Faculty Senate By-laws
Article II. Purpose
Article III: Organization
Section 1. Eligible Faculty
Section 2. Voting Eligibility
As specified in the Constitution of the Faculty Senate.
Section 3. Membership Quota
Section 4. Term of Office
A. A term of office shall begin with the special session of the Faculty Senate in April.
B. A senator rotated off the Faculty Senate, as provided in Article III, Section 4, of the Constitution, will become eligible for a new term after twelve months.
Section 5. Election
Tie votes shall be resolved by drawing of lots.
Section 6. Selection of Replacement Members of the Faculty Senate
As specified in the Constitution of the Faculty Senate.
Section 7. The Committee of Elections
A. Members of the Committee of Elections will serve throughout their term or terms of office as senators.
B. Elections to fill vacancies will be carried out in the respective college caucuses held during the May meeting, or during the next meeting after a vacancy is reported to the Senate Chair.
C. Members of the Committee will elect the Chair at the first meeting after the organizational meeting of the Faculty Senate.
D. The schedule of activities for the elections of senators and senate officers shall be as follows:
- Distribution of a provisional list of eligible faculty for each department and division at the November Senate meeting; senators are to check their list and note any changes; return corrected lists to the Committee and necessary changes are made in the Senate database.
- Preparation of the list of faculty who may be included on ballot. All eligible faculty from the departments having elections are listed except current senators who have served in two consecutive terms, and current senators from the departments with two senators who are not up for election in the current year.
- Preparation of ballots
Committee sends of self-nomination letters by the third week in January. This letter explains that each eligible faculty may choose to remove himself or herself from the ballot. This letter should include a form to be returned to the Committee chair to indicate that the person should not be included on the ballot.
Mailing labels for faculty eligible to serve are printed; letters are mailed to eligible faculty; ballot exclusion forms from faculty must be received before January 31st; ballots are prepared; ballots are created by department with names of those eligible and willing to serve.
- Distribution of ballots and voter lists to departmental secretaries.
Must occur by the second week of February. Instructions included with each ballot should tell faculty to vote for as many candidates as desired and return their ballot in a sealed envelope to their department secretary. Secretaries should be instructed to place ballots in faculty mailboxes, and that ballots be returned to them to be picked up later by Committee members. Secretaries are asked to collect ballots from the faculty in sealed envelopes and to place these in a large envelope, checking off the name of each faculty member from the “eligible to vote” list.
The election committee picks up ballots from each department/division secretary by the third week in February.
- Counting of ballots and reporting of election results to Senate Chair
Must occur during the third week of February. Person with the most votes is the new senator.
Person with the second most votes is the new proxy. Tie votes are decided by a coin flip (standard procedure for the approval voting method)
- Senate Chair notifies new senators and proxies of their election to the Senate by the first business day in March (via email).
New senators are invited to the March Senate meeting as observers (they don’t have voting privileges at this meeting). Senate Chair introduces new senators at the March meeting.
- Elections of officers.
The Senate Chair receives nominations for Chair-elect and Secretary and announces them at the March Senate meeting.
The Election Committee prepares paper ballots for the “Chair-elect” and “Secretary” elections for the special supplementary April Senate meeting. New Senators are required to attend the regular April Senate Meeting, though they do not have a vote. This is the last regular meeting for outgoing senators.
When the April Senate meeting ends, senators completing their terms and leaving the Senate are excused. The Election Committee Members, regardless of their senate status, stay to hold the election of officers. The outgoing Senate Chair presides over this supplementary special meeting which has as its sole agenda item the election of the new senate officers. The outgoing secretary takes the minutes.
The Election Committee counts the ballots during a recess and reports the results to the outgoing Senate Chair.
The Senate Chair announces the results for “Chair-elect” and “Secretary,” effective immediately.
The new senate and officers begin their first regular meeting in May.
- Elections for the Merit Pay Appeals Committee shall be completed by October 1.
- The Merit Pay Appeals Committee shall include three faculty members from the College of Arts and Sciences, three faculty members from the College of Business, three faculty members from the College of Education, one faculty member from the School of Nursing, and one faculty member from Library Services. No two members shall be from the same department/division. Members shall be elected by the faculty in the college or school they represent and shall serve staggered three-year terms. The Committee Chair shall be elected by the Committee. To resolve an appeal, six committee members must be in agreement.
- The Committee on Elections shall provide the Senate President with a list of the newly-elected Merit Pay Appeals Committee members, as well as a list of the alternates, in order of votes received, who may need to serve in cases of conflicts of interest; the Senate President shall appoint a convener who shall convene a meeting of the Merit Pay Appeals Committee by December 1 of each academic year. At this meeting, the Merit Pay Appeals Committee shall elect its chair.
- The Chair of the Merit Pay Appeals Committee shall consult immediately with the Faculty Senate in appeals cases that necessitate committee members’ recusing themselves – for example, when a committee member is from the same department as the appealing faculty. In such cases, the Senate President, in consultation with the Committee on Elections, shall appoint the alternate who is next in line, with the most number of votes received in that unit, as long as that alternate is not from the same department as the appealing faculty.
