentive) components of faculty salary are the ones that offer flexibility for reduction. However, there seem not to have been many cases where this has in fact happened.
NEW HIRES: Given that new faculty hires are not on the payroll and not even in human resources data bases, how is access to basic resources made available to incoming faculty as they transition into their new positions?
Does your campus have any practices that work well or don't work well with regards to practical matters such as getting keys, setting up insurance, getting ID's, getting parking permits, setting up labs, etc.? Is your institution using the provision in Regents' Rules that allows for a reduced workload for new hires in their first year of employment? [ Taglialatela, Giulio] We have standard orientation for each new employee plus we have now the faculty orientation luncheons by the office of Linda Phillips. As per the reduced workload, also this aspect pertain to local arrangements with the dept. Chair. (You may want to ask further input to Linda Phillips on this) The School of Nursing Faculty Development Committee (a standing committee of the SON Faculty Assembly) has developed a formal orientation program for all new faculty that specifies on-line materials, hard copy, and formal mentoring relationships that are established prior to the arrival of the new faculty member.This orientation program addresses the start up activities, i.e. parking permits, ID badges, keys, phone connection, etc. as well as content specific information about curriculum, courses, and development as a teacher. SAH: I WOULD ADD THAT EACH SCHOOL HAS BEEN ASKED TO DEVELOP A FACULTY ORIENTATION PLAN FOR THE SCHOOL AND THIS HAS BEEN DONE AND IS NOW BEING I MPLE MENTED. (CHC)
TRAVEL: At your institution, what is the status of funding for in state and out of state travel for faculty and graduate students next year? [ Taglialatela, Giulio] most travel expenses are from grants. I would not know whether there is any "status" for state money for travel. The only recommendation I heard from the AEC and the president was regarding containing/reducing/abolishing overseas travel on state funds. Travel money at the SON is limited to activities that are central to the Mission of the School. Grant money and practice money is used by those faculty who have resources targeted for travel. The Dean has a discretionary fund from which travel monies can be drawn for high priority travel. Graduate student travel is supported by Predoctoral fellowships of minority supplements.
SAH: CURRENTLY, UNDER BUDGET RESTRICTIONS, STATE DOLLARS SHOULD NOT BE USED FOR , NON MISSION RELATED OUT OF STATE OR OUT OF COUNTRY TRAVEL. I ASSU ME TIGHT CONTROLS ON THE USE OF STATE DOLLARS WILL CONTINUE INTO THE CO MING BUDGET YEAR. (CHC)
BUDGETS: Other than raises, what are the three most troublesome effects of the budget woes at your campus?[ Taglialatela, Giulio] Possible lay-offs. I have some concern about faculty individual bridgin g accounts that may be drawn by the Chair to cover budget constraints. But this is my personal fear and do not have any info for sure. The uncertainty of what happens next with additional budget cuts in the future is a real concern for most faculty and staff. The most recent budget cuts have had a devastating effect of faculty and staff morale. There is concern about teaching loads within the context of cutting back on faculty and resources while admitting larger classes to deal with the nursing shortage.
SAH: MOST TROUBLESO ME IS THE CANNIBALIZATION OF STAFF SUPPORT AND VACANT FACULTY LINES TO MEET BUDGET TARGETS. THIS PLACES TRE MENDOUS PRESSURE ON THE SYSTE M AND REDUCES THE ABILITY OF SCHOOLS TO RESPOND TO OPPORTUNITIES AS WELL AS CONDITIONS OF EXIGENCY. (CHC)
GRIEVANCE POLICIES: Does your grievance policy contain phrasing that the grievant must prove that "there is no rationale basis" for the decision or action that the grievant is grieving? (If some such related wording is in your grievance policy, please bring the policy for the Governance Committee.)[ Taglialatela, Giulio] Where is our grievance policy (the one the senate worked on)? You may want to ask Victor or Linda Phillips about this. In any case, I do not recall its content by memory. The grievance policy for the SON was revised last year. It specifies the conditions appropriate for appeals and provides a description of a step by step process, a timeline, and the levels of appeal.
