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org Dear Dr. Manning: I write to request a Higher Learning Commission investigation and consideration of sanction based on violations of the HLC governance criteria by the North Dakota State Board of Higher Education, which governs all public institutions of higher education in the state. Actions of the board and its chancellor prompt this request. There is no complaint against any of the HLC-accredited institutions themselves. The complaint is based on HLC’s Guiding Value on governance and related criteria. The Criteria for Accreditation: Guiding Values 7. Governance for the well-being of the institution The well-being of an institution requires that its governing board place that well-being above the interests of its own members and the interests of any other entity. Because the Commission accredits the educational institution itself, and not the state system, … it holds the governing board of an institution accountable for the key aspects of the institution’s operations. The governing board must have the independent authority for such accountability and must also hold itself independent of undue influence from individuals, be they donors, elected officials, supporters of athletics, shareholders, or others with personal or political interests. Governance of a quality institution of higher education will include a significant role for faculty, in particular with regard to currency and sufficiency of the curriculum, expectations for student performance, qualifications of the instructional staff, and adequacy of resources for instructional support. This guiding value strongly emphasizes that the governing board must focus on the well-being of the institution. The State Board of Higher Education governs 10 institutions, one of which oversees the work of an 11th. This complaint points out that the board has allowed itself to be systematically cut off from direct contact with the institutions and their presidents. Few board meetings take place on campuses other than the one in Bismarck, and the new protocol eliminated long-standing social and presentation occasions that gave host-campus personnel opportunities to talk with board members. The board’s sole source of direct information has become the system chancellor. The chancellor has very little knowledge of any of the institutions and shows very little interest in learning more. He has fired or marginalized all of the veteran system office staff members and several have resigned. He does not demonstrate knowledge of state/national conditions or academic policy, and he often behaves unprofessionally. The board is not in a position to put the well-being of the institutions above anything, and the centerpiece of its new strategic plan is a glaring example that it does not do so. The North Dakota University System (NDUS) universities and colleges have made a number of significant achievements on their own and in collaboration with each other and the system office. For example: 1
comprehensive annual accountability reports since 2001, a first-rate workforce training system by the community colleges, statewide common course numbering and statewide general education core, and countless collaborative partnerships to bring quality academic programs where they are needed. Major changes such as these have led, for example, to North Dakota having the highest percentage (74%) of students who start at a two-year institution and graduate from a two-year or four-year institution (Affordability and Transfer: Critical to Increasing Baccalaureate Degree Completion, http://www.highereducation.org/reports/pa_at/index.shtml). The NDUS Roundtable (launched in 1999) to forge shared expectations and strengthen relationships among legislators, K-12, business leaders, and higher education was a nationally recognized process with positive effects for a decade. Board governance is another matter, however, and a serious concern. For many recent years the board seemed to be more interested in the fate of the Fighting Sioux nickname for the University of North Dakota than in knowing the institutions under their care, facilitating mutual understanding between constituencies and the system, understanding how their policy decisions impact students or the state, learning the principles and practices of good governance, or fulfilling other duties as specified in their own policies. Long-term dissatisfaction with Board behavior was a contributing factor to five presidents in a two-year period (2007-2009) resigning or retiring earlier than they had planned. The situation has only worsened in the last nine months. Of the eight voting members of the board, four have less than one year of service, one has less than two years, and one has less than three years. The other two, board president Espegard and immediate past president Shaft, were appointed in 2007. The newer board members appear to have had minimal orientation to the institutions, their duties as board members, or sound governance. They have been deferring to Espegard and Shaft. HLC Criterion Five. Resources, Planning, and Institutional Effectiveness 5.B. The institution’s governance and administrative structures promote effective leadership and support collaborative processes that enable the institution to fulfill its mission. 