Highlights from the Board Report: April

Highlights from the Board Report is a monthly regular feature that highlights what one person finds to be important from the most recent Board Report. We read it so you don’t have to. You’re welcome.

Well, it’s been awhile since I did one of these, but the February and March Board Reports were getting plenty of attention as it was, so I didn’t think I needed to do any highlights from them. No reason not to do April’s Board Report, though.

~At the March Academic Affairs meeting (which took place in February, remember?), the Chancellor reported on the “PeopleSoft pre-requisite project.” There is no information on what that is, though. I suspect that it has to do with something like, “changing all of the local pre-requisites to make sure that they are all the same (without consideration of (or input on) what impact that will have on students, learning, or colleges) because doing so will mean not having to change (read: pay Oracle for) new capacity.” I am, however, just speculating since to my knowledge, no information on this has been shared with mere faculty, except for the fact of the pre-requisite changes. Ahem.

~Ironically, considering what I just wrote, a PeopleSoft Upgrade is coming (perhaps they will consider “the capacity to support locally approved and determined pre-requisites that fit with the curricular expectations and institutional knowledge of each college’s student learning needs as they do their “gap-fit;” I shall hope for, but not expect it). Also coming soon, an “Investment Manager.” And someone forgot to use Spellcheck (can you find it?). (And with that I think I have exorcised the last of my lingering bitterness for the moment. Sorry. Sometimes one just needs to vent it a bit.)

~Oh, wait. There is a mention of pre-requisites. It’s in the approved March Board Meeting Minutes; the sentences read: “Provost Henderson is also instituting customized career planning for the students and working with OIT to improve our online registration. Many of the pre-requisites were not lined up with the student’s (sic) career choices and the programs they choose.” If anyone knows what that means, please interpret in the comments. Also, the colleges are apparently at 97% compliance with the residency requirement. (Sorry, I was wrong; I guess there was a little left. It’s gone now, though.)

~A new rule was passed that allows the Board to debar potential vendors from the procurement processes of the CCC for shady or illegal dealings.

~Some HR action occurred. Kennedy King got a new interim President, the District Office got a new PART TIME Ethics officer for $75Gs (good work if you can get it–sorry, wrong again; now I’m done), and five of nine hires for the month were hired to work at 226 W. Jackson (dang!); additionally, Jesse Montelongo was moved to the District Office, and Brandon Pendleton returns from Deaning elsewhere to our HR department. Dorothy Clark’s retirement became official, and Chris Kabir (Keenan’s assistant) left us for greener pastures.

~We’ve pretty much used up our grant money. Actually we spent more than 100% of it. Now that is efficiency!

~The District is renting a space for the inspector general and staff so they can “conduct investigations in a discreet and confidential manner.” It will cost no more than $63, 278 a year, not including the estimated $75,000 in furniture. (See? this one is ripe for snarky bitter commentary, and…nothing.)

~We’ve got a fixer of the clocks.

~The Board approved a $1.2 million contract to Sofbang to “design and implement a Hosted Microsoft Exchange Email Managed Services solution” over a five year period, and re-upped with Aztec for another year at the rate of $4200 a month.

~We rented the UIC Forum for graduation for “not more than $65,000.”

~Approved some money to pay for EBSCO.

~FC4 President Ellen Eason Montgomery addressed the Board to present the FC4 Academic Freedom resolution.

If I missed anything, throw it up in the comments! See you in May.

11 thoughts on “Highlights from the Board Report: April

  1. I have concerns about the “PeopleSoft pre-requisite project”, but I’m not sure where to start. I guess a good start would be to know what it is and who is working on the project. As far as I understand it, pre-requisites are about curriculum design, building skills, building content, logical sequencing of student learning outcomes – that kind of thing, which is clearly faculty material.

    If the Project is just about making Peoplesoft actually work to ensure that prerequisites are honored, then fine. Otherwise, I think Faculty Council should invite itself to the table on this one.

    • We’re trying.

      Part of the problem at the moment is that it’s not clear (to anyone, as far as I can tell) which pre-requisite changes were intentional and which were printing errors.

      It’s going to take a bit of time to untangle it all, I suspect.

      • This is what I’ve heard:

        Discipline meetings were held over this semester for faculty to ensure that the prerequisites listed in the catalog descriptions for courses are correct.

        These prerequisites are then being put into peoplesoft so that when students try to register, if they have not met a prereq, they will not be allowed to register.

        The theory is that it will allow more students to register online instead of having to come in and register in person.

        That’s all I know.

        • Some disciplines but not others then–they seem to have left out Humanities (which includes Fine Arts, Music, Philosophy, and Literature)…

          • Right (in my head, those are covered in Fine Arts, but that, too is a multiple discipline category); apologies–no disrespect intended, as I know you know (still worth saying).

          • I never heard of those meetings! I would certainly have had something to say about the prerequisites! Who represented the social sciences?

          • I did not hear of the discipline meetings either. As far as I know, Child Development was not reviewed or there was not a representative from the CD faculty reviewing the prerequisites for the CD program.

  2. In response to the EBSCO fiasco, no bills for Truman or HWC have been paid. In fact, items approved by Provost Henderson for HWC have been rejected for payment. Please don’t ask me who, I don’t know. We have not been able to order paper via the same rejection route. I fear, also, that there sre some new positions being developed that will also be housed at the DO. What’s a poor cat to do?

  3. Is that “less than 65,000 for student graduation” (to rent UIC pavilion space) or Mayor Daley’s farewell/thank you for giving me my job event? Is making his farewell speech and will he be paid?
    Really did all the individual campus graduations costs add up to “less than 65,000” that is like the annual salary of 3 clerical staff that actually “work”!

  4. I have to admit it – I tried really hard to be supportive of new ‘reinvention’ type of things – I didn’t want to be a spastic naysayer of all things DO right off the bat but…well, I have lost the tiny bit of faith I had…the cost for the new (ridiculously (and that is the nicest word I can think of in a public forum) paid PART TIME ethics officer and the new office for the ‘investigators’ plus their new furniture could hire desperately needed faculty, could expand and update equipment and facilities, could make sure departments actually have staff and supplies to run efficiently for students sake, etc. – it seems UNethical to pay that much to a part time position.

    I am left constantly asking myself when I read board reports or get wind of decisions (orange? to just name one)…”um…why?”

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