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June 30, 1999 Minutes


Senators Present: Bible, Early, Gordon, Hays, Irvin, McKinney,
McGee, Peeler, Renick, Skerpan, and Winek.

Absent: Conroy, Gillis, Stimmel

Liaisons Present: None

Guests: Miriam Escheverria Modern Language
James Andrew Correspondence and Extension
Isis Gomez Correspondence and Extension
John Powell Continuing Education
Ruth Taylor Management and Marketing
Mike Moore Provocateur

CONTENTS
INTERNATIONAL STUDIES OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE PROPOSAL
SPRING FACULTY EVALUATIONS
APPOINT NEW MEMBER FOR CURRICULUM COMMITTEE
SUMMER SCHOOL PAY FOR EXTRA PREPARATIONS
DEVELOPMENTAL LEAVE CONSIDERATIONS
SENATE MEMBER TO WORK ON FACULTY SALARY DATA PROJECT
DEAD WEEK OBSERVANCE
REPLACEMENT FOR PAT DEDUCK ON LIBRARY COMMITTEE
NEW BUSINESS
INFORMATION ITEMS

The meeting was called to order by Chair Hays at 3:05 p.m.

INTERNATIONAL STUDIES OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE PROPOSAL

RTA until a Fall meeting when John Blair, who produced the proposal,
can attend.

SPRING FACULTY EVALUATIONS

Sen. Hays reported that several students had complained to her that they
had not had the opportunity to evaluate some of their instructors in the
Spring semester.

Various senators noted that the Faculty Handbook, p. 31, only requires that
individual faculty be evaluated annually. It is thus likely that the subjects
of the complaints were evaluated in the Fall 1998 semester. Further, students
can always see the chair of the department or the dean of the school if they
wish to submit a special evaluation of a particular faculty member.

Related issue: To whom do chair and dean evaluations go?

Sen. Skerpan produced the following scenario: Suppose that in a department
of 85 faculty of various sort [tenure, tenure-track, folding chairs, camp
stools, etc.], 21 faculty submit chair and/or dean evaluations. If, say, 15
of those evaluations are positive, then the affected administrators assume
that all is well. A less sanguine view might be that those who do not submit
evaluations do so for less positive reasons:

1. fear of retaliation [dangerous to submit evaluations]
2. conviction that such evaluations are routinely ignored and/or
covered up [useless to submit evaluations]

The Senate took no action on this issue which is, however, likely to arise
again, chair/dean evaluations being rather prominent on the Senate's radar.

APPOINT NEW MEMBER FOR CURRICULUM COMMITTEE

RTA. We couldn't figger out who was goin' off.

SUMMER SCHOOL PAY FOR EXTRA PREPARATIONS

The Situation: Dr. X, Professor of Marketing, was scheduled to teach 2
different 3-hour courses during Summer 1 and yet a 3rd course during the
10-week summer semester. Her chair, however, assured her that that schedule
would be changed before classes began. Lo and behold, that schedule did not
change. Thus, during Summer 1, Dr. X has 3 class preparations.

Dr. X then seized upon the following statement in the Summer Employment
section of the Faculty Handbook, p. 39:

If more than one course preparation is required, the chair may
recommend a higher pay rate, subject to the approval of the
dean and the VPAA.

Appeals to her chair, her dean, and the VPAA for, at least, pecuniary relief
in such an egregious example of faculty exploitation were to no avail.

Indeed, the Minutes of the Council of Academic Deans' meeting of 11 May 1999
reports: Dr. Gratz noted that he had not received any such requests in the
past and HE DOES NOT PLAN TO APPROVE ANY SUCH REQUESTS. [emphasis mine]

Bible/Early 10-0
1. Charge Sen. McGee to research the basis for the inclusion in the Faculty
Handbook of the statement concerning extra pay for extra work.
2. Refer the matter to the Tenure, Promotion and Compensation Committee
to carefully study the rights and responsibilities of faculty vis a vis
summer employment.

[There was, initially, some unfortunate feeling that, the Faculty Handbook being
at odds with official UPPS and/or the Powers That Be, then the offending
language should be mercilessly ripped from the Handbook. Fortunately, that
view was soon overpowered by the complementary view; e.g., that if UPPS do
not support the right of faculty to be fairly compensated, then it must be
UPPS that need mending rather than the Handbook.

Shoot low, Senators. They're ridin' shetlands.]

[Sen. McGee reports as follows:
Grady
I have an objection to your editorial comments concerning our discussion
of Faculty Handbook language vs. UPPS language. ...

IF the Faculty Handbook is the official faculty member's guide to
University policies and procedures then items which are not based on
a UPPS have no business in the handbook. If one wants to argue for
the right for faculty to be compensated fairly for their efforts I am
right with you, but that is a separate issue from whether the Faculty
Handbook accurately reflects University policy.