1. The institution has and employs policies and procedures to engage its internal constituencies—including its governing board, administration, faculty, staff, and students—in the institution’s governance. 2. The governing board is knowledgeable about the institution; it provides oversight for the institution’s financial and academic policies and practices and meets its legal and fiduciary responsibilities. 3. The institution enables the involvement of its administration, faculty, staff, and students in setting academic requirements, policy, and processes through effective structures for contribution and collaborative effort. The governance and administrative structures that have been put in place since Chancellor Hamid Shirvani took office on July 1, 2012 undermine effective leadership, prohibit collaborative processes, fail to engage internal constituencies, prevent board members from being knowledgeable about the institutions, and pre-empt academic involvement in educational policy decisions. Presidents were instructed not to attend Shirvani's second board meeting on September 5, 2012. At that meeting, the board approved Shirvani's recommendation to waive the normal second reading and immediately adopt sweeping changes in the terms of appointment and termination for both chancellors and presidents. The policies changed the chancellor’s employment from “at will” with 12 months notice for termination without cause (common practice in other systems) to three-year contracts with the 2
possibility of tenure in a campus academic position. They provided for only annual chancellor performance reviews against goals while providing also for periodic comprehensive performance reviews for presidents. They cut off the presidents’ secondary reporting line to the board as well as the chancellor, and they provided for presidents to be terminated without cause with only 30 days notice. In addition, the chancellor presented and the board discussed at length a proposed three-tier admission policy for the institutions. At the board’s September 26 meeting, Shirvani gained board approval for his system strategic plan, featuring the three-tier admission policy, by methods that are both illegal and in violation of HLC requirements. He had met with three members of the board’s executive committee for dinner on September 4, 2012, in violation of the state’s open meetings law, where he likely gained their support for the proposed new admission criteria. Then he led an extended board discussion of the plan on September 5 at a meeting from which the presidents were explicitly excluded. Shirvani told at least one system office employee that they decided to fast-track the plan to board approval on September 26 so the presidents would not have an opportunity to “nitpick” the plan or its details. The plan appears to have been written by the interim system CAO who lives in Illinois, had no prior connection to the
NDUS, and only traveled to North Dakota occasionally throughout the term of his appointment.
To aid the fast-track process, Shirvani brought the plan to the board under the generic “Chancellor’s Report” agenda item for the September 26 meeting, giving no public notice that the strategic plan existed and would be considered for approval. At the meeting, the chancellor presented a recommended motion (not distributed earlier and again, waiving second reading) for board approval of the plan, delegation of full authority to the chancellor to implement the plan, including adoption of procedures and board policies, and language replacing or updating the board's existing strategic plan with the three-tier plan. In other words, the board adopted the new plan without consultation with institutional leaders or faculty and without any advance notice to the public or anyone else of intent to take this action, all in violation of board policy, state law, and HLC requirements. The plan calls for a three-tier set of admission standards (“1960 California plan”) in a state where open or limited-criteria access has been the norm for over 100 years. The avowed purpose was to increase student success, but (a) this is not an evidence-based strategy for student success, (b) the system was already engaging in a number of effective strategies for student success, and (c) the approach is more likely to keep students out of college than help them finish. Even after some revisions, the presidents are greatly concerned about potential harm to students and institutions from this ill-conceived mandate from the chancellor and the board. Shirvani terminated employment of the system chief academic officer as of July 1, 2012, assigning him to a campus to work out his one-year notice. He hired an interim CAO who lives in Illinois and made occasional trips to North Dakota. Unable to find a qualified new CAO by winter, Shirvani extended the interim appointment for another six months. That person is paid significantly more than the capable fulltime veteran CAO he replaced. Two of the three professional assistants in academic affairs have resigned, as have the board secretary and the director of financial aid, citing unwillingness to tolerate Shirvani’s lack of ethics and his treatment of people. Since the interim CAO has vowed not to return to North Dakota, it appears that system academic affairs are, in effect, in the hands of the one remaining professional assistant. No current vacancy announcement for the CAO position is posted on the NDUS web site.
