CAA to table Open Meetings Act vote

Logan Rascke, Managing Editor

The Council on Academic Affairs will vote on two items Thursday: a revision to the CAA bylaws in the Illinois Open Meetings Act section and a revision to the online course policy.

On Nov. 15, The Daily Eastern News reported that a discussion item for CAA was a proposal to change the council’s bylaws regarding the Illinois Open Meetings Act.

The “Procedures of the Council on Academic Affairs” section in CAA’s bylaws states “All meetings shall adhere to the provisions of the Illinois Open Meetings Act.” The proposed revision to these bylaws would replace that with “All meetings shall be scheduled and function in a fashion consistent with the spirit of the Illinois Open Meetings Act.”

During CAA’s Nov. 14 meeting, the council addressed the fact that it was not being compliant with what its bylaws stated regarding the OMA because the council was not posting a physical agenda at its meeting place at least 48 hours in advance and that it was adding items to its agenda and voting on them same-day.

CAA also does not have a public comment portion during its meetings even though the OMA requires public bodies to give members of the public a chance to speak during public meetings.

In order to keep functioning and operating the same way it does while being compliant with its own bylaws, the council said changing the bylaw language would alleviate that issue.

However, Laura McLaughlin, general counsel for the university, said in an email that she would review information and report back to CAA in January. McLaughlin said she asked CAA to table the bylaw change revision until she can have that discussion with the council.

Also on Nov. 15, The Daily Eastern News reported that CAA tabled the online course policy because of a possible conflict in the language of professors’ contracts and language in the online course policy revision.

At the end of the proposal for the item, the line “Finally, a Dean, upon the recommendation of a chairperson, may submit a request to the VPAA office seeking an exception to the certification requirement based on an applicant’s previous successful online teaching experience” would be added if approved, according to the proposal.

CAA has one discussion item: an assessment proposal draft (revised).

CAA will also hear three executive actions during its Thursday meeting:

• Removing HPR 3000 from the catalog

• Removing the course restrictions from HSL 4775

• Revising the HPR course prefix to PUBH for all of the Health Promotion courses (this request is meant to supersede the CAA agenda item 19-114, which was approved on Oct. 31).

Logan Raschke can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected]