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Washington State University
Washington State University Responses to Constituent Concerns

Constituent Concerns with Responses

Show All Submitted Concerns

  • Parking Inflation

    In a moment where inflation is at a 40-year high and salaries remain both consistently low and stagnant (in the midst of inflation, the lack of even of a cost of living adjustments constitutes a pay cut) for faculty and staff, the possibility of a parking hike is both outrageous and predicable given the leadership of this university. What is the faculty senate doing to increase salaries for faculty and staff; what efforts are being made to combat the level of inflation not only seen nationally but in our own backyard .err parking lots?

    Dr. David Leonard
    School of Languages, Cultures and Race

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  • Costs to Move The President Downtown

    What are the costs of moving the president and the Office of the President to Downtown Pullman? What are the costs of moving the chancellor/provost into the president’s former office suit? What are the benefits, beyond symbolic?

    Like concerns about the creation of more administrative positions, one has to question if this is a priority given the ongoing budgetary challenges and the endless demands to faculty and staff to do more with less.

    David Leonard
    School of Languages, Cultures and Race

     

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  • Vice-chancellor Position & Administrative Expenses Concern

    One of the constituents in my college has concerns about the new vice-chancellor position.

    “In light of WSU’s higher than average expenditures on administration versus instruction compared its peers. I think the senate should consider if this new vice-chancellor position is actually needed, and should open a dialogue with the Pullman Chancellor concerning this issue.”

    https://www.howcollegesspendmoney.com/

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  • Constituent Concern Re: Land Grant Revenue

    How does WSU spend ‘Grant Lands’ revenue?

    During the December 9, 2021 Faculty Senate meeting with Provost Chilton and VP Pearson regarding the WSU budget plan, I asked for information regarding the annual revenue produced by tribal lands granted to WSU in 1890. Provost Chilton helpfully suggested that I provide my questions in writing so that they could be addressed more fully. I did so later that evening in an email that simply restated the information I provided during the Faculty Senate meeting:

    In 1890, our institution was granted 90,000 beneficial acres of tribal land that was appropriated as part of the Morrill Act of … » More …

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  • Concern for In-person Classes during the Omicron Outbreak

    I have had numerous constituents concerns from the Vancouver campus. To summarize:

    As the Omicron variant develops and we know more about it, it looks like the original message from December is already dated (https://from.wsu.edu/covid-19/2021/omicron-variant/email.html). In particular, regular 2-dose vaccination is not as effective in combating Omicron, and the new strain is MUCH more transmissible. Would the administration take more active and targeted measures to avoid what likely will be super-spreader events starting next week when classes begin? Specifically, allowing for more flexible local responses from different campuses that reflect the situation on that specific campus.

    I am also including a copy of a faculty … » More …

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  • Problems with curricular “compromise,” and a request for change.

    The many problems with the curricular “compromise” that pits diversity courses against EQJS. Students should be required to take EQJS and Diversity courses. Make real change.

    I oppose the change to the university diversity requirement as currently configured. As someone who played a role in drafting of the original proposal, this purported compromise renders the potential progress in this curricular change null and void. The shift to allowing students to pick between diversity and EQJS is a HUGE step backward, a betrayal to the work of the committee, to the demands from students over the years, and an afront those efforts to address campus climate … » More …

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  • Inability to give ‘soft money’ technicians a pay raise

    One of my faculty constituents wants to give a field technician a raise. This technician is essential to the program, has a Ph.D. and is supported by grant funds (soft money). This particular program has a history of losing field technicians due to non-competitive salaries. The faculty member would like to know why WSU wants to control the ability of faculty to give raises to employees that are funded from grants and/or commission funds. The department chair approved the raise but it was denied at a higher administrative level. The faculty member has heard from two other faculty with the same concern.