The annual state accountability report has served state-level policy and communication needs as well as providing significant support to each institution’s assessment, improvement, and accountability efforts. Shirvani cut an estimated 20 of 32 standard state accountability measures from the annual report prepared on his watch. Those no longer reported include: Entrepreneurship Program Enrollment and Graduates NDUS Graduates Retained and Enrolled in North Dakota Workforce Training Satisfaction NDUS Graduates Employed in North Dakota One Year after Graduation Economic Status of Graduates Career and Technical Education Degrees Awarded NDUS STEM Degrees Awarded (NDUS Student) Performance on Nationally Recognized Exams (NDUS Student) First Time Licensure Pass Rates Degrees Awarded Responsiveness to Clients Student Credit Hours Earned at Multiple Institutions Non-Traditional Delivery Methods Enrollment Numbers and Trends Student Participation Levels and Trends Recent North Dakota High School Graduates Enrolled at NDUS Institutions Adult Learning Enrollments Some of the dropped measures have important state policy implications. The NDUS Graduates Retained and Enrolled in North Dakota dispelled the myth that "most NDUS graduates leave the state." Student retention rates were increasing in recent years, and a 2011 audit of the report found the results to be accurate. Some of the dropped reports describe important changes in the type of students the NDUS serves, such as Adult Learners and Non-Traditional Delivery Methods. In consultation with chair Espegard, Shirvani established a pattern of violating the state’s open meetings laws. Veteran legal counsel to the board repeatedly educated and warned the chancellor and the board about these meetings violating state law. On September 27, the day after the board approved the strategic plan, Shirvani and the board president met with legal counsel and attempted to deliver a 12month notice of termination without cause and relieve him of general counsel duties immediately. Counsel informed them that he was appointed by the board and termination would require a board vote. Chair Espegard said "You know if the chancellor recommends something the board is going to approve it unanimously." The attorney ultimately accepted a retirement agreement effective November 5, 2012. When the state student association and the student governments of the two largest universities in the system voted “no confidence” in Shirvani in late February 2013, their decision was based in part on the open meeting law violations. With the students’ documentation before them, the board and Shirvani commissioned their new board attorney to investigate the allegations and report back in seven days. This attorney had only a few weeks on the job, and she has no prior experience in higher education, North Dakota, or state agency law. Her report exonerated the board and Shirvani based on in-house interpretations of paper trails. I have attached a news story regarding the emptiness of the “investigation.” This cavalier approach to state law stands in sharp contrast to Shirvani’s and the board’s request for 30 additional system staff members on the premise that the institutions require greater compliance oversight. 4
The North Dakota legislature meets for only four months every other year. It is in the last weeks of its session now. Many legislators are deeply concerned about the board and Shirvani. In February 2013 the Senate approved a budget amendment that would allocate over $800,000 for a contract buyout if the board decides to terminate Shirvani. The House has not yet taken action on this amendment. Legislators introduced five major bills to dramatically change the structure of the system and its governance in the current legislative session. Four have been defeated so far, but the message from legislators is very clear – they are not happy with the board or the chancellor. The fifth bill passed the House by a vote of 64-28 and is under consideration in the Senate. It would eliminate the State Board of Higher Education and create a “department of higher education,” an agency in the executive branch whose director, appointed by the governor, would supervise the institutional presidents. Positive legislative relations are fundamental to effective leadership of a public university system. HLC Criterion Two. Integrity: Ethical and Responsible Conduct C.1. The governing board’s deliberations reflect priorities to preserve and enhance the institution. C.2. The governing board reviews and considers the reasonable and relevant interests of the institution’s internal and external constituencies during its decision-making deliberations. C.4. The governing board delegates day-to-day management of the institution to the administration and expects the faculty to oversee academic matters. The board’s meeting agendas consist primarily of budget, legislation, and consent items. The minutes are available at http://ndus.edu/board/sbhe-minutes/. Aside from whatever may be incidental to these topics, meetings provide no information for board members about the institutions. There is no apparent board discussion or education on major