Faculty Senate to close part of meeting, vote on resolution

Cassie Buchman, Administration Editor

The Faculty Senate will invoke the Open Meetings Act to close part of the meeting at 2 p.m. Tuesday in Booth Library.

The first hour of the meeting will be open like any other Faculty Senate meeting, and the second hour will be a closed executive session with only the senate members.

Jemmie Robertson, the faculty senate chair, said this means no observers and no administration.

“We’re going to discuss some private matters,” Robertson said. “We’re conducting this according to the Faculty Senate constitution and the relevant Illinois state law.”

The executive committee agreed to have a closed meeting, Robertson said.

Robertson said the purpose of the closed meeting would be to discuss the faculty’s vote of no confidence in Blair Lord, the vice president for academic affairs.

Meetings are required to be open to the public unless they discuss the appointment, employment, compensation, discipline, performance, or dismissal of specific employees of the public body or legal counsel for the public body, according to the Illinois Open Meetings Act.

This includes hearing about a complaint against an employee of the public body.

“We may discuss it to a certain extend in the open session, but there’s some matters relating to it that we need to discuss privately,” Robertson said.

The executive committee of faculty senate and faculty senator Grant Sterling, a philosophy professor, met with President David Glassman Monday morning about the vote.

They will also discuss some of the details of this meeting in either the open or closed portion of the senate meeting.

Robertson said at some point the executive committee will talk about their meeting with Glassman.

“He definitely received the message and is taking it under advisement,” Robertson said.

During the open part of the meeting, the senate will vote on a resolution from economics professor Teshome Abebe about the evaluation methods used for administrative staff.

The resolution comes as a result of some people feeling the methods currently used are not as transparent and effective as they want them to be.

Robertson said some people could feel this way because this creates a system where administrators evaluate each other.

“I’ll give you a good recommendation if you scratch my back,” Robertson said. “And I’m not trying to imply that there’s been any malfeasance, but there’s a perception for the potential for that.”

Robertson said this resolution is suggesting the administration revise their evaluation practices.

Robertson said they will also vote to adopt or revise the language in the resolution.

“We will discuss that in senate in the open session, but some other legal issues came up that we thought it was best to do behind closed doors in the second session,” Robertson said.

The Faculty Senate will also finalize their decision on who should receive the Luis Clay Mendez Distinguished Service Award.

“It’s a teaching award the Faculty Senate gives annually,” Robertson said.

 

Cassie Buchman can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]