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Sept 18, 1996 Minutes

Present: Bible, Bourgeois, Caverly, Deduck-Evans, Ford, Hays, Horne,
Hunter, McGee, Pascoe, Sawey, Simpson, Stimmel, Weller, and Winek.

Guests: Assoc.VP Cassidy; Mike Moore and Ms. Shirley Pilus.


MINUTES OF 9/11/96

The meeting was called to order at 4:06, Chair Bible presiding.


A lengthy debate ensued over the Bonus Plan Proposal of 9/4/96 from
the Committee authorized by the EPC. The proposal deals with a $318,000
faculty pot not yet assigned to performance or merit (the rest of the
$530,000 pool goes to Student Affairs and other areas). Bonuses are
one-time things, not adding to salary base as does merit. Last year a
faculty survey by the Senate indicated that 2/3 of the 40% of faculty who
responded were skeptical about the bonus concept. PPS 7.10 currently
requires three-quarters of faculty increases to go to performance (longevity
with acceptable work) and one-fourth to merit based on each department's (or
dept. chair's) view of the teaching/scholarship/service mix. The PPS does
not allow for bonuses, which the Senate perceived as rewards for doing
something really unusual.

Despite the PPS percentages, the Board has suggested a 2.5%
longevity, 2.5% merit, 1% bonus ratio. The EPC Committee has suggested a
connection with the SWT Strategic Plan. Dr. Cassidy pointed out that the
Plan is written broadly to cover all areas of teaching/scholarship/research.

Caveats were suggested: (1) It is time consuming to go through
two processes (merit and bonus) [Prof. Stimmel et al.]. It was suggested
by Sen. Hays that the winnowing process was already in place for merit in
teaching and research in the President's awards -- and runners-up could be
granted bonuses; (2) Bonuses need to be fewer and bigger in dollars than
the Committee report recommended, if they are going to be of value in
motivation. It was suggested by Senator Deduck-Evans and others that
faculty motivation should not be/could not be shaped in the direction of
criteria of publishing and research, to the detriment of teaching [Dr.
Cassidy noted that motivation in any one direction was not the aim.]; (3)
This smacks of the bean-count, short-run approach of corporate America and
higher ed. outcomes cannot be evaluated in this way, several senators
stated; (4) Dissention within departments will occur and group bonuses
cloud the mixture [Group bonuses, occasionally done in corporations, have
been suggested by the Administration, but have not yet been attempted to
any great extent on campuses across the country. This could be done here
as an experiment, of course]; (5) The bonus pot should be put into the
performance pool to raise abysmal faculty salaries; (6) If 2/3 of the
faculty respondents said they didn't want bonuses, why is the Senate even
considering it? (7) Why not add bonus money to the merit pool? [A sort-of
answer is that the increased base salaries for the next year would wipe out
the bonus pool for the following year.]

At the 9/11/96 meeting "it was agreed to get data on merit
increases in the last cycle. Presumably this gives some idea on how and
why merit is distributed across campus. This is open records info." Dr.
Cassidy supplied this data for us and we will be examining it.

A motion was made and defeated that a committee be appointed to
pursue this. It was noted in the discussion of the motion that the role
of merit and bonus is a part of the ongoing examination of workload and
examining tenured faculty.

A motion was made that the Senate recommend bonuses be forthcoming
in years in which merit is not available. The motion was defeated, 4 to
10. [Last spring the Senate endorsed an examination of bonuses,
particularly to be given in years of no merit increases. Not all senators
were in agreement then, and certainly many of the new senators have
questions that have not been answered.]

At the 9/11/96 meeting the Senate tabled a motion to put bonus
money into the merit pool this year. That motion was reintroduced and
passed 8 to 5, with one abstention.


The Senate examined a copy of the draft revision of PPS 7.05 on
Faculty Workload. The new guidelines are particularly detailed for various
types of teaching assignments and provide some general guidance on other
areas of scholarly and service activities, e.g. grants/research,
professional office, administrative tasks, etc.

A number of questions were asked. For example, is teaching in
North Austin counted as resident credit in figuring workload? [Answer:
VPAA Gratz has been heard to say "yes" on this.] What does #10 mean? To
wit, "House Bill No. 558 of the 67th Legislature (Article III, Section 20c)
requires that if any faculty member in an institution is found in violation
of that institution's workload regulations, the Coordinating Board must
impose a twelve-hour classroom teaching load on all full-time faculty in
the institution." [Answer: Apparently this has never been done. Hmmmm]
[Subsequently, Chair Bible e-mailed Dr. Gratz these and other questions.]

In the past workloads have not been distributed equitably within
or across departments. [Answer: Deans are supposed to compare depts. to
see if similar standards are being used.] It was suggested that, when the
new policy is adopted, deans and chairs be given a workshop on how the new
workload policy operates. This might help with the previous lack of attention
to the PPS.

A motion was made to endorse the workload report in concept, with
our questions, and to review its operation in one year from implementation.
The motion passed with 13 yes votes and one abstention.






Questions have been asked regarding: (1) What authority do deans
and chairs have in overriding a faculty member's grade for a student? (2)
What is the status of faculty-given grades given to disabled students under
the new guidelines? Discussion involving concrete cases of the above areas
ensued, where faculty grades had been overturned or the student was allowed
to retake the final exam, etc. It was noted that the current grade-change
form does not require the faculty person's signature, just that of the
chair and dean.

Senators Hunter, Horne, and Simpson were appointed to a CAD/Senate
Committee which Dr. Gratz has indicated he will appoint to examine this.


The second round of ballots will go out this week for the run-off
election on Piper Professor, Senate liaison for departments without a
senator, and tenure-track (not tenured) representative to University
Council. Ballots are due in departmental ballot boxes by noon, Monday,
September 23rd.

MINUTES OF 9/11/96

The minutes were approved as read.


(1) The Parking and Transportation Committee has been approved:
Profs. R. Mooney, W. Mullins, D. Ronan, W. Davis, C. Frost, and W. Peeler
(Chair). P&T makes policy, such as what lot is designated what color(s).

(2) Prof. Bourgeois noted that he has been told the $72,000
promised for the support of the Honors Program (to reimburse the depts. for
a faculty member teaching an Honors course) has been approved by PC for
Spring 1997.

Meeting adjourned at 6:00 p.m.

Ramona Ford