Faculty and Unclassified Staff Handbook
Chapter 2 -- Academic Affairs

Faculty Senate Bylaws

Article I--Name

The name of this organization shall be the Faculty Senate of Fort Hays State University.


Article II--Object

Section 1: The Faculty Senate represents the Faculty of Fort Hays State University in participating in the governance of the University.

Section 2: It is advisory to the President of the University, and as such provides for representative participation of the faculty as interested partners in decision making and the effective management of the vital affairs affecting campus personnel.

Section 3: It cooperates with the Student Senate in promoting conditions for effective learning and fair treatment of the students; actions of the Student Senate may be reviewed by the Faculty Senate at the request of the President of the University or any member of the Faculty Senate.

Section 4: It cooperates with the Alumni Association and Classified Senate to achieve common goals and objectives.

Section 5: It cooperates with the surrounding geographic community to promote the collective interests of Fort Hays State University.


Article III--Representation

Section 1: For the purpose of determining representation on the Faculty Senate, teaching faculty shall be defined as follows:

Those who are members of the faculty on fulltime appointment, excluding those in administrative positions who teach less than four-tenths time, shall constitute teaching faculty. Departmental chairs shall also be considered as teaching faculty.

Section 2: All members of the teaching faculty, and those part-time persons whose appointment is solely a teaching position, shall have the right to vote for representatives to the Faculty Senate.

Section 3: Number, Eligibility, and Election of Representatives.

  a. Representation is determined by the following ratio: One representative for every ten members of a department who are qualified as teaching faculty, or fraction thereof.

  b. It is recommended that these representatives shall have at least the rank of assistant professor and shall have served at least three full years on the faculty of the University.

 c.  For purposes of serving as an elected representative of a department on Faculty Senate, only full-time faculty who are not in the position of Department Chair will be eligible.

  d. Method of election.

    (1) Each department shall elect representatives in a meeting at which there shall be nominations from the floor and written ballots counted at the meeting.  Academic Departments are strongly encouraged to consider the merits of selecting representatives to serve on the Faculty Senate for no more than two full terms consecutively.

    (2) Representatives shall be elected not later than the third school week in April for the term of office to begin and end with the fiscal year (July 1 through June 30.)

    (3) If a department becomes entitled to an additional representative after the April election, the department shall elect its additional representative prior to July 1.

    (4) Faculty members not attached to a department and those holding joint appointments may choose the department in which they wish to vote, provided that no faculty member may vote in more than one department.

Section 4 Terms of Representatives.

  a. Except as modified in this subsection and subsection d below, the terms of senators shall be three years. Terms of elected senators from a given department shall be adjusted so that the term of no more than one senator from any given department will expire at the end of any fiscal year.

  b. The terms of senators shall begin and end with the fiscal year.

  c. Filling a Vacancy.

    (1) In the event a vacancy occurs before the completion of a term, a successor shall be elected for the unexpired portion of the term.

    (2) In the event a senator goes on leave of absence or is gone for the summer, that member's place shall be filled temporarily by an alternate, and he/she shall resume his/her place in the Senate upon return to the University.

    (3) A department may provide an official alternate either by authorizing the departmental chair to appoint an alternate or by electing an alternate. The duly elected or appointed alternate shall have voting privileges.

  d. If a person is serving as Vice President of the Faculty Senate in the third year of a term in the Senate, such person, if not re-elected, shall be granted a one-year extension as senator-at-large in order to fulfill the duties of the President of the Senate.

Section 5: Any senator may place an item on the agenda of the Senate or may present a proposal for referral to a committee.


Article IV--Officers

Section 1: Election and Tenure of Officers.

  a. Officers of the Faculty Senate shall be a president, a vice president and a secretary. A vice president and secretary shall be elected by the Senate as a whole at the April meeting, and will succeed to their respective offices at the beginning of the next fiscal year following their election.

  b. In the absence of the president, the vice president shall preside.

  c. The method of election shall be by nominations from the floor and written ballots to be counted at the meeting.

  d. The term of office for the president and secretary shall be one year.

  e. The vice president shall be the president-elect and will succeed to the presidency at the beginning of the next fiscal year.

Section 2: Certification of Officers.

  a. Elected officers shall certify their willingness to perform their duties.

Section 3 Duties of Officers.

  a. The President of the Faculty Senate shall

    (1) preside over all meetings.

    (2) circulate the agenda of each regular meeting to the faculty no later than one week prior to the meeting.

    (3) prepare an annual report, which shall be distributed to the faculty prior to the final spring semester general faculty meeting.

    (4) create any administrative arrangements and agencies necessary to conduct Senate business and activities (e.g., select ad hoc committees, liaisons, special appointments).

  b. The Vice President of the Faculty Senate shall perform the functions of the president in the event the president is unable to do so.

  c. The Secretary of the Faculty Senate shall

    (1) keep the minutes.