    Michael Neff, – … » More …

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  • Written policy on non vaccine compliance

    I understand that Oct 4th is the last day for faculty, staff, and students to finish their vaccine regimen. To continue operations with potential employee loss after Oct 18, unit leadership needs written policies that include

    1) Classified Staff. Since these staff members are under a collective bargaining agreement, will this be different than AP Staff? What will happen if they have not either been vaccinated or granted an exemption by this date

    2) Undergraduate students who are also WSU time slip employees.

    3) Career track faculty

    4) Tenure track faculty

    5) Graduate students. Will grad TAs lose tuition waivers?

    We need a clear written … » More …

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  • Updates on COVID precautions

    I appreciate the prior responses from administration. However, I and many of my colleagues and students are wondering where are the updates on WSU COVID vax rates and response rates as the deadline for reporting status for faculty, staff and students has passed? The last update seems to have been late Aug, and I have noticed the Whitman county COVID infection rates are rising precipitously, with overall vax rates for the county not really changed. Where does WSU stand?

    Also, the UW has really prepared well for the quarter. They have a UW COVID dashboard, ongoing testing through the Husky Testing program, some schools and … » More …

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  • Concerns about salary being offered permanent employees in Spokane

    We have been trying to hire research staff. As everyone has heard, Spokane is getting very expensive. I was shocked to see the salary we were approved to offer, which was $31k for a research study assistant position for a candidate who has a bachelor’s and is 3 years postbacc (but had not had prior research experience). It was just about 300% the poverty level in Spokane (which is a level where benefits could even start kicking in). We were able to get up to $34k, but that’s not a lot better, and we have learned our offers are just not competitive other academic institutions.

    » More …

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  • Constituent Concern: Communication from Central Administration

    Faculty and staff receive numerous email communications from the central administration regarding COVID-19 policies, return to work policies, memoranda regarding instruction, and the like. Unfortunately, I have found many of these communications to be poorly written and/or organized, both in terms of the email text and associated attachments, and many contain links that are either broken or that point to pages that have nothing to do with the matter at hand.

    Taking the time to wade through the avalanche of communications is time consuming, and it is especially frustrating when these communications do not convey important information in a cogent matter. I ask that the … » More …

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  • Constituent Concern: COVID 19 Budget Issues and Priorities

    Today VP of Finance and Admin, Stacy Pearson, circulated a letter concerning budget stress due to COVID 19 and subsequent budget priorities. It seems unbelievable that during this crisis WSU administration elected to shift $2,000,000 from student revenue to support the football program. Then our new football coach, the highest paid state employee at about $3,200,000 annually, broadcast to the nation that he did not intend to get vaccinated for personal reasons — a statement clearly contrary to the best interests of WSU. Perhaps the faculty senate could encourage the administration to (1) revisit the football budget in light of recent developments, and (2) explore … » More …

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  • More Questions & Clarifications on Information Provided

    1) About the welcoming week events:

    a. Why did the university sponsor and seek outside sponsorship (BECU) for unmasked and densely populated events to take place before classes started? (CougsGlow dance party = https://twitter.com/WSUPullman/status/1428951054335438848
    b. What safety measures were in place?
    c. Were vaccinations required at the door to get into these events? (As a point of comparison, real actual nightclubs in my community require vaccination proof PLUS masks at the door before entry. As an institution of higher learning, we should be held to a higher standard than nightclubs.)
    d. Why did the university wait to … » More …

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  • Questioning the statistical integrity of the vax rates reported

    The responses we are receiving assume we have poor understanding of basic descriptive statistics. I challenge the recent assertion that >90% of students are vaccinated. You have to report the response rate for that to have any actual context.

     Can we please add a dashboard on the vax status data, by campus, by status (faculty, staff, student)? This would be pretty incentivizing and fun to watch [from a distance] increase over the course of the semester.
    In the meantime, what percentage of the WSU community (reported separately by classification — faculty, staff, students– and by campus):

    Have reported their vaccination status?
    » More …

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  • Please sign this petition for a safer teaching and learning environment at WSU

    The COVID-19 delta variant poses an increasing challenge to WSU students, staff, and faculty. It is also putting our families at risk–our unvaccinated children and immune-compromised family members. It is endangering the larger surrounding community, where the vaccination rate is only 44%. This petition demands for more shared leadership and transparency informing COVID-19 policy, alternative accommodations for more vulnerable constituents, including access to remote learning/teaching, and regular testing and monitoring to detect and contain outbreaks in a timely way.