Having said that, I discovered that the last paragraph of the section
Summer Employment on page 39 of the Faculty Handbook is a direct
quote of PPS 7.08 #4. (see http://www.txstate.edu/academicaffairs/pps/
7-08.html) NOW we got ourselves an issue. We apparently are faced
with a situation where faculty are being required to make multiple
summer preparations and are not being compensated despite a UPPS that
provides an avenue for such compensation to be made. If the VPAA does
not in fact plan to approve any such requests, then maybe it would be
appropriate for him to similarly instruct chairs to not make multiple
preparation course assignments to their faculty during the summer.


Right on, Jon. I didn't mean to offend.]

DEVELOPMENTAL LEAVE CONSIDERATIONS

Chair Hays reported that VPAA Gratz and CAD had rejected two Spring 2000 Faculty
Development Leave applicants who had tied for 9th/10th place in the Senate's
ranking of 10 applicants.

Chair Hays noted that both applicants ranked well above [1.3] the Senate's
minimum criteria level [1.0] and only nominally below the 8th place applicant
[1.4].

Since the Senate adopted the numeric evaluation/ranking scheme, Gratz/CAD has
only rejected applicants with a score below 1.0. Further, Gratz/CAD presented
no justification for rejecting the applicants.

However, given the opportunity to respond to the Gratz/CAD rejection, the
consensus of the Senate was that Chair Hays communicate to Gratz/CAD the
Senate's unqualified support of the rejected applicants. Chair Hays memo
reads as follows:

Dr. Gratz,

Thanks for allowing the Senate to revisit the awarding of Developmental
Leaves for the Spring of 2000. You have advised us of the suggestion that the
two applicants with the lowest rankings not be funded, and after reevaluating
their situations we have decided to strongly urge you to fund their leaves as
well as those of the other eight candidates.

In previous years we have had candidates whose proposals did not meet
our minimal criteria and we agreed with decisions not to fund. However, both
[of these applicants], with 1.3 ratings, actually exceeded our minimal criteria
(1.0) based on the ranking system we now use. Their proposals contained valid
arguments for potential for publication, teaching improvement, professional
growth and contributions to individual departments.

We also think it is important to stress that there was no clear line of
demarcation between these two candidates and the candidates immediately above
them; the next highest rated candidate had a 1.4 rating, and five were separated
by only one thenth of a point. We feel there is some element of capriciousness
in the notion of not funding two candidates with 1.3 ratings but funding those
rated 1.4, 1.5, 1.6, etc. The situation would be far different if, for example,
these two candidates were rated 1.3 and the rest were 1.8 or higher, but even
then we would have to stress that all of the candidates exceeded our minimal
criteria.

The Senate was especially concerned by the deletion of [one applicant].
He has applied for a Developmental Leave several times. Each time he has been
turned down he has come to the Senate for help in how to better prepare his
proposals. This time he presented a clear proposal and was albe to defend it in
his presentation and to fully answer our questions. We feel that this is a
valid and viable proposal.

It is, perhaps, useful to remind you and the Deans that the Senate has
the opportunity to read the Developmental Leave proposals and to hear the verbal
presentation and defense of those proposals, whereas you and the Deans have only
the brief written records before you. Often presentations have a far different
flavor when made orally and in writing rather than only in writing, and we feel
that you and the Deans might have a different perception of the strengths of the
presentations if you had heard them and participated in the give-and-take of the
Senate interviews.

We are all concerned that only proposals with the potential of
contributing to the University through the enhancement of teaching, scholarly
research and publication, professional growth, and the improvement of the
academic community as a whole be funded. Our bottom line, however, is that the
applications of [both of these applicants] fit in this category. We urge you
to fund their as well as the other applications.

SENATE MEMBER TO WORK ON FACULTY SALARY DATA PROJECT

In a desperate attempt to stage off his almost-certain receipt of this task,
Sen. Early pleaded that this item be RTAed, thus giving him time to attempt
to persuade distinguished former Sen. Sawey to accept the assignment.

DEAD WEEK OBSERVANCE

In the Faculty Handbook section on Dead Week, p. 41, is the statement:

Due to special teaching responsibilities at this time, with the
exception of emergencies, meetings involving teaching faculty
will not be held.

Sen. Early reported that one of his constituents, Mr. Wilbon Davis [Computer
Science] had requested Senate consideration of a proposal to extend this
prohibition into Final Examination periods.

The Senate agreed to the proposal. Early/Bible 9-0-1 <1?>

Chair Hays petitions VPAA Gratz as follows:

Dr. Gratz

A member of the faculty has brought to the attention of the Faculty Senate
language in the Faculty Handbook concerning dead week as follows:

4) Due to special teaching responsibilities at this time, with the
exception of emergencies, meetings involving teaching faculty
WILL NOT be scheduled. [emphasis mine]

The Faculty Senate strongly endorses this policy but also recommends that
this policy be extended through the final period as well. The time available
for grading finals and averaging and assigning grades is already minimal. To
add the pressure of committee meetings makes a difficult task almost impossible.

We recommend that language in any PPS as well as the Faculty Handbook that
addresses the issue of faculty responsibilities during dead week be changed
to include the moratorium of meetings during the final period as well.

