Faculty seeks voice in decision making

By Stephanie Bradley and Katrina Kelly

The NIU Faculty Assembly agreed to pass a resolution changing the decision-making process of summer-school funding at its Wednesday meeting.

Gordon Dorn, undergraduate director of the NIU art department, called for the resolution, saying faculty should have a direct voice in the administration of funds for summer school. Currently, only NIU’s deans directly contribute their opinions, and faculty participate indirectly by communicating their ideas to the deans.

“There has always been a concern in relation to the funding of summer school,” said Judy Bischoff, University Council executive secretary. Summer school has always been funded by deficit spending, she said.

Last semester’s false class registrations and the resulting grades given to the accused students also were discussed. Charles Larson, communications studies professor, suggested a class action suit should be taken against the university by the faculty members involved.

Larson said faculty members gave the students involved “F”s for the classes in which they had illegally registered. NIU administration changed some of the students’ grades to “Delete,” which means the student appears never to have enrolled in the class.

“The only person who can assign a grade is an instructor,” Larson said.

Sue Ouellette, a communicative disorders professor, said the students’ cases were heard on an individual basis. If students pled guilty, they could either accept the punishment or appeal the decision.

Depending on the way each student appealed his case, he would either be forced to accept the penalty or his case would be dropped.

In other business, the assembly discussed the search for an associate vice president for business and operations. The nationwide search to fill the position drew 55 applicants. Two open forums to review the applicants will be held on Sept. 13, 14 and 16.

The assembly reported a possible change in the method for acquiring student identification cards. In the future, registration materials might not be sufficient to obtain an ID.

The conflict between the academic schedule and some religious holidays led to some possible policy changes. Bischoff said if a student has a conflict due to a religious holiday, he should notify his instructor. If the instructor does not release the student for the holiday, the student has the right to take the matter to the chairman of the department involved.