Faculty Senate Chair Announcements
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February 28, 2014
Fellow faculty members,
First, let me thank you for your swift responses to the Faculty Senate's informal poll regarding State Senate Bill #1254 Guns on Campus. In the first 12 hours, we had 330 respondents. It's fabulous to hear from you all. We may use such polls again in order to better understand faculty sentiment.
As for the results of the poll, there were 383 respondents. 91% of you were in favor of a resolution/statement from the Faculty Senate regarding this bill. However, in light of the data, the Senate has reache consensus that it would not be possible to capture the interests of the faculty in a single statement. Instead, we share the data with you.
54% of faculty were OPPOSED to the bill.
44% of faculty were SUPPORTIVE of the bill
2% of faculty ABSTAINED
Thank you for participating. The Faculty Senate would again urge you to contact your state representatives individually if you have strong feelings about this bill.
Sarah and Linwood
Faculty Senate co-chairs
February 13, 2014
As the spring semester is flying by, we wanted to take a few moments to update you regarding the Faculty Senate’s activities this year, with special emphasis on some current issues.
Faculty Senate has been involved in providing feedback to Academic Affairs in matters related to Program Prioritization. In the fall semester, we were called upon to provide input regarding which elements of the Dickeson model (this was the model mandated for use by the State Board of Education) were most (and least) important to faculty members. Faculty Senate will again have input when the Provost’s office has action plans and outcomes compiled.
The input of the Faculty Senate has been sought by several committees and groups on campus. We have provided feedback and recommendations regarding policies which affect students, including changes to wording and policy in the undergraduate catalog. Many of the Policies and Procedures at ISU have not been updated for several years and are in need of attention in order to meet standards for the State Board of Education, accreditation purposes, and for the benefit of faculty and staff. Faculty Senate has begun reviewing some of these policies and will be revising them over the course of this semester, along with developing a few new ones. At Faculty Senate’s recommendation, several obsolete policies from the former Faculty/Staff Handbook have been removed. Senators also elected Dr. Nancy Legge and Dr. Peter Denner to serve as Chairs of the Academic Dishonesty Board and Scholastic Appeals Board, respectively.
More recently, you may have been aware of Proposed Policies 4000: Policy and Procedures for Faculty Suspension/Dismissal/Termination for Cause and 7010: Intellectual Property Policy. The initial drafts of these policies were of concern to the Senate and faculty at large. With very little notice, David Alexander (ISU’s General Counsel) came to a Senate meeting in late January to answer questions and hear concerns. Senators and visitors alike were able to voice the concerns of constituents, as well as provide some possible solutions.
Dr. Howard Grimes and Mr. Alexander attended Senate’s meeting this week and we were very pleased to learn that both policies have been significantly revised based upon faculty input. Due to the substantial nature of these changes, the revised policies will appear in your inbox once again for an additional 30 day comment period. Please continue to take the time to provide your quality input to this process. Among the changes:
- a mechanism for the Faculty Senate to provide the names of 4 faculty members who will participate in the standing ‘pool’ for appeals/grievance procedures, in addition to those chosen by the Deans/Colleges.
- Copyright of course materials is now securely in the hands of the faculty members.
As the 7-year accreditation visit is upon us, you will likely see several more policy updates in the coming months.
Linwood and I (Sarah) are pleased to report that after the changes in university organization that have occurred over the last several years, Faculty Senate has found a role within the system. Although not currently mandated by any policy, Curriculum Council and General Education Requirements Committee (GERC) have been providing minutes to the Senate for information and comment, in case there is anything of note. Linwood and I have continued to attend both the President’s Cabinet as well as the Dean’s Council and State Board of Education meetings on a regular basis, and we report the highlights to Senators at every Faculty Senate meeting. We encourage you to contact your Senators if you have any concerns, questions, or if there is an issue you think Senators should be aware of, or consider taking action upon.
On that note, we wanted to let you know that in Monday’s Faculty Senate meeting, Senators briefly discussed Senate Bill #1254, currently under consideration in the Idaho Legislature, which, if passed, would allow those with concealed weapons permits to carry guns on campuses. Senators did not feel they had enough of a grasp of faculty sentiment either way to be able to speak on behalf of faculty regarding this issue. Instead, Senators encourage faculty members to contact your state legislators and exercise your rights as individual taxpaying citizens.
The Faculty Senate’s webpage is being updated on an ongoing basis with current information, and we will continue to post things to keep you better informed of Senate’s activities and matters of interest to faculty.
Sarah and Linwood,
Faculty Senate co-chairs
Last updated: 02/28/2014 11:07