Faculty Senate discussed sick leave, senate fellow and department chair review at Wednesday’s meeting, Sept. 28. The Senators also noted a few positions around campus have gone vacant, including the assistant vice president for Academic services.
Ron Brown, assistant vice president for Academic Services is stepping down from his position. This position is now available and applications are opening in October but there is still no confirmation on a due date.
The Faculty Senate had created a Faculty Senate Fellow position to give more faculty more opportunities to learn about shared governance and the faculty senate. As of right now, Andrew Marks has been the first and only senate fellow ever.
At this time, the Faculty Senate thinks it is time to have a new senate fellow. Full time faculty will be able to apply for this job in the spring. The theme for next academic school year will be Strengthen Community and applicants will be tasked to assist in developing a plan in line with that theme.
Sick leave reporting is becoming an issue at Texas State. Faculty is not using the sick leave reporting, forcing the university have an audit in every department. The amount of sick leave was so low that auditors started to question the validity of the reporting. Starting Dec. all faculty are encouraged to report sick leave.
Dana Garcia, professor of biology, is worried about staff having to work more just to check if the faculty is present or not. The Faculty Senate agreed that this policy needs revision and that it should meet the letter of the law and the way faculty members utilize their sick leave.
Also, the Senate Observers of Chair Summative Review is happening soon. The Faculty Senate chose different senators to represent the senate in the process. The Faculty Senate as well as the college dean are tasked to find the external observer.
Lastly, the senators talked about the faculty concerns report. The Faculty Senate is working on making it easier for faculty to reach out to them and ask for requests or talk about concerns. The senators want this report to be welcoming but also encourage faculty to take action without them if they have an idea to solving a problem or issue. This was also discussed at last week’s meeting.
As of right now the senate is debating what features this report will have, however the senate has agreed the faculty will have to log in and the report will include several questions.