UNOFFICIAL - Yet to be approved
Members present: F. Michael Combs, Beauvais Lyons, Sam Jordan,
Tse-Wei Wang for Otis Stephens, Glenn Graber, Peggy Pierce, Ann
Fairhurst, Fred Weber, David Patterson, Salvatore DiMaria, Jim Gehlhar,
Wesley Morgan, Carolyn Hodges, Sara Williams, Doug Birdwell, Candace
White, Laura Jolly, Loren Crabtree, Misty Anderson, Barbara Dewey,
Combs called the meeting to order at 3:30 p.m.
President’s Report (M. Combs)
Combs thanked T.-W. Wang for serving as acting parliamentarian today.
He then reminded everyone that the Provost’s State of the
Campus discussion will occur this Wednesday at 4:00 p.m. in the
UC Auditorium. Combs next congratulated faculty, staff and students
honored at the Provost’s Honors Banquet last Wednesday. He
also invited everyone to join him after the meeting to honor L.
Crabtree and to recognize the committee’s very hard work this
Combs then noted that the Advisory Committee will meet with the
Chancellor Transition Committee Wednesday, April 23, at 9:00 a.m.
He reminded everyone that he and Wang serve on the Enrollment Management
Committee and reported that its plans include printing far fewer
timetables, relying more on on-line sources, and using students’
U.T. e-mail accounts as a way for academic and administrative units
to communicate with students.
Combs next voiced some concerns about aspects of the view book
that UT provides to all applicants and asked that others review
the book. He also noted that the agenda packet contains information
regarding the establishment of a School of Public Health.
Next, Combs reported that the minutes of the committee’s
last meeting have been adjusted by the elimination of a sentence
to which an objection was raised (and a slight rewording of the
following sentence, so that it would be understandable without the
eliminated sentence). He apologized for any lack of clarity and
provided the following report which includes additional details:
Two special meetings of the senate executive committee were called
at a time and location approved by the majority to review the recommendation
on senate structure. Careful records of those meetings were kept,
which were reviewed and edited by senators and then provided to
all members of the committee. An honest and thoughtful assessment
of those meetings was based on a combination of the results of those
meetings in addition to e-mails and conversations from those members
who were unable to attend. Records show that only 4 or 5 members
of the executive committee did not attend or provide some type of
input. Considering all information that was gathered, it appears
that the executive committee clearly supported the 8 recommendations
as presented to the senate.
Combs turned next to the meeting of campus faculty senate presidents
with President Shumaker in Nashville last week. He reported that
Shumaker promised to provide budget and financial reports for the
UT athletic program and the UT system administration, as well as
a copy of the complete report from the Educational Marketing Group.
Also, Shumaker reported that S. Leonard now is in charge of IT,
administration of research on this campus will be dealt with in
the transition to chancellor, and the UT Research Foundation is
virtually in place. Shumaker also was positive about following the
AAUP “red book” guidelines concerning any reductions
in faculty positions (and assured the group that there are no tenured
faculty at risk), and said he is concerned about faculty salaries
and salaries of lower paid staff on all campuses, sees UT smaller,
more focused and more expensive in the future, expects that the
chancellor transition “dominoes will drop in the next six
weeks,” and is disappointed with the level of public understanding
of the importance of public education in Tennessee.
Combs noted that the committee needs to nominate someone to serve
as secretary next year. B. Lyons nominated S. Jordan who agreed
to serve. There was no other nomination. The nomination will be
taken to the Faculty Senate.
Combs also asked for and received approval of the proposed Senate
Executive Council for summer 2003. He also asked for approval of
the proposed membership of the new Advisory Task Force on IT. In
response to a question from F. Weber, Combs said he thinks each
person listed would have a vote. Weber then said that he believes
someone from the School of Law should be on the task force. The
suggestion was accepted as a friendly amendment. D. Birdwell suggested
adding R. L. Ridenour as an ex-officio member.
Combs then asked Lyons to discuss the proposed Faculty Senate budget
for next year. It is a bare-bones budget and has been approved by
Crabtree. K. Greenberg pointed out that there was no budget until
the last few years.
Combs then proceeded to the other action items for the next Faculty
Senate meeting. First, Weber distributed copies of the revised Applicable
Use Policy and indicated that the revisions reflected the discussion
at the last Faculty Senate meeting. He noted that he expects the
IT committee to take up the question of privacy at its first meeting.
The second item was the revised Cumulative Performance Review document.
D. Patterson distributed a flow chart for the new process and quickly
described it. The intent is to protect faculty, insure due-process,
and include peer-review. Birdwell recommended deleting an option
allowing a dean to ignore a faculty CPR committee’s finding
that a faculty member’s performance is “Satisfies Expectation
for Rank” and recommend to the Chancellor that he/she initiate
proceedings to terminate the faculty member. There was considerable
discussion, including the observation that the Chancellor could
not terminate the faculty member, but only “trigger”
a termination process described in the Faculty Handbook. Lyons then
noted that the design of the flow chart could and should be improved;
he also suggested rewording the document to indicate that various
administrators would follow procedures specified in the Faculty
Handbook. The former suggestion was agreed to and the latter one
was accepted as a friendly amendment to the document. Crabtree noted
that the current five-year review cycle will be completed and reminded
everyone that cumulative reviews are a response to attacks on tenure.
Birdwell then suggested that the Chancellor should be required to
consult the Faculty Affairs Committee, not the Faculty Senate President
and the Faculty Senate Executive Committee. After a brief discussion,
it was agreed that the parenthetical statement at the end of paragraph
c. (iii) on page 7 of the document should be changed to read “…
to the appropriate Faculty Senate committee,” such as a Faculty
Affairs Committee. Weber then observed that if the CPR Committee
recommends that an improvement plan be developed for a faculty member,
then that person has only one year to correct the situation, but
if the dean makes such a recommendation, then the person has two
years to correct the situation. This arrangement did not raise broad
concern. Patterson then noted that B. Levy should be thanked for
his extensive assistance with the document.
Combs next reviewed the proposed bylaws changes. C. White suggested
moving consideration of the changes to the beginning of the next
Faculty Senate meeting. Combs said he would move all action items
to the beginning and include the bylaws in the agenda packet. He
then asked certain committee members to try to get reports from
selected active committees. Weber suggested providing reports only
electronically; there was general agreement.
Combs then noted that the agenda packet contains a copy of the
Guidelines for Reduction of Force, information on “low-producing”
academic program, and a copy of an e-mail from S. Riggsby on the
quality of undergraduate education. Lyons then suggested that Crabtree
be very clear in his discussions at Wednesday’s forum that
decisions about eliminating programs will not be made during the
summer and that faculty will be involved in the process next year.
Finally, Combs raised the matter of his being asked by an alumni
group to inform the faculty that they can contribute to the alumni
campaign. There was strong objection to his doing so, because of
other campaigns. In response to a question from Birdwell, Crabtree
said that the dean search in Arts and Sciences should be concluded
about April 25 and he hopes the search for the new dean in the College
of Engineering will be concluded by May 1.
Combs next thanked Provost Crabtree for his participating in the
The meeting adjourned at 4:55 p.m.
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