Faculty Senate Constitution
Article I: Purpose
The Faculty Senate of Kentucky State University exists:
A. To recommend broad academic policies for the University and to make regulations to implement the academic policies established by the Board of Regents.
B. To approve all academic courses, except in those instances where accrediting agencies require approval of an autonomous curriculum committee.
C. To recommend new graduate, baccalaureate, and associate degree programs and the abolition or suspension of such programs.
D. To establish policies for the academic calendar and to approve the annual academic calendar.
E. To advise the President on criteria and procedures for faculty appointments, reappointments, promotions, and the granting of tenure.
F. To make recommendations to the President on the establishment, alteration, composition, and abolition of educational units.
G. To advise the President on the planning for physical facilities and staff when these may affect the attainment of educational objectives.
H. To recommend to the President conditions for admission to the University and to specific academic programs.
I. To recommend to the President the requirements for specific graduate, baccalaureate and associate degrees.
J. To provide a forum for the expression of opinion on matters relating to the well-being of the University, to provide a means for dissemination of information of interest to the faculty, and to provide a structure for study, planning, and the evaluation of academic programs and practices.
Article II: Membership
A. The Faculty Senate shall consist of both elected and ex officio members. Elected members shall be voting members and ex officio members shall be non-voting members.
B. For the purpose of election to, and service on, the Faculty Senate “faculty” is defined as full-time teaching, library, and research members of the general faculty except those who are listed as ex officio or those who have held a faculty appointment for less than one academic year. Persons in their first year may be elected at the end of that year for service beginning in the second year.
C. The ex officio members shall be the President, Provost/Vice President for Academic Affairs, the Deans of Colleges, the Registrar, the Faculty Regent, the Director of the Library, Chairpersons, and the Student Regent.
Article III: Authority
A. The powers of the Faculty Senate emanate from the power of the general faculty and from delegations of authority and responsibility by the Board of Regents.
B. The general faculty, meeting in regular or called session, has the authority to overrule, modify, or negate any action or recommendation of the Faculty Senate.
Article IV: Election of Voting Members
A. The voting membership of the Faculty Senate shall be elected in accordance with the following procedures:
- Any school or college without divisions, each academic division, and the library shall elect one (1) senator, any division or other unit with more than seven (7) funded faculty lines shall elect a senator for each additional seven (7) funded faculty lines or fraction thereof. Ex officio members are not eligible and are not included in the above count. Also, five (5) senators shall be elected at large from the entire University faculty; no more than two (2) may be from the same college, school or the library. Nominations for the five University-wide members shall be held at a regularly called meeting of the University faculty during the Spring Semester. During the first month of the Spring Semester, the President of the Faculty Senate shall request from the Office of the Provost/Vice President for Academic Affairs a list of funded faculty lines in each unit. These numbers shall be used to determine the number of senators to be elected by each unit in the spring elections.
- Senators shall serve for two-year terms from the beginning of the Fall Semester to the beginning of the Fall Semester two years later. An elected senator shall be eligible for re-election for a second consecutive term but ineligible for further re-election until one year has elapsed.
- The annual election shall be conducted by secret ballot by the Registrar for each educational unit in the spring following procedures established by the Senate. The election shall be concluded and the President and those elected notified of the results by April 15.
- If an elected member of the Senate should at any time become ineligible to serve (e.g. by reason of assuming an administrative position, resigning, taking official leave which precludes attendance, or being purged from membership for non-attendance), the administrative head of the educational unit represented shall declare a vacancy and designate that member from those eligible who in the last election received the next highest vote to serve for the duration of the elected faculty member’s term or period of eligibility. If there is no one eligible to assume the vacant seat, the Faculty Senate President shall request the Registrar to initiate, in conjunction with the administrative head of the unit, a special election to select a representative for that unit until the next regular election. If one of the five (5) at large Senators vacates a seat, the eligible individual who received the next highest vote shall serve for the duration of the academic year until the next election. If there is no eligible individual to assume the vacant seat; a special University faculty meeting shall be called to nominate candidates.
