May 25, 2005

Officers attending: Cindy Beckett, President; Jackie Myers, Vice President; Fred Thomas, Secretary

Senators attending: Myra Grinner, Ryan Murphy, Amanda Romero, Marti Shapiro, Tom Singer, Charles C. Williams

Senators not attending: Derek Allen, James Brooks, Susan Callender, Frank Clay, Art Ross, Marsha Wamsley

Others attending: Dona Fletcher, Al Giambrone, Ann Hall, Laurel Mayer, Anthony Ponder

Cindy called the meeting to order at 2:12 in Green Room

1.        Approval of Minutes

Jackie moved to approve the minutes from May 4th. The motion passed.

2.        Officers’ Reports


3.        Committee Reports


4.        Special Orders


5.        Old Business

5.1.         FITs Feedback/comments

Cindy asked Senators to share the feedback they had received from faculty about the draft FITs agreement. The general response seems positive, considering the difficult funding environment.

Cindy reported that the full FITs team met again on May 25th and discussed plans for site visits and other work during the summer. Dee Delaney and Cindy are continuing to work on the supplemental survey on reassigned time, lab pay and similar issues. The supplemental survey will be distributed to Sinclair faculty either during summer or very early in Fall Quarter to obtain an internal benchmark; it will be sent later to other colleges to establish the external benchmark. Data from the primary survey of compensation systems at other colleges is being analyzed in preparation for work on drafting an alternative compensation model at Sinclair.

5.2.         Office Hour Proposal

Cindy reported that the Academic Policies Committee reviewed Senate’s office hour proposal (attachment FSMA20050504-01) on May 24th. In a close vote, the Academic Policies Committee failed to approve the proposal and sent it back to Senate for further revision. Cindy reported that the Committee is increasingly aware of issues such as non-uniform enforcement of the existing office hour policy. With additional benchmark data about office hour policies at other colleges and with additional discussion, she is optimistic that a new policy will be approved next year.

5.3.         Assembly Elections

Cindy and Jackie reported that there was no quorum at the Faculty Assembly meeting on May 18th. Without a quorum, the Assembly cannot hold elections or conduct other business. There was extensive discussion about the official status of the nominations and the elections. There was also extensive discussion about whether or not the current President could be elected Vice President, thereby holding two offices simultaneously during 2005-06 and then succeeding herself as President for a second two-year term, 2006-08.

Since there is very little time remaining before the end of Spring Quarter, many Senators felt Senate’s Election Committee should notify faculty that nominations can still be submitted until a specific date and that the actual elections for Vice President, Secretary and Representative to Leadership Council will be held during Fall Conference. The Election Committee consists of Marsha Wamsley, Derek Allen, Tom Singer, James Brooks, Amanda Romero and Art Ross, with Jackie Myers as Chair.

Charles made a motion that the present status of the elections be referred back to Senate’s Election Committee to determine if the person nominated as Vice President can serve simultaneously as Vice President and President. Tom seconded the motion, and the motion passed.

5.4.         OATYC Nominations

After discussion and review of applications distributed earlier, Senate voted to select Barbara Carruth as Sinclair’s nominee for 2004-05 OATYC Full-time Faculty of the Year and to select William Michael Belanich as Adjunct (Part-Time) Faculty of the Year. Barbara is a Professor in the Mathematics Department with a very strong record of achievements in the classroom, the College and the community. William Belanich has taught extensively and very successfully in the areas of American government, comparative government and international relations.

6.        New Business

6.1.         Attorney Saundra Schuster to Senate?

Cindy reported that Dr. Schuster is now working directly for Sinclair. During Fall Quarter, it may be appropriate to invite Dr. Schuster to meet again with Senate.

6.2.         Handbook Changes

Cindy and Fred referred to two proposed Handbook changes that were distributed the previous week.

The first proposal would clarify the cycle of formal and interim reviews so as to coordinate more effectively with promotion applications. The change involves both Handbook section 2.6 (attachment FSMA20050525-01) and section 2.6.1 (attachment FSMA20050525-02). Since all Handbook changes must be approved by the Board of Trustees at their June meeting in order to be implemented for the following year, this Senate meeting was the last opportunity for Senate to act without delaying the implementation until September 2006. Senate concluded that this was a non-controversial change which benefits faculty and approved the proposal without the usual period for faculty discussion.

The second proposal would revise Handbook section 2.11.6 (attachment FSMA20050525-03) to allow faculty to administratively withdraw students from their classes if the students do not satisfy a prerequisite. There are situations, for example, in which a student is taking a prerequisite course when he or she enrolls but subsequently fails that course. At present, there is no systematic process to deregister these students. There was a brief but vigorous discussion in which several Senators expressed concerns about the proposed revision. Two concerns were that the current writing of the proposal may not provide sufficient safeguards for students and may place an unreasonable burden on individual faculty members to check and enforce prerequisites. There were also questions as to whether the proposal itself is consistent with the College’s open access philosophy. Tom moved to send the proposed policy back to the Academic Policies Committee for further review. Jackie seconded the motion and the motion passed.

7.        Announcements

7.1.         Future Meetings

Senate’s final meeting of the year is scheduled for June 1st, but the meeting may be cancelled if there is no immediate business.


The meeting adjourned at 3:30

Submitted by Fred Thomas

Approved by Senate in electronic vote, June 2, 2005