Faculty Senate

Minutes

January 27, 2010, 3:30 p.m. Magnolia Avenue Campus, Community Room

 

 

I.          Suspension of Rules and Presentation by Dr. Wise

President Mark Fuentes made a motion to suspend the rules so that Dr. Anthony Wise, Vice President of Learning, could discuss various issues with faculty senators; motion was unanimously passed. The most pressing issue that Dr. Wise discussed was the recent higher education law just passed. He said that we have very little information about how this law will be implemented, but changes in performance funding and standardization among community colleges are two troublesome issues.

 

II.        Call to Order: Tom Gaddis

 

The meeting was called to order by Tom Gaddis. Members in attendance: Mark Fuentes (President), Wanda Scarbro (Past President), Donn King (Parliamentarian), Mae Jean King (BCT), Joe Zitka (BCT), Rick Barber (BCT), Ken Swayne (EMT), Trent Eades (English), Lawana Day (English), Sydney Gingrow (English), David Keys (LA), Marilyn Harper (LA), Linda Streebeck (Math), Ann Preston (Math), Ron Bridges (NBS), Michael Lusk (NBS), Brad Rose (NBS), Trish Roller (Transitional Studies), Tom Gaddis (Business Officer/Division Street), Ashley Boone (Blount County), Jane Stribling (Magnolia Avenue), David Vinson (Math, TBR Rep), William Gwin and Jonathan Morrell (Adjunct Faculty). Guests: Dr. Wise, Mary Monroe Ellis, Keith Norris

 

III.       Approval of Minutes: Tom Gaddis

 

            The minutes of the November 2009 Senate meeting were approved as posted.

           

III.       Officer Reports:

 

                  Secretary: Jean Jackson—Absent due to illness.

 

                  Communications—Ken Swayne

No report.

 

                  TBR Representative—Dave Vinson

Dave added information about the repercussions of the higher education law that Dr. Wise discussed. He explained that the Chancellor could not define the role of THEC in standardizing curriculum such as requiring one specific textbook for all community colleges to use in a particular course. He talked about the sub councils and their role in this whole process. By this law, THEC could conceivably have a large amount of power over the colleges, and it appears that very little if any input from academics was a part of the law’s design. Rather, it was principally crafted by a consultant from Indiana. Dave also discussed the new A-100 guidelines. They are still being overhauled, and the math segment is particularly troublesome with multiple exits possible. The final vote is planned for April.

                 

                  President—Mark Fuentes

President Fuentes referred to an email he received concerning the early beginning of the spring semester. The idea was that additional holiday time could be worked out in December/January with less from May to August. Ron Bridges explained that he worked on the common calendar committee, and a template exists for the scheduling of holiday times. President Fuentes solicited calendar ideas from faculty. He also asked for any ideas to streamline final registration including the use of student helpers and adjunct welcome sessions. President Fuentes explained that shred bins for the site campuses would not be possible due to contract issues. Mark talked about new technology installations and asked for input on where these new sympodium units should be installed.

 

IV.       Committee Reports:

 

                  Adjunct Faculty—Jonathan Morrell/William Gwin

William said that the adjunct meetings were valuable, and Jonathan discussed two adjunct issues: the upgrade of Office 2007 needed for Portable A and the lack of sufficient office space for adjuncts. The president will address these problems.

 

                  Student Scholarships—David Key

                  The sale is quite organized and will take place in March.

 

                  Rules—Donn King

Donn explained that senate minutes only must contain distinct actions taken, committee written reports, and constitutional changes.

 

                  Nominating Committee—Wanda Scarbro, substitute for Jean Jackson

Two names were placed in nomination for President-elect of the Faculty, Ron Bridges of Natural and Behavioral Sciences and Keith Norris of the English Department. The voting will take place in February among full time faculty. The candidates will host an informational session shortly.

 

                  Promotion/Tenure—Mae Jean King

The packets will be located in Bagwell 209 and four or perhaps five candidates will pilot an electronic version of the packets. She explained how colleagues will sign for these electronic versions.

 

                  Faculty Development—Ron Bridges

Ron told the senate that the committee volunteered to help with the adjunct orientation and offered sessions that each adjunct could choose according to interest. The committee had 200 responses to its survey with the data to be compiled soon.

 

                  Faculty Bill of Rights Ad Hoc—Anita Maddox –absent.

 

                  Budget Ad Hoc—Wanda Scarbro – No Report

 

V.        Unfinished Business:

           

            Constitutional changes—Donn King and the Rules Committee

 

            The following proposed changes were discussed by the senate.

 

Resolved: That we amend the Faculty Senate Constitution by striking Article IV, Section 1, Subsection B, and substituting the following text:

 

Representation: Each academic department of the College having at least 20 fulltime tenure-track faculty members is entitled to elect three representatives to the Faculty Senate, with at least two of them during any given academic year holding academic tenure. Each academic department with fewer faculty members is entitled to elect two representatives to the Faculty Senate, with at least one of them during any given academic year holding academic tenure. New departments having no faculty member with academic tenure are exempt from the requirements of this section regarding tenure. As a department including faculty members with a particular interest in learning issues, Library Services is also entitled to elect representatives according to the same guidelines and standards as an academic department.

 

A motion was made and seconded to amend the amendment to define when the number of faculty will be determined by inserting the phrase as of February 1st after the words 20 fulltime tenure-track faculty. Further discussion followed concerning how representation should be envisioned. Some senators felt that senate representation should not be based so wholly on departmental divisions. A motion was made to send the constitutional motion back to the Rules Committee for further research and development. Failing to receive a second, this motion failed. The senate then voted on the motion as amended. The amended motion passed by a ¾ (three-fourths) majority vote. The approved constitutional change appears below.

 

Resolved: That we amend the Faculty Senate Constitution by striking Article IV, Section 1, Subsection B, and substituting the following text:

 

Representation: Each academic department of the College having at least 20 fulltime tenure-track faculty members as of February 1st  is entitled to elect three representatives to the Faculty Senate, with at least two of them during any given academic year holding academic tenure. Each academic department with fewer faculty members is entitled to elect two representatives to the Faculty Senate, with at least one of them during any given academic year holding academic tenure. New departments having no faculty member with academic tenure are exempt from the requirements of this section regarding tenure. As a department including faculty members with a particular interest in learning issues, Library Services is also entitled to elect representatives according to the same guidelines and standards as an academic department.

 

VI.       New Business:

 

            Trent Eades presented the following motion on academic freedom.

 

Whereas, The faculty at Pellissippi State Community College serve students by aiding them in becoming thoughtful and well-informed citizens equipped to participate in a democracy; and

 

Whereas, Academic freedom is crucial to this role in that it allows faculty to teach their subjects in the manner they find most effective; and

 

Whereas, Academic freedom as traditionally understood includes the right of individual faculty to write their own syllabi consistent with state standards and mandates; and

 

Whereas, It is the responsibility of faculty to use their academic freedom in such a way as promotes effective student learning; Therefore be it

 

Resolved, That the Faculty Senate of Pellissippi State Community College recognizes and affirms that faculty have the right to teach their subjects and create their syllabi in a way they believe is consistent with TBR outcomes and mandates as captured in Departmental Master Syllabi; and

 

Resolved, That academic departments are encouraged to continue the usual practice of constructing Master Syllabi in such a way as allows faculty maximum liberty in teaching their courses.

 

            The motion was passed unanimously by the senate.

 

VII.     Announcements:

 

The next senate meeting will be on February 17, 2010, at 3:30pm at the Hardin Valley Campus (Faculty/Staff Dining Room)

 

VIII.    Adjournment of meeting