    I have a list of questions for the administration about the COVID-19 policies and procedures, which some other constituents have noted below. I am very concerned … » More …

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  • Pullman-centric COVID-19 update

    Dear Colleagues – Here are some mostly Pullman-centric factoids about COVID-19 as of 24 Aug 2021.

    The Whitman County case count (293/100,000) is lower than the state level (437.5/100,000).

    The vaccination rate in Pullman is much higher (59%) than other areas (36-39%).

    Local hospital representatives report an increase in case load, but we are doing “ok” overall.

    Approximately 11,300 students have reported their vaccination status (>90% vaccinated) with about 500 reporting personal exemptions (these will have to be adjusted given the recent vaccination mandate). Students have until 10 September to declare their status and WSU is receiving about 200 declarations per day at present. The … » More …

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  • Covid Petition

    Please note the COVID Petition submitted here

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  • Request for further clarification of COVID FAQs

    Could the FAQ-s clarify the types of masks permitted under the governor’s order? It is likely to cause disturbances.
    https://www.doh.wa.gov/Portals/1/Documents/1600/coronavirus/Secretary_of_Health_Order_20-03_Statewide_Face_Coverings.pdf
    p.4:
    “Types of face coverings permitted.
    o For purposes of this order, a face covering must:
    +Fit snugly against the sides of the face;
    + Completely cover the nose and mouth;
    + Be secured with ties, ear loops, elastic bands, or other equally effective method; and
    + Include at least one layer of tightly woven fabric without visible holes, although
    multiple layers are strongly recommended.
    o A face covering may also be a mask or … » More …

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  • The rising covid case rate – even among vaccinated individuals – has many instructors concerned about the university moving forward with face-to-face instruction, especially in large enrollment courses.

    WSU policies surrounding fall 2021 instruction were developed under assumptions about the effectiveness of vaccines and lower positive case rates. These were reasonable policies given the information at the time. Unfortunately, that information is now outdated and obsolete. The rising covid case rate – even among vaccinated individuals – has many instructors concerned about the university moving forward with face-to-face courses. Large enrollment courses (> 60 or >100 students) are particularly worrisome. Recent data and local health trends suggest that the administration should reconsider its current instructional policy, and allow online/hybrid instruction to ensure the safety of students, staff, and the community.

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  • There is no plan for what happens to an instructor if/when they fall ill.

    There are many unanswered questions about the logistics of moving forward. To name a few:

    1. If a course is billed as FTF, can an instructor flip to SO or hybrid if they get sick? Now such changes are not being considered (apparently)

    2. What if they are too sick to teach–who steps in?

    3. Does an instructor infected with Covid on campus file a worker compensation claim if they need medical treatment and/or return to work benefits? Our state considers an illness that arises out of and in the course of their employment as eligible for workers compensation?

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  • Hybrid Models of Teaching for Primary Caregivers given Delta

    Along with many of my colleagues I am adamant that the administration re-implement the hybrid model of teaching for those with medical or caregiver needs. My two boys are 3 years and 10 months, and they have never even had a cold. My significant other and I both teach large scale classes and are essentially being asked to expose ourselves, and therefore our children, to over 300 students multiple times a week. A mask mandate is a first step, but the Delta variant requires that the hybrid model must be an option. We know it works pedagogically and also keeps us and our children safe. … » More …

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  • Alternatives for Primary Caregivers Given Rise in Delta

    Given the recent news on both the contagiousness and the deleterious effects of the new Delta variant, especially on children, I find it my utmost responsibility to do everything in my power to keep my two, very young, unvaccinated children safe. If the latest numbers on the spread of COVID in Whitman county are correct (a 300-599% increase in the last 30 days), alongside our pandemic history this time last year (#1 New York Times hot spot) I really prefer to go back to a hybrid model of teaching that keeps me (and therefore my children!) socially distanced from students. Given the latest memo from … » More …

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  • COVID-19 public safety protocols at WSU concerning

    Given the rise of the delta variant, I am incredibly worried about the public health implications (and for my family’s health) of returning in person next week.

