Academic Senate

Faculty to Faculty December 2015

Message from the ASCSU Chair
Steven Filling (Stanislaus)

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This Month's Issue
Front Page
Message from the ASCSU Chair
Report of the Faculty Trustee
Reports from Standing Committees

Academic Affairs
Academic Preparation &
   Education Programs
Faculty Affairs
Fiscal and Governmental

Capitol Watch
The Chancellor's General Education Advisory Committee (GEAC)
The California State University Emeriti and Retired Faculty Association (CSUERFA)
Senator Spotlight
Resolution Summaries
I was privileged to represent the Academic Senate CSU (ASCSU) at the CSU Northridge Celebration of the life of Shane Frehlich on October 30, 2015.  It was a moving and appropriate tribute to our colleague, and his family, friends and campus community expressed their appreciation for our support. In lieu of flowers, Shane’s family suggested that donations be made to an education fund for Shane’s three children. If you are able to contribute to the fund, you may do so at
Sustainable Financial Model Task Force Draft Report
Thanks to all for the thoughtful comments on the Sustainable Financial Model Task Force draft report.  The task force had two additional teleconferences since our last plenary and the report has been revised.  You will find the current version of the draft report in the ASCSU November 15 Shared Materials folder at
. The draft report was pulled from the Board of Trustees Agenda this month to enable further consultation and revision.

Ethnic Studies Task Force Draft Report
Thanks to all for the thoughtful comments on the draft report.  The Ethnic Studies Task Force is in the process of reviewing comments and editing the document.  We look forward to the revised report.

Intersegmental Council of Academic Senates (ICAS)
ICAS met on September 25, 2015.  Discussion items included a report from the California Open Educational Resources Council, the Statway developmental math program, the CCC BA pilot programs, the UC Transfer Preparation Pathways project and SB 1440 Implementation.  A revised draft statement of Natural Sciences Competencies was also presented.  You may find the statement in the dropbox folder linked above.

Academic Technology Steering Committee (ATSC)
ATSC discussed the CMS implementation of financial systems (largely complete), HR systems (in process) and student systems (in process).  As you’ll hear from Vice Chancellors Lamb and Relyea, we are in the process of shifting Human Resources (HR) systems to a combined model across all campuses.  ATSC will continue to advise on student systems and the prospect of combining those systems across the campuses.  There was an extended discussion of who the Common Management Systems (CMS) serve.

Academic Council
As you’re aware, Chancellor White has chosen to integrate the Divisions of Academic Affairs and Student Affairs under EVC Blanchard.  In pursuit of that integration, the initial joint meeting of the Academic Council [the council of campus provosts] and the Student Affairs Council took place in late September.  The Council heard reports on a number of topics including the Sustainable Financial Model draft report, plans to shift toward a common HR system, and RSCA funding.  In a change from past practice, the Council held a significant portion of its meeting in Executive Session so I am unable to report on their discussion of strategic direction or thoughts on organizational working structure.
Campus Senate Chairs Council
The Campus Senate Chairs met in October.  CSULB Chair and ASCSU Senator Soni was elected as convener of the group.  As at other meetings, a prominent topic of discussion was the Sustainable Financial Model draft report.  Chairs had a thoughtful discussion of the nature of presidential searches and the preferences of the various campuses with respect to search process.  Chairs also shared their campus experiences with implementing policies for award of assigned time for exceptional service to students.  The Chairs Council meets again on December 3, 2015.
California OER Council
The Council is in its final year of funding and continues to work on development, review and use of open educational materials.  The Council will be preparing a mandated report to the Legislature on its activities and that report will be shared with ASCSU.  While the Council’s funding under SB 1052 is ending, the work of the council will continue under AB 798, which was signed by Governor Brown in September 2015.  As you’ll recall, AB 798 was sponsored by CSSA and supported in concept by ASCSU.

ASCSU Budget
Our budget was authorized at the same amount as last year, approximately $965,000.  We will continue to pursue increases to our budget to cover increased cost of travel, negotiated increases to assigned time cost, and enhancing our ability to get our work done.  You will find a summary report on ASCSU finances in the November Shared Materials Dropbox folder; if you have questions or would like further information, please contact me.

Campus Visits
As noted previously, one of our efforts this year is enhancing our joint work with campus senates.  In pursuit of making that happen, I am visiting a number of the campuses.  I want to thank Humboldt Senate Chair Zerbe and Senators Creadon and Eschker, Pomona Senate Chair Eskandari and Senators Neto and Swartz, and San Luis Obispo Senate Chair Laven and Senators Foroohar and LoCascio for their hospitality and continuing efforts on behalf of their campus communities.  We had interesting and thoughtful discussions on a variety of issues, and I continue to be awed by the work of our colleagues.

Shared Governance Issues
I reported in September 2015 that several of our campuses had faced campus climate and governance issues and were actively engaged in collecting data and responding to the challenges they faced.  The Executive Committee has continued to be alert to the situation at those campuses.

Please be aware that shared governance is a “contested field” at the system level as well and requires our active participation and constant vigilance, especially in this time of new leadership and organizational change.  The Executive Committee has had multiple conversations with CO administrators concerning both the timeliness and content of CO responses to ASCSU resolutions.  We have also continued to advocate for what we firmly believe to be the bedrock principles of shared governance:  faculty primacy in matters of the curriculum and in matters of faculty personnel decisions, and a prominent role in conduct of the affairs of the university.  There are several matters before us this week that address our role in governance processes, please give them your thoughtful consideration.

We shifted to ZOOM conferencing software for our interim meetings and for a variety of task force meetings.  We heard no reports of significant difficulties using ZOOM from senators after our October 2015 interim meetings; if you had problems, please let me know so that we can get things resolved.

Thanks for all that you do for our students, our universities and our communities.
As always, please feel free to contact me via email ( or phone (209-988-8256) if you have questions, concerns or suggestions on these or any other issues.