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Posts tagged as “Governance”

December 15th, UO Constitution Day

December 15 is UO Constitution Day. The UO Constitution lays out the division of responsibilities between the UO President and the UO Faculty, and the procedures for resolving disputes. It was adopted by the UO Faculty Assembly on December 7th 2011, and signed by UO President Richard Lariviere on December 15th.

In honor of the event I am posting a history of the Constitution, from the pseudonymous “Old Man”. As prelude, here is the video from the Assembly meeting. The introduction by Senate President Robert Kyr (Music) is followed by Susan Gary (Law), John Bonine (Law) and Peter Keyes (Architecture) giving excellent explanations of what the constitution means:

Screen Shot 2015-12-14 at 10.13.18 PM

I had no involvement in writing the constitution or its adoption. I would appreciate it if those who did would post comments and corrections.

The History of the UO Constitution

(and the Policy on Policies)

as Recalled by the Old Man­­­

Introduction: This document recounts the loss of the University’s century-old tradition of faculty governance, enshrined in its Charter, and events leading to its recovery through the creation and adoption of the Constitution of the University of Oregon.

University of Oregon Charter

“The President and professors constitute the faculty of the University, and, as such, shall have the immediate government and discipline of it and the students therein…”

Oregon Revised Statutes (ORS) § 352.010; originally section 14 of Law No. 9, Oregon Laws 1876

The Good Old Days

Senate to move on policy adoptions, deletions. Today, 3PM.

In December the Senate was able to postpone the threat to shared governance from Chuck Triplett and Doug Park’s policy power-grab. That policy will come up again at the Trustees meeting in March. Meanwhile John Bonine (Law)has set up an independent process for making sense of the existing policies and determining which…

The UO administration’s secret plan to abolish the UO Senate

1/4/2015: The UO administration’s secret plan to abolish the UO Senate UO Matters operatives have obtained a “confidential” memo from former UO General Counsel Randy Geller to former Interim President Bob Berdahl, recommending that Berdahl abolish the University Senate and prohibit most faculty members from being members of the Faculty Personnel Committee, Faculty…

Senate repudiates Triplett and Park proposal, directs TAIF to investigate potential retaliation against faculty

12/14/2014: Video of the Senate meeting is now available:

12/10/2014 PM update:

Alexandra Wallachly from the Emerald has posted a report on the meeting, here.

On the Board meeting Thursday: I think it’s important to show up at the Board meeting Thursday at 8AM in the Alumni Center. While the board has backed off on the latest power grab, there’s plenty of potential for surprises, those making public comments deserve some supporters, and it’s important that the Board sees that the faculty take what’s been happening very seriously. And I hear someone will be passing out “Save our Senate” buttons.

On the Senate meeting today: I got there at the very end. I’d love it if someone would send me some notes or post them. People tell me it was standing room only, and filled with dismay and outrage over what’s going on with our administration.

The Senate passed an amended version of the motion below, opposing the Triplett/Park power grab. The fact that they did this even after Coltrane announced the Board would withdraw the motion at his suggestion shows how deep the mistrust of Johnson Hall has become. Coltrane and Bronet need to take charge of that snake-pit, decisively and soon.

The Senate then apparently wrote and approved a second motion, directing the Academic Integrity Task Force to investigate the administration’s “alleged plans to establish groundwork for disciplinary procedures” against Philosophy Dept Chair Bonnie Mann and other faculty who refused to issue “fraudulent” grades. Apparently there is also an accusation that a CAS administrator not only gave out grades for courses, but then raised them after students complained. I don’t know if the TAIF will also investigate that.

I’ll post the video when available, and I expect the motions (passed unanimously?) will be on the Senate website soon, here. Meanwhile check Try Bree Nicolello’s twitter reports on the meeting:

12/10/2014 update: (see below for Coltrane response)

Sorry, I’m at the Board committee meetings, no live-blog.

Show up Th at 8AM! UO Board and committee meeting agendas and links for Wed-Fri

12/10/14 PM update:

I encourage faculty to show up at the full Board meeting, 8 AM Thursday, to support the guest speakers supporting faculty governance. I’ll do my best to live-blog it.

12/10/2014: Some erratic live-blog reports below, in the committee agendas. It’s rough, I’ll try and clean it up later.

Highlights from the 12/10/2014 committee meetings:

– Helena Schlegel has been confirmed by the state Senate as new UO student Board Trustee.

– UO’s financial position is still strong, independent auditor gives “clean audit”.

– ASUO and Lamar Wise get the board to amend tuition and fee setting policy.

– Board abandons the Triplett / Park scheme to supersede the UO Constitution and faculty governance – at least for now.

– Board Chair Chuck Lillis presents draft plan for how the board can take pro-active steps help improve UO’s academic excellence- including improvements in administrative efficiency, fundraising, etc.

– Board moves forward on the Sports Product MS program. As much as it pains me to say it, this program probably makes sense for UO. Of course Jim Bean, our former provost and new $250K Sports Product program head, skipped the meeting. Having heard Bean talk many times, I can say that this was probably also a good idea. Two minutes of Bean would have killed its chances forever.

12/9/2014: Some highlights from the committee meeting agendas for Wednesday, and the Board meetings for Thursday-Friday:

– In the committees, starting 10AM Wednesday: A new Duck sports marketing deal, audited financial statements, Jim Bean’s sports product design sinecure, and Coltrane’s presentation on how he’s replacing Senate committees with his own “Administrative Advisory Groups”.

– In the full Board meeting, starting 8AM Thursday: Public comment on the Lillis motion to replace the UO Constitution and the UO Senate’s role in faculty governance with top-down control by the UO Board and its UO President, followed by a vote by the board. Update: The faculty has now been promised that this motion is off the agenda.

The committee meetings are all in room 403 of the Ford Center, and the full Board meeting is in the first floor ballroom. The list of UO Board Trustees is here. It will be interesting to see if Chuck Triplett uses the support staff tables to form a defensive wall between the university community and the board members, as last time.

The “Agenda” links below go to the docket material. However these dockets are not completely trustworthy. At the last meeting Board Secretary Angela Wilhelms did not post the most interesting parts of the dockets, e.g. Chuck Lillis’s power grab on presidential hiring authority. Even the board members didn’t get that until just before they were forced to vote. This secrecy led to confusion and embarrassment for the UO Board, as noted in this InsideHigherEd report by Ry Rivard.

This time I notice that the audited financial statements and the auditor’s report are not posted. The docket says they’ll be distributed at the meeting as hard copies, so no one has a chance to read them in advance and ask tough questions. I’m no CPA, but an auditor might say that this sort of lack of transparency “raises a potential matter of concern”.

Berdahl and Geller claim President controls faculty authority:

Update: Geller’s quotes come from here: Check out the board policies and IMD pdf’s – for example athletics. There are all kinds of things UO and OUS pay no attention to in practice. Except when it’s convenient for them to use them against the faculty. 1/26/2012: This will get…

The acid test

for leadership at UO for the next few years will have two parts: a) Did you fight back when OUS fired Lariviere? b) Can you get over it already, and put in the effort to get UO back on track? Lots of unpaid committee work coming up for the faculty…

Time to put up or shut up

11/4/2011: Last spring the faculty pushed for an honest and thorough review of the performance of our VP for Academic Affairs. Your voice got heard, and the administration is now searching for a replacement: Colleagues I am pleased to announce the internal posting to recruit the Senior Vice Provost for…