The AAUP Executive Committee met with the Provost and Faculty Senate President Todd Harper yesterday (Wednesday, February, 22) to discuss how the P&T revision process was going. We expressed concerns about issues pertaining to the scope and speed of the process as well as questions pertaining to shared governance.
On the shared governance concerns, the Provost was quite clear that shared governance was a priority in this process and that he was working with deans and chairs to assure that P&T revisions were grounded in the disciplinary wisdom of departments(not college level negotiations).
He also told us that he wants to hear from any faculty member who feels as though shared governance was not being followed in the development of P&T guidelines. According to the provost, Pam Cole is leading small group in Academic Affairs focused on P&T revisions, and faculty with concerns should contact her directly.
Of course he reiterated that the USG PTR requirements were non-negotiable, but all other revisions were to be developed at the departmental level. He has instructed the chairs to work collaboratively with Department P&T committees so that the document sent forward is agreeable to all parties including the chair who has to sign it. Finally, he told us that the College level committees should be building their P&T documents based on what has come forward from the departments. It should not be a stand alone top down document.
Regrettably we were not able to impact the scope or speed of the process; however, Academic Affairs is aware that the May due date we’ve all been asked to meet is very rapid. As such, our chapter leadership suggests that faculty involved in the process focus on getting the most necessary things accomplished clearly and with consensus.
Please use the Provost’s overt support of shared governance in your negotiations with chairs and deans. Please let us know if there are violations of shared governance as delineated by the Provost.
The word the Provost used several times with respect to P&T language, especially with content beyond that USG mandated changes, was complexityand wants to encourage faculty to “embrace” the complexity of these conversations. As chapter leadership, we see this as an invitation for faculty to come to the table ready to advocate for themselves and their own disciplinary expertise.
We will continue the dialogue with the Provost on this issue throughout the P&T development process; we have another meeting scheduled with the President and Provost in May. We remain committed to robust dialogue within the chapter about these issues, so please feel free to use this thread to offer suggestions or contact any of the four of us if you’d like to have a more detailed conversation.
The AAUP Executive