Committee Minutes

Faculty Council 11/08/2010

New York University
Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Human Development
Faculty Council Meeting – November 8, 2010

1.    Welcome – Bill Wesbooks, Chair
Minutes of the meeting of October 18, 2010, were approved.

The plan for this meeting is to discuss the issues being discussed in the standing committees and to identify topics to be summarized at the Senate meeting.

2.    Faculty Affairs Committee – Teboho Moja, Chair

Faculty Work/Faculty Load: There is need for fuller discussion about the faculty work report and recommendations.

[Discussion: Throughout the discussions it is important to recognize that programs and departments vary and specific decisions need to be made at the department level.  That is a shared concern but it is also important to discuss school-wide guidelines for departmental consideration.  There are distinctions among policies, procedures, and rules that can derail these conversations.

What problems are these task forces establishing identifying?  What are the issues to be discussed and debated?  It seems that much of the direction is to quantify faculty work and create consistencies.  The Council wasn’t involved early enough to inform the questions.  The Task Force is framing the discussion in terms of principles.

However the Task Force was formed, Dean Brabeck is aware that there have to be discussions of the full faculty and they will come in the normal way through council, senate, etc.   Faculty is concerned about many issues of transparency in terms of administration.  The onus is on us to be able to discuss all of this as clearly possible and inform both the discussions and the results of those discussions.

Clinical Faculty Guidelines:  There is a need to develop principles to guide the implementation process, to talk broadly with the clinical faculty, and to include what options people will have – who wants a contract now, who doesn’t want a contract.  The deans felt that there was urgency in getting the process going; they felt that there was some discomfort between clinical faculty and their chairs and they would be helped by these principles.  

[Discussion: Beth Weitzman arrived at the FAC meeting with the idea that the guidelines were not whether the guidelines would be implemented with current clinical faculty, but how.   That is not an understanding held by all.  And, actually, the guidelines have not yet been approved by the “university.”

Whether or not the implementation was to be part of the policy, there are questions about whether or not the guidelines apply to people already here.  We need a town hall meeting when the administration describes implementation plans for the clinical faculty.  The question is not what process will be applied; it’s that there was never an agreement about to whom the guidelines would be applied.  This is the method for getting rid of a clinical faculty member.  Now there’s a system in place for review and if they’re deemed wanting they will not be renewed.  

We should have 3 clear statements: do we have an approved set of guidelines  (presumption of approval); do they apply to current faculty; what are the implementation plans?

Changes in Tuition Remission for Children of Faculty:  There was no attention to kids who are currently attending NYU.  Central administration referred faculty to the deans.  How many are we talking about?

3.    School Planning Committee – Fran Stage, Chair

Budget Priorities Ranking:  The Committee is getting to conduct a budget priority survey ranking those things that are funded through discretionary funds.  The Committee is considering some additions:

Increased funding to expand the doctoral program
Interdisciplinary programs/activities
Addition professional staff
Student scholarships for global studies
Enhancing advisement
More support for MA student

4.    Faculty Academic Affairs Committee – Sandra Lang

Rodney Benson described the recommendation of the Doctoral Affairs Committee that there be a shift in procedures regarding the timing of committee appointments, advancement to candidacy, and dissertation proposal review.  This will be placed on the agenda for discussion at a future faculty meeting.

Respectfully Submitted,
Terry Astuto, Faculty Secretary