Chair's Report for December 9, 1997
- remember to initial the roll call sheet when you enter the room
- please do not pick up packets for others; packets mailed out along with meeting minutes to those absent
- meeting transcript available on the web site: http://www.uwec.edu/Usenate
- any canceled Senate meeting will be listed in the weekly pink sheet
Open Forum Items from Senate Executive Committee Meetings
- Absence reporting. The process of reporting absences on a monthly basis was discussed. The system's accuracy and necessity were questioned. It was pointed out that the reporting process was initiated because the Legislature was concerned about the accurate accounting of absences. The current process represents a compromise between the Legislature and the University System.
- Pay increase. The recently implemented 4% pay increase was discussed. The question of whether or not the 4% increase was properly implemented was raised. It was pointed out that the 4% figure applied to only faculty and academic staff who were on staff in October 1996 as well as October 1997. The figure does not apply to administration or classified staff. Additional explanations of the pay plan are available through appropriate channels.
- Reorganization of the Senate. Michael Wick, Chair of the Senate Compensation Committee, reported that the Compensation Committee officially did not want to address reorganization. Speaking as an individual, Dr. Wick recommended that each College or School be represented on that committee regardless of whether or not that representative was a member of the University Senate.
- Open session. If a committee member arrives at a meeting after the committee has voted to go into closed session or if a committee member votes "no" to going into closed session, it IS appropriate for that committee member to attend the closed session. A brief update for a member arriving late may be in order.
- On November 18, the Senate passed SB 32 by a vote of 31-2. The bill would eliminate the current 5-year annuity vesting period for participants in the Wisconsin Retirement System. The bill now goes to Assembly for committee action.
- Assembly action on Tuesday, Nov. 4 included unanimous passage of SB 31 which changes the death benefit eligibility age from 60 to 55 under the Wisconsin Retirement System to match the retirement benefit eligibility age. The bill is awaiting the Governor's signature.
- The Joint Finance Committee s.13.10 hearing on the release of UW System Instructional Technology/Distance Education funds has been scheduled for Thursday, December 18.
- The 1997-1999 biennial budget requires tuition bills to include the a statement identifying the GPR and GPR per student amounts. Using the prescribed methodology, spring semester tuition bills should contain the statement:
"The Legislature and the Governor have authorized $860,291,800 of state funds for the University of Wisconsin System and its students during the 1997-1998 academic year. This is a tuition subsidy of $6,873 per student from the taxpayers of Wisconsin."
- AB 269 - Delays the ability of an institution to rehire a retiree from 30 to 120 days. The UW System has gone on record opposing this bill.
Faculty Reps Meeting
- The UW System Board of Regents' Study of the University of Wisconsin System in the 21st Century recommended that, "Since teaching academic staff are an essential part of those instructing students across the UW System, it is time to examine the role of teaching academic staff within the UW System with the intention of improving their status, roles, rights and responsibilities."
- Why study instructional academic staff?
- Who are the instructional academic staff?
- IAS appointment trends
- Appointment rules, policies, and practices
- Integrating IAS into institutional life
- Four-Year Graduation contracts reviewed by Senates. UWEC's 4-year contract before Senate in Spring.
- Optional Retirement System (see attached information)
- Faculty Reps are collecting information of how each campus pays for summer, winterim, and outreach instruction.
Board of Regents Meeting
- The Business and Finance Committee of the Board of Regents reported in the minutes of November 6, 1997, "Internal Audit reviewed Post-Tenure Review plans... The audit determined that several forms of faculty review already take place and that all institutions have a Post-Tenure Review plan in place, although some institutions and some departments within a college have more effective processes in place than others. There is a common set of factors present in some of the more effective review plans: First is the strong involvement by Vice Chancellors/Provosts, Deans and Department Chairs in the process; second is written criteria; third is the faculty themselves have to take the process seriously; fourth, the committee approach improves the review process; and fifth, where improvement is needed, positive assistance can be helpful. In order to benefit from the successes experienced by the most effective plans, the audit recommends System Administration and the institutions consider: reevaluating the role of Administration in the review process; reviewing plans to ensure the use of effective, written criteria consistent with each department's mission and goals; conveying to faculty the importance and the benefits of the review process; modifying the review process to provide committee evaluations; requiring improvement plans to address inadequate performance; identifying a source of funding that will not compromise existing campus budgets; and lifting the ban on the use of Faculty Development funds."
- The 1997 Report on UW System Accountability Indicators was received at the December 5th meeting of the Education Committee of the Board of Regents. The report stated "despite budget reductions, this year's report shows that the UW System has met 13 of 18 accountability goals and is generally meeting the three underlying priorities of the accountability task force". The three priorities met include: delivering a high quality undergraduate education, meeting the needs of Wisconsin in career preparation, technology transfer, and research, and responding to customer concerns. Areas for improvement that will be monitored in the coming years were listed. They include:
- "Although faculty group and contact hours increased for all but one institution, the overall faculty share of undergraduate instruction was down slightly in 1997 as the number of faculty positions was reduced to respond to the base budget reduction. The use of instructional academic staff increased to maintain service to students.
- The overall rate for graduation within six years of enrollment declined slightly, following several years of gradual increase. Some institutions have continued to improve their graduation rates. The UW System's graduation rate for full-time students (54%) is significantly higher than the national average of 42.7%.
- The UW System has maintained the GPR/fee investment in instruction-related activities at 66.6% by disproportionately cutting other functions to protect instruction from the effects of the budget cuts.
- The 1996-97 renewal rates of multi-cultural faculty were slightly less than white faculty, in part due to the smaller proportion of candidates, but the five year average for all categories remains high. Renewal rates for women were stable at 98%.
- The UW System awarded $1.7 million in competitive professional development grants to faculty and staff, a level consistent with 1996-97 awards, but still well below the recommended one percent of payroll.
- Facilities maintenance is 5% below the Regent approved target scheduled in the ten-year plan to eliminate the deferred maintenance backlog, as established under the 1991-93 budget. As of June 1997, the UW System is close to being on schedule to total expenditures ($250.2M), but falls short when the original figure is adjusted for inflation. Routine maintenance has suffered as institutions protect instructional budgets from cuts.
- Though satisfaction is high, the number of programs offered and participation in UW Extension Continuing Education and Cooperative Extension programs decreased in 1996-97 as more programming has moved to user fees."
- President Lyall presented a report on the biennial budget planning process. Details will be shared at the January meeting.