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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

  • Robert Nelsen called the meeting to order.
  • Due to weather delays at the airport, many representatives were late.

 

12:10 P M Chancellor Yudof

  • The Chancellor gave a brief overview of the compact system that is planned for the individual campuses.
    • Compacts are intermediate strategy plans designed to give a snapshot of the campus. The compact process will generate written, public documents individual to each campus.
    • On campuses where the compact process is implemented, faculty tends to support it.
  • Chancellor Yudof also discussed the recent legislative session.
    • He stated that on a whole, we came out pretty well—compared to other state agencies.
    • The system took the lead on tuition deregulation and return of indirect costs.
    • Return of indirect will mean $54 million in additional funds to System institutions.
    • Academic institutions are down (in state support) about 3 percent; however, this does not consider the effects of inflation nor increased enrollments.
    • Cuts at the health institutions averaged around 4 percent—although UT MB was cut $50 million.
    • He has authorized a consulting contract to look eight of the academic campuses (all but Austin) in order to increase the research profile of these institutions.
    • He indicated that the academic units do not lack in the quality of faculty, only in the quantity.
    • He described changes in financial aid with the “Be On Time” program in which financial aid recipients pays zero percent on loans if they graduate in a set period of time.
    • Increases in tuition will not occur until January and must be preceded by considerable justification to the stakeholders.
    • “We need to build up trust (with the Legislature) with regard to tuition.”
    • System will require that campuses have a “consultation plan” for proposed tuition increases to address what increases will be spent for.
    • The reason for these plans is to show the legislature that we are so super accountable for this authority that the legislature is glad that tuition deregulation was passed.
    • The Legislature established an oversight committee to examine tuition issues.
  • Questions
  • Can we expect any changes in benefits?
  • 90-day waiting period for new hires
  • Part-time employee benefits reduced
  • Retiree benefits
    • By how much can tuition be raised?
  • It depends on the needs of the individual campus.
    • Was the sabbatical policy considered?
  • The bill includes a leave policy.
  • He has asked the General Council for an opinion.
  • The regent’s are not resistant to a formal sabbatical policy.
    • Has the Texas Tomorrow Fund expired?
  • The Bill requires state universities to honor the program requirements.
  • This will affect UT Austin more than the other academic institutions.
  • The Comptroller has announced that she is closing it down—although the Chancellor is unsure she has the authority to do so.
    • Will cuts at the academic components lead to salary cuts for tenured and tenure-track faculty?
  • “It is not a good idea to cut faculty salaries.”
    • How will new legislation affect tuition for graduate students?
  • The 20% set-aside is new but there is no new System policy.
  • Eliminating graduate tuition is good idea but it is financial issue for each campus.
  • Senate Bill 1652 added fringe benefit coverage for post-docs.
    • What is the status of the search for a new vice-chancellor for health affairs?
  • The search committee is the presidents of the health components.
  • The process is very slow.

 

1:00P M Dr. Geri Malandra

  • Dr. Malandra met with the FAC to discuss the development and implementation of accountability performance measures for the academic institutions as well as the current status of the Compacts.
    • We are in the process of drafting the guidelines for the Compacts
    • Compacts will be completed in the Spring of 2004.
    • Planning for accountability is over; the implementation and research phase is beginning.
    • The Accountability Committee developed the list of accountability measures; however, these measures will change on data availability.
    • The Legislature has charged the Coordinating Board to implement a “state report card” for the academic institutions.
    • This report card calls for twenty measures focused on undergraduate student performance.
    • The data collection will be completed in the fall.
    • A list of 6 to 10 peer institutions is being compiled for each academic component to make institutional comparisons.
    • Once data is collected, benchmarks for accountability can be developed.
    • The information will be deposited in a relational database.

 

 

2:00P M Campus Reports

 

See Appendix for Campus Reports

 

2:45P M Committee Meetings

 

 

 

4:00P M Vice Chairman Woody L. Hunt

  • Regent Hunt met with the FAC to address the recent legislative developments and discuss the current state of Texas higher education.
  • State funding for higher education has seen no increase in real terms in the last twenty years.
  • Higher education is in competition with Medicaid and is losing.
  • M ost notable is the disturbing trend in funding growth for higher education.
  • It appears that government will not solve the emerging problem in high education funding.
  • Texas is faced with two conflicting circumstances: Closing the Gaps versus declining real funding.
  • This legislative session appears to be an historic turning point for higher education funding.
  • Tuition deregulation and indirect cost recovery are two significant benefits of the recent legislative session.
  • Texas 18-year olds are going to college at a 25 percent lower rate than the national average.
  • In the future, Texas faces a relatively less-educated workforce than the nation.
  • Texas and especially higher education will need to adjust to dramatic demographic changes that are occurring in the state.
  • The Permanent University Fund (PUF) is dysfunctional.
  • PUF’s purchasing power is lower than it was in 1989.
  • PUF’s responsibility to provide funding to academic campuses exceeds its current resource base.
  • Questions:
  • How do we as a System respond to the political problems that we face?
  • We must change the perception of higher education in the eyes of the Legislature and the State.
  • We must communicate the long-term view of higher education to those involved in decision-making.