IF you would like us to help with the language addition please send me the
pertinent PPS and we will see if we can craft suitable language.

Thanks!

[Given VPAA Gratz' callous disregard of current policy as evidenced by such
things as his scheduling of University Council meetings during Dead Week, we
eagerly await his reaction to this proposal to double the time available for
him to schedule meetings in violation of the Faculty Handbook.]

[Ms. Pilus reports as follows:
I am not sure but I think that dead week "died" up on the 10th floor.
I gave all the "most current" revisions of the handbook to Gay so I
can't reference that fact for sure but I recall that paragraph being
crossed out and a note about why. In the draft I have here which is
a copy of the most recent changes, dead week isn't even mentioned
at all.

Also, speaking of the handbook, we do need to add a note to the draft
version on the web indicating that it is NOT CURRENT and may contain
incorrect information. We should do whatever is needed to get the
most recent draft posted out there ASAP. I think the web site is a
very valuable way to communicate but old, outdated information reflects
negatively on our credibility.]

REPLACEMENT FOR PAT DEDUCK ON LIBRARY COMMITTEE

The Senate agreed to replace former senator Deduck with Sen. Bible on the
Senate's Subcommittee on Librarian Pay & Status. Skerpan/Irvin 10-0

NEW BUSINESS
Macebearers for August 7 Commencement. Sen. McGee will serve as macebearer
for the morning ceremony; Sen. Early for the afternoon ceremony.

INFORMATION ITEMS

1. Candidates to replace Dr. Marion M. "Mimi" Tangum as Associate VP for
Research and Special Projects began arriving on campus 6/30/199 for
interviews.

2. The Senate will host the new faculty luncheon on Monday 23 August 1999.
Watch your mailboxes for written notification.

3. Whither American Sign Language? The School of Education Council Minutes
for 16 June 1999 read in part as follows:

Dr. Charles Dolezal (C&I) presented pros and cons regarding the
Department of Curriculum and Instruction taking over the American
Sign Language courses which are currently being taught through
the Communications Disorders program. At the present time, these
courses do not fit the strategic plan of the C&I Department.

Senators were asked:
1. Are there programs to which ASL is crucial?
2. Should ASL be moved to a department other than CDIS?

[a. The courses in question are CDIS 1410, 1420, 2310, 2320. 1410 and
2310 are offered in Fall and Summer 1 semesters. 1420 and 2320 are
offered in Spring and Summer 2 semesters. 1410 was first offered in
Summer 1 1991; 1420 in Summer 2 1991; 2320 in Spring 1992. I guess
that 2310 was first offered in Fall 1991, but it's not in the
Schedule of Classes for that semester.
b. Apparently, the possibility of moving the courses from CDIS to
C&I arose as the School of Education considered the possibility
of instituting a Deaf Education program. That possibility has
been shelved.
c. The CDIS courses were NOT designed for Communications Disorders
majors; they were designed specifically to satisfy State Law
requiring that ASL be allowed as an alternative to foreign
language to satisfy foreign language degree requirements.
d. CDIS has no objection to keeping the courses, no desire to transfer
them to some other department.
e. No other department has expressed a desire to have the courses.
f. If the sole raison d'etre of the ASL courses is to satisfy foreign
language requirements, why not transfer the courses to the Department
of Modern Languages?]

4. Sen. Early [your nsh scribe] will distribute draft minutes to Senators and
will eagerly await their corrections. Early will incorporate corrections,
suggestions, etc., and recirculate so that approval of the 19990630 minutes
can proceed via email.

5. Sen. Bible raised the issue of exposure/potential liability of faculty who
serve as advisors to various student organizations. Sen. Bible queried
University Attorney William Fly who responded:
a. advisors/sponsors have immunity from prosecution for acts committed
by members of such student organizations, but
b. there ought to be a UPPS covering the issue

With respect to communication of this information to faculty advisors/
sponsors:

i. include the UPPS in the Student Organizations Handbook along with
advisor forms
ii. include it on the Senate web site.

6. Chair Hays reported that the faculty grievance policy will change effective
1 September 1999 because of a new state law give rights of grievance to all
non-renewed faculty. At present, certain faculty can be dismissed without
cause and with rights of grievance.

As this change in state law requires a substantial change in the Faculty
Handbook, Sen. McGee suggested that the new Handbook simply include a
sentence saying that:

a. state law has changed the grievance process, and
b. see the on-line handbook for the new policy

This assumes, of course, the modification of existing policy to meet the
strictures of state law.

7. Sen. Renick reported that summer insurance packets had been distributed
to faculty. He noted that the packets included:

a. Summary Report of the FY98 Patient Satisfaction Survey, and
b. A survey form designed to determine satisfaction with the
Satisfaction Survey.

Faculty are urged to complete the Satisfaction Survey of the Satisfaction
Survey. [whew]

The meeting was adjourned at 5:05 p.m.

cheerfully submitted

grady

sen.19990630

posted on the web: 7-22-99