- If necessary during the Summer Session, when the full faculty is not available for an election, the members of the Executive Committee who are available shall appoint temporary Senators to work with Senators who are available to conduct Senate business.
Article V: Officers
The officers of the Faculty Senate shall consist of a President, a Vice President, a Secretary, and a Parliamentarian elected as stipulated in Article V. B. The President and Secretary of the Faculty Senate shall be provided one-fourth full-time equivalent release time from other assigned duties to perform the responsibilities of these offices.
B. Nomination and Election of Officers
- After Senate elections are held in the Spring Semester, the outgoing Executive Committee (minus the President) shall appoint a Nominating Committee. The Nominating Committee shall consist of three continuing senators (who have one year remaining in their term of office in the Senate) and two newly elected senators (re -elected to a second term or elected to a first term). The Executive Committee shall designate a convener for the Nominating Committee.
- The convener of the Nominating Committee shall convene a meeting of the committee no later than one week after appointment of the committee. At the first meeting of the Nominating Committee a chair shall be elected.
- The Nominating committee shall prepare a single slate of nominees for Senate offices. In preparation of the slate of nominees, the Nominating Committee shall solicit nominations from the membership of the Senate for the next academic year. The Nominating Committee shall obtain the consent of the nominees for office. Nominating Committee members will remain eligible for nominations to Senate office while serving on the Nominating Committee; however, any Nominating Committee member proposed as a nominee for a Senate office shall be excluded from all committee discussions and decisions regarding selection of a nominee for that office. The Nominating Committee shall complete its nominations no later than two weeks after appointment.
- The Chair of the Nominating Committee shall call a meeting of the next academic year Senate before the end of the Spring Semester for the purpose of electing Senate officers for the next academic year. Announcement of the slate of nominees prepared by the Nominating Committee shall be included in the meeting announcement.
- At the first meeting on or after May 1 of each year the Faculty Senate shall elect its officers who will assume their duties in August at the beginning of the Fall Semester. The election shall be by secret ballot and the procedures must insure that each officer elected receives a majority vote of those present and voting.
C. Terms of Office
Terms of office shall be for one year from August of one year to August of the next year, and any elected officer shall be eligible for re-election or for election to another office if eligible for active membership. No Senator may be elected to more than two (2) consecutive terms in the same office.
Duties are generally as prescribed by Robert’s Rules of Order.
- If the President resigns, becomes ineligible to serve or otherwise vacates the Office of President of the Faculty Senate, the Vice President automatically becomes President.
- If any elected office of the Faculty Senate other than President is vacated, the President shall declare a vacancy and proceed with an election of the replacement following procedures established by the Senate for the election of others.
Article VI: Committees
A. Standing Committees
There shall be five standing committees of the Faculty Senate: the Executive Committee, the Budget and Academic Support Committee, the Curriculum Committee, the Professional Concerns Committee and the Academic Policies Committee. Each voting Senator shall be assigned to at least one standing committee; assignments shall be made each year by the elected officers of the Senate based upon a preference list submitted by each voting Senator. The remaining membership of each committee shall be composed of Senators from educational units not already represented on the committee and any non-senator or ex officio members as voting members of standing and ad hoc committees. At no time shall the non-senators and ex officio members comprise a voting majority on ad hoc and standing committees. The Chairperson of each committee, except the Executive Committee, shall be elected by the membership of that committee.
B. Executive Committee
The Executive Committee shall consist of officers of the Faculty Senate and the chairpersons of the standing committees. In addition, the immediate past President of the Faculty Senate shall serve ex officio without vote. The Executive Committee shall be chaired by the President of the Faculty Senate.
- It shall serve as a committee on committees, appointing members to all standing and ad hoc committees of the Faculty Senate. In addition it may appoint non-senators and ex officio members as voting members to all standing and ad hoc committees of the Faculty Senate. At no time shall the non-senators and ex officio members comprise a voting majority on ad hoc and standing committees. It shall upon request, work with administrative officers of the University in forming administrative committees, in developing charges to such committees, and by nominating persons to serve as members of such committees.