state or national educational issues. There is no input from or engagement with any internal or external constituencies except a mandated annual meeting of the various state boards involved in education. Recently the system’s liaison officer for reporting and information complained to the attorney general and the House of Representatives Appropriation Committee that Shirvani had deliberately used inappropriate comparison data on retention and completion in order to make the universities and their presidents look bad. The picture he painted of the NDUS institutions was entirely negative, setting himself up as the one who can fix everything. Indeed, his and the board’s primary message to legislators and the public since his arrival has been to denigrate the institutions and their personnel. Shirvani’s call for dozens of new compliance officers on his staff implies widespread dishonesty on the campuses. The board chair’s constant repetition of the board’s “100% support” (although the most recent board vote had three dissenters) for the chancellor implies that there is no interest among board members in better understanding the institutions or ensuring that the considerable amount of good news from/about the campuses is widely known. Shirvani and Espegard have terminated the heretofore unbroken tradition that presidents present their own agenda items at board meetings. Instead, Shirvani and his new hires have become the board’s window into institutional affairs – to the extent it happens at all. Shirvani has made it clear to the presidents that they are not to speak to board members or legislators about substantive matters. Contrary to ongoing practice and in another sign of presidential disrespect, board minutes no longer include presidents in the list of meeting attendees. Ask the presidents how it’s going, and you get a shrug of the shoulders and downcast eyes. Shirvani does not dispute that he told a legislator last summer that five of the presidents would have to go. During the same week that chair Espegard assured 5
a legislative committee that all the presidents were secure in their jobs, Shirvani told the House majority leader that three of the presidents were not qualified for their jobs. Shirvani requires institutional presidents to attend Chancellor’s Cabinet meetings in person, no delegates. He does not solicit their input in any meaningful way at these meetings – communication is one-way. His disrespect for the presidents is also evident in that he has twice canceled Chancellor’s Cabinet meetings when presidents were already in Bismarck or nearly so. On one such occasion he was on his way to Japan when the meeting was to take place. None of this behavior should be a surprise to the four current board members who were among those who decided to hire Shirvani. He has twice before gotten his institution in accreditation trouble, once as dean in Colorado and then as president as CSU Stanislaus. He earned a 90% no-confidence vote from his California faculty in 2009. He blames the vote on budget cuts, but among 23 CSU presidents he and possibly one other were the only ones with no-confidence votes. What kind of governing board goes out of its way (I have heard that Shirvani was ranked #4 by the search committee) to hire a highly controlling, abrasive, negative chancellor with a bad track record and offers him 100% support when he disparages the board’s institutions, fires people without cause, hires inexperienced people, cuts off communication between the board and the institutions, threatens his senior leadership team, secures a one-man state strategic plan during his first three months in the state, and routinely breaks the open meetings law? I submit it is a board that has well earned a sanction from the accrediting body. I would be glad to provide you with any additional information I have. Individuals from the Shirvani eras in Colorado and California have told me that it did (Colorado) or will (CSU) take years to recover from his effects on their institutions. If you can expedite your inquiry, it would be much appreciated. Sincerely, Ellen Chaffee Ellen Chaffee, Ph.D. President Emerita, Valley City State University Past President, Mayville State University Past Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, North Dakota University System Attachments: September policy recommendations SBHE minutes, 9/5/2012 and 9/26/2012 News: internal investigation of open meetings violations News: letter from past presidents to SBHE Past presidents letter to SBHE HCR 3047 to create a department of higher education Statement by Pat Seaworth, Board general counsel, 1993-2012