Section 8. Duties and Entitlements of Faculty Senate Officers
- To call the special organizational meeting that immediately follows the regular April meeting;
- To preside over meetings of the Faculty Senate and over meetings of the Executive Committee;
- To represent the general faculty at the meetings of the DSU President’s Cabinet, Academic Council and at other meetings of any administrative council or advisory body established by the President or Vice President to assist in administering the affairs of the University;
- To notify faculty members of their election to membership in the Faculty Senate;
- With the concurrence of the Executive Committee, to prepare and distribute notices of meetings of the Faculty Senate with agendas. Such notices shall be distributed at least seven in advance of a notified meeting;
- To send a memorandum to the DSU President, not more than a week after each meeting, calling attention to any resolutions passed by the Faculty Senate and other matters of importance that arose;
- To serve as the signatory officer of the Faculty Senate’s account budgeted by the University and as custodian of any other Faculty Senate funds. To make or authorize all expenditures necessary for the conduct of the business of the Faculty Senate. To maintain adequate financial records, and to report to the Faculty Senate at the January meeting the state of the Faculty Senate’s finances;
- To supervise and coordinate the work of the Faculty Senate’s standing and ad hoc committees;
- To secure faculty marshals for university commencement exercises;
- To be provided with an office outfitted with personal computer;
- To receive a stipend equivalent to not less than three 3-hour courses over the course of the Senate year;
- To be released from no less than three 3-hour courses during Summer, Fall, and Spring;
- To be provided with a Graduate Assistant;
- To be provided with an email list of all faculty;
- To perform all other functions of a president of an organization.
- To preside over meetings of the Faculty Senate in the absence of the Senate President;
- To substitute for the Senate President, when necessary, at meetings of the DSU President’s Cabinet, Academic Council and other organizations and functions when the Senate President would normally be present ex officio;
- To monitor attendance at scheduled meetings of the Faculty Senate, to encourage future attendance of those members absent from consecutive meetings, and to recommend resignations from those who encounter scheduling conflicts and become unable to attend Faculty Senate meetings;
- To represent the Faculty Senate at DSU Staff Council meetings;
- To be a non-voting observer at Spring meetings of the DSU President’s Cabinet and Academic Council meetings.
- To keep a record of attendance at Faculty Senate meetings, which shall be included in the minutes;
- To prepare the minutes of Faculty Senate meetings for distribution by the Senate President to all members of the Faculty Senate. The minutes are to be provided to the Senate President within 2 weeks of the meeting. The Senate President is to distribute the minutes at least a week before the subsequent meeting;
- To maintain archives in the Roberts-LaForge Library of the records of the Faculty Senate, including all monthly meeting agendas, minutes and the Senate President’s advisory memoranda to the President of the University.
- To reserve the meeting place for Faculty Senate meetings.
The Chairs of the Standing Committees designated by the Constitution together with the four officers of the Faculty Senate comprise the Executive Committee of the Senate.
- If the office of Senate President becomes vacant, the President-Elect will become the President of the Faculty Senate. If the President-Elect cannot serve as President, a new President will be elected at the next regular meeting of the Faculty Senate.
- If the office of President-Elect or Secretary becomes vacant, the vacancy(ies) will filled by election at the next meeting of the Faculty Senate.
Section 9. Committees
- Executive Committee
The committee shall organize forums including, but not limited to the DSU President, Vice President for Academic Affairs, Provost, and Chief Financial Officer, on an annual basis.
- Committee of Elections conducts the elections of the Faculty Senate as provided under the Constitution of the Faculty Senate of Delta State University.
- Committee on University Standing Committees
- The committee shall be composed of three Faculty Senate members appointed by the Senate President. No two committee members shall be from the same college or the Library;
- Members of the Committee shall serve throughout their term or terms of membership in the Faculty Senate;
- When necessary, new members of the committee will be appointed by the President of the Faculty Senate at the May meeting of the Faculty Senate or the next meeting after a vacancy is made known to the Senate President;
- The Committee members will elect their chair each year at the May Faculty Senate meeting;
- The Committee is charged with the responsibility of selecting candidates from the University faculty for membership on all university standing committees, including:
- Attendance and Grievance Appeals
- Faculty and Staff Benefits
- Health and Wellness
- Safety and Environment
- Service Learning
- Special Programs
- Student Organizations
- Student Publications
- Teaching Excellence
- Technology Across the Curriculum
- Tenure and Promotions Appeals Committee
- Writing Across the Curriculum
- The Committee shall receive a list, including emails, of faculty eligible to serve on standing committees, from the office of the Vice-President for Academic Affairs, by August 15.
- The Committee shall also receive from the office of the Vice-President for Academic Affairs a list of extant university standing committees, with descriptions of each committee, including their duties and composition, by August 15.
