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Bloomington Faculty Council discusses attendance policies, faculty voting rights



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The Bloomington Faculty Council meets Feb. 19 in Presidents Hall of Franklin Hall.  Ty Vinson Buy Photos

The Bloomington Faculty Council met Tuesday to discuss a change in attendance policies and the effects a projected high school graduation decrease will have on IU’s budget.   

Budget

IU-Bloomington's in-state tuition has grown by 0.8 percent in the past five years, while Purdue University-West Lafayette remained constant.  

Over 16 years, state appropriations increased approximately $75 million. Student fee revenue increased over $750 million. 

Indiana high school graduations are anticipated to decline by 11 percent by 2031.

Bob Kravchuk, co-chair of the University Faculty Council Budgetary Committee, said the best scenario for responding to the effects of this would include getting students to stay and go on to graduate programs at IU, finding ways to keep attracting students and help students to not drop out. 

Student Affairs Committee and IU Health Center on medical forms and attendance policies

Some professors require students provide proof from the IU Health Center of medical visits if the student misses class. The IU Health Center is looking to limit that practice.

Health Director Beth Rupp said she feels the current forms cannot verify if the student was actually sick or if they just came to the health center so they could get an excuse for missing a class. 

Also, visits to the health center cost at least $45 and some students cannot afford that. 

The Dean of Students Office will continue to help when students have an extended illness absence or family matters. Steve Sanders, Student Affairs Committee chair, said the change will mean students and facility will need to have more face-to-face interactions when absences occur. Though the BFC does not have formal power over the decision, Rupp said she was open to suggestions because the health center has not made a decision yet. 

Sanders said he wanted this policy change to open a broader discussion of IU attendance policies.

Maggie Hopkins, IU Student Government vice president of administration, said she thinks the best attendance policy is one that mirrors many work policies by allowing a certain number of free absences, but once the free absences are used students will have to deal with the consequences.  

IUSG 

IUSG reported they helped 550 students register to vote and hung 7,100 posters to inform students about various services students can get on campus.  

They also are planning an international fashion show and do a helmet giveaway because of the Bird and Lime scooters.

Voting rights of full-time non-tenure track faculty 

The council recommended a plan for how non-tenure track faculty should be able to vote on administrative issues. 

The council cannot force schools to either allow or disallow these faculty members to vote, but a 2002 resolution by the council encouraged schools to allow it. 

A new resolution presented Tuesday recommended schools allow non-tenure track staff to vote in campus, school and department-level decisions. It also recommended tenured faculty have at least 60 percent of voting power in certain decisions and directed leaders to report non-tenure track faculty voting rights and participation in their respective schools at least once every three years.

After running out of time, the council postponed a vote on it.

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