SUMMARY AND RECOMMENDATION AMENDED SBHE POLICIES 100.6, 304.1, 305.1, 608.2, 705.1 and 802.8 Summary SBHE Policy 100.6 summarizes SBHE guiding principles and responsibility. Proposed amendments to this policy update and clarify the university system’s governance structure, SBHE responsibilities, and roles of the Chancellor and institution presidents. Policy 304.1 delegates authority and responsibilities to the Chancellor; Policy 305.1 delegates authority and responsibilities to institution presidents. Consistent with revised language in Policy 100.6, language in these two policies is updated. Amendments to Policy 304.1 include language requiring the Chancellor’s review prior to dismissal or termination of an institution’s chief finance officer or internal auditor. Language in Policy 304.1 permitting one year notice of termination without cause and language in Policy 705.1 permitting notice of termination without cause with 30 days’ notice and payment of up to 12 months’ compensation is deleted. In place of the deleted language, amended Policy 304.1 states the Chancellor shall have a contract not to exceed three years, which the SBHE each year may extend for an additional term of three years. Amended Policy 305.1 replaces language removed from Policies 305.1 and 705.1 governing presidents’ contract terms. The amended policy permits an initial appointment not to exceed three years. In addition, the SBHE may award tenure to university presidents and, if an appointment is terminated without cause, a university president is entitled to a tenured faculty position, instead of a severance payment. The SBHE would not grant tenure to community college presidents but those presidents would be entitled to payment of up to 12 months’ compensation if the SBHE terminates an appointment without cause within the initial three-year term. Policy 608.2 governs non-renewals and dismissals of employees who are excluded from the NDUS broadbanding system. The broadbanding system is the NDUS version of an employee classification system. A separate set of policies establish employment terms of broadbanded employees. Faculty are excluded from the broadbanding system and faculty employment terms are governed by other policies. In addition to faculty, executives and designated administrators and professional staff also are excluded from the broadbanding system. One amendment to Policy 608.2 reduces the notice requirement for without cause termination of an appointment of a non-faculty employee excluded from the broadbanding system with two or more years of service from 12 to 6 months. Other amendments add clarity to language explaining application of the policy. Deletion of language governing Chancellor and presidents’ contract terms (which is replaced by revised language added to Policies 304.1 and 305.1) is the only substantive amendment to Policy 705.1.
Policy 802.8 concerns internal audit functions. Recommended amendments replace references to the former Budget, Audit and Finance Committee with the new Audit Committee and clarify reporting relationships and appointing authority for system audit staff. The SBHE Executive Committee will review these policies on September 26. Recommendation Subject to Executive Committee review and recommendation that the SBHE act on these policies on September 26 following Committee review according to SBHE Policy 330, I recommend the SBHE adopt the following motion: “That amended SBHE Policies 100.6, 304.1, 305.1, 608.2, 705.1 and 802.8, as shown on the attached drafts, are approved on introduction and adoption, effective immediately.”
H.A. Shirvani, Ph.D. Chancellor
Date of Meeting: September 26, 2012
DRAFT 100.6 Sept 10 2012 Page 1 NORTH DAKOTA STATE BOARD OF HIGHER EDUCATION POLICY MANUAL SUBJECT: INTRODUCTION EFFECTIVE: April 15, 2004
Section: 100.6 Authority and Responsibility of the State Board of Higher Education, Chancellor and Institution Presidents
State Board of Higher Education Guiding Principles and Responsibility 1. The State Board of Higher Education (Board) was established by an initiated measure approved by the voters in 1938 (now article VIII, section 6 of the state constitution). Article VIII, section 6 states the Board “shall have the control and administration of” all of the state institutions established in the state constitution at that time and “such other state institutions of higher education as may hereafter be established.” Further, the Board “shall have full authority over the institutions under its control” and “full authority to organize or reorganize within constitutional and statutory limitations, the work of each institution under its control, and do each and everything necessary and proper for the efficient and economic administration of said state educational institutions.” The Board shall appoint a commissioner of higher education as its “chief executive officer.” In 1990, the Board established a unified system of higher education, with its Commissioner/Chancellor as the system’s chief executive officer. Later, the state legislature enacted North Dakota Century Code § 15-1001.2, which states: The institutions of higher education under the control of the state board of higher education are a unified system of higher education, as established by the board, and are designated as the North Dakota University System. 2. Holding the North Dakota University System (NDUS) in its trust, the Board: a. Ensures the NDUS achieves the purposes of its mission and goals; b. Ensures the NDUS is properly led and managed; c. Maintains the quality of academic programs; d. Provides responsible policies and procedures for proper governance; e. Safeguards NDUS assets; f. Honors the mission and integrity of each institution and its people;