    I cannot believe I am saying this at an institution of higher learning—even the full-on commercial ventures have put off bringing people back into offices this fall (Google, Amazon) — but here it is. This is irresponsible from a public health perspective. There is no universal masking, no strict requirement that people are vaccinated. (Even with tightening on “personal reasons,” people do not have to be fully vaxxed until well into the school year, after the damage is … » More …

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  • Ditto others’ concerns: we need a mask mandate ASAP

    Federal, state, and county public health officials strongly recommend masking indoors regardless of vaccination status. We would do well to follow UW’s lead and mandate masks. Here’s hoping Gov. Inslee issues a mask mandate soon so that WSU must comply.

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  • I am concerned about the lack of a mandatory mask policy for Fall 2021.

    Given the spread of Delta, I am concerned about the lack of a mandatory mask policy for the Fall 2021 semester.

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  • Ask not what your university can do for you …

    As faculty/staff as well as a graduate student, I have serious reservations about not requiring student vaccination. This pandemic is clearly still a danger to all, and without a commitment from everyone to the benefit of all, this university—already on shaky ground in several ways—will suffer horribly. Ask not what your university can do for you, after all: Ask what you can do for your university and its community.

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  • Covid 19 delta varient

    Given the Delta variant is more contagious, leads to more breakthrough cases, especially in older adults or immunocompromised individuals, and makes children who are not vaccine eligible sick in a way that the original COVID strain did not, I am concerned about the lack of a mask mandate for classrooms. Many member of the campus community, such as myself, live in multi-generational homes. In order to keep our families and greater community safe I would like to recommend a mask mandate regardless of vaccination status.

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  • WSU contingency planning for the Delta variant

    I am concerned about the lack of communication and contingency planning for the possibility that the Delta variant of the Covid virus causes a major rise in cases in the WSU community. Do we have plans in place, or at least under development, to fall back to on-line learning, social distancing, and mandatory masking? These are unpleasant possibilities but the community will, in my view, respond much more united and committed if the realities are laid out, plans are publicized well ahead of time, and specific benchmarks are identified that would trigger a contingency response. On the other hand, the lack of such public communication … » More …

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  • We need a mask mandate in the classroom

    In light of the emergence and spread of the Delta variant, which seems to be making children more sick than the OG COVID-19, and causing more breakthrough infections in vaccinated people, it seems irresponsible to be sending instructors in full capacity classrooms where students will not be required to wear masks unless they are unvaccinated. Many instructors have young children at home who are not vaccine eligible and would thus be put at risk by parents’ exposure. The CDC is recommending mask wearing for indoors in areas of high transmission, which Whitman county is (and that is before the full return of students). As an … » More …

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  • testing

    Why is WSU not screening and routinely testing for Covid-19? Why do we not have asymptomatic testing available even on a voluntary basis? Other universities seem to be able to handle the logistics, short-term, expense, etc. Why is it that we just do the minimum and then just hope it doesn’t blow up in our faces?

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  • Fall 2021 mask mandates

    Given changing guidance from the CDC for vaccinated people, and the likely spike in cases as many people move into town in August and begin mixing on and off campus, why not require all students, faculty, and staff to mask?