- It shall serve as liaison between the Faculty Senate and administrative officers of the University. It shall refer to the appropriate committee of the Senate any question or policy on which advice is sought. Responses to such requests shall be transmitted through the Executive Committee which shall record in its minutes any recommendations on policy.
- It shall receive and retain for an appropriate period typed reports of all committees of the Faculty Senate.
- It shall cause matters approved by the Faculty Senate to be brought to the attention of the appropriate administrative officers for action and/or information and shall report any action taken to the Faculty Senate.
- It shall have authority to act for the Senate when for any reason the Senate is unable to meet, or when emergency action is required. All such actions shall be reported to the Faculty Senate at its next regular meeting.
- It shall refer to the appropriate Faculty Senate committees for study and recommendations such matters as are designated by the Senate.
- It shall prepare and distribute to the members of the Senate three (3) working days in advance the agenda for a meeting of the Faculty Senate. The agenda shall include as a minimum a synopsis of all items to be acted upon.
C. Budget and Academic Support Committee
Responsibilities shall include the following:
- Recommend faculty priorities and work with the administration in developing the annual budget and the biennial budget report.
- Analyze the finance and resource allocations of the University on a continuing basis so that it may advise the Faculty Senate, and through it the President of the University, on the relationship between the allocation of funds and the established missions of the University.
- Make recommendations regarding the administrative services which the University provides for its faculty.
- Make recommendations regarding academic support services such as the library, bookstore, duplication, and any other support units affecting the academic programs of the University.
D. Curriculum Committee
Responsibilities shall include the following:
- Makes recommendations to the Faculty Senate and through it to the University administration, in the area of general curriculum policy.
- Review, evaluate and make recommendations to the Faculty Senate concerning courses, curricula, programs, and requirements which are received from the Faculties of the educational units as listed in items B, C, I of Article I, and in cooperation with the Budget and Academic Support committee examine those proposals with reference to budget priorities.
- Periodically review the liberal studies core requirements and make recommendations to the Faculty Senate regarding procedures for University-wide review and revision of the liberal studies core.
E. The Professional Concerns Committee
Responsibilities shall include the following:
- Review, evaluate, and make recommendations concerning the policies, procedures, and programs related to faculty benefits–in particular those policies dealing with insurance, retirement, salary schedules, sabbatical and other academic leaves of absence, summer fellowships, institutional research grants, deferred compensation, and the credit union, travel allowance and reassigned time.
- Review, evaluate and make recommendations concerning the various University policies relating to the general academic and professional matters dealing with appointment, retention, tenure, promotion, rank, and performance evaluation.
- Annually review the Faculty Handbook and make recommendation for changes.
- Review and evaluate those policies regarding students that are of professional concern to the faculty and make recommendation for changes.
F. Academic Policies Committee
Responsibilities shall include the following:
- Recommend registration procedures.
- Recommend class scheduling procedures.
- Develop and recommend the academic calendar.
- Recommend advising procedures.
- Recommend grading policy.
- Recommend class attendance policy.
- Recommend in other policies and procedures affecting the academic mission of the University.
Article VII: Meeting
A. The University Faculty
- The University Faculty shall consist of the President; all full-time University employees holding the rank of Professor, Associate Professor, Assistant Professor or Instructor, and such other administrative officers as may be recommended by the President and approved by the Board of Regents.
- The University Faculty shall meet in regular session at least once each academic semester upon the call of the President of the University or his/her designated representative. The President of the University or the President’s designated representative shall preside at regular meetings.
- The University Faculty shall meet in special session upon the call of the Executive committee of the Faculty Senate or upon petition signed by at least twenty percent (20%) of the members of the University Faculty. Any such petition shall be filed with the President of the Faculty Senate, shall state the proposed items of business, and when challenging Faculty Senate action shall be interpreted as a declaration that the University Faculty is asserting its jurisdiction and authority. A meeting called by petition shall be held no later than two weeks, exclusive of holidays, from the filing date of the petition. The Executive Committee of the Faculty Senate shall develop and distribute the agenda for all special sessions of the University Faculty to members of the University Faculty at least one week prior to the scheduled meeting.
