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University of North Florida
Board of Trustees
Educational Policy Committee

  • Meeting
February 5, 2003
University Center at 12:00 noon

Members Present

Dr. Edythe Abdullah, Dr. Terry Bowen, Mr. Luther Coggin, Ms. Toni Crawford, Mr. O'Neal Douglas, Mr. Steve Halverson, Ms. Ann Hicks, Mr. Wilfredo Gonzalez, Ms. Wy Kendrick, Dr. Bruce Taylor, Mr. Kevin Twomey.

Members Absent

Mr. Hank Rogers.

Call to Order/Approval of Minutes

Chair Ann Hicks convened the meeting at 12:00 p.m.

Minutes of the Finance and Audit Committee's December 10 meeting and the Educational Policy Committee's December 11 meeting were approved as circulated.

President Kline explained the reason for the joint meeting is due to scheduling issues with some of the members. Today's main topic, Union Requests for Certification, will be discussed in preparation for an upcoming conference call.

President Kline reported that an orientation for new Board members was held on February 3 in the President's Conference Room. Everything went well. Karen Stone will be meeting with the new trustees soon to discuss the Sunshine Law.

Hiring Freeze and the 2003/2004 Budget

Dr. Kline reported the hiring freeze he issued three weeks ago in anticipation of budget cuts proposed by Gov. Bush would be lifted later today. A number of possible responses to the proposed budget cuts were considered; the vice presidents submitted plans for their divisions, taking the projected budget reductions into account for the next fiscal year. Dr. Kline was confident that a workable plan had been developed that would meet the reductions for next year.

The budget was cut $4.1 million. Revenue from the increase in tuition will be used to offset the cut. The actual amount of the cut will come to $2 million. President Kline said he would offer more details on this at a later time. Dr. Kline did include a 2% salary increase in the budgetary plan.

Enrollment Projections

President Kline stated that UNF exceeded the 7,869 FTE target for the 2002/2003 academic year, instead meeting the target enrollment for next year at 8,294 FTE. Because the Governor's proposed budget does not allow for any additional enrollment growth, the University is not planning to seek any additional FTE.

Based on the information provided at the new board member orientation, Trustee Abdullah understood that universities could keep their tuition dollars. She asked if these dollars would allow UNF to add more courses. Dr. Kline responded that because tuition dollars pay only a portion of the cost of a course, they would be insufficient to cover the total instructional cost.

The nursing program was briefly discussed. UNF has 48 slots for nursing training and received 380 applications for these slots this year. Dr. Kline suggested that the Board might benefit from a visit from Pam Chally, Dean of the College of Health to discuss the nursing program and ways to increase the number of nursing slots available for students. Dr. Kline explained that the issue was not the number of applicants to the nursing program but the availability of supervised positions in hospitals for nurses-in-training to complete their clinical experiences. Trustee Gonzalez suggested we might try NAS Jacksonville and the naval hospital. Dr. Kline noted the suggestion. The group decided that Dr. Chally would be invited to give a briefing.

Dr. Kline also spoke on the subject of teachers. The University and the region have a different sort of dilemma with teacher education. Teachers-in-training often change their minds about becoming a teacher after their first two years. Dr. Kline explained that a study was being conducted to determine ways to encourage them to pursue a teaching degree. He will invite Dr. Kasten to discuss the teacher shortage at the March meeting.

Union Requests for Certification

The UFF has asked the Board of Trustees to voluntarily recognize the union as the faculty representative and as representative for other professional employees at UNF as the five SUS collective bargaining agreements expired at midnight on January 7, 2003.

Dr. Campbell and Ms. Sheppard presented the information requested at the last Board meeting on the employee unions and their demographics.Packets were distributed outlining the previous bargaining units on campus: AFSCME (American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees), FNA (Florida Nurses Association), PBA (Police Benevolent Association), and UFF (United Faculty of Florida).

Ms. Shepherd reported on the status of each union in regard to possible future representation of UNF employees. She reported that dues deductions have been suspended for law enforcement officers, whereas, UNF and UFF have reached an agreement to reinstate dues deductions for faculty members who submit new authorization cards.

On January 13, the Truckdrivers, Warehousemen and Helpers, Local Helpers 512 filed a petition with PERC to represent the twenty-one in-unit police officers employed at UNF currently represented through the Police Benevolent Association. The petition included twenty interest cards from in-unit members.

On January 28, the Fraternal Order of Police filed a petition with the PERC to represent 21 in-unit police officers employed at UNF currently represented through the Police Benevolent Association. The petition included ten interest cards from in-unit members. There will be a meeting on campus in the near future. Whoever gets the most votes will be the police union on campus.

AFSCME requested from Human Resources the names and addresses of current in-unit AFSCME employees and is currently distributing signature cards on campus. On December 12, the union filed a Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief against the FBOE seeking a temporary injunction to maintain the status quo of system-wide bargaining until the court can determine the effect of Amendment 11 on the issue of public employer. The request was denied. A motion to dismiss has been filed on grounds that the individual university boards of trustees were not named in the action. A hearing date has been set for February 26. On January 7, AFSCME filed petitions to amend the current certification by substituting the Florida Board of Governors for the Florida Board of Education.

On January 29, UNF received notice from the attorney retained to inspect the UFF signature cards that 62% of the faculty had signed cards indicating that they authorized the UFF to be their exclusive representative for the purposes of collective bargaining.

In light of this finding, President Kline stated that he did not see the purpose of going through an election process. It would only delay things. Rather, President Kline recommended that the Board recognize UFF, but that it limit membership to faculty and stipulate that negotiation of a new contract would be required. President Kline further discussed the pros and cons of voluntary recognition.

Trustee Bowen made a motion that the committees recommend that the Board recognize UFF as the faculty bargaining unit. The motion was accepted. Trustee Bowen further stated that the Faculty Association voted to change tenure guidelines. He asked if there could be a policy statement that these guidelines would be used in the contract, as it appeared union collective bargaining could have set guidelines for tenure and promotion that could override policies passed by the Faculty Association.

Trustee Twomey asked if it would be possible to get information about who would bargain for the next meeting as well as a history of the current contract. Dr. Campbell said she and Ms. Shepherd could provide that information along with a list of provisions.

Comparison of UNF to Surface Analogues and Aspirational Peers

As one mechanism for judging the quality of its programs, the University has been examining its own performance on some of the measures used in the U.S. News and World Report rankings in comparison to the performance of a set of institutions with which UNF shares a number of characteristics: enrollments, mix of academic programs, urbanicity. President Kline proposed the term "surface analogues" for these institutions. In most of these comparisons UNF performed well.

Additionally, President Kline and Ms. Brayton will examine UNF's performance in comparison to the performance of a set of institutions chosen as aspirational peers. President Kline indicated that two institutions were not on the list, UNC and Wayne State, which he felt were very good models. He was particularly impressed with their mission statements. He and Ms. Brayton will get copies of mission statements and develop comparison models for aspirational peers to present to the Board.

UNF Student Profile

As part of the University plan to provide routine communication with trustees, Dean Serwatka prepared a profile of UNF's student body. The profile tracked enrollments and demographic and academic characteristics of students over the past ten years. It also provided a framework for ongoing discussions about the future profile of the University's student body ten years from now.

The profile presented the challenges faced by UNF, including the balance of growth with quality, the need for increased minority representation, and the necessity to meet the requirements of more traditional, full-time students.

Dr. Serwatka stated that in three or four months another report on UNF's faculty will be provided for the Board.