DRAFT 100.6 Sept 10 2012 Page 2 g. Serves as a catalyst to create more efficient and effective programs and services through partnership and resource sharing; h. Maintains student affordability; i. Represents the institutions to the public and vice versa, assisting where appropriate in the understanding of each other’s needs; j. Ensures effective stewardship of its financial, physical, and intellectual assets; k. Achieves cost savings due to economies of scale, where appropriate; l. Secures cooperative and planning advantages; m. Shapes, supports, and achieves complementary institution missions; n. Ensures excellence in programs, faculty, and students; o. Minimizes unnecessary duplication through cooperative endeavors; p. Gains public and legislative support for the system through unified efforts; and q. Shields institutions from direct political and other outside interference. 3. In fulfilling the its Mission and Vision, the State Board of Higher Education Board will govern the institutions in the North Dakota University System NDUS in accordance with the North Dakota Constitution and state statutes and will be guided by the Belief Statements and Core Values adopted by the Board. The people of North Dakota created the Board through the state constitution to ensure the institutions and their employees were protected from political interference. Recognizing the legitimacy and importance of such protection and believing each institution properly retains substantial responsibility for its own affairs, the Board and the system honor the integrity of each institution and its people. The State Board of Higher Education Board will provide the leadership and governing environment necessary to maximize the opportunities for the NDUS colleges and universities to be successful in fulfilling their individual missions and enhancing the economic and social vitality of North Dakota. I.Guiding Principles: 4. The state constitution provides the State Board of Higher Education Board with broad powers and specifies the Board retains any powers it does not specifically delegate to the campuses institutions. The Board has adopted the following guiding principles regarding the responsibility of the Board, as stewards of the system, and the institutions.
DRAFT 100.6 Sept 10 2012 Page 3 A.Responsibility of the Board a. Board approval for new or discontinued programs and organizational units ensures the overall pattern of service to the state is coherent and efficient. b. Board review of institutional and program quality ensures the institutions provide positive educational experiences and seek continually to improve. Academic program quality and faculty quality determinations are made by faculty peers and campus administrators. The Board's responsibility is to support, provide oversight, and hold the institutions accountable for results. c. Board budget guidelines and final approval of budget requests promote equity and appropriate investment of state resources throughout the system. d. Board priority-setting of facility requests promotes facilities funding on the basis of statewide need. e. On matters that involve major costs for equipment or facilities which could be shared effectively among campuses, such as computing and telecommunications, the Board expects and will help facilitate such sharing. f. The Board sets system priorities regarding all requests of the legislature and executive branch. Those representing the institutions are not to undermine those priorities. g. The Board is the appointing authority for institution presidents and has final authority concerning contract terms. The Board shall exercise this authority in consultation with the Chancellor and has delegated to the Chancellor authority to conduct searches and recommend a candidate and contract terms to the Board. h. The Board delegates substantial authority and responsibility to each institution's president through the Chancellor, as defined in Board policy, and holds each accountable for his or her performance. i. The Board shall have access to information about students, programs, faculty, staff, and finances of each campus to carry out its responsibilities. j. The Chancellor shall bring to the Board's attention any difficulties in the application of any of the above responsibilities that threaten to impede institutional effectiveness or efficiency. The Board is committed to free and fair inquiry and just resolution of such difficulties. k. General education courses and programs are central to the mission of all NDUS institutions and overlap among institutions is expected and necessary. However, the
DRAFT 100.6 Sept 10 2012 Page 4 Board will continue to guard against unnecessary program duplication and collaborative delivery will be encouraged where the quality of the program can be maintained and the total cost of delivery can be reduced.
l. Professional, technical, vocational, and graduate courses and programs require institutional and Board judgments regarding their number and missions. m. The Board retains authority for naming academic units (college, school, department, center and institute), professorship and endowed chairs, and physical structures.
