Skip to content

10/3/18 UIUC Policy Committee Summary

    Present:  Matthew Ando, Hadi Esfahai, Bettina Francis, Richard Laugesen, Walter McMahon, Robert Parker, John Prussing,  Bruce Rosenstock, Daniel Steward, Leslie Struble (Skype), H. F. Williamson; guest:  Mark Steinberg

    The meeting began at about noon with Laugesen presiding.

    1. Introductions.  After the attendees introduced themselves, Laugesen passed on Hilton’s apology for being unable to attend.  He welcomed Ando to his first meeting and thanked Steinberg for joining us.
    2. Review of the Minutes for September 5, 2018 Meeting of Policy Committee.  The minutes were approved.
    3. President’s ReportThe key elements in the report from Hilton were discussed.
      1. He continues to follow up on the status of the revisions in the Statutes regarding hiring policies that have been approved by the three senates and the Senate Council. They were transmitted to the president on December 5, 2016.  Francis indicated that progress is being made on their implementation.  It was suggested that this could be a topic for the meeting with the President and Executive Vice President.
      2. The Chapter’s Executive Committee meeting with two members of the Board of Trustees on was cancelled because the meeting of the Trustees ran longer than expected.  Efforts will be made to reschedule in the future.
      3. He reported the new date and time for the meeting of the Policy Committee with President Killeen and Executive Vice President Wilson:  2-3 p.m., Tuesday, November 13, 2018.
      4. He noted that Parker continues to track and monitor news items on legislative attacks on tenure, course content, free speech and science. 
      5. He reported that Esfahani has prepared a Shared Governance questionnaire to be sent to the faculty.
    4. Review of fall schedule of meetings of the Policy Committee: 
      1. Regular Policy Committee Meetings: 
        • Noon, Wednesday, November 7, 217 Illini Union (1st Wed.).
        • Noon, Wednesday, December 12, 213 Illini Union  (2nd Wed.); Reading Day is Dec. 13
      2. Meetings with Administrators
        • 2 p.m., Tuesday, November 13, 364 Administration:  Pres. Killeen, Assoc. VP Wilson
    5. Approval of spring schedule of regular Policy Committee meetings.  Williamson reported that if we continue to meet on Wednesday, a proposed schedule for the spring would be:
      • January 16 (third Wednesday; instruction begins Jan. 14; King Holiday is Jan.21)
      • February 13 (third Wednesday); 
      • March 13 (third Wednesdays) (spring vacation starts March 18)
      • April 10 (second Wednesday)
      • May 1 (first Wednesday, last day of instruction)
      • NOTE:  May 7 is the Tuesday of final examination week when we have scheduled Annual Meeting.
        Before a final decision is to be made, the Policy Committee will be polled to see which day of the week would be the best for these meetings.  The results will be presented at the November meeting.
    6. Report on Shared Governance Issues.  Esfahani reported on the status of the survey to the faculty.  He had sent a draft to the Policy Committee along with a copy of the survey that had been sent to the Executive Officers last year.  He asked for feedback from the Committee so that we can finalize the decision on the survey at the November meeting of the Policy Committee.
    7. Preparation for Meeting with President Killeen and Executive Vice President Wilson: 2 p.m., Tuesday, November 13.  Given the postponement of this meeting, the discussion of possible topics for this meeting was moved to the November 7 meeting.  A draft of the agenda will be sent out ahead of time to help with the preparation.
    8. Report on Activities of the Campus Speech Task Force on the Hosting of Outside Speakers.  Steinberg reported on the difficult tasks facing the Task Force and when it is likely that their recommendations will be brought to the campus for review.  The wide-ranging presentation included discussion of the following issues: 
      1. What sort of review process is there currently and should there be in the future and what should it review?
      2. What are the criteria for the review with regard to such issues as protecting free speech; determining whether a speaker is controversial; and determining whether the presentation meets the campus mission?
      3. What are the obligations of those proposing to host a speaker with regard to such issues as covering the extra costs that may occur?

    The discussion by the Policy Committee included noting the importance of being sensitive to the First Amendment obligations of the University as a public institution.  Steinberg was thanked for his presentation and asked to let the committee know when the new Chair of the Task Force is appointed and when the documents prepared for the Task Force will be available to the campus.

    There were no other reports so the meeting adjourned at about 1:10 p.m.  As noted above, the next meetings will be on November 7, 2018 in 217 Illini Union.