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  • Using a tuition increase to provide relief to students is self-defeating

    [Please post anonymously. Thank you!]
    I applaud the intention to “support mental health, housing, and food insecurity services for students and will provide additional tuition waivers for students who are having difficulties paying for college” described in this article on the proposed tuition increase: https://news.wsu.edu/2021/04/29/wsu-regents-consider-tuition-increase-budget-items-may-7-meeting/ . However, I’m concerned that raising tuition to fund these efforts would do more harm than good and may defeat their purpose. Tuition costs contribute to food insecurity, housing insecurity, and stress, and a tuition increase across the board will have an impact on low- and middle-income students that the university may not be able to remedy through redistribution. … » More …

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  • Student vaccination requirement

    Is WSU considering requiring students to prove they have been vaccinated before allowing them back on campus? I believe Rutgers is requiring it and there are several other schools that are considering it. Is WSU? I’m not going to feel safe if students are going to misbehave and not follow rules, like wearing a mask etc.

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  • Questions surrounding return to face-to-face Instruction in the fall

    Anonymous constituent concern from 4/7/2021. These questions relate to all campuses.

    Who are the members of the WSU Testing, Attestation, and Contact Tracing (TACT) Committee, their departmental/campus affiliations, and how can members of the university community contact them with concerns or questions?
    We have learned that a 3-foot distancing requirement is to be implemented in classrooms in fall. Where is the data that supports this move? While the CDC has approved 3-foot distancing for K-12 students, their adult teachers are still supposed to remain 6 feet away from them, and from other adults (“CDC continues to recommend at least 6 feet of distance: … » More …

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  • Concerns of Faculty Regarding Fall 2021 Instructional Modes and Transparency of Decision-making

    Shared on behalf of constituent faculty members:

    We understand that there is still much uncertainty about the Fall 2021 semester and that plans are in flux. However, the current planning strategy is causing frustration and concern among some faculty, especially because the communication to faculty from the Provost’s Office has been sparse and vague.

    The following are concerns some faculty have expressed regarding the instructional modes and transparency of decision-making. As members of a research-intensive university, we are asking for evidence in support of student preferences, pedagogical reasons for the instructional modes, and other decisions being made for the Fall 2021 semester. Additionally, … » More …

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  • Concerns with Workday Personal Profile Section

    In the “Personal Profile” section of Workday, there is a required gender field containing problematic language that both others trans-binary individuals and ignores all other gender non-conforming identities. Since reviewing the Personal Profile is an explicit direction in the “First 30 Days” manual, the likelihood of multiple individuals being affected is high. At this time, I would like faculty senate to encourage adjusting the existing options as well as implementing a more inclusive option for gender non-conforming individuals.

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  • Free parking for students seeking services is no longer available at Cougar Health Services.

    Posted for Faculty Senate’s consideration on behalf of the Clinical Psychology Graduate Student Organization:

    To Whom it May Concern,

    This is an open letter in response to the recent decision by WSU Cougar Health Services administration to implement a parking fee for the parking lot in front of the Washington building.

    The building this lot is attached to is Cougar Health Services which houses the student medical center, the psychological services center, and the Access Center—where students go to receive disability services.

    For context, this parking lot has historically been free but required obtaining a parking token while receiving services in order to exit the … » More …

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  • Assigning designations to our 6 campuses

    On September 30, 2020, President Schulz included in an email to the university community the suggestion of using descriptors for the different campuses. I ask that this be reconsidered. Offering some campuses with a specific descriptor (e.g., HEALTH SCIENCES CAMPUS: SPOKANE; FLAGSHIP CAMPUS: PULLMAN) but not others (e.g., REGIONAL CAMPUSES: EVERETT, TRI CITIES, AND VANCOUVER) implies a tiered status, which could impede applicants and opportunities for Everett/Tri Cities/Vancouver as well as neglect the true diversity and unique qualities each campus brings to the system.

    I ask that the campus’ descriptor titles be discussed further to reflect the “one university/geographically dispersed” practice.

    From the President’s September … » More …

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  • Spring Break

    We understand the goal the WSU administration wants to accomplish by canceling spring break. And we understand they made this decision based on the concern of spreading COVID and bringing back more cases because we also share those concerns. But the logic is skewed, misguided, misinformed, and focusing on the wrong thing.

