[an error occurred while processing this directive]

Minutes, Meeting of the Senate of the Faculty,

March 21, 1997

Chair, Faye Gilbert, called the Faculty Senate to order at 2:05 p.m., March 21, in Conner 122.


Ben Banahan, Billy Barrios, Anne Bomba, Felice Coles, H.C. Cunningham, Bob Dorsey, Ann Fisher-Wirth, Faye Gilbert, Glenn Hopkins, John Johnson, Edward Komara, Fred Laurenzo, Fannye Love, R. McLaughlin, Marilyn Mendolia, Harry Owens, Ted Ownby, Shyam Prasad, T.J. Ray, Daniel Schlenk, Sharon Schreiber, Ed Sisson, Warren Steel, JoAnn Stefani,Peter Sukanek, Paula Temple, Kirk Wakefield, Clint Williford, John Winkle, Christy Wyandt


Kim Beason, Don Cheek, Jean Cheek, Sumali Conlon, Carol Dale, David Graves, Sophia Gray, Tim Hall, Robert Haws, Stacy Holmes, Jay K. Johnson, Phil Malone, Tom Marshall, James Payne, Bill Rayburn, Jim Reidy, Natalie Schroeder, William Scott, Bryn Vaaler, Julie Walton, Robert Westmoreland, Mark Wilder

Prior Notification of Absence Given:

Robert Cook Maurice Eftink, Dave Nichols, Stacy Rodgers

UPDATE AND QUESTION AND ANSWER PERIOD WITH PROVOST WALTON: Dr. Walton began by reporting on actions by the Board of Trustees. In the face of operating budgets that have been flat for years, the Committee on Finance recommended all requested fee increases. The Board approved increases for housing, but rejected the others. He pointed out that we have some technology needs.

There will be program evaluations. There has been a lot of discussion about this, for instance regarding support for BA and BBA degrees. Dr. Walton then summarized a number of items relating to promises he made before becoming Provost.

At the April Board meeting we will get budget approval. Some House Bill 400 (a or b?) one time money is available. We may get about 20% of $6 million.

The Provost then answered questions.

Chair Gilbert asked about the 12 month pay option for 9 month faculty. Dr. Walton said this had proven more difficult than thought due to a technical problem (with setting up the computers?). Senator Johnson raised the question why this should be a problem, when some faculty are already paid on a twelve month basis. Regarding teaching awards, the idea of extending the Barnard professorships has been dropped for now due to criticisms. The Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs will work on recognizing teaching. There was a question about the duties of the Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and those of the Associate Provost. Dr. Walton responded that the administration will work out these duties. In response to a question about Rex DeLoach and his influence on funding decisions, Deloach will be acting Vice Chancellor for Finance, probably by April. A concern was raised about faculty oversight on financial decisions. The university Planning Council will have to approve funding. This will serve as a major check and balance.

The new stationary says that we are a four-campus university.

Academic freedom and Responsibility has drafted a policy on off-campus instruction. He hopes that the needs can be filled without forcing people to do it. The people at Jackson and Tupelo are under a lot of pressure to offer more courses. The best way to do it is with people who live there. The off-campus courses do make money, if the only costs are travel and the professor. We do make money at Tupelo. We probably don't make money at Jackson, and he doubts if the Jackson Engineering program will make money for a long time. If we can guarantee enough courses at the April 9, 1997 Desoto Center in Southhaven, we can make money. Chair Gilbert referred to pressures to offer reduced hours, and hoped that there would be no reduction in contact hours.

Regarding Standing Committee revisions, we want people on the committees who are interested. There are some committees that have not been active, but may still be useful.

He was aske, if salaries from unfilled positions are used in other areas, and funding is static, can positions be filled? Dr. Walton responded that it probably will assumed that we can fill (the positions). We will need about a million dollars for this. Last year, it was assumed that $600,000 would needed to be moved from budgets to fill needs. This year it is assumed the funds are there. If the money is there in July, then (you can) assume the positions can be filled.

OLD BUSINESS: Amendment of Article III, Section 9 of the constitution was approved by the general faculty in the fall of 1995. No further action is needed. Therefore three changes to the bylaws were considered regarding Article III, Section 14 and Article IV, Amendments. These changes revised the procedures for putting items onto the agenda, particularly motions.

There was discussion of the policy for extension of the pre-tenure probationary period. Senator Ray felt that the general faculty must take action on this. After a discussion or vote, Chair Gilbert can take the matter to the Academic Council. There were a number of concerns raised: who will make the final determination; what about tenure by default, since AAUP says there is no flexibility in the time period; should there be a cap on the length of time and the number of requests; finally, how will requests and grants of extensions, be documented for evidentiary purposes?

Chair Gilbert asked committees to send her reports so she can summarize them by the end of the year. There were no verbal reports at this time.

There was a discussion of a promotion policy for nontenure track faculty. This applies to research faculty , for instance, at RIP and NCPA. The request came form the University Research Board to form a policy to reward these faculty for performance.

NEW BUSINESS: Senator introduced a motion to reinforce the Chancellor's efforts to review symbols, etc.

After a voice vote giving approval, Chair Faye Gilbert adjourned the meeting b at 3:17 p.m.