B.Program Collaboration and Duplication: 1.General-education courses and programs are central to the mission of all postsecondary institutions. Overlap among institutions is expected and necessary, although the Board will continue to guard against unnecessary program duplication. Collaborative delivery will be encouraged where the quality of the program can be maintained and the total cost of delivery can be reduced. 2.Professional, technical, vocational, and graduate courses and programs require institutional and Board judgments regarding their number and location. 5. Within the framework of the NDUS is a division of labor between the Chancellor and the services operating at each institution. In addition to a strong Board and Chancellor, achieving the advantages and purposes of a multi-institution NDUS require the energies, leadership, and talent of equally strong presidents who are dedicated to the mission and goals of their respective institution. While the principal role of the Board and Chancellor lie in policy, overall direction, and planning, the leadership demanded of the presidents is primarily focused on implementation and direct operational control. As a general rule, system-level services exist only when there is a strong rationale justifying cost efficiencies and unnecessary duplication of functions. These include academic policy, planning, and quality assessment; capital planning and construction; budgeting; human resources policy and compliance; institutional research; risk management; auditing; legal services; information technology systems and services shared among the institutions; and legislative and community relations. 6. The Chancellor is the chief executive officer of the Board and NDUS and exercises such powers as are necessary for Board and NDUS governance and functions. Chancellor duties and responsibilities are delegated in Policy 304.1 and other Board policies or directives.
DRAFT 100.6 Sept 10 2012 Page 5
7. A president is the chief executive officer of the institution and a member of the Chancellor’s executive staff. The presidents report to and are responsible to the Chancellor. The presidents are the chief executive officers of their respective institution. This designation includes the right and responsibility to manage the institution within the overall policies and directives issued by the Chancellor and Board. Presidents’ duties and responsibilities are delegated in Policy 305.1 and other Board policies or Board or Chancellor directives.
New Policy. SBHE Minutes, March 30, 2001. Amendment SBHE Minutes, April 15, 2004.
DRAFT 304.1 Sept 10 2012 Page 1 NORTH DAKOTA STATE BOARD OF HIGHER EDUCATION POLICY MANUAL SUBJECT: GOVERNANCE AND ORGANIZATION EFFECTIVE: April 15, 2004
Section: 304.1 Chancellor/Commissioner of Higher Education Authority and Responsibilities; Contract Term ______________________________________________________________________________ 1. The terms 'Commissioner' and 'Chancellor' shall be used interchangeably throughout this manual. 2. The Consistent with Policy 100.6, the Chancellor of Higher Education serves as the chief executive officer of the Board and shall be the chief executive officer of the University System North Dakota University System (NDUS) with the following authority and responsibilities delegated by the Board:. The Chancellor is empowered to execute all documents and exercise all powers necessary to the discharge of that office. Operating under the overall direction and policy control of the Board, the Chancellor: a. Provides vision and overall leadership for the NDUS and a single focus of accountability to the state and its citizens. b. Shall be the chief executive and administrative authority for the NDUS. c. Serves as the primary link between the Board’s responsibilities for policy and the presidents’ responsibilities for operations. d. Promotes and preserves the overall mission and goals of the NDUS by working with each institution president to plan, build, and sustain appropriate academic and co-curricular programs and initiatives that minimize duplication and link NDUS resources to state, regional, and national needs. e. Working in conjunction with the presidents, proposes to the Board short- and long-term planning goals, policies, and actions which serve the best interests of the NDUS. f. Working in conjunction with the presidents, promulgates guidelines and regulations for the consistent interpretation and application of Board policies. g. Monitors and evaluates the performance of the presidents and the institutions in pursuit of their established missions and goals.