    Instead, WSU should be implementing repercussions for the people who choose to party or not wear masks despite WSU’s COVID policy. Other universities have implemented punishments for people they discover not following their policies. For example, NMSU mandates a day-long zoom class with an essay for first-time offenders. As far as I know, … » More …

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  • Cancellation of spring break

    This is an extreme decision made with zero input from students. This is a huge inequitable practice that will cause more harm than good for students. By letting this decision pass, you are putting your students last.

    Response:  This COVID-19 emergency measure was put forward from the Provost’s Office, discussed during the September 24 and October 8 Faculty Senate meetings and then passed by the Faculty Senate on October 8.

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  • Cancellation of Spring Break

    Spring break needs to be re-instated, my club FormulaVanCougs Electric where we design and build electric racecars use that time to fundraise and meet with potential sponsors to lobby for funding which is vital for our club, we have already missed the time window to apply for senate funding because our campus’s Office of Student Involvement failed to notify any of our club members of when the application period started and when it closed. We just got John Lynch as our faculty advisor and now we are getting set back after setback. We don’t need more time for winter break we need time off for … » More …

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  • Cluster Hire Turnaround

    While it is commendable (and perhaps overdue) that the Provost’s office is willing to fund a cluster hire around racism and social inequality, it is, frankly, irresponsible and undermining to demand that full-blown, interdisciplinary proposals, endorsed by college/campus leadership, be completed within only seven days. Such a short timeframe, unreasonable even under normal circumstances, is necessarily disadvantageous to those individuals who are already working beyond capacity due to the pandemic (many of whom belong, ironically, to groups affected by existing structures of inequality), and to dangle such a funding opportunity in a time of overall austerity without providing the appropriate time to respond to it … » More …

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  • Impact of the new spring schedule on faculty salaries

    Many of my constituents have contacted me with this concern: with the extended winter break now in the new Spring schedule, how will this affect the pay cycles for those faculty on 9-month appointment?

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  • Impact of resuming Pac-12 football in Pullman this Nov

    On September 24th, Pac-12 officials announced resumption of football games, including three scheduled for Martin Stadium (Nov. 14th, Nov. 27th, and Dec. 12th). Fans will not be allowed into the stadium, but WSU has a long history of enthusiastic “tail gating” as an alternative means of attending and supporting football. From a public health perspective, and in the interests of our community’s hopes of reopening K-12 public schools, is anything being done to discourage people from coming to Pullman for these games and participating in traditional tail-gating activities?

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  • Adjustment to Spring 2021 Academic Calendar

    I’m concerned with WSU making such changes to the academic calendar in regards to spring break without considering the actual functional purpose within the academic structure for faculty, students and staff. That said, this is not enough time for faculty to do field work or make changes to research plans. I would rather see us possibly make spring break later in the semester or have the semester end a week later as well as consider other remedies before taking action on this agenda item. My primary point, as always, is if there has been enough discussion on the matter or consideration of the long-term ramifications … » More …

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  • Proposed changes to S2021 academic calendar

    Dear Senators,
    I would like to voice my concerns on the proposed changes to the Spring 2021 academic calendar. I understand the reasoning behind the benefits for delayed start section, but I disagree that finals week can be counted as a week of instruction; 1) no class meetings other than the final exam time is scheduled during finals week so there is no class instruction that week; 2) many classes do not require a final exam so again no meetings that week. MWF classes historically lose 2 lecture days per semester and that will not change so now MWF classes will lose 5 lectures; … » More …

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  • Altered Spring Schedule

    I am writing in support of the proposed change to the Spring semester schedule. Such a change seems wise from a COVID-19 perspective. Additionally, from a faculty perspective, it would give an additional 2 weeks to prep Spring classes for online delivery. While we had all summer to work on fall classes, the winter break is much shorter. So, personally, I would welcome those extra 2 weeks!

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  • WSU’s use of, and statements supporting, ProctorU and/or other proctoring technologies

    On Friday, September 25th Provost Chilton sent out a statement about the University’s utilization of ProctorU to “monitor tests administrated remotely.” As a faculty member and librarian, this statement felt wholly insufficient to address real concerns held by students, parents, and other stakeholders. Not only did this statement insufficiently address issues of privacy and surveillance, but it directly ignored concerns surrounding the inequities that proctoring technologies uphold.

