GEORGIA INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY
The Executive Board
Held in the Poole Board Room
Members Present : Abdel-Khalik (ME); Allen (Arch); Hall (Bio); Henry (OSP); Kahn (CEE); Mark (CoC); McGuire (LCC); Swank (GTRI); Wardi (ECE); Clough (Pres.); Chameau (Provost); Childress (G. Stu); Kavanaugh (U. Stu.); Thomas (SoF).
Members Absent: Boyd (Stu Servcs); Estes (EDI); Jayaraman (Mgt); Marr (Psy); Richards (GTRI); Welch (GTRI); Alexander (Staff Rep);
Visitors: Jay Telotte (LCC). April Brown (Pres. Of.).
1. Said Abdel Khalik, Chair, opened the meeting at and invited the President to comment on any matters of current interest. Clough stated that there is nothing new since his statement at last week’s GFA/AS meeting. Budgetary considerations continue at the Capitol. The supplementary budget includes a number of items beneficial to Tech and we are trying to keep those items in the budget.
2. The Chair called for approval of the minutes of the January 15th meeting of the Board including the corrections requested by the Provost. This was agreed without dissent.
3. The Chair called on Jay Telotte to present suggestions from the Faculty Status and Grievance Committee concerning changes to their statutory duties. Telotte stated that some of the charges are broad and vague. The Committee would like to see changes. (See attachment for a detailed statement from the Committee).
They propose that Statute 126.96.36.199.(c)(2) be eliminated entirely. This requires the FS+G committee to annually review the records of all faculty who have not had a promotion within a certain time period (related to rank) and to take certain actions. This item seems to involve a confusion of procedures and agenda. It involves a lot of work that is outside the abilities of the FS+G committee. Any faculty member denied promotion should understand that they have the right to apply to the FS+G committee for a review; this right is quite independent of this particular Statute. Clough commented that much of the need for “review” now is covered by the “5 year post-tenure review process” which was instituted after this statute was written.
The Committee proposes also that Statute 188.8.131.52.(c)(3) be eliminated entirely. This requires the FS+G committee to make annual review of general Institutional policies related to remuneration and duties. Again this is far too broad to be within the capabilities of the Committee. Moreover there is some overlap with the duties of the Faculty Benefits Committee.
The Committee further proposes that Statute 184.108.40.206.(c) (5) should be expanded to include the notion that the FS+G Committee will listen to complaints of faculty against other individuals. Finally, that Statute 220.127.116.11.(c) should be expanded to cover the archiving of confidential records; this should reflect the procedure already agreed and in use.
Swank asked whether the FS+G committee would listen to grievances of students against faculty. Telotte answered that this was the duty of other committees of the Academic Faculty. Telotte was asked whether he would care to expand on the likely matters covered under “complaints of faculty against other individuals”. He stated that this would be a broad menu and they would hope that the present proposed change would suffice.
It was moved that the proposals from the FS+G committee be transmitted to the Statutes Committee for consideration and implementation. This was agreed without dissent.
Clough commented that it might be valuable to annually report to faculty on the number of tenure decisions in a year and on the size of the faculty in the different ranks.
4. Doug Allen presented the report of the Nominating Committee. (See attachments for the proposed ballot). There remains a little confusion on whether all the persons listed for the Student Activities Committee have in fact confirmed their willingness to run for the office; this will be clarified in the next day or two. It was moved that the proposed slate of candidates be accepted. This was agreed without dissent.
Thomas stated that he proposed to electronically mail the ballot on March 11th which is the day after the mid-term break. There were suggestions that this might be seen by some faculty as an “overload” in their mail on that day and this might lead to a poor response. After some discussion it was decided to delay the mailing until March 13th. A period of ten working days will be allowed for responses.
5. The Chair introduced a list of “post-season athletic events” in which Tech teams might possibly be invited to participate. The Registrar sought blanket approval for participation in all these events if invitations are received. There is often a very short time period between receipt of an invitation and the event itself. Sometimes the Board has been in the position of granting approval after the event has taken place. The use of blanket approvals would avoid such irregular actions. The need for the Board to approve such matters results from the rules of the various Athletic Conferences. The Chair asked first whether the Board was comfortable in making such decisions in advance. No concerns were expressed.
It was moved that participation in the events listed be approved, subject to an invitation being received. This was agreed without dissent.
6. The Chair reported that the Secretary of the Faculty will be retiring from Tech in July. He thanked Thomas for his contributions. It is consequently necessary for the Board to seek a replacement. The most suitable candidate would be a person with significant experience of Faculty Governance preferably at the level of the EB. He asked all members to think of candidates and bring them to Ed Thomas’ attention. Self-nominations by Board members are certainly encouraged. We would plan to review the names at the next EB meeting and bring the name of a proposed candidate to the faculty as a whole on April 23rd for their approval.
7. The Chair presented two forms of PhD diploma certificates that are proposed for use in the joint Tech-Emory BME program. They differ only in which Institution is listed first in the heading; students will be allowed to choose which diploma format they wish to receive. There was some discussion of the fact that within the body of the diploma, the order of Institution names and the Presidents’ signatures were the same on both formats. The diploma formats were approved without dissent.
8. The Chair introduced a “Policy on Religious Holidays” which the administration would like reviewed by faculty and perhaps adopted. April Brown stated that this was motivated by student concerns. The Legal department considers the statement to be appropriate but would prefer there be a list of the holidays which we would specifically acknowledge. Clough stated that there has for some time been an “ad-hoc” agreement on how to handle such matters but now it is desirable to write something down. Perhaps it would be better to call this a policy on “Absences for Religious Reasons” rather than “Holidays”.
There was much discussion of the need for a “list” of acceptable religious days. Mark stated that with such a list faculty could perhaps avoid relevant dates entirely. Who should maintain such a list? Brown said that this should be created in collaboration with Student Affairs. Wardi commented on the statement that students should notify faculty at the start of a semester if there were dates that should be avoided. Clough said that this was probably unrealistic and that most students do not plan that far in advance. There was general agreement that this required further work and was not ready for discussion by the faculty as a whole. The matter will be brought back to the Board for possible inclusion in the agenda for the April 23rd Senate meeting.
9. The Secretary reported that a problem has been found with the working of the Statutes changes accepted for a first reading at the Feb 5th GF meeting. In the calculation of representations we use the words “Rounded up” which gives the impression that rounding should be to the next higher whole number. That was not the intent. We shall, at the second reading, alter this to read “rounded to the nearest whole number”.
10. The Chair reported that the Chancellor would not be able to attend the April 23rd Senate meeting as planned and we should discuss what item might replace his address. Clough said that we would try to get the Chancellor to attend the September 17th meeting instead. Chameau was asked whether the “Committee on Academic Misconduct” might be ready to make a report at that time; this is a matter of great interest to many faculty. He replied that an interim report might be possible. It was decided to make a decision on this at the March meeting of the Board.
11 There was some limited discussion about the debate on “Grading” initiated at the last AS/GFA meeting. The debate gave rise to some question about statistics that McMath will follow up. It was decided to postpone further discussion of the matter to the following Board meeting when McMath could attend and provide further information.
12. The Chair closed the meeting at .
Edward W. Thomas
Secretary of the Faculty
Attachments to the Archival Copy of the Minutes:
(2) “Recommended Changes to the FSGC Charge” Report by the FS+G committee.
(3) “Faculty elections” Slate of candidates. (Also to be posted soon at http://facultysenate.gatech.edu/yelectindex.html).
(4) List of approved “Post Season Athletic Events”.