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K-State Today

April 21, 2015



Highlights from the April 14 Faculty Senate meeting

By Faculty Senate

Previous minutes are available on the Faculty Senate website as they are approved. Highlights from the April 14 Faculty Senate meeting:

Guest:

  • Provost April Mason updated senators on budget issues, plans to begin work on the next three-year salary plan, and she also addressed questions about the future assignment of the responsibilities of the Office of Academic Personnel. She will continue to update senators as information is available.

Consent Agenda:

  • Academic Affairs chair Andy Bennett presented the consent agenda to senators, which was approved.

Standing committee and Student Senate reports: 

  • Academic Affairs: Senator Andy Bennett presented for a vote the new doctorate in personal financial planning from the College of Human Ecology. There has been a personal financial planning emphasis in the   Human Ecology doctorate, which is now being proposed to have its own separate degree title. After discussion, the proposal was approved. It now will be moved forward to the provost and then to Board of Regents for final approval. Bennett also reported on other items Academic Affairs is working with, including credit for prior learning. 
  • Faculty Affairs: Senator Betsy Cauble reported on a visit they had with Maureen Redeker and Paul Lowe regarding international research and travel. She encouraged faculty to become more informed about the import/export laws that affect them as individuals. She will continue to provide updates as she has more information on this. The committee will be soon working on Section C of the University Handbook. They also will be looking into temporary vs. regular appointments of assistant and associate professors in light of the new titles that have been approved recently.  
  • Professional Staff Affairs (PSA): Senator Danielle Brown reported that the committee has finalized their very detailed work on Section C of the University Handbook. They have sent it forward to Faculty Affairs now for their review and input. They are still discussing policy, as related to professional staff being able to grieve termination, the way University Support Staff and faculty do. Their meeting with HCS was canceled and therefore, no update is available on that topic.
  • Student Senate: Kurt Lockwood, newly elected Speaker of the Student Senate, reported that they held their first meeting last week. A question was asked about the status of smoking policy changes. They will inquire about this. 
  • FSCOT: Senator Joe Lear updated senators on their recent meeting. Discussion surrounded accessibility in technology; they would like to raise awareness about captioning videos, using OCR on scanned documents, and the like. OneDrive is now available to be used and discussion regarding policy for this is taking place. With regard to Canvas, there is work being done to distribute a document with tips and resources for faculty to take with them for the summer as they prepare their classes for fall. Also, core router maintenance that was performed over spring break has been causing some issues and further maintenance work is being done to resolve these.
  • FSCOUP: Senator Barbara Anderson reported on their meeting with Pat Bosco, Ethan Erickson and Robert Gamez regarding tuition, scholarships and the general budget. It was a sobering meeting. During the senate meeting, questions were asked with regard to the role of FSCOUP if the university were to ever declare Financial Exigency. At their next meeting they will be discussing city/university fund proposals.

Announcements/Reports

  • Faculty Senate elections are final and standing committee assignments are due April 27.
  • Those interested in running for Faculty Senate president-elect or Faculty Senate secretary can discuss this with any member of Leadership.
  • The annual retiree ceremony for faculty and professional staff will be at 4 p.m. Friday, April 24, in the Alumni Center.
  • KBoR meeting report: President Rintoul briefly reported on the March KBoR meeting. K-State's proposal for clarification to University Handbook, Appendix M, was approved and is now in the University Handbook. 

Discussion period for senators.

  • In light of comments made during the Academic Affairs standing committee report, Senator Ransom suggested the committee perhaps discuss whether a freeze on new programs and certificates, etc. would be appropriate considering the budget climate. 
  • Senator Spooner recalled the resolution from a couple years ago regarding administrative salaries vs. faculty and professional staff salaries and asked that Leadership request an update from administration on monies spent on administrative salaries versus faculty salaries. President Rintoul will follow through with this.
  • Senator Hutchinson would like an update on the Olathe campus and future plans for it and Faculty Senate involvement. It was noted this would be a good topic for conversation with the provost at next month’s meeting.
  • Senator Bennett yielded his time to Jarold Boettcher, who wanted to request that the process for citizens of Kansas, over the age of 60, who want to audit a course at K-State, be more easily found. He gave commendation for this being available and would like others to be able to benefit from it as well.

 

David A. Rintoul, Ph.D.
Associate director/graduate program director
Division of Biology
Faculty Senate president
Kansas State University
Manhattan, KS 66506

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