    These concerns include, but are not limited to:
    – Exacerbated mental distress during testing
    – Utilization of racist, ableist, and transphobic technologies
    – Inaccessibility based on technological needs and ability to have an adequate space … » More …

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  • Adjustment to Spring 2021 Academic Calendar

    The memo sent by the Provost proposes to start two weeks later, which means January 25th, 2021.
    However, the memo mentions Martin Luther King Jr. Day as a day off.
    What’s the “official” beginning of Spring 2021 semester date that the Provost is using to base the proposed change on?
    According to the Registrar, next semester starts on January 11th.
    Could you please clarify?
    Thanks!

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  • Black Lives Matter

    I came to WSU in 1970, since then I’ve seen the social, cultural, academic, and athletic contribution from African-Americans, a minority that has fought for the rights of other minorities such as mine (I am Mexican). I believe that now it is time for WSU to come to the front in this matter by adding to the WSU logo painted on Pullman’s streets a “Black Lives Matter” sign, or a sing on Stadium Way. A letter from the President (as is the usual response) is not longer enough to give support to that important movement. I as a member of a minority, WSU faculty, and … » More …

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  • Notebooks and colored paper

    According to our guidelines for tenure and promotion, candidates must submit a notebook, and paper colors are specified. Modifications may be made because of Covid-19 (awaiting updates), but when will modifications be made to make the process fully digital? The current process is inconsistent with our drive to modernize, and needs to reflect our 21st century setting.

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  • University should consider final grade deadline extension

    While WSU has implemented a variety of accommodations to help students succeed during this difficult semester, very little has been implemented for career-track faculty with heavy teaching loads that have suddenly become much heavier. The university should consider an extension for the final grade submission deadline. Some career-track faculty have a teaching load of five classes with enrollments of up to 40 students per course without grading support. Additionally, we have been encouraged to use alternatives to multiple-choice exams to limit proctoring costs, and to be lenient with students who need additional time or resources. Career-track faculty with the highest teaching loads are disproportionately women, … » More …

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  • Confusing messaging surrounding COVID 19

    On March 9th, a message was sent to WSU’s student body with a section heading of “Facts not Fear.” I’m concerned about both facts and fear as it relate to the roll-out of messages from WSU administration.
    1) On Friday, March 6th, President Schulz tweeted one message that I believe to be lacking proper context and retweeted something that included misinformation about COVID 19. His first tweet was about how WSU will be in session after Spring Break and that students should plan to return. No mention was made of making decisions with current information, or on the basis of wider public health. More … » More …

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  • Online courses

    I have had several concerns expressed about the way in which the entire burden of certain expenses is placed on the department. Global campus expects departments to be prepared to fully fund course redesigns. Departments are expected to fund all expenses for disability-related accommodations, interim measures for CRCI reports, temporary teaching for family and medical leave. These costs are especially onerous for smaller departments, and sadly, many of them might be incentivized to ignore responsibilities because they can’t afford to pay out of their already strapped budgets. These kinds of expenses should be funded centrally, so that all employees and students have access to the … » More …

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  • Changes to the scholarship/service language for career track

    I am very concerned about the changes that say “some service and little or no scholarship.” My contract is 80% teaching, 10% service, 10% scholarship. I am very concerned that these guidelines will be used to discount my creative and scholarly activity when it comes to promotion. I believe the wording should take the scholarship of career track faculty seriously, allowing us to be evaluated based on how well we fulfill our contract. I’m also very concerned that this will be used as a way to offload service from tenure track faculty to career track faculty, even though tenure track faculty often have 20% service … » More …

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  • I am concerned about the justification provided by WSU Transportation Services for a parking rate increase, and would like more clarification regarding their published budget.

    On 2/6/2020 we received notifications from WSU Transportation Services proposing that parking rates should increase. The justification for this increase was centered around a need to generate an additional $4.8 M over 8 years to cover “capital maintenance and repair projects”.