 

4:45P M M r. Carlos Martinez

  • M r. Martinez provided the FAC with an update on the legislative session.
    • He characterized the most recent session as “very successful”.
    • However, he noted that Comptroller Strayhorn has yet to certify the budget.
    • He suggested that times may get tougher for higher education.
    • System institutions expected 12.5 percent across the board reductions; however, reduction averaged only 1 percent.
    • The UT System fared much better than other systems in the state.
    • Indirect cost return and tuition deregulation were important legislative gains.
    • Complete legislative measures can be found at www.llb.state.tx.us .

 

 

Friday, June 7

 

8:00A M Chairman’s Report and Election

  • Robert began his remarks with an update on the FAC budget problems.
  • The FAC was given three options to remain within the budget:
  • Ask individual institutions to pay for Executive Committee meeting travel.
  • Cut FAC meetings from four annually to three.
  • Conduct two meetings with two representatives from each component institution and two meetings with only one representative from each institution.
  • A fourth alternative came from the floor to move the Executive Committee meetings to the day after the FAC meeting.
    • Robert also announced that System will no longer allow the four officers to serve in addition to normal membership. That is, only two representatives from each component will be allowed to attend.
    • Robert asked the committee chairs to consider endorsing the SAC recommendations.
    • Robert indicated that assessment is movin g ahead. Bruce will say more in the Academic Affairs Committee report.
    • Robert announced that a consulting group has been hired to evaluate the research capacities of the eight academic institutions (excluding Austin).
    • Robert opened the floor for nominations for Chairman and Secretary:
  • Jim Bartlett and Tom Chryanowski were the nominees for Chair.
  • Steve Johnson and Carol Collinsworth were the nominees for Secretary.
  • Elections are to be held in the afternoon session.

 

8:30A M Mr. Dan Stewart (Group Health Insurance)

  • M r. Stewart agreed to meet with the FAC to provide an update on changes in the group health insurance plan.
  • As a point of reference, he provided information on the other state employees health plans.
    • The Texas A& M system ran out of money in the middle of the year and had to cut benefits and increase rates.
    • ERS also ran out of money and will be forced to change coverage.
    • Insurance rates will trend upward by 15-20 percent.
      • The UT System plan is in much better condition.
      • State appropriations were slashed by 15 percent; however, there will be no rate increase.
      • The plan will continue to carry two options—H MO and PPO.
      • Credit for our status goes to the insurance carriers.
      • The message conveyed to the Legislature was to get the insurance plans flexibility.
      • There were some changes in eligibility:
    • Beginning September 1, 2003, to qualify for full health insurance coverage, UT System employees must meet the “rule of eighty”. That is, the retiree must have years of service and age that total eighty. Also, eligible retirees must have at least ten years of service.
    • Letters will go out to all employees within the “retirement window”.
    • New employees (staff and faculty) must wait 90 days to receive insurance coverage. Institutions cannot spend state funds to provide this coverage.
    • The 90 days begin when they are paid for a service they deliver.
    • Individual employees (new hires) can pay premium sharing.
    • If institutions pay for one (new hire), it must pay for everyone (adverse selection).
    • Part-time employees (graduate students, TA’s, etc.) who work less than 40 hours a week cannot receive any more than 50 percent of the state’s contribution to health benefits.
    • Local funds can be used to pay premium sharing.
  • Given that only 16 percent of the System employees drive 80 percent of the claims, the adopted philosophy is to “keep premiums low and charge for access.
  • Coinsurance charges will increase slightly, but the out-of-pocket maximum will not change.
  • UT-Flex will continue and may now have the possibility of carry-over.
  • Prescription drug coverage will now require a $50 deductible.