UT Pan American
GENERAL INFOR MATION TO BE ADDRESSED IN CA MPUS REPORTS
UTPA has no such policies or practices.
Once a completed Memorandum of Employment has been forwarded to the Personnel Office, new hires can be processed for email accounts, campus ID cards, parking permits, office assignments, telephones and keys. The new faculty goes to the Personnel Office with a picture id to begin the process. The Personnel Office provides the forms for email accounts, ID cards and parking permits. Verification of employment status is given directly by Personnel to the appropriate office as the request is received. Departments can process office space assignment, telephones and keys directly on behalf of new hires.
Generally, UTPA allows new tenure-track or tenured faculty hires to have a reduced workload in their first year. It is not automatic but must be requested of the Provost.
At UTPA, there is not an absolute moratorium on out-of-state travel for faculty and graduate students. Out-of-state travel in support of research is permitted (presentation of research at academic conferences, etc.). Out-of-state travel only for professional development is not funded. Out-of-state travel must be justified at the time of the request.
Although there are no stated restrictions for in-state travel, travel budgets have been reduced across the board so all travel requests are closely scrutinized.
Since the final state budget has just been passed, UTPA is completing its own budget this week. It is unknown at this stage what the impact on faculty will be.
Yes. HOP 6.2.8.F.1.(b)(ii) contains this wording. A copy of the complete policy is attached.
UT San Antonio
Recent Faculty Senate activity:
Major issues on campus:
GENERAL INFOR MATION TO BE ADDRESSED IN CA MPUS REPORTS
Nothing seems to have yet happened at UTSA in regard to the proposed EPLC nor has there been any contact with Staff Council or Student Government. Most of our time in the Senate has been spent getting up and running in terms of our new bylaws passed in September 2002. According to those new bylaws, the Faculty Senate reports directly to the President and Provost’s Office. The University also has an autonomous University Assembly, which is composed of faculty, staff, and student leaders and is chaired by the President. Finally, the Faculty Senate Chair has recently been invited to attend the Dean’s Council meetings.
Yes -- (HOP 9.28) http://www.utsa.edu/hop/chapter9/9-28.htm. There is a well-defined and regular review process, but no apparent sunset provision within the UTSA HOP.
Math assessment has not been brought before the Faculty Senate. The Dept. of Science and Math Education is following out SACS recommendations for assessment including by embedding questions in final exams for college algebra; assessing majors and recent graduates from their program through surveys; surveying schools where teachers from their program have been employed; Excet exam scores are being tracked.
The Provost’s Office has gotten word out through Department Chair budget workshops and through presentations in the Faculty Senate. The Faculty Senate is also firing up a new standing budget committee, which was mandated by our new bylaws (passed in September 2002).
Tenure-track faculty receive one-twelfth of their salary for summer courses. There is no set limit in the HOP on the number of summer courses that can be taught; however, the Provost’s Office has established that TT faculty may teach a maximum of four classes in the summer. Tenure-track faculty do not get paid for independent studies, etc. Though those do count toward overall workload credit that lead to course release time that is negotiated with the Department Chair.
MATERIAL NEEDED FRO M ACADE MIC CO MPONENTS
Please brin g any documentation you have gathered regarding the success, failure, problems associated with transfer students at your institution.
Provided as an PDF attachment.
For the second consecutive year UT Tyler has experienced exceptional growth for spring 2003. There is a 11.5% increase in headcount (3,807 to 4,242) and 17.1% increase in SCH (35,613 to 41,708) compared to spring 2002 and an increase in SCH over fall 2002. Also the headcount is only 23 less than fall 2002. This of course has increased the problem of parkin g and large class sizes. There are plans for a new lot and increases in parking fees and fines for violators. With the current budget cuts this continued expansion will probably come to a halt. A major concern across the campus is how we can maintain our advertised goals of “quality education” with such severe cuts.
The requested changes to the HOP were approved and have been implemented. Thanks to Dr. Theresa Sullivan standing up to OGC we were able to get the sentence put back in regarding “faculty should exercise discretion in the introduction of controversial material” rather than what OGC wanted that stated “faculty should not include irrelevant or controversial material”.