- The Committee shall send out a call for committee sign-ups to all eligible faculty and shall make available to all faculty the list of extant committees and their descriptions.
- Faculty membership in committees shall be voluntary and must be renewed each year – no faculty membership in committees shall automatically carry over from the previous year.
- The Committee shall guarantee that faculty membership on committees does not exceed quotas established by the committees and shall consult with faculty to reallot committee membership accordingly.
- The Committee’s recommendations will be submitted to the Faculty Senate at the September meeting, at which meeting the Faculty Senate will vote upon their recommendations.
- The chair of the Committee shall meet with a representative from the Staff Council and the Student Government Association to create the final list of university standing committee members, by September 30.
- The final roster of candidates shall be recommended to the DSU President for appointment to the designated University standing committees for a term of twelve months from the date of their appointment.
- The Tenure and Promotion Appeals Committee composition is defined by the Delta State University official tenure and promotions policy, as follows:
- It shall consist of three tenured faculty members at the rank of Professor.
- No two members of the Committee shall be from the same college or school, nor shall they be members of the University Tenure and Promotion Committee.
- The members shall be appointed by the Faculty Senate as a standing committee at the beginning of the academic year and shall serve one-year terms.
- Committee members shall not hear appeals from members of their academic department/division. If a member of the Committee cannot hear a particular appeal, the Faculty Senate shall appoint a temporary replacement.
- The Committee on University Standing Committees, in consultation with the Senate President, shall appoint a faculty member to other University committees including, but not limited to, the following;
- Athletic Committee
- Graduate Council
- Information Technology Governance Committee
- Institutional Review Board
- Teacher Education Council
- Web Oversight Committee
- In the event an appointee to one of the University standing committees is unable to serve, the Committee on Standing Committees will recommend a replacement to the Executive Committee of the Faculty Senate.
Upon the Executive Committee approval of the replacement, the name of the new appointee will be sent to the DSU President;
- Committee on General Academic Affairs whose responsibilities will include, but are not limited to, such matters as academic freedom and tenure, faculty evaluation, curriculum and university policies, faculty compensation, fringe benefits and the budget;
- Committee on Technology whose responsibilities will include, but are not limited to, such matters as the university website, online courses, university technology governance, and maintenance of the Faculty Senate website;
- Committee on University Services whose responsibilities will include, but are not limited to, such matters as athletics and recreation, bookstore, food services, housing and traffic.
- Membership on certain standing committees is ex officio and members are selected as provided by the Constitution (Executive Committee), or by election to membership as provided by the Constitution (Committee of Elections) or by the Senate President (all others);
- The tenure of each appointed committee member continues for the duration of that member’s term or terms as Senator;
- At or prior to the May meeting of the Faculty Senate, new members will be given the opportunity to submit written committee assignment requests, and consistent with maintaining a reasonable balance in numbers and voting unit representation on each committee, the chair will take these preferences into consideration in making the appointments to standing committees;
- A member coming into the Faculty Senate in mid-year to replace a Senator who has resigned from the Senate will always be assigned for the remainder of the term to the same committee on which the Senator whose place he or she has taken was serving;
- Each standing committee shall, unless otherwise provided for, elect its own chair for the year at the May meeting of the Faculty Senate. Whenever a committee is without a chair, the President of the Faculty Senate shall appoint a convener.
Section 10. Meetings of the Faculty Senate
A. The regular monthly meeting of the Faculty Senate will begin at 3:30 p.m.
B. Regular meetings of the Faculty Senate will be held as prescribed by the Constitution;
Section 11. Procedural Authority
As specified in the Constitution of the Faculty Senate.
Section 12. Quorum
As specified in the constitution of the Faculty Senate.
Section 13. Agenda Procedures
- By presenting the written motion or resolution to a member of the Faculty Senate for placement on the agenda of the next regular monthly meeting;
- By distributing the written motion or resolution to the membership of the Faculty Senate at least ten days prior to the next regular monthly meeting, in which case it will be placed on the agenda of that meeting;
- By giving the written motion or resolution to the Executive Committee not less than ten days prior to the next regular monthly meeting;
- By presenting the written motion or resolution at a meeting of the Faculty Senate together with a written motion for suspension of the rules and immediate consideration. The motion to suspend the rules must be approved by a three-fourths vote of all members present and voting.
B. Motions concerning matters on the agenda may be made orally from the floor but must be presented in writing and delivered to the Secretary before the vote will be taken on them, if any Senator so requests.
Article IV. Amendments
These By-laws may be amended by placing a motion on the Faculty Senate’s agenda as provided for in Article III, Section 13 if a majority of the members present and voting approves the motion.
Approved by Faculty Senate – April 11, 1991
Approved amendment to Section 9 E. – May 2, 1991
Approved amendment to add E. 1. and 2. to Article III, Section 8 – October 13, 1994
Approved amendments to Article III, sections 3, 4, 7, 8, 9, 10 – April 12, 2007