University of Iowa
Tuesday, February 21, 2006
3:30 p.m.
Penn State Room, 337 IMU

Members Present: Linda Boyle, Gloria Bulechek, Christine Catney, Virginia Dominquez, David Drake, Claibourne Dungy, Paul Heidger, Steve McGuire, Frank Mitros, Michael O’Hara, Catherine Ringen, Jarjisu Sa-Aadu, Linda Snetselaar, Downing Thomas, Brad Thompson

Members Absent: Vicki Grassian, James Nepola,

Faculty Senate Officers in Attendance: Richard LeBlond, President; Sheldon Kurtz, Vice President; Michael Cohen, Secretary; Katherine Tachau, Past President

Guests: Craig Porter (Ombudsperson), Charlie Drum (University Relations), Jim Andrews (AAUP), Richard Saunders (University Benefits), Steve Collins (Engineering), Cynthia Joyce (Ombudsperson), Emileigh Barnes (Daily Iowan), Susan Johnson (Office of the Provost), Lori Cranston (Office of the Provost), Eugene Spaziani (EFC), Pat Cain (Office of the Provost), Julie Thatcher (Faculty Senate Office)

I.       Call to Order

President LeBlond called the meeting to order at 3:35 p.m.

II.      Approvals

   A.  Meeting Agenda

The meeting agenda was approved by consent.

   B.   Faculty Council Minutes, January 17, 2006

The Council unanimously approved the minutes as submitted after a motion by Professor Thompson, seconded by Professor McGuire.

   C.   Committee on Committees, Sheldon Kurtz

The Council unanimously approved the appointment for Laurie McCormick, Psychiatry, to the Human Rights Committee to fill the vacancy created by the death of Professor Ken Cmiel (2006-08).  The motion was proposed by Professor Kurtz and seconded by Professor O’Hara.

III. Reports

   A.  Faculty Senate President, Richard LeBlond

1.   Presidential Search Update.  President LeBlond announced the Open Forum with the Board of Regents, March 2, 5:30-7:00.  The Council will go into executive session at the end of the meeting to discuss issues related to the open forum (VIII, below).

2.   Shared Governance Task Force. President LeBlond announced that President Skorton approved the task force proposal and that membership and staffing is in place.  The task force will generate proposals for sharing staffing and increasing communication between the Faculty Senate, Staff Council, and Student Government and chartered committees.  Work of the task force should be complete by May 2006.

3.   Brody Award.  The Faculty received information about the Brody Awards via email.  Nominations are due in the Faculty Senate office February 27th.  President LeBlond asked Councilors to encourage their colleagues to respond.

4.   Committee Recruitment. Faculty received email alerts and a hard copy mailing requesting committee volunteer forms be completed and returned to the Faculty Senate office by February 28th.  President LeBlond encouraged all Council members to volunteer for at least one committee in order to increase communication between the Council and committees.

5.   Faculty Senate Elections. The nomination period is closed. Nominees are still needed in the Colleges of Law and Public Health.  Professor Snetselaar is attempting to recruit more nominees.  The Faculty Senate electronic election period is March 3-13.

6.   Request for Full-Time Staffing.  The Faculty Senate Leadership requested that Julie Thatcher’s effort be increased from part-time to full-time.  Provost Hogan approved the request effective immediately with the proviso that she support all Faculty Senate committees, and joint task forces between the Provost’s and President’s Offices and the Faculty Senate.

7.   Iowa Public Television Volunteers. President LeBlond asked if more Councilors were willing to participate in the Iowa Public Television fundraising festival along with members of Staff Council. This event is Saturday March 4, 12:30-6:30 in Des Moines.

8.   CIC Faculty Leadership Program.  The Provost’s Office is soliciting three nominations of faculty to participate in this program.  The UI typically sends five faculty members on three 4-day trips to various CIC campuses.  The program generally attracts faculty interested in future administrative roles.  Faculty may self-nominate or nominate colleagues directly to the Provost’s Office.  

   B.   Coalition on Intercollegiate Athletics Meeting, Claibourne Dungy

Professor Dungy thanked the Council for allowing him to represent The UI at the December 1-2, 2005 meeting of the Coalition on Intercollegiate Athletics (COIA) at Washington State University.  After providing a brief history of COIA’s inception, Professor Dungy shared the current membership and highlighted several of the 8 topics discussed at great length by COIA meeting participants.  These discussions resulted in a resolution and recommendations that were forwarded and used by university presidents at a January NCAA meeting. 

President LeBlond asked Councilors to review the COIA report thoroughly and forward ideas and reactions directly to Professor Dungy.  COIA requested that the 52 participating Faculty Senates approve the report by the end of the semester.  Professor Dungy’s presentation may be viewed at, and the COIA recommendations are available at 

IV.  Unfinished Business

   A.   Program Reviews, Richard LeBlond

The draft of the University-Wide Policy on Review of Academic Programs,, has been forwarded for review to the Faculty Policies & Compensation Committee chaired by Steve Collins.  Currently the Board of Regents office is aware the Provost’s Office is reviewing this document with the Faculty Senate. Professor Tachau pointed out that the UI Criteria for Institutional Enhancements and Reductions ( that Councilors were asked to review, was not in synch with the Operations Manual.  However, it is referred to in the OM.  The Faculty Policies & Compensation Committee will determine whether the Program Review document is in line with language in the Operations Manual.