    (2) distribute the minutes to the faculty no later than one week prior to the next regularly scheduled Senate meeting.

    (3) engage in correspondence.

    (4) perform the functions of the president in the event the vice president is unable to do so.

Section 4: Committee on Committees.

Before the end of the fiscal year, the officers, meeting as a Committee on Committees, shall appoint the members of the standing committees, except the Executive Committee, for the following fiscal year.

Section 5: Filling a Vacancy.

  a. Vacancies in the offices of vice president and secretary shall be filled by an election at a Senate Meeting where nominations are taken from the floor and written ballots are used to count the votes. The president may appoint a Senator to fill the vacant position(s) until the election process is completed.

  b. If the president is unable to perform the duties of the presidency due to illness, absence from FHSU or other conflicts and the inability to perform exceeds 60 days, then the Faculty Senate Executive Committee may, for the good of the Senate, take certain actions.

    The Executive Committee may authorize the vice president to assume the position of the presidency for that remaining year. The Committee may also request that the absent president become the Senate president the following year. If the vacating Senate president is not able or willing to serve in that capacity the following year, then the Executive Committee will request an election for a new vice president as prescribed in ARTICLE IV – Officers, Section 1 c.

[as amended by Faculty, November 1998; resolution 9899-21]

Section 6: Administrative Support.

The University Administration shall provide one-quarter reassigned time for the Faculty Senate president with an additional one-quarter reassigned time to be provided by the department from which the Faculty Senate president is elected. In addition, the University Administration shall provide an office, appropriately equipped and staffed for the performance of the official functions of the Faculty Senate.


Article V--Meetings

Section 1: Regular Meetings.

  a. Regular meetings of the Faculty Senate shall be held from September through May.

  b. Monthly meeting times shall alternate between Mondays and Tuesdays at 3:30 p.m.

Section 2: Special Meetings.

  a. Special meetings shall be called by the president upon the written request of twenty percent of the senators or ten percent of the faculty, or upon the request of the Executive Committee or President of the University.

  b. Special meetings shall consider only the issue for which they are called.

  c. If a special meeting is called to meet a short deadline for a Senate decision imposed by the Board of Regents or the university administration, then a written and/or e-mail notice of the meeting must be sent to all Senators at least one week prior to the special meeting date. If a quorum of the Senators is not obtained at the special meeting, then the Executive Committee may act on behalf of the Senate with advice and guidance of the Senators present at the meeting.

Section 3: Quorum and Majority.

  a. A quorum for the conduct of business shall be a majority of the members.

  b. Decisions in all matters except Standing Rules shall be by majority of those voting.

Section 4: Order of Business.

The usual order of business for regular meetings shall be the following.

  a. Roll call.

  b. Minutes of the previous meeting.

  c. Announcements.

  d. Reports of standing committees.

  e. Reports of special committees.

  f. Unfinished business.

  g. New business.

  h. Adjournment.

Section 5: Open Meetings.

  a. Meetings of the Faculty Senate will be open in accordance with statutes of the State of Kansas.

  b. Nonmembers will be seated in a separate section and may address the Senate upon recognition by the president.

  c. Upon request, the President of the University shall be recognized by the President of the Faculty Senate.

  d. The presiding officer may cause anyone who disrupts the proceedings to be ejected.

Section 6: General Faculty Meeting.

The President of the University shall call a general meeting of all faculty before the end of the spring semester for the purpose of reviewing the annual report of the President of the Faculty Senate. At the university faculty meeting in the fall, the President of the Senate shall report on the summer activities of the Senate.

Section 7: Parliamentary Procedure.

  a. Robert's Rules of Order, newly revised, shall govern the meetings of the Faculty Senate in all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are consistent with these Bylaws or the Standing Rules.

  b. A parliamentary consultant shall be appointed by the Executive Committee of the Senate.

Section 8: Standing Rules.

  a. The Faculty Senate may, upon two-thirds vote of the Senate, adopt, amend or repeal Standing Rules governing its operations.

  b. A record of the Standing Rules and Bylaws will be kept and made available.


Article VI--Committees

Section 1: Powers and Functions of Committees.

  a. Standing committees shall be responsible for recommending policies and actions on items referred to them and for formulating recommendations in the area of their responsibilities for the consideration of the Faculty Senate.

  b. Standing committees of the Faculty Senate may establish subcommittees as needed; subcommittees may consult with other members of the faculty, members of the administration, or students.

  c. Each standing committee, special committee, and subcommittee shall elect its own chair and secretary.

  d. Each committee shall submit written reports of its recommendations to the Executive Committee, which shall put them on the agenda.

  e. A majority of committee members shall constitute a quorum for meetings.

Section 2: Standing Committees.

  a. The Executive Committee.