CA MPUS REPORTS: TO DO LISTS
1. Has anything happened on your campus regarding the proposed Executive Plannin g and Leadership Councils?
Nothing has been done to this point
Have you contacted the Staff Council and Student Leadership on your campus regarding the proposed EPLC?
No formal talks have been held
2. Does your campus have any policies regarding the establishment of (and continuation thereof) centers and institutions (self-sustainin g and/or institutional supported)? If so, are there built in sunset provisions for these centers and institutes?
Southwest Educational Leadership Academy contains: Have been told will have to become self-sustaining
Literacy Center- Education Department
Funding through grant and excellence funds. Longitudinal grant for 3 years, $45,000 for program with Head Start
Principle Institute- Excellence fundin g and contractual agreements with school districts that support.
Math Institute- Endowed chair running. Received approximately $500,000 from Ralph Hall to be used over time and brought in some already existing grant money.
Center for Small and Medium Businesses- College of Business and Technology
Outreach for Hispanic oriented businesses through US Hispanic Small Business program. Funding through grant and support from local businesses. No state or university funding
3. Has anything on your campus been done regarding math assessment? If there are plans or policies, please share with FAC.
According to the chair of the math department everything has been put on hold due to the recent change in leadership for the assessments. He had been contacted by Dr. Reyes in early February to determine when a meeting could be arranged to discuss the assessment plan and has not received any further communication. He did state a concern that he presented to the deans and department chairs that the number of failures in college algebra will remain high as lon g as the students do not attend class. UT Tyler does not have a mandatory class attendance policy and some students that have failed had an average of 10-12 absences.
4. Have faculty been actively consulted with regard to both this year and next year’s budget cuts? In what forums and in what ways have such consultation taken place?
This is sporadic across campus. Some deans have asked for a input where others made the decisions about what would be cut. The president had a meeting with all the past and current president of the Senate and asked for any input about budget cuts. There has not been any open face-to-face forums inviting input about budgetary cuts.
5. How many classes may a faculty member teach in the summer, and how is compensation determined for teaching in summer? Flat rate per course? Do faculty get paid for independent studies, dissertation hours or other non-formal class related teaching responsibilities?
There is no specified limit, but 12 SCH has been the accepted “standard”. Compensation is 2/15 for 6 SCH and 1/15 for 3 SCH of the 9-month salary. There is not any financial compensation for thesis chairs (do not have doctoral programs). Faculty receive teaching load credit at the rate of 1 SCH for each 6 total student SCH of thesis credit. No compensation is granted for other than assigned teaching loads.
Academic Affairs Committee Report
Assessment. The major business of the Academic Affairs Committee at the June 2003 FAC meeting was a consultation with Pedro Reyes, who has replaced Ray Rodrigues as the head of the System’s assessment initiative. The meeting was extremely productive. In particular, Pedro affirmed his support of the March 2002 FAC resolution that urged the UT Sytem to move slowly, confining its assessment activities to writin g and mathematics until those projects are on firm ground and their impact can be accurately measured. The first report on the mathematics assessment is due at System in December 2002, but early signs are promising. (This is partly because of the way the mathematics assessment instrument is structured, allowing each component to apply it within the context of its own mission, yet generating useful information for the System.) This is not the case with the writin g assessment, with the results of which Pedro is not at all satisfied: the assessment generated information of possible value at the component level, but nothing that could be reported in any meaningful way to the regents. In effect, the original writin g assessment instrument had to be scrapped; a new one is under development. (This is precisely the reason the FAC advocated a very deliberate pace in implementing the assessment program.) Under consideration here is some kind of standardized test, to which both the FAC and the Presidents of the components early on in the assessment initiative voiced opposition, along the lines of the writing portion of the ETS Academic Profile Examination (APE). Vice Chancellor Sullivan has authorized a small-scale pilot study at two component institutions to determine the effectiveness of the APE, a test aimed at “rising juniors.” (Students will volunteer to participate in the study and will be paid for doing so.) The plan is now to have all assessments measure “value-added,” with the initial data point provided by SAT or Level I exams. Pedro was most emphatic in saying that, even if the writin g assessment does ultimately take the form of an examination, it will not involve high-stakes testing. Furthermore, he stated unequivocally that the results of the mathematics, writing, and any future assessment activities would be used solely for the purposes of programmatic improvement and would not be cause for disciplining faculty members whose students underperform.