   B.   Civility Policy, Richard LeBlond

President LeBlond shared a brief history of this policy,, as a result of last year’s report on civility from the Ombudsperson’s Office.  A group of faculty looked at this policy.  President LeBlond compiled a draft policy by utilizing language currently used in other University manuals.  Much of the language is duplicative, but this draft was intended to serve as a framework.

This report will be sent to the Faculty Policies & Compensation Committee, but first the Council was asked to offer comments and concerns that might benefit the Faculty Policies & Compensation Committee.  Professor Tachau objected to the use of the term “ad hominem” as being unwise and inapplicable.  Professor Kurtz shared his concerns that the current language was not tailored to adequately represent the relationship between faculty and students.  President LeBlond reiterated that the intent of the policy was to address personal attacks rather than the general tone of instruction.  Professor Catney suggested including statements that offered faculty language to disrupt heated negative classroom interactions.  Professor Kurtz asked the Faculty Policies & Compensation Committee to consider how downgrading students, as punishment would be allowed in the policy.  Professor Tachau pointed out that the language used in the draft was that of “zero tolerance” and such language was not applicable in all situations.  President LeBlond requested that Councilors forward additional comments directly to Steve Collins.

   C.   Honorary Degree Policy, Richard LeBlond

President LeBlond will meet with John Scott to continue working on this policy.  He hopes to have a formalized policy by the end of the year.

V.     New Business

   A.  Review of Violence Policy, Richard LeBlond

The Dispute Resolution Committee is looking for a Faculty Councilor to serve on their committee for the purpose of reviewing the violence policy.  The committee meets Wednesday afternoons.  President LeBlond nominated Professor Boyle who said she would consider it.

   B.  Sick Leave Policy and Committee Service, Richard LeBlond and Susan Johnson

President LeBlond offered some background on this topic.  The State Code and Operations Manual state that sick leave must be reported.  This policy has been in effect for many years.  Twelve-month faculty report sick leave monthly and 9-month faculty, up until January, reported sick leave to their DEO at the end of each semester.  The change in question was not in the overall policy, and focused on how 9-month faculty members report their sick leave.  Professor Kadera, by email to President LeBlond, raised concerns regarding this change.  Faculty who miss committee meetings due to illness were explicitly instructed to report such absences.  This seemed to penalize those active in service, whereas those without service commitments would not have to report that sick time.  Associate Provost Johnson pointed out that missing a committee meeting does not necessarily constitute sick time.  Being sick constitutes sick time, and those who are unable to come to work due to illness should report such illness regardless of the activity missed.  Richard Saunders shared that under this new reporting method, faculty recorded 69 instances of absence do to illness in January, a far shorter work month than other months.  This rate was three times more than all reported absences for the entire last year.  Mr. Saunders reasoned that reporting twice annually allowed many absences to slip through the cracks.  This new system was designed for faculty accountability and likewise relieved the burden from DEOs to report for their departments.

Several issues were raised involving the definition of a faculty workday, considering flexibility and the missions of teaching, research, and service.  Many 9-month faculty members do not work a traditional 8:00-5:00 work day and are obligated to make up any missed instruction time due to illness.  Similarly, many faculty work more than a 40-hour work week.  Therefore, sick time occurring during a traditional workday is often made up in the evenings or on the weekends.  Likewise, when faculty are too ill to teach, yet remain well enough to perform research, it seemed questionable whether that time be reported as sick time, as the work was being completed at home.  Professor Kurtz pointed out that the State Code did not consider the flexibility that faculty are afforded in fulfilling their tri-part mission. Professor Dominguez pointed out that overtime hours are not recorded and many faculty members make up their own sick time with those hours.  Professor Bulechek was concerned that there is no incentive to cancel classes due to illness, as colleges do not offer substitute teachers and some departments do not assist with posting the cancellation.  Therefore, many faculty members come in to teach in spite of illness. AP Johnson pointed out that many P&S staff worked far more than 40 hours per week, yet still reported sick time if taken during the 8:00-5:00 work day.  Professor Dominguez shared that many of her colleagues were unsettled by the “clericalization” of faculty and suggested responding to the new reporting guidelines by working only 8:00-5:00 and letting unfinished work remain unfinished.  Professor Cohen shared that 12-month faculty report sick time when they are too sick to report to campus regardless of scholarly activities occurring at home.  Professor Ringen pointed out that faculty are not compensated based on the hours they work, rather on their productivity. Professor McGuire noted that faculty need education on this policy, as it seems to be taken out of context.  Professor Dungy shared his experience in reporting sick leave with this method and assured Councilors that it is not as onerous as some may think. 

MOTION: Professor Kurtz moved to refer this policy to the FRIC committee for review, Professor Tachau 2nd.  Vote: 4 in favor, 14 opposed. Motion failed.

MOTION: Professor Kurtz moved that the Faculty Council recommend to the Faculty Senate that these guidelines be repealed and we revert to practice prior to implementation of these guidelines, Professor Tachau 2nd.  Vote: 13 in favor, 5 opposed.  Motion carried.

VI.  From the floor

There was no business from the floor.

VII.   Announcements

  1. Open Forum with Board of Regents, IMU 2nd floor Ballroom, March 2, 5:30-7:00.
  2. Faculty Senate, March 7, Tippie Auditorium, W151 PBB
  3. Legislative Receptions, 4th Saturday of each month

VIII.  Executive Session

Professor Kurtz motioned to move the meeting into executive session, Professor Dominguez seconded.  Motion carried unanimously and all but the Faculty Councilors left the meeting.

IX.  Adjournment

President LeBlond adjourned the meeting at 5:30.