Minutes for the Towson AAUP/Faculty Association Spring Meeting

April 9, 2010


Jennifer Ballengee called the meeting to order.


  • Jennifer announced that the Faculty Senate passed the proposed Primary Parental Caregiver Leave Policy almost unanimously. The Policy is now with the Provost; she will report back to the Faculty Senate at the May meeting.
    • The proposal includes support for a semester leave for a primary parental caregiver. However, no one is required to take this semester leave and could also choose to work under modified duties, still at full pay, or take part-time status to stretch out the leave time they can have (at a reduced salary).
    • Jennifer thanked both Committee W and FLIC for their work on the proposal. She announced as well that Chris D’Addario will take over as chair of FLIC for Karen Osland and Michelle Manasse will take over as chair of Committee W for Ayse Dayi.
  • Chris D’Addario reported as chair of FLIC giving additional detail on what was included in the proposal. He also mentioned that FLIC will now move on to creating a proposal for a Family Caregiver policy that will cover those who have to take leave to care for ill family members.
  • Jennifer mentioned that Committee W will work in 2010-2011 to come up with a report on the family-friendliness of chairs and deans in each department as well as a report on statistics of tenure, promotion and salary based on gender for the university as a whole.
  • Jennifer reminded everyone that University elections for Senate and faculty committees are next week. She exhorted everyone to vote AAUP, since we know that our members are involved. She also encouraged people to run for these positions in the future.
  • Next item was a discussion of a draft resolution in support of adding a Lecturer to the University Senate. Jennifer noted the essential role that Lecturers play in Towson’s reputation and then read much of the proposal. Tim [don’t know last name] pointed out the size of the lecturer pool.
    • Some questioned the source of the proposal; Jennifer stated it was generated from the lecturers themselves. They had their first group meeting in March. Jennifer also noted that there are 30 lecturers who pay AAUP dues.
    • The urgency and timing of the proposal has been caused by the impending budget cuts and their clear impact on lecturers and adjuncts.
    • Question was raised over the fact that the Senate will have to change its by-laws. Leave Senate to deal with that.
    • Some questions and suggestions were raised over the fact that an elective process for the lecturer representative should be included in the proposal.
    • Vote was taken; support for proposal was unanimous with expected changes.
  • Jennifer mentioned her concerns over AAUP membership and number of dues-paying members. Urged members to get others involved.
  • Matthew Durington gave a brief report on the Salary Compensation, Compression and Merit task force. The group has decided to untangle the three and come up with three separate statements. These statements will be ready in the Fall and will hope to influence university policy as we (hopefully) move back to COLA and merit raises eventually.
  • Pam Lottero-Perdue gave a report on the Junior AAUP Faculty Committee, which has been working on and discussing salary, workload and P and T issues. The plan is to meet the Provost in the Fall to discuss their ideas/concerns on each. There will be a Faculty mentoring meeting for a pilot mentoring program next Friday 4/16 at 3:30. There will also be a survey coming around getting people’s opinions on what they want from a mentoring program.
  • Jennifer mentioned that Saturday April 17th the Maryland AAUP will be meeting at Goucher. Executive elections for this organization will occur then. The issues of academic freedom and government relations will be focused on as well.
  • The final issue discussed was the Alan Zaruba firing by Towson. Jennifer noted that the national AAUP has gotten involved in defending Zaruba. For them the issue is not what he said but the lack of due process followed in his dismissal. This dovetails with their general concern over the growing number of contingent faculty in universities and their treatment.
    • Jennifer then raised the question over possible TU-AAUP responses to this issue. She presented Virginia Thompson’s suggestion that a teach-in that covered both academic freedom (and as it relates to contingent faculty) as well as the perception of a hostile environment for African-American students. We could organize with campus minorities for a series of symposiums on both issues.
    • In general, people wanted to separate out the issue of due process and the fact that the university did not follow this procedure from the specific issues raised by Zaruba’s case.
    • We could also do a teach-in, or several, on race issues on campus; however, the AAUP as an organization should stand up for due process in some way.
    • What we will do will be decided in the Fall.

Return to Spring 2010 Newsletter