Travel. The Academic Affairs Committee sponsored a resolution urging institutions not to serve up faculty travel as an easy victim to the budgetary chopping block. The resolution, which was approved by a unanimous vote of the FAC, reads:
Whereas professional academic travel facilitates the free flow of ideas, broadens the intellectual activity of individual faculty, and enhances the prestige of the supporting institution;
Be it resolved that the academic institutions that comprise the University of Texas System make every possible effort to ensure that support for faculty travel be maintained and enhanced.
Accountability. Although it offered no resolution on the issue, the Academic Affairs Committee feels that performance indicators of the type “administrator/faculty ratio” and “administrative salary/faculty salary ratio” would be quite appropriate to include in the System’s overall accountability framework. If nothing else, they would draw attention to the rapid expansion of the “middle management” class (meaning individuals at the level of Assistant Dean or above) at component institutions at a time when it is the faculties that should be growing if “Closing the Gaps” goals are to have even a remote chance of being met.
Student Advisory Council recommendations. The Academic Affairs Committee urged FAC support for two of the recommendations made by the UTSSAC to the Board of Regents in its May 7 report. First, the committee recommended support of UTSSAC’s proposed dissemination of an “academic integrity” statement, which stops short of calling for the implementation of a system-wide honor code. (The FAC voted to approve the committee’s recommendation.) Second, the committee recommended that the FAC support the UTSSAC’s proposed policy on making the results of student evaluations publicly available. While agreeing in principle that certain information from student evaluations should be more widely available, some FAC members raised questions about the scope of information that might be included. Thus the FAC gave only its qualified endorsement to this proposal, indicating that further discussion on this issue between the FAC and the UTSSAC will have to take place before a full endorsement can be forthcoming.
Michael Granoff and Cynthia Brown were elected committee co-chairs.
Governance Committee Report
The Governance Committee met with the Health Affairs Committee to consider the situations of the non-tenure track faculty. Reports from UT Austin and UT Dallas were reviewed. A healthy debate ensued touching upon the differences at the health and academic campuses and the variation between the academic campuses as well as different faculty governance philosophies. It was agreed that an overall policy recommendation is needed from the FAC and that both committees will need to devote a good of effort in the immediate future to help frame it.
The last batch of revisions to the Regents Rules were reviewed, amended, and approved. The “ Murray Amendments” were later reamended by the FAC as a whole and passed unanimously.
In light of real and imminent problems with the UTSA and other UT System grievance policy statements and interpretations thereof, the Governance Committee drafted the following resolution for the FAC:
The Faculty Advisory Council recommends that wherever system
component grievance policies provide that a grievance may be filed
for a decision that has “no rational basis,” the wording should be
changedto say that a grievance may be filed on the grounds that an
action is “arbitrary and capricious.”
Similarly, where the policies require a grievant to provide evidence
or proof that an action had “no rational basis” or something similar,
the wording should be changed to say that the action was “arbitrary
The resolution passed the FAC unanimously.
The 2002-2003 Recommendations Report of the Student Advisory Council was reviewed. The Governance Committee considered the Report already somewhat dated by the actions of the Texas Legislature. Beyond that no recommendation was found endorsable under the charge of the Governance Committee.
With regard to the charge of the Governance Committee, the FAC by-laws were reviewed briefly and deemed perhaps in need of revision, but the Committee ran out of time at this meeting to proceed further.
Linda Montgomery and Dennis Reinhartz were elected co-chairs of the Governance Committee for 2003-2004.
Health Affairs Committee Report
No Report Provided
Faculty Quality Committee Report
No Report Provided
Results of Election
Suggestions for Future Consideration
The meetin g adjourned at 2:25 pm.
Steve A. Johnson, Secretary