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Faculty Forum Papers

"November 1975 Collective Bargaining - Do We Have a Choice?"
Margaret Lumpkin

October 31, 1975

In higher education in Oregon, students are educated in an atmosphere devoid of the democratic processes of checks and balances. I doubt if a majority of the faculty or students recognize that AR 12.000 and 12.100 of the OSBHE establish a hierarchy in which full authority is delegated to the president with no effective checks and balances from faculty.

To illustrate the accuracy of this statement, begin with AR 12.000 and AR 12.100, "The President is delegated full authority to administer the affairs of his institution in accordance with Board Policies, Budgets and Standards… and shall have the right to preside over the legislative body of the faculties of his institution and have the right of veto over their decisions subject to the review of the chancellor. He shall have the right to define the scope of authority of the faculties, councils, committees, officers of his institution subject to review by the chancellor and when not otherwise specifically defined by Board Action."

In spite of the Dean of Faculty's statement of October 14, that the "Faculty Senate plays a significant role in the governance of the University, particularly in academic affairs", these regulations as well as the Faculty Senate Minutes clearly demonstrate the inability of the Senate to provide the much needed checks and balances needed to created a democratic community of scholars. While the Senate may serve as a forum for introducing and debating innovative ideas or policy, it has no legal power to enforce any of its decisions. At this point in institutional governance, the Senate can and has refused to rubber stamp policies which it cannot accept. The Senate cannot be used to comply with AR 12.030 which states that, "The President shall develop and recommend to the Chancellor in consultation with the appropriate committees or members of his institution as he deems necessary and/or advisable". The Senate can refuse and has refused to dignify policies which it believes detrimental to students, faculty or OSU as a whole.

This refusal of the faculty to approve certain policies seems to have little impact on policies. The President may select another group to represent consultation with appropriate committees to do so. This is not a very productive function for Faculty Senate.

Current law leaves the faculty members who believe that faculty members play a "significant role in the governance of the University" with two alternatives; change O.R.S. 352 on which AR 12.000 And 12.100 are based, or use the one law already given to us by the legislature, the collective bargaining law.

Assess the performance of the Interinstitutional Senate and the academic climate oat our last legislature and decide if we have the potential for changing AR 12.000 and AR 12.100. Do we really have a choice between legislation and collective bargaining?