Joint Faculty Council Constitution

DRAFT, 1993

JOINT COMMITTEE ON FACULTY GOVERNANCE

 

Introduction

 

This draft constitution has been developed by the Joint Committee on Faculty Governance in accordance with the principles presented in the Committee's Summit I document.

 

In its Summit I document the Joint Committee discussed general principles of faculty governance and how those principles apply to Pace University. This document specifies a faculty governance structure for the university. In formulating this structure the Joint Committee has built on the strengths of the current system while providing for a more efficient mode of communication and decision making.

 

An apparent casualty of Summit I was school or college governance. This was certainly not the intention of the Joint Committee. This difficulty could have been avoided if Summit I had been limited to consideration of faculty governance on the university-wide level and discussion of school or college governance delayed until it could be discussed in the context of an agreed upon faculty governance structure.

 

Now that the Joint Committee's detailed plan for an efficient and effective faculty governance structure has been developed, there appears to be no obstacle to schools and colleges organizing themselves so as to most effectively meet the challenges of the future. The Joint Committee does not prescribe how the faculty and deans of the schools and colleges should approach the issue of governance provided that any school or college governance structure conforms to the principles of faculty governance as described by this document (in particular see section 10 c).


 

 

FACULTY GOVERNANCE AT PACE UNIVERSITY

 

Preamble

 

In order to ensure meaningful faculty participation in decisions at Pace University and to establish an efficient vehicle for communication between the faculty and other components of the University, the faculty promulgates a faculty governance structure which it calls Joint Faculty Councils. The faculty recommends to the Board of Trustees and to the President of Pace University the recognition of the new faculty governance structure which is described in this document.

 

1.  Joint Faculty Councils

 

In recognition of Pace University's history, geography, and culture and, as well, in preparation for the future, the Joint Faculty Councils (JFC) structure will unite the faculty through its joint committee structure. As the sole university-wide faculty legislative and institutional advisory body, JFC will report the results of its deliberations to the President and/or other appropriate bodies or offices as the recommendation of the faculty.

 

2.  Purpose

 

The JFC functions in two areas: 1. As a legislative body in the area of its primary responsibility, academic policy; 2. as a recommending body. Therefore the JFC has the authority to set and implement academic standards and policies (as defined below) and the responsibility to review and make recommendations on institutional standards and policies in cooperation with the University administration.

 

The JFC will initiate, develop, and implement, through timely participation, academic standards and rules, and will participate at all stages with administration and trustees in budget and strategic planning activities of the University.

 

The JFC is the only faculty representative body delegated to share in the decision making of policy and management of the University. Faculty serving on committees formed by administration are deemed to represent the JFC (and hence the faculty) only if they are elected or selected by the JFC.

 

3.  Authority of the Joint Faculty Councils

 

The JFC is the sole legislative body through which the faculty achieves consensus in University-wide issues. It supersedes, in such matters, all campus faculty councils, the University Senate [whose abolition is recommended] , and Schools or Colleges. The JFC is also the mechanism for the Faculty to make recommendations to the President or other appropriate body or office regarding matters outside of its primary area of responsibility.

 

4.   Structure

 

The JFC shall be composed of two discrete (location) faculty councils, one in Pace New York and one in Pace Westchester (the Westchester Faculty Council will encompass the Pleasantville, White Plains, and Graduate Center faculty.) The two councils will have constitutions which in most details will be parallel and will be similar to the constitutions of the present faculty councils (including, in particular, participation by administrators in all unclosed meetings) but with a revised committee system. Recommended committees are ADMISSIONS, CURRICULUM, EXECUTIVE, FACULTY AFFAIRS, STUDENT AFFAIRS, HANDBOOK, GRADUATE, SCHOLASTIC STANDING, GRIEVANCE, and CFPT. (The CFPT will replace the current CDFPT and will consist of 13 faculty; 6 elected by each of the two location faculty councils and one elected by each location faculty council on alternate years. Appeals related to promotion and tenure will be considered only with respect to due process violations and such appeals will be made to the grievance committee of the JFC through the local committees.)

 

Each council and its committees will deliberate separately in its particular location. If the deliberations result in recommendations to another person or entity (e.g., the President, the Board, a School or College ) then the two council's executive committees or like council committees will arrive (via a conference subcommittee drawn from the two location committees) at a single recommendation for the person or entity involved. The conference subcommittees may invite administrators to participate in their meetings when they deem it useful or at the request of administrators. The chairs of the two location councils and of the like committees will be considered, respectively, as co-chairs of the JFC and committees and it is their responsibility to organize the conference subcommittees, cited above, and to arrive at a single recommendation. In principle the single recommendation will be brought to the location councils for consideration. However, if time constraints preclude timely consideration of a matter, the co-chairs will report the conference committee's recommendation to the appropriate person or office and at the same time place the matter on the agendas of the location councils.

 

5.  Primary Powers and Responsibilities

 

Admissions Policy and Procedures, Curriculum, Status of the Faculty, and Academic Policies, Procedures, and Support shall be considered primary responsibilities of the J FC.

