Minutes, Truman State University Chapter of AAUP
March 4, 2005, 4:30 pm
Meetings are open to all university faculty members.
Faculty present: Judi Misale (presiding), Martha Bartter, Marc Becker, Roger
Festa, James Harmon, Diane Johnson, Sylvia Macauley, Steve Reschly, Peter
1) Minutes of February meetings were approved.
2) Peter gave a report on the Faculty Senate Budget Committee, and the lack of
openness of the budget. Peter queried each member of the budget committee about
how the budget divided, what is the size of each piece, who is in charge of each
piece, and what are past and future projected budgets? It is hard to discuss
issues like faculty sabbaticals when we do not know what the budget situation
is. President Dixon has said that she will present the budget to the Senate.
Peter will keep after this from the Faculty Senate end. Keeping the budget in
the dark is not good for anyone. We will wait to see how the budget committee
follows through on these issues before considering scheduling a Town Hall
meeting on this topic.
3) The Science Division plans to ask the VPAA to explain how the DAP will be
used to forward student learning. Social Science may submit a similar resolution
at its March 9 meeting.
4) Judi presented the results of the AAUP University survey. There were a lot of
split attitudes, though there were negative ratings on morale, access to
resources, and salary. Even though morale was low, dedication to the University
and its mission remains high. The survey also reflects significant questions
about the effectiveness of our assessment instruments and methodology. There
were also significant differences between divisions. For example, Social Science
is more distrusting of administrative policies than HPP. Satisfaction with
resources for research, salaries, morale, and assessment instruments, however,
were universally low across the board. We will post the results of the survey to
the AAUP webpage shortly after spring break (http://aaup.truman.edu).
5) Report on President Dixon’s meetings with faculty groups regarding our
divisional structure. She is thinking this would be a good time to rethink the
division structure, but did not indicate which way she might go. Might it help
our budget situation to eliminate a layer of highly paid administrators?
President Dixon observed that conflict can lead to growth. Roger noted the
necessity to have a type of structure that represents faculty concerns to the
administration. However, this reorganization proceeds, we need to stay on top of
this and continue to be actively involved in these discussions. We once again
encouraged structured and public feedback on what has happened in these
6) We discussed at length confusion over what appear to be changes in the timing
of granting tenure, what the rationale behind the charges is, and the lack of
public information about those changes. Those currently eligible for tenure have
been informed that tenure decisions will be made by the Board of Governors in
April of this year, but will not be effective until August of 2006. The phrase
“tantamount to tenure” has been used in conjunction with these changes, but what
does “tantamount to tenure” mean? Exactly what is the status of faculty approved
for tenure but not actually tenured for over a year after approval relative to
the benefits afforded by tenure, justification for dismissal being a primary
[FYI–There are seven reasons why a tenured professor can be fired:
incompetence, insubordination, physical or mental health (inability to do a
job), moral turpitude, public behavior unbecoming of a professor, elimination of
position, and financial exigency.]
7) Chett Breed submitted a memo regarding possible roles of the AAUP in a
reconstituted University Club committee. The main concern is submitting the
necessary paperwork to maintain the Club’s legal status. We are concerned that
this may turn into creeping demands on AAUP limited resources. We are still
hesitant to be the target organization to take responsibility for the Club, but
we again expressed our support for the continued operation of the University
Club and conditions that will ensure that outcome.
8) We send our best thoughts and wishes to David Gruber.
Meeting adjourned at 6:15 p.m.
Respectfully submitted by Marc Becker, Secretary