    (1) The Executive Committee shall consist of the President, Vice President, immediate past President, and Secretary of the Faculty Senate and the chairs of the other standing committees.

    (2) The Executive Committee shall

      (a) receive proposals.

      (b) provide for negotiation with the President of the University in the event a Senate recommendation is disapproved.

      (c) provide liaison between the Senate and other components of the University.

  b. The Academic Affairs Committee.

    (1) The Academic Affairs Committee shall consist of at least nine members.

    (2) The Academic Affairs Committee shall be concerned with curriculum, educational improvement, general education, instructional technology, research, specialized accreditation, faculty recognition, program discontinuation, Virtual College course development and redevelopment, and other matters regarding the academic program of the University.

  c. The Strategic Planning and Improvement Committee.

    (1) The Strategic Planning and Improvement Committee shall consist of at least three members.

    (2) The Strategic Planning and Improvement Committee shall provide input to the University's President and Vice Presidents regarding strategic goal setting, action planning, and continuous quality improvements efforts.  It shall concern itself with the Bylaws and Standing Rules of the Faculty Senate and review them for amendment at least every three years.

  d. The University Affairs Committee.

    (1) The University Affairs Committee shall consist of at least seven members.

    (2) The University Affairs Committee shall be concerned with policies regarding appointments, promotions, tenure, buildings, budgets, professional ethics, and maintaining formalized contact with classified staff.

    (3) This committee shall provide the due process called for by the AAUP Statement on Academic Freedom and Tenure in the event such should become necessary.

    (4) In all cases wherein a faculty member must have a hearing, the University Affairs Committee shall nominate a panel of at least five members of the faculty who have tenure; this nomination shall be subject to approval by the Senate.

  e. The Student Affairs Committee.

    (1) The Student Affairs Committee shall consist of at least five members.

    (2) The Student Affairs Committee shall concern itself with relations between the faculty and the student government, leadership of the Division of Student Affairs, and policies regarding student services and student rights, after due consultation with administrative staff concerned with student affairs.

    (3) The Student Affairs Committee shall lay before the Faculty Senate any proposal that the Student Senate wishes the Faculty Senate to consider.

    (4) After appropriate consultation with representatives from the Student Senate and administrative staff concerned with student affairs, the Student Affairs Committee shall recommend to the Senate regulations of the University, and the means of enforcement and appeal.

  f. The Partnerships and Technology Committee.

    (1) The Partnerships and Technology Committee shall consist of at least five (5) members.

    (2) It shall concern itself with the development and maintenance of all University strategic partnerships, domestic and international.  The committee will also provide input to all appropriate university administration regarding technology needs of the faculty not limited to on-campus classrooms, faculty computers, and educational technology for in-person and online class delivery.

Section 3: Appointment Power of the President of the University.

Nothing in these Bylaws shall be taken to limit the power of the President of the University to appoint committees to assist or advise him/her in any matter.

Section 4: Committee Appointment Procedure.

  a. After the spring election of new senators for the following fiscal year, the president shall request of the newly elected members and all continuing senators that they submit, to the president, their requests for appointments to committees for the following fiscal year.

  b. Each senator, except the officers, shall serve on one standing committee and may serve as representative of the Senate on no more than one other campus committee.

  c. The President of the Senate shall announce the committee assignments at the first senate meeting of the new fiscal year and shall at the same time designate a temporary chair of each committee to preside over its organizational meeting to be held at least one week before the first senate meeting of the academic year.

  d. The president, at the first senate meeting of the academic year, will introduce the new senators and the chair of each senate committee, who in turn will introduce his/her committee members.


Article VII--Initiative, Referendum and Recall

Section 1: Initiative.

  a. Any petition signed by eight members of the faculty shall be sufficient to lay a proposal before the Faculty Senate.

  b. The President of the University shall also have the power to lay a proposal before the Senate.

Section 2: Referendum.

Any petition signed by twenty-five percent of the faculty shall be sufficient to cause the President of the Faculty Senate to conduct a referendum on any action of the Senate as specified by the petition.

Section 3: Recall.

Any petition signed by one-third of the members of any department shall be sufficient to cause a vote on the recall of any of its representatives and the election of a replacement, such vote and election to be held by a method in conformity with Article III of these Bylaws.


Article VIII--Ratification and Amendment

Section 1: Ratification.

These Bylaws shall be ratified at the moment of their approval by a majority of the faculty by written ballot within one week after a general faculty meeting called to discuss the Bylaws, and by the President of the University.

Section 2: Amendment.

  a. An amendment to these Bylaws may be proposed by a majority vote of the entire senate membership.

  b. A proposed amendment shall be ratified by a majority vote of the faculty members voting, provided that the amendment has been circulated to the faculty at least one week prior to a mail ballot.


Revised by Faculty Senate (11-2006, 04-26-13, 2-28-14).

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