 

9:15A M Bob Cuzner and Janet Lawrence – DRI, Faculty Satisfaction Survey

  • Representatives from Digital Research presented the results of the System-wide faculty satisfaction survey.
  • FAC members were provided copies of the Powerpoint presentation as well as the Summary Report.
  • M s. Lawrence suggested that the response rate and “nature of the response” was “as expected” and consistent with other academic institutions.
  • Timing of survey participants indicated that it took, on average, 30 minutes to complete the on-line survey.
  • Two data sources that can provide comparable statistics are:
      • The University of Michigan “Project Advance”
      • National Center for Educational Statistics

 

10:45A M Committee Meetings

 

12:00P M Lunch served

 

12:15P M Dr. Teresa Sullivan and Dr. James Guckian

  • Dr. Sullivan began her comments stating that Chancellor Yudof had covered much of what she had prepared.
  • The System Administration anticipated a 7 percent cut in state appropriations and had prepared a budget based on 93 percent of the previous year.
  • M ajor issues facing the component institutions:
    • Health insurance changes
      • Reduction in benefits for non-full time employees
      • 90-day waiting period
  • M erit pool and promotion adjustments could be available in January.
  • Some layoffs may occur.
  • Incentives for voluntary retirement have been effective.
  • Academic Affairs will maintain a website posting for adjunct positions at component institutions to assist new Ph.D.’s in temporary placements.
  • Federally funded post-doc’s can be added to the System health plan.
  • Academic travel will be very specific to campuses with the decisions left to the presidents.
  • TA and RA health insurance can be funded from the 20 percent financial aid set-aside.
  • The Higher Education Coordinating Board has three new programs:
    • $10 million work-study program
    • 0 percent interest student loans
    • Hiring program for underrepresented minorities
  • Dr. Guckian stated that the new budget, written during the last two weeks of the session, cut $77 million from the UT Health components.
  • Funding changes were uneven in that UT MB was cut $42 million in state appropriations but UT Southwestern got a slight increase in state funding.
  • State appropriations will account for approximately 16 percent of the health component’s total revenue—the remainder will be generated by the institutions
  • Other state agencies had funding cuts as well and 70 percent of the health components’ budgets come from these agencies.
  • The good news is that the Legislature agreed to fund research through bond issues—UT Houston is to receive $65 million, UT Southwestern $56 million and UT MB $20 million.
  • UT San Antonio Health Center was to receive $9 million for regional health to come from the Governors Enterprise Fund; however, a spat between the Governor and Senator Lucio may eliminate that funding.
  • Tuition receipts account for only 0.78 percent of total revenues for the health components; thus, tuition deregulation will have little impact on the ability of these institutions to raise funds.
  • Approximately 800 employees will be released at UT MB. UT Houston will also have layoffs.

UT Arlington

 

Receivership:

 

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.

 

 

Presidential Search:

 

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

 

  1. No.

 

  1. UTA used to have an annual day long New Faculty Orientation, which has now been scrapped due to budget cuts. The principal resource now will be the on-line Senate revised Faculty Guide.

 

  1. Faculty travel funds have been cut somewhat substantially, but not for graduate students. The situation hopefully will get somewhat better for faculty, but without the new budget figures this is unsure. With the rise in tuition coming, some of this new money will be earmarked for increasing graduate student travel funds.

 

  1. a. Increasing costs of health insurance and care.
    1. Hiring freeze (selective?).
    2. Faculty development leaves.

 

5. No.

 

 

UT Austin

 

ITE MS IN THE NEWS – UT-Austin:

1. Budget Shortfall

  • Staff layoffs – estimate of 300 - 350 positions
  • 50% Reduction of benefits to part-time employees (impacts all graduate students plus numerous other faculty and staff part-time employees)
  • Possible elimination of research and related centers
  • No raise or merit pool for Fall 2003 – estimated savings of $15 M
  • Delay in faculty hiring – concern about high student / faculty ratio
  • Deferred maintenance on infrastructure

2. Steps taken to address Budget Shortfall

  • March ’03 - “Supplies Gateway” with Office Depot expected to save $2.5 M
  • April ’03 - 1.75% convenience charge on credit / debit card payments for tuition and mandatory fees; estimated savings of $2 M
  • M ay/June - $16,000 retirement incentive offered to 487 staff eligible for retirement by end of August (so far, 77 staff have elected this option as per June 5 th DT article).

3. 78 th Legislative Actions

  • Tuition deregulation – future impact on tuition rates
  • 100% Indirect costs return ~ $39 M over biennium
  • Top 10% admissions for Fall 2003 is expected to rise to 75% of incoming class. Bill to cap that at 60% and require students to take recommended high school curriculum was killed by filibuster.
  • 50% Reduction in benefits to part-time employees

4. Major Faculty Council Actions 2002-2003

  • Report of Task Force on Assembly and Expression (D 2386)
  • Report on Non-Tenure-Track Teaching Faculty (D 2488-2494)
  • Proposed Procedures Administrative Investigations of Policy Violations Alleged Against Faculty Members (D 2539-254 )

5. UT-Austin opens Charter School

  • A charter school to serve students living in the area east of Interstate 35, south of U.S. Highway 290, west of U.S. Highway 183 and north of State Highway 71 will open this fall. The charter school will serve pre-kindergarten, kindergarten and first-grade students during its first year of operation. Second grade will be added the following year, with another grade added each year until the school includes grades pre-kindergarten through fifth grade. This fall, the school is projected to have 18 to 20 students in each pre-kindergarten section and 20 to 22 students per section in kindergarten and first grade. The school is expected to open with about 120 students and eventually serve 300 students.
  • The vision of The University of Texas at Austin Elementary School is to serve as a national model for university- based charter schools and instruction in reading, math, science and social studies, and to develop new paradigms for principal and teacher professional development. The vision is to create a school where equity and excellence are a reality, where all students regardless of economic background master the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills. The plan is to create a school where no child is left behind.

