Foothill College Academic Senate Minutes
February 9, 2004; 2:30 – 4:30 pm, Room 6712

Meeting was called to order at 2:37 p.m.

Minutes were approved with changes

Dolores Petersen was added as Senate representative to the human resources advisory committee, replacing Brian Lewis (this is actually a consent calendar item, so we might be able to remove it completely)

Consent calendar was approved with additions as noted?

An emergency item was added to the agenda at President Fong’s request – regarding a response from the Senate to the Sentinel article. Rich Hansen was added to the calendar and will address the Senate at 3:30 p.m.

Sentinel article - A discussion regarding the Sentinel article ‘Good Fences Make Good Neighbors’ lasted roughly an hour. All agreed that if the Senate were to have a formal response, it needed to be unanimous. We agreed to discuss the issue at the next meeting. A resolution was passed with the following language:

Resolution. The Senate had strong and passionate feelings about the issue, but could not reach a unanimous response. The motion was passed 16-1.

FSA deadline – The deadline for submitting FSA changes is Friday 13, 2004. Senators should inform their constituents of the need to make any changes by that date. Given that there is a holiday on Monday the 16th, the FSA deadline would be extended until Tuesday the 17th.

Foothill Day – February 11th will be a day of celebration for Foothill employees to enjoy being a part of the community. Faculty and classified employees are encouraged to wear Foothill colors (red and black) and bring food and beverage to share with their divisions and work areas.

Cathy Blackwood hiring committee – Foothill College was encouraged to have a faculty member present on the hiring committee for Cathy Blackwood. April Flowers volunteered to serve on that committee. Her appointment was approved unanimously.

Plus Minus Grading report – The board will look at the proposal put forth by the De Anza academic senate to institute +/- grading in a ‘shadow’ mode but would not appear on the students’ transcripts or count towards the student’s GPA. It might be a one or two year study. Institutional research would benefit from three quarters of grades that include plus minus annotation, in a parallel system, that would allow us to see what the impact on GPA would be. Faculty also need a period of time to transition to using a plus / minus system, including training and staff development. Lauren Velasco presented the Senate’s position at the FHDA board meeting February 2nd. In addition to clarifying positions misstated by previous speakers, Lauren wowed the board with her speech and debate prowess, which was unanimously noted by all the board members.

FA presentation – Rich Hansen made a presentation of the District’s position on a number of financial items in negotiations. Mike Brandy’s recent budget presentation was referenced, specifically the $5.1 million in negotiated items, $2.7 million of which is related to benefits. At midyear, both campuses were on track to make a 5% reduction. The board is expecting that reducing the roughly $12 million deficit will require cost savings of $5.1 million from negotiated items. Various changes to health plans were discussed, including having employee contributions for dependent coverage, and changing the coverage for out of network services in the District plan. It now appears that if the faculty wants to keep the District plan as it is, faculty (will) may need to pay for it.

English and math colloquium – a state-wide colloquium to create a position paper on math and English requirements for the AA degree will be held on Friday, February 27th. Senators are urged to (urge and) encourage faculty in their divisions to attend.

Senate budget – The Senate had about $2,500 balance on December 31, 2003, with $2,500 in (receipts) dues expected over the 6 month period ending in June, or roughly $5,000 to work with.

Commencement speaker – Dolores Petersen has asked for feedback on (this issue) the proposed procedure for choosing the faculty speaker, and is confident that we will be able to forward some excellent candidates (for faculty speaker) to the ASFC.