Chair Stone, Senators Brennan, Conroy, Davidson, Feakes, Hazlewood, Hindson, Homeyer, McGee, McKinney, Montondon, Sorensen, Wiley, Winek
Guests: President Trauth, Provost Moore, AP Bourgeois, VPIT Wyatt, AVPEM Heintze, AVPTR Hughes, Mark Fronstad, Geography, Bill Lancaster, Univ. Star
Meeting called to order at 4:00.
PAAG: President Trauth arrived late to the meeting due to an earlier meeting in Austin. She did announce that everyone should look to the newspaper to see future gift that was coming to the University.
Procedures for Future Faculty Raise Cycles: Provost Moore responded to the Senate’s query about future faculty raise cycles and if failure to receive a merit raise might trigger a post-tenure review. His comment was that non-performance was an evaluation that would have to be justified, but that no justification was needed for a recommendation of no merit. Thus, he didn’t think that a recommendation of no merit should trigger a non-performance review. However, he was not sure how many faculty may have received no merit in the last cycle nor was he sure how many faculty are currently being reviewed for non-performance. AP Bourgeois will gather the data. A question was also raised about unfairness of the process outlined in PPS 7.10 where faculty who are dissatisfied with the chair's final merit recommendation may appeal to the college dean, but that the dean’s decision on the matter is final and not subject to appeal. Here is a process where a decision is made by a chair with the approval of his/her dean with the only appeal going to someone who has already approved the decision. The Provost agreed to review the policy. The general discussion seems to mandate that whether or not monies are provided for performance raises, there should be a clear recommendation with every evaluation of faculty for merit on the issue of performance. The Provost did indicate that there should be some basic training for chairs in evaluating and dealing with faculty.
San Marcos and RRHEC Scheduling Issues: Conflicts in final schedules for certain classes being taught on campus and at RRHEC will be investigated by AVPEM Heintze and, hopefully, the situation will be resolved.
Technology Resources Support: In response to the Senate’s expression of concern about the overall campus support received from Technology Resources (TR), VPIT Wyatt indicated reform is being done and priority-setting groups are in place in each division of TR. He provided a list of who to contact and encouraged everyone to get in touch with the appropriate person about any concerns:
Much of the further discussion dealt with specific issues such as wire-less hubs that do not work with the computers available as the CRP standard and why the standard can’t be adjusted so that the network works. Tasks for TR currently working on fall into the following categories: immediate action; high priority; and good ideas. A phrase, to-be-processes, was used to projects that are deemed worthy but not doable at this time with current resources. One of these is a new Student Information System (SIS) to replace the old (16 years) system. The Provost’s comment was that he wants memories of SAP to fade before trying another new system.
PAAG Follow-up: There is still some apprehension among some Senators regarding the potential that the receipt of no merit might trigger a non-performance review. The PPS will be reviewed. An interesting comment was that while all faculty raises were based only on merit during the last cycle, all deans got what amounted to the same performance raise. Hmmm…
Development Leave Rankings: The Senate approved the ranking of the development leave applicants to be forwarded to the Provost. The Chair will draft a letter to the applicants informing them of their ranking.
Committee Appointments: Senators were asked to consider nominees from Fine Arts & Comm. for the Academic Computing Committee. Dr. Mary Ellen Cavitt, Music, was named as a Fine Arts & Comm. representative to the University Curriculum Committee. Senator Warms was recommended as the Senate’s representative on the Worklife Advisory Council.
· Faculty Handbook: The Senate subcommittee on the Faculty Handbook reported progress on revisions to the new Faculty Handbook.
· Enrollment Data: Current enrollment data was circulated