1. The meeting was called to order by Chairperson Rice at 9:35 a.m. All members were present except Senator Barbour and Ms. Grubman.
2. The minutes of Meeting #16, December 12, 2006, were approved as presented.
3. The FSEC met with President Carothers and Provost Swan until 10:15 a.m. Three items were discussed:
a. The President and Provost explained their objections to the amendment to 8.87.10 and 8.87.11 that had been approved by the Senate on December 14, regarding suspension and abolition of academic programs. There was acknowledgement that the existing legislation is ineffective. After reviewing options, the FSEC agreed that in light of the President's planned veto of the amendment (8.87.12), it would recommend that the Faculty Senate appoint an ad hoc committee to review 8.87.10 and 8.87.11 with the intention of crafting new legislation that would satisfy both the Administration and the Faculty Senate.
b. Discussion ensued about the Committee organized by Ms. Morrissey to explore formation of a Joint Classroom Management Committee. It was explained that ad-hoc group had much of the committee and subcommittee structure worked out, but the only remaining issue was method of selecting the chairperson to be determined by the FSEC, President and Provost. It was decided that the procedure would be that the Joint Classroom Management Committee would annually elect their chairperson from its membership with confirmation by the Senate and approval by the President.
c. The Provost expressed concern that a significant number of summer online courses taught in 2006 would not be approved under the new review procedures. She indicated that this would have a negative effect on summer school enrollment for 2007. The FSEC agreed to work with the Curricular Affairs Committee to identify the possible gap between courses taught in 2006 and approved for 2007 and to make every effort to ensure that an adequate number of courses are reviewed and approved.
a. Chairperson Rice reported on the December 15 meeting of the BoG's Academic and Student Affairs Committee, which he attended. Among the items discussed was a potential conference on K-16 performance standards.
b. The schedule of FSEC meetings for the semester was distributed.
c. Memoranda re: the CAC's online-course-review process and the jurisdiction of the Student Rights and Responsibilities Committee with regard to the Student Handbook were received from Professor Wenisch, chair of CBUM.
d. A copy of the memo asking the TEC to review "best practices" in the evaluation of teaching was distributed.
e. Senator Kowalski reiterated what he had written in an email regarding his concern that faculty were being asked inappropriately to report directly to the OHE on some matters. He reported that he had asked Vice Provost Pasquerella to look into the issue.
f. The FSEC was reminded that it would meet on February 1 with Professor Spaulding regarding the new grade appeals process.
5. In light of Ms. Grubman's illness and the fact that the first Senate meeting of the semester falls during the first week of classes, it was agreed to cancel the January 25 Senate meeting.
a. Chairperson Rice said that Ms. Grubman will be drafting legislation creating a joint President-Senate Classroom Committee.
b. The next meeting of the JSPC is scheduled for January 23. The FSEC agreed it had no agenda items to add.
c. Senator Kowalski said 10 of 11 NEASC drafts are in hand and under review. It is hoped that a complete draft will be available for public release in March.
7. There was no unfinished business.
8. Two items of new business were briefly presented:
a. Professor Ramstad has resigned from the Athletics Advisory Board for health reasons.
b. Senator Miller said he has new data from Engineering regarding student grades for the Fall semester, which is being looked at in light of SAT data.
Barbara F. Luebke