 

The location component of the JFC is empowered to deal with local issues such as office and teaching space, campus food service and other amenities - parking, local building and grounds condition - and other issues which may be defined by the JFC during its inaugural year. In order to carry out its responsibilities the JFC must work closely with academic administrators, officers of the University, and students. The JFC will also seek the advice of adjunct faculty and of staff. The JFC acknowledges that the Pace President and Board of Trustees have the authority to reject Faculty decisions. However, it is expected that they would do so only in exceptional circumstances, and in doing so, communicate to the JFC, in writing, their reasons for rejection of Faculty decisions.

 

As vested by the Pace University Board of Trustees, the JFC shall have the responsibility to set policy for:

a. Admission Policy and Procedures including standards, transfer credit, scholarships and awards.

b. Curriculum Policy and Planning for all undergraduate, graduate, corporate, and other programs under the auspices of the University; changes in degree programs or certificates; establishment or elimination of colleges, schools, or departments; reorganization of the general University academic structure.

c. Status of the Faculty including standing, evaluation, selection, appointment, promotion, tenure, in addition to academic freedom, faculty grievance, faculty salary review, revising the Faculty Handbook or the JFC Constitution.

d. Academic Policies, Procedures and Support including methods of instruction , defining institutional academic policy for grading, examinations, attendance, scholastic standards, graduation criteria, honors, appropriations and grants for research, scholarly and creative endeavors, academic technical services, selecting faculty to serve on search committees, blue ribbon panels, and other ad hoc committees or commissions.


 

5.

 

6.  The JFC shall Advise the Administration and the Board of Trustees in all stages of Policy Planning and Decision-making with respect to:

 

a. Establishing University priorities;

b. Formation of policy for the University budget and allocation of funds including salaries, increments, merit raises, benefits, and institutional planning for buildings and grounds maintenance;

c. Formation of policy for University allocation of human resources and allocation of space;

d. Oversight and Assessment of administrators, establishment and dissolution of administrative offices, major changes in administrative structure;

e. Setting the University and academic calendar;

f. Establishment of policies for intercollegiate athletics;

g. Conducting commencement exercises and convocations;

h. Awarding of honorary degrees and other honors;

i. Any matter of interest to the JFC pertaining to the University and its purpose.

 

7.  Membership and Officers

 

The membership of the JFC shall consist of all members of the Pace New York Faculty Council and of the Pace Westchester Faculty Council. The membership of each of the location councils is prescribed by the constitutions of these councils.

 

The Chairpersons of the two location councils will serve as co-chairs of the JFC and will serve in an equal status when the JFC meets as a single body or when the executive committees of the two councils have a joint meeting. The membership of the Executive Committee of the JFC consists of the executive committees of the two councils and in addition a faculty member of the School of Law who has been elected by the law school faculty.


 

 

8.  Meetings

 

The location faculty councils will meet in accordance with their respective constitutions (a prescribed monthly meeting). The JFC Executive Committee will meet monthly during the academic year. Towards the end of each spring semester there will be one meeting of the JFC whose purpose will be to review the year's work and to document the JFC's accomplishments; the meeting location will alternate between Westchester and New York.

 

9.  Amendments

 

Amendments to this document may be made if each of the location councils approves the same amendment in accordance with its constitutional procedure for amendments. The location councils will make no amendments to their individual constitutions that will undermine the integrity of the joint committee system or will counter the governance structure presented in this document.

 

10.       Interaction of JFC with Trustees, Administration, Schools and Colleges, and Students

 

The variety and complexity of the tasks performed at Pace University produce an inescapable interdependence among the major components of the university. The relationship calls for adequate communication among these components.

 

a. Trustees

The JFC will elect representatives to sit on each committee of the Board of Trustees. The representatives will be participating non-voting members of these committees. In turn, members of the Board of Trustees are encouraged to attend meetings of the JFC.

 

b. Administration

As prescribed by the constitutions of the location councils, administrators are encouraged to attend the meetings of the location councils and of the annual meeting of the JFC as non-voting participating members. Also, administrators may participate in the meetings of the conference committees in accord with the principles described in Section 4, Paragraph 2 of this document.

 

c. Schools and Colleges

Initiatives (programs and policies) developed by a School or College or any of its components will be submitted for review and approval to the appropriate committee of the JFC , which will judge them on the basis of university-wide impact with respect to academic standards and financial considerations. Such initiatives are considered to be faculty initiatives if and only if the departments and the Schools or Colleges are organized in line with the principles of faculty governance, as enunciated by this document, that is, with full faculty participation and elected faculty leadership at all levels.

 

d. The School of Law

In accordance with section 7, an elected faculty member from the School of Law will sit on the Executive Committee of the JFC. In addition, representatives of the law faculty are invited to sit on the Benefits subcommittee of the JFC Faculty Affairs Committee. Faculty of the School of law are encouraged to attend meetings of the location councils and of the annual meeting of the JFC as non-voting participating members.