When your Provost doesn’t even bother to tell you he’s not going to tell you about tenure

The deadline to notify assistant profs about tenure decisions was May 1. That was Saturday, so I imagine most people thought the university would tell them Friday. Nope. No notices went out. I can imagine how stressful this was – to be told you’ll get a tenure letter by May 1, and then not getting an email – not even one announcing a delay. Many nervous emails from faculty to dept heads, from heads to deans, etc.

Today Karen Ford from CAS did a little damage control, in the process discovering Provost Phillips is hoping to get around to tenure decisions soon, maybe:

From: CAS Dean <casdean@uoregon.edu>
Date: May 3, 2021 at 14:53:07 PDT
To:cas-heads@lists.uoregon.educasbudmgr@lists.uoregon.edu
Subject:cas-heads: Promotion Decisions from Office of the Provost

Sent on behalf of Karen J. Ford, Dean for Faculty:

Dear CAS heads and directors/managers.

As you’ve no doubt noticed, promotion decision letters have not yet been sent to candidates from the Provost’s Office.  They are hoping to notify TTF faculty standing for promotions and tenure or going through midterm contract renewal reviews by May 18.  Career faculty candidates should hear about their promotions on June 1.

Please let me know if you have any questions about this, and I apologize for not letting you know about the expected date change sooner.

Karen

Karen J. Ford

Dean for Faculty

Professor of English

Pres Schill & GC Kevin Reed promise not to ask SCOTUS to gut Equal Pay Act at least for now, in response to Senate Resolution

May 2 2021 update:

The resolution that was to be considered by the Senate this Wed had 90 or so faculty and senate co-sponsors. The gist was:

2.1 Therefore be it moved that: The University Senate declares its belief that university professors should not be excluded from the protection of the Equal Pay Act, and in particular that if women professors believe that the policies and procedures followed by any university have resulted in them receiving lower pay for equal work, they should have the right to present their case in a court of law and to challenge policies and procedures that result in inequitable pay. 

2.2 Be it also moved that: The University Senate rejects the suggestion that it is a legitimate “business necessity” to engage in practices with discriminatory results, as the university has argued in this case with respect to retention raises. 

2.3 Be it finally moved that: The University of Oregon Senate asks the University President to direct its counsel not to seek further review, and the senate wants all to know that the University of Oregon Administration’s and its attorney’s efforts to create a legal precedent that would prevent faculty and other professionals from using the Equal Pay Act to sue for redress of discrimination are not done in our name. [Emphasis in original.]

At 8PM Tu, the evening before the 3PM Wed vote, the administration’s GC Kevin Reed sent the Senate the email here, saying:

The core of the resolution seems directed at persuading the university not to pursue further review of the summary judgment decision in the United States Supreme Court. Such persuasion is misplaced, as the university has decided to proceed to trial in this matter and not to seek Supreme Court review at this stage. [emphasis added]

Given that the goal of the motion had been achieved (for now at least) the chief co-sponsors, myself and Beatrice Dohrn (Law), decided to withdraw the motion for now as moot and we explained this to the Senate.

April 23 2021 update: Full 9th Circuit rejects UO Administration’s latest attempt to stop Freyd discrimination suit from going to trial

4/23/2021 update: 

Appealing this to the SCOTUS would seem like a stretch for UO’s lawyers, but they seem to have an unlimited budget for outside attorneys so who knows. Meanwhile the UO Senate will be voting next Wed on a resolution asking our Administration to give up these appeals so as to not further sully UO’s brand, and just let Professor Freyd take her case to trial.

March 15, 2021 update: Prof Freyd gets an easy revise and resubmit as appeals court rejects attempt by UO lawyers Paula Barran, Kevin Reed and Pres Schill to gut the Equal Pay Act

Continue reading

GC Kevin Reed abandons false claim that FERPA and HIPAA kept Ducks from reporting count of athletes w/ Covid

In the Oregonian today, from Daily Emerald reporter Shane Hoffman. A few snippets:

… Data obtained by The Oregonian/OregonLive through a public records request show 91 out of the university’s 520 student-athletes tested positive for COVID-19 between July 17, 2020, and March 2 of this year. According to the university’s latest enrollment numbers, 17.5% of student-athletes have tested positive, compared with 8% of students overall, though student-athletes are required to get tested frequently, while other students are not. …

This is the first time the university has reported this data, previously declining media requests while citing privacy laws such as HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) and FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act).

A New York Times investigation published Dec. 11 reported at least 6,629 coronavirus cases in athletic departments around the country. Nine Pac-12 schools provided complete data, and two — Colorado and Arizona State — contributed “limited” data. Oregon was the only school in the conference to provide no data. Oregon was among 19 schools of the 130 surveyed that did not provide the information.

A New York Times spokeswoman told The Oregonian/OregonLive via email that UO denied requests for data and that the newspaper subsequently filed an open records request. The university responded by saying it did not have records about cases in the athletic department, and that any records it did have would be exempt due to privacy. …

FERPA and HIPAA do prohibit schools from disclosing information that could potentially harm or identify individuals, but do not prevent the university from disclosing aggregate numbers to the public.

“I can say confidently that denying access to such data doesn’t serve public interest,” said attorney Gunita Singh, legal fellow with the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press. “FERPA and HIPAA should absolutely not be used to withhold de-identified, aggregate data about the toll of the virus, especially at a time like this when we are by no means out of the woods.”

Singh added: “I do think there is a degree of short-sightedness when these laws are overapplied, because it is to everybody’s detriment. The public and the news media have a right to see the data, understand the trends, understand the risks involved with physically heading back to school.”

Duck athletic secrecy aside, UO posts a daily count of student and employee cases here. For employees they even report what buildings they worked in – and from those locations most positive employee tests seem to be athletic department employees. Of course they are presumably tested more frequently than the average schlub.

UO Senate to vote Wed on Canvas, new programs, Admin attempts to gut the Equal Pay Act and Clark Honors College, etc.

Update: Rumor has it that the EPA resolution will come up around 4:15.

3-5 PM Wed April 28th 2021, on Zoom here: https://uoregon.zoom.us/j/95815283199

  • Land Acknowledgment
  • Intro Remarks: Senate President Elliot Berkman and Senate Vice President Spike Gildea
  • ASUO updates; Ella Meloy

Approval of the Minutes

  • April 7, 2021

State of the University

  • Provost Patrick Phillips

New Business

Open Discussion

  • OICRC update; Nicole Commissiong

Adjournment

5:00 P.M.

Mullens and Schill give coaches permanent raises to make up for temporary Covid cuts

4/25/2021: When it comes to the Duck athletic budget nothing surprises me, certainly not the news that the 10% paycuts for coaches that President Schill announced last year were a sham.

James Crepea has the story in the Oregonian:

All of Oregon’s returning assistant football coaches received new contracts this offseason.

Offensive coordinator Joe Moorhead, receivers coach Bryan McClendon and cornerbacks coach Rod Chance all signed new deals this winter, according to documents released to The Oregonian/OregonLive in response to a public records request.

Moorhead, who signed a two-year contract for $900,000 last year and was due to earn $1 million this year, is now signed through Jan. 2023 for $1.15 million annually.

McClendon, who was hired in April 2020 to a three-year contract for a prorated $360,000 last year and $400,000 each of the next two years, remains signed through Jan. 2023 and will now earn $515,000 annually.

Chance, who was under contract through Jan. 2022 for $350,000 per year, was extended through Jan. 2023 for $385,000 annually.

4/8/2021: How President Schill scammed the academic budget out of $1.2M for football

Leo Baudhuin has a great story in the Emerald on the long history of our students’ efforts to end their $1.7M payment to Duck Athletics for “free” football and basketball tickets, here.

They finally succeeded this year. So President Schill turned around and gave the athletic department another $1.2M from licensing revenue – money that has historically been split 50/50 between the athletic and academic budgets:

Instead of replacing the ASUO agreement with a similar mandatory fee, Schill proposed a plan to provide students with 5,000 season tickets for a discounted fee of $100 — a price consistent with that of a “Pac-12 Package” for football under the most recent ASUO and athletics agreement. Schill said he will subsidize the agreement by paying athletics $1.2 million out of UO’s licensing revenue.

OR Treasury catches Rob Mullens raiding Knight Arena bond reserve fund, makes him pay it back

4/24/2021 update:

When I first wrote about this earlier this month a reader emailed me wondering if UO had notified the investors holding the Knight Arena bonds that UO VPFA Jamie Moffitt had loaned out the reserve fund. It turns out that she hadn’t even told the Oregon State Treasurer. So I did.