    I have several concerns:
    First, according to transportation’s publicly available budget, they already account for costs associated with maintenance ($536,109 / yr) as well as depreciation ($619,992 / yr accounted for in real dollars). Why then, is there a need to spend more on maintenance and repair projects?

    Second, in the budget there is a ($989,450 / yr) line item for “Debt Service”. … » More …

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  • Increase in Parking Rates

    This was forwarded to me about the recently announced increases in parking rates on Campus:

    “I know faculty senate loves parking issues; However, it seems to me that faculty senate is the only way there is push back on raising prices. When the university is providing 1.5% raises and then raising parking in some instances more than 10% something seems off. Add to that the amount of extra money they are making with tickets on the backs of students https://dailyevergreen.com/61732/news/parking-fines-resulted-in-over-half-a-million-dollars-in-2019/ ”

    “…At the end of the day, this won’t adversely affect me, but there are people who work here that this will be a bad … » More …

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  • EP29 and the inherent disconnect between Pullman and the other campuses.

    As we now have a committee and a consultant dedicated to reviewing EP-29 and the the relationship between and among the campuses, I would like to state the following concern: it is naive, dysfunctional, and (in some cases) crazy-making to insist that academic-unit leadership reside in Pullman without any input from that leadership concerning the allocation of resources. I know of no model anywhere, public or private, academic or corporate, for which this principal works. Academic decisions *are* (as often as not) decisions about how to best allocate limited resources–both to promote academic vision and goals, and to assure that our students, faculty, and staff … » More …

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  • Can we delay the search for a provost until we have resolved/clarified EP 29? It seems that this is a glaring infrastructural problem for the incoming provost.

    With a firm in the process of calculating solutions to our system and clarifying EP 29 it seems difficult to communicate to incoming candidates the state of affairs at WSU. Shouldn’t we solidify and clarify the reporting structure prior to the search for a provost? Wouldn’t it be best to be able to establish and test a new structure without a new provost?

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  • My concern is that we get wsu *ready* for a new provost to be successful.

    There has been talk about what we need to do to attract good candidates and also how to conduct the search. These are really important given our circumstances. Beyond that, I’d like us to be talking about what we need to do at WSU to be ready for the next person to be successful. What change in structures and relationships need to be revised so the Provost can engage in productive decision making? What constituencies inside and outside of the university need to be engaged with such that our next Provost can arrive and actually move us forward?

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  • Provost Search

    For the second time in a row, an external provost search has ended with the selected provost stepping down to become a regular WSU faculty member within the first weeks of assuming the office. In the first case, under President Floyd, the person was paid his full provost salary for seven years after stepping down, because that was what was stipulated in his contract when he assumed the provost’s office. The question now that this has happened a second time is: is the latest provost to step down, Prof. Montoya, also going to be paid her full provost salary for the next seven years, or … » More …

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  • Real Life Church on Campus

    Are there potential issues concerning WSU leasing space to Real Life in Daggy Hall, together with concomitant semi-permanent displays in and near Daggy?

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  • Online courses killing face to face classes

    This semester, when I try to check course enrollments for the Pullman campuses, 75% of the time, I am immediately directed to global campus offerings. Though I understand that students deserve the option, the automatic re-direct is killing face to face classes. Please make changes so students can see all options when they click on “wsu course schedule.”

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  • Blackboard updates/design is detrimental to student grades and record keeping. The time faculty spend correcting BB is too long and too much.

    Blackboard’s gradebook has become almost non-workable. Fall 2018 changes altered the way the gradebook looked, and has made it more difficult to see the student grades and more difficult to view the student grades online (for the faculty). This is a problem if you have 20-odd students, I cannot imagine what this is like for a faculty member who has hundreds of students.
    This spring, I found an error in the gradebook (that I didn’t find when checking in Fall) that inflated a student’s grade by a half letter grade–not a real big deal, but it alerted me to be more aware of the … » More …

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