- Emergency meetings of the University Faculty may be called by the President of the University or by the Executive Committee of the Faculty Senate without advance notice and published agenda but the business of any emergency meeting shall be limited to the issue giving rise to the emergency.
- Special sessions or emergency meetings called by the Executive committee of the Faculty Senate shall be chaired by the President or Vice President of the Senate. Emergency meetings called by the President of the University shall be presided over by the President of the University or his/her designated representative. The Registrar shall be the official custodian of all official Faculty Senate minutes and records. The official minutes and records of each meeting with supporting material shall be delivered to the official custodian by the Faculty Senate Secretary within five (5) days of such minutes becoming official.
B. Faculty Senate
The Faculty Senate shall meet in regular session at lease once each calendar month during the academic year unless a meeting is canceled by the Executive Committee. Special meetings may be called by the President of the Faculty Senate or the Executive Committee. Prior to commencement each year the Executive Committee shall develop and distribute to all members of the University Faculty Senate a schedule of regular meetings of the Faculty Senate for the following academic year. Generally, standing committees meet on alternate Mondays from Faculty Senate meetings.
C. Public Nature of Meetings
All meeting of the University Faculty and of the Faculty Senate are open to members of the University community, to representatives of the media, and to the general public. Any person attending any such meetings may be granted the privilege of the floor by majority vote of the voting members present at the meeting.
Article VIII: Faculty Regent
The Faculty Regent shall report regularly to the Faculty Senate, and through it to the general faculty, on those matters coming before the Board of Regents that pertain to the faculty and actions taken on such matters. The Faculty Regent shall be provided one-fourth full-time equivalent release time from other assigned duties to perform the responsibilities of this office.
Article IX: Rules of Order
A. Robert’s Rules of Order shall govern the conduct of the meetings.
B. Time Limits
- The Senate President, in conjunction with the Executive Committee, shall assign time-frames for debate of items on the agenda for each Senate meeting.
- When the Senate votes on the agenda at the beginning of each meeting, it also votes on the time limits.
- After time has elapsed for discussion of each agenda item, the Senate, by majority vote, may extend time.
- In the initial round of discussion the following time limits shall apply to individual senators: a) five minutes for chairs giving committee reports; b) three minutes for senators.
- Before senators are allowed to speak a second time, all other senators who wish to speak on an issue will be allowed to do so within the overall time frame.
- If there is a second round of discussion, the following time limits shall apply to individual senators: a) three minutes for chairs; b) two minutes for senators.
Article X: Quorum
A quorum for University Faculty meetings shall be fifty (50) percent of its members. A quorum for the Faculty Senate shall consist of a simple majority of the voting members of the Faculty Senate.
Article XI: Senate Action
The President of the University may accept, modify, or reject any action of the Faculty Senate except those actions involving final authority granted by the Board of Regents. The Faculty Senate may address the President or, through the President, the Board of Regents, regarding any University matter.
Article XII: Administrative Functions
Beyond those listed above, the Faculty Senate shall have no management or administrative functions either in itself or through the instrumentality of its committees.
Article XIII: Effective Date
This constitution shall take effect upon approval by the Board of Regents.
Article XIV: Amendments
This constitution may be amended at any meeting of the University Faculty by a two-thirds majority of those present and voting, provided the proposed amendment was included in the agenda and was available to the members of the University Faculty at least five (5) working days prior to the meeting. The approved amendment shall take effect upon ratification by the Board of Regents.
Adopted: March 3, 1993
Amended: April 30, 1984
Amended: January 22, 1987
Amended: October 21, 1988
Amended: January 19, 1989
Amended: July 16, 1993
Amended: July 25, 1997
Amended: January 30, 1998