Today I got the email below from the Oregon Treasury Dept. They had a talk with UO’s finance people, Mullens had to pay the money back with interest, and Treasury is going to keep an eye on UO’s auditor, who seems to have missed this impropriety and who knows how many other ones:

On Apr 24, 2021, at 11:53 AM, … @ost.state.or.us> wrote:

Mr. Harbaugh,

We appreciate your bringing the issue related to the Arena Reserve Fund to our attention.  We likewise alerted University Finance staff to the requirements associated with the use of the Arena Reserve Funds and specifically that amounts credited to the Arena Reserve are to be used only to pay Arena Bond debt service.  Treasury staff met with University Finance and Athletics staff this week to review Arena Reserve Fund conditions and constraints. We have confirmed that moneys have been transferred back to the Arena Reserve Fund, including applicable interest earnings, to bring the Fund in alignment with the Bond issuance requirements.  University staff have assured us that they are taking necessary steps and putting processes in place, including working with the University internal auditor, to ensure that such a mistake does not occur in the future. Treasury staff will also institute a periodic certification process to validate that the Arena Reserve Fund is being maintained in accordance with the 2008 General Obligation Bond requirements.

Again, we do appreciate your bringing this matter to our attention. Please contact me if you have any questions.

Best regards, …

4/07/2021: Ducks raid Knight Arena Bond Reserve Fund for coaches pay:

Back in 2007 or so when the state agreed to let UO sell $235M in bonds for the Knight Arena – ultimately guaranteed by future UO tuition revenue and the full faith and credit of the university – they insisted the athletic department set aside $1 of every ticket over $8 for an emergency reserve fund in case ticket revenue and Uncle Phil’s Legacy Fund couldn’t cover the deficit. The prediction was that this would build to $7M by 2019, but ticket sales have been slow and it is actually only $5.8M.

Now President Schill has let our VPFA lend it all to Duck Athletics at 0% interest, so they can keep paying the coaches:

Full agreement here.

The money is of course fungible, and will allow the Ducks to keep paying the bloated salaries of their coaches, despite the language in their contracts making clear that UO does not have to raid the rest of the budget for them. E.g.:

Current UO Public records requests

Full log here: https://publicrecords.uoregon.edu/requests

Request DateTitleRequesterStatus
04/08/2021InvoicesHouston, HenryAwaiting Payment from Requester
04/06/2021RFPMead, MaxRecords Exempt From Disclosure
04/05/2021ContractHernandez, LuisRecords Provided
04/05/2021ContractHernandez, LuisRecords Provided
04/05/2021ContractsYoung, CarrieAwaiting Payment from Requester
04/02/2021Financial RecordsHarbaugh, BillAwaiting Payment from Requester
04/01/2021CorrespondenceLibit, DanielAwaiting Payment from Requester
04/01/2021ContractsCrepea, JamesRequesting/Reviewing Records
04/01/2021ContractCrepea, JamesNo Responsive Records
04/01/2021ContractCrepea, JamesRecords Provided
03/31/2021RFPGermondo, DonRecords Exempt From Disclosure
03/30/2021RFPs, contractLavorato, AlexRecords Provided
03/29/2021Student directory informationSewell, KaylaAwaiting Payment from Requester
03/29/2021RFP, scoresheetCook, LindseyRequesting/Reviewing Records
03/29/2021RFP, scoresheetDwiggins, RachelRecords Exempt From Disclosure
03/29/2021Financial InformationHurley, ReidNo Responsive Records
03/26/2021Manuals and ContractCassidy, DanaRecords Provided
03/25/2021Student directory informationReidenbach, DanielleAwaiting Payment from Requester
03/25/2021ContractHendrix, JasonRecords Provided
03/24/2021ProposalsHouston, HenryRecords Provided
03/22/2021CorrespondenceWittry, AndyRecords Provided
03/19/2021ContractsDianno, JakeAwaiting Payment from Requester
03/19/2021CorrespondenceWittry, AndyRecords Provided
03/19/2021CorrespondenceWittry, AndyRecords Provided
03/16/2021RFPTran, TyRecords Provided
03/16/2021RFPPritchard, NickRecords Exempt From Disclosure
03/15/2021ContractAlger, TysonNo Responsive Records
03/15/2021ContractsCrepea, JamesRecords Provided
03/12/2021ContractSabes, AdamRecords Provided
03/12/2021ContractThorburn, RyanRecords Provided
03/12/2021RFPJennison, CodieRecords Exempt From Disclosure
03/11/2021RFPCarroll, NatashaRecords Exempt From Disclosure
03/10/2021RecordsTabrizian, ArdeshirAwaiting Payment from Requester
03/10/2021ReportTabrizian, ArdeshirAwaiting Payment from Requester
03/10/2021RecordsTabrizian, ArdeshirRecords Provided
03/09/2021Student dataHoffman, ShaneRecords Provided
03/09/2021ContractCatlin, SteveRecords Provided
03/09/2021Financial InformationWashburn, LoganRecords Provided
03/08/2021Financial InformationKish, MatthewRecords Provided
03/08/2021ContractBaudhuin, LeoNo Responsive Records
Request DateTitleRequesterStatus
03/05/2021CorrespondenceWittry, AndyNo Responsive Records
03/05/2021Student directory informationMullen, LequanAwaiting Payment from Requester
03/01/2021ContractsBaudhuin, LeoRecords Provided
02/26/2021Financial InformationWilson, ClareRecords Provided
02/25/2021ContractsThorburn, RyanRecords Provided
02/25/2021ContractWade, KevinRecords Provided
02/25/2021ContractWade, KevinRecords Provided
02/25/2021ContractBlutstein, AllenRecords Provided
02/24/2021ContractsWade, KevinRecords Provided
02/24/2021ContractsCrepea, JamesRecords Provided
02/24/2021ContractCrepea, JamesRecords Provided
02/23/2021ContractThorburn, RyanRecords Exempt From Disclosure
02/23/2021ContractWade, KevinRecords Exempt From Disclosure
02/22/2021ContractWade, KevinRecords Exempt From Disclosure
02/22/2021ContractCrepea, JamesRecords Exempt From Disclosure
02/22/2021Financial InformationForrest, JackRecords Provided
02/22/2021ContractsBaudhuin, LeoRecords Provided
02/19/2021Student directory informationSchatz, AldenAwaiting Payment from Requester
02/17/2021ContractsWade, KevinRecords Provided
02/17/2021RFPMcNeil, KristineRecords Provided
02/17/2021ContractsWade, KevinRecords Provided
02/17/2021Student directory informationAsari, DavidAwaiting Payment from Requester
02/17/2021ContractsWade, KevinRecords Provided
02/15/2021CorrespondenceSinanian, ColeAwaiting Payment from Requester
02/15/2021CorrespondenceSinanian, ColeAwaiting Payment from Requester
02/15/2021CorrespondenceSinanian, ColeAwaiting Payment from Requester
02/15/2021Financial InformationLong, AarikRecords Provided
02/12/2021Stale dated checksMinotti, AnthonyRecords Provided
02/12/2021RecordsAyele, WIlliamNo Responsive Records
02/12/2021ContractLibit, DanielRecords Provided
02/11/2021Financial InformationEngland, MichelleAwaiting Payment from Requester
02/11/2021ContractShaffer, RobertRecords Provided
02/10/2021RecordsMann, JoannaClosed
02/10/2021Financial InformationWittry, AndyRequest Withdrawn
02/10/2021Student dataSundholm, AnnaRecords Provided
02/10/2021RecordsMann, JoannaClosed
02/09/2021ContractMann, JoannaRecords Provided
02/08/2021ContractAlger, TysonRecords Provided
02/08/2021ContractAlger, TysonRecords Provided
02/08/2021RFPMcDowell, NancyRecords Exempt From Disclosure

April 7, 2021 Senate Meeting Agenda

April 7, 2021, on zoom here: https://uoregon.zoom.us/j/94175088714

Call to Order

  • Land Acknowledgment; Kirby Brown
  • Intro Remarks; Senate President Elliot Berkman and Senate VP Spike Gildea
  • ASUO updates

