University of North Florida
Board of Trustees
Educational Policy Committee
March 16, 2006
University Center at 12:30 p.m.
Committee members present
Ms. Toni Crawford, Mr. Wilfredo Gonzalez, Ms. Ann Hicks, Ms. Joan Newton, Dr. Judith Solano
Committee members absent
Mr. Luther Coggin
Item 1 Call to Order
Chair Hicks called the meeting to order.
Item 2 Approval of the Minutes
Chair Hicks asked for a motion to approve the minutes. The motion was offered, seconded and carried unanimously.
Item 3 Open Comments
Chair Hicks presented the opportunity for open comments.
Dr. Bob Vergenz, UNF professor in the Department of Physics, expressed concerns regarding the repeal of the Religious Observances Regulation. He stated that his concern was with the level of authority governing this regulation. He felt that repealing this regulation and making it into a policy made a statement in and of itself. Withdrawal of this Board’s oversight would place jurisdiction at a lower level and would send the University in the wrong direction.
Chair Hicks asked if the Religious Observances Regulation appeared elsewhere, other than regulation format. Vice President Serwatka stated that there were references to religious observances in the Student Handbook, Student Conduct Code and the Faculty Handbook.
Associate General Counsel, Mr. Marc Snow, stated that Florida Statute indicated that religious observances should appear in “policy” format, as opposed to “regulation” format.
President Delaney asked about the consequence of leaving religious observances in “regulation” format. Mr. Snow stated that there was no consequence and this would only require a modification of language and minor updates.
President Delaney asked that the Religious Observances Regulation be pulled from the repeal list and presented to the Educational Policy Committee for review at a later meeting.
Item 4 Tenure and Promotion
Provost Workman stated that the Board had responsibility for approving recommendations for tenure of faculty. This process affected the quality and shape of the institution and the community.
Provost Workman stated that these recommendations reflected a careful series of reviews. There were a few cases that emerged from the process with negative recommendations. This confirms the integrity and rigor of the process. The candidates being presented for consideration have the strong support of the entire University community and are ready for the endorsement by the Educational Policy Committee.
Trustee Gonzalez asked if there was information available on the diversity of these candidates. Mr. Marc Snow stated that the information included in the meeting materials was a biographical summary and did not highlight diversity.
Provost Workman stated that the recruiting and hiring process embraced diversity – the promotion and tenure process rewarded excellence.
Chair Hicks asked for a motion to approve the tenure nominations. This motion was offered, seconded and unanimously approved.
Item 5 Newly Proposed Regulations and Policy
Vice President Serwatka stated that the committee was being presented with two regulations and one policy – Equal Opportunity and Diversity Regulation, Sexual Harassment Regulation, and Amorous or Sexual Relationship Policy.
Item 5A Equal Opportunity and Diversity Regulation
Vice President Serwatka stated that the Equal Opportunity and Diversity Regulation was updated to better fit recently developing case law, emphasizing court rulings and movements across the United States in equal opportunity areas.
Chair Hicks asked for a motion to approve the Equal Opportunity and Diversity Regulation. This motion was offered, seconded and unanimously approved.
Item 5B Sexual Harassment Regulation
Vice President Serwatka stated that this regulation was updated to reflect the United States Supreme Court’s ruling that employers must establish appropriate reporting procedures for the timely reporting of sexually harassing behavior. The update also included examples of types of conduct that constitute sexual harassment and further, examples of conduct that do not constitute sexual harassment.
Vice President Serwatka stated that a training program was being developed to educate departmental chairs and administrators on reporting mechanisms and would be implemented after Summer 2006.
Chair Hicks asked for a motion to approve the Sexual Harassment Regulation. This motion was offered, seconded and unanimously approved.
Item 5C Amorous or Sexual Relationship Policy
Vice President Serwatka stated that this policy was being presented to the committee for review and information only. This policy was in place primarily for individuals who had a direct reporting relationship, or relationships which directly affected educational performance or employment.
This item was for review only. No further action was required.
Item 6 Regulation Repeals
Vice President Serwatka stated that the Board had a responsibility to approve the repeal and/or addition of all regulations. The purpose of this item was to repeal old regulations discussed in items 4A, 4B and 4C. There were also several other regulations (included in the meeting materials) that were either out of date or covered in other places and/or not required to appear in regulation format.
Vice President Serwatka stated that the Board had recently approved the Human Resources Personnel Program and Parking and Traffic Regulations – both of which had gone through a similar repeal process.
Chair Hicks asked if the regulations listed for repeal appeared elsewhere. Vice President Serwatka stated that these appeared in the Student Handbook, the Student Conduct Code and the Faculty Handbook.
Chair Hicks acknowledged the prior public comment and asked that the Religious Observances Regulation be removed from consideration from the repeal process.
Chair Hicks asked for a motion to approve the regulation repeal. This motion was offered, seconded and unanimously approved.
Item 7 Cost of UNF’s Role in Realizing Blue Print for Prosperity Projections
President Delaney stated that one objective of the Blue Print for Prosperity (BPFP) was to increase the baccalaureate degreed population of Jacksonville from 21% to 30%. This item addressed UNF’s cost of meeting that objective.
President Delaney stated that UNF was currently redefining its image to reflect a quality education. The BPFP’s objective to escalate post-secondary degrees might negatively affect UNF’s goal. He asked Vice President Serwatka to discuss the projections for this objective.
Vice President Serwatka presented the committee with a hand out that included a rough draft of the preliminary estimates. He stated that in order for the criteria to be met, and if UNF accepted 100 percent of the burden, the University would need to produce 66,000 additional degrees – this would cost the University about $2.7 billion.
Chair Hicks asked if there was a conduit for feed-back to BPFP. President Delaney stated that the Chamber of Commerce and Mayor Peyton were both presented with this data and were aware that this program would compromise the current mission defined for UNF.
This item was provided for discussion only. No further action was required.
Item 8 Adjournment
Chair Hicks stated that the agenda had been sufficiently covered and this meeting was adjourned.