6. Other items of interest

  • Ransom Center reopening on May 13; >40,000 square feet of new public space
  • Watergate papers of Woodward and Bernstein acquired for $5 million
  • Pres. Larry R. Faulkner elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences

CO M MITTEE REQUESTS

1. SALARY REDUCTION: 

  • Does your institution have any policies regarding the reduction of salary? No planned campus-wide reduction in salaries. HOP does allow for reduction in number of hours or elimination of position due to decrease or loss of funding source.
  • Does your institution have any policies or practices that require that a certain percentage of salary must come from extramural sources?  No, but this practice is used in some departments to “buy” a reduced teaching load.

2. NEW HIRES: 

  • 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.?  There is required attendance at an orientation session given by OHR. Prior to arriving, dept. administrators notify the various offices that the faculty member has been hired and is entitled to keys, parking permits, 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? Yes - at the discretion of each department, new faculty can be assigned reduced teaching loads during their first year.

3. 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? A substantial fraction of funding for faculty travel funding is unaffected since it comes from outside sources (invitations) and federal grants. All out-of-state and foreign travel on state appropriated funds was frozen effective January 31, 2003 with some exceptions such as approved faculty or student recruitment. Approval for all documents required prior to travel.

4. BUDGETS:

  • Other than raises, what are the three most troublesome effects of the budget woes at your campus? 1) Layoffs of staff and funding of ORUs; 2) Reduction in financial support for graduate students and premium sharing; and 3) Delay in decreasing student/faculty ratio.

5. 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.) No. The complete policy can be found on the web at http://www.utexas.edu/policies/hoppm/h0318.html

 

 

UT Brownsville

 

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

is increasing.

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 Dallas

 

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”.

Administrative Oversight

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.

Establishment

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.

Evaluation

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.

 

3.n/a

 

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?

No.

 

 

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

 

  • 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.)

 

UTPA has no such policies or practices.

 

 

  • 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?

 

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.

 

  • 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?

 

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.

 

 

  • BUDGETS: Other than raises, what are the three most troublesome effects of the budget woes at your campus?

 

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.

 

  • 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.)

 

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:

 

  1. Passage of a recommended research lab space policy.
  2. Significant progress on a third-year review policy for junior tenure-track faculty.

 

Major issues on campus:

 

  1. Digitizin g and central storage of qualitative student survey information.
  2. Breakevens continue to be of interest (how faculty cost/benefit ratios are being used).
  3. Budget and tuition deregulation (the latter especially among students).

 

 

GENERAL INFOR MATION TO BE ADDRESSED IN CA MPUS REPORTS

 

  • 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?

 

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.

 

  • Does your campus have any policies regarding the establishment of (and continuation thereof) centers and institutes (self-sustainin g and/or institutionally supported)? If so, are there built in sunset provisions for these centers and institutes? (If there are policies, please bring them for the Academic Affairs Committee.)

 

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.

 

  • Has anything on your campus been done regarding math assessment? If there are any plans or policies, have those policies been shared with the Senate and other appropriate committees?

 

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.

 

  • Have the faculty been actively consulted with regard to both this year and next year’s budget cuts? In what forums and in what ways has such consultation taken place?

 

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).

 

  • How many classes may a faculty member teach in the summer, and how is compensation determined for teaching in the summer? Flat rate per course? One-twelfth of a faculty member’s salary? One-nineth? One-sixth? Individual negotiations with department chairs? Do faculty get paid for independent studies, dissertation hours, or other non-formal class related teaching responsibilities?

 

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.

 

 

 

UT Tyler

 

Campus report:

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

and capricious.”

 

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

 

Other Announcements
Results of Election
    • James C. Bartlett was elected Chair of the FAC.
    • Steve Johnson was elected Secretary of the FAC.
Suggestions for Future Consideration
    • Require Faculty Senate consideration on all changes in the Handbook of Operating Procedures
    • Document to de-emphasize social security numbers in student and employee identification
    • Public disclosure of faculty and administrative evaluations.

 

The meetin g adjourned at 2:25 pm.

 

Respectfully Submitted,

 

Steve A. Johnson, Secretary

 

 

 

 
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