Approval of the Minutes

State of the University

  • President Schill

New Business

Notice of Motion

  • Changes to Core Education Council
  • Open Access policy

UO Law still sucking money from CAS, and still lagging in US News rankings

UO’s Law School gives the average student a 50% discount on tuition. The cost of this is now $8M a year. The money comes from UO’s general fund – which is mostly undergrad tuition for College of Arts Sciences students, and state funds:

You’d think that would buy us a pretty respectable law school. Barely. The US News rankings put our law school in a tie for #72. Almost every other UO graduate program, with the notable exception of the Lundquist College of Business, does better, despite the Law school money suck:

UO Econ PhD student less dismal than some on voter suppression effects

From a NYT Op-Ed here:

Kyle Raze, a graduate student in economics at the University of Oregon, studied turnout patterns in the wake of the 2013 Supreme Court ruling in Shelby County v. Holder. The court declared Section 5 of the 1965 Voting Rights Act, which required jurisdictions with a history of discrimination to get preclearance from the Justice Department for any change in election law, unconstitutional. Shelby opened the door to the enactment of voter suppression measures.

Raze, in his February 2021 paper, “Voting Rights and the Resilience of Black Turnout,” writes that

Despite well-founded fears to the contrary, the Shelby decision does not appear to have widened the turnout gap between Black and White voters in previously covered states.

Instead, Raze found

an accumulating body of evidence that suggests that voters mobilize in response to increases in the cost of voting when those increases are perceived as threats to the franchise.

Dethroned OSU Pres F. King Alexander goes Prince Harry rogue, spills dirt on secret Board meetings

Jack Stripling has the report in the Chronicle, here. These were LSU Board meetings, presumably he’ll get around to trashing OSU soon. Here’s hoping he kept screenshots of those secret NCAA portal communications. Those will be crucial to making sure the other big-time college sports presidents help him find his next job running SHEEO or something.

OSU board doesn’t have the stones to fire F. King Alexander for cause, pays him ~$700K to “resign”

3/23/2021 updates on twitter:

Oregon State to buy out F. King Alexander for ~0.7 Gottfredsons, from “private funds”. Both sides to release all claims. No word on WittKiefer refund, no apparent recognition from Board that they got rolled and failed at due diligence.

Heartfelt remarks from Trustee & former BB player Lamar Hurd on corruption in big-time college sports.

Other board members now saying how they share others pain, "may have been too cold" during public testimony.

Trustee Steve Clark wants to work on an "engagement strategy". Nothing yet on a transparent hiring policy.

Whoops, he's not a trustee, just the OSU PR flack. Sorry, rookie mistake.

Yup, now he's telling the board to be careful when they talk to the press.

Pres F. King Alexander now saying "it's all about the students" (and the $700K buyout he must have demanded). Board puts him on admin leave until April 1, with pay.

Board will empower Provost Ed Feser until Interim Pres is appointed. (Close call for @JonBoeckenstedt and @waynetinkle). Board Exec will meet in public tomorrow to consider process for appointment of interim Pres.

Trustees won't admit they blew it with secretive Alexander hiring process, but are promising transparency for interim Pres appointment process.

OSU Board Chair closes meeting with heartfelt thanks to UO Emerald alum & USAToday reporter @kennyjacoby for tirelessly pursuing the public records that led them to realize WittKiefer had tricked them, and Alexander needed to be fired.

Originally tweeted by UO Matters (@uomatters) on 03/23/2021.

3/22/2021: LSU Board tells OSU Board F. King Alexander is a liar:

Just in time for their 8:30 AM meeting Tu. I predict they pay him 0.5 Gottfredsons to leave. Maybe they’ll even ask WittKiefer’s Zachary Smith for their money back. Full letter here.

Alexander’s contract with OSU is here.

OSU Trustees will meet Tu, offer Pres F. King Alexander’s job to Wayne Tinkle

I assume that’s what this Oregonian news report says, I didn’t read it all: https://www.oregonlive.com/education/2021/03/oregon-state-university-trustees-call-special-meeting-tuesday-to-again-consider-fate-of-f-king-alexander-as-osu-president.html

8:30 AM Tu, https://leadership.oregonstate.edu/trustees/meetings/board-meeting-03232021

And their Exec committee has a followup meeting 8AM Wed: https://leadership.oregonstate.edu/sites/leadership.oregonstate.edu/files/210319_public_meetings_notice.pdf