DRAFT 304.1 Sept 10 2012 Page 2 h. Serves as the “voice” of the NDUS to the citizens, governor, state legislature, and the Board regarding the capacity of the NDUS in meeting the priorities of the state and other matters not reserved to the Board. i. j. Communicates the needs of the state to the NDUS community. Serves as a “shield” against outside interference in NDUS and institutional matters.
k. Working in conjunction with the presidents, develops inter-institution cooperative academic and operational programs and services designed to reduce cost while improving efficiencies and accountability. l. Ensures that the office of the Chancellor can meet NDUS responsibilities that include academic policy, planning, and quality assessment; capital planning and construction; budgeting; human resources policy and compliance; institutional research; risk management; auditing; legal services; information technology systems and services shared among the institutions; and legislative and community relations.
m. Serves as the channel of communication between the Board and all subordinate administrative officers and personnel, including presidents. n. May consult with each institution’s constituency groups through the presidents on matters which the Chancellor deems appropriate for constituency involvement. o. Administers the academic, financial, and other functions of the NDUS in a manner which assures support for the approved mission of each campus. p. Directs the activities of the presidents in a manner which promotes the general welfare of the NDUS while, at the same time, ensuring support for the approved mission of each institution. q. Evaluates the performances of the presidents on an annual basis. r. Balances the sometimes competing interests of the institutions. 3. Among other duties and responsibilities, the Chancellor shall: a. Execute and administer the policies, decisions, and rules of the Board;
DRAFT 304.1 Sept 10 2012 Page 3 b. Prepare policy recommendations for the Board's consideration. c. Exercise administrative control, consonant with Board policy, over inter-institutional matters including, but not limited to, those pertaining to budgets, curriculum, research, and public service, and extension activities. d. Appoint, determine the composition of and delegate duties to such committees or councils as the chancellor deems advisable. e. Subject to applicable Board policies, make recommendations to the Board concerning appointment and compensation and other terms of employment for institution presidents. f. Provide for the administration and staffing of the University System NDUS office. g. Following recommendations of the college or university president, make recommendations to the Board regarding tenure. h. Review and approve or refuse to approve dismissal or termination of an appointment of an institution’s chief finance officer or internal auditor. i. Serve as the official representative of the Board and the institutions and entities it governs to the legislature, to the Governor, to the executive branch, and to other governmental entities. j. Serve as the channel of communications between the Board and all NDUS administrative officers and personnel. In this connection, the Chancellor shall have direct access to the Board and, in conjunction with the presidents, inform and advise the Board with respect to operations of the NDUS and its institutions. j. Act on behalf of the Board during the interim between meetings provided that the Chancellor shall, when practical, first consult with the President of the promptly inform the Board President and report and request ratification of the action taken to at the next Board at its next meeting. k. Act on behalf of the Board as the sole authority authorized to request opinions from the Attorney General's office and coordinate all legal services of the institutions and entities governed by the Board. l. Exercise such other authority and perform such other responsibilities as may be assigned by the Board. 3. In exercising this authority and carrying out these responsibilities, the Chancellor shall at all times conform to and advocate the Board’s beliefs and core values.
DRAFT 304.1 Sept 10 2012 Page 4 4. The Chancellor shall establish a process or forum enabling presidents to provide advice to the Chancellor regarding matters affecting the university system. The Chancellor shall ensure that NDUS institutions cooperate to improve academic offerings, expand access to education, promote faculty development, improve support services, reduce unnecessary duplication and enhance efficiency. 5. The Chancellor serves at the pleasure of the Board. The Chancellor shall have a written contract for a term not to exceed three years. The Board may, with written notice of one year prior to expiration of a contract term, terminate the contract without cause. The Board shall annually evaluate the Chancellor’s performance as provided in Policy 604.2. Subject to satisfactory performance, the Board may each year extend the Chancellor’s contract for an additional term of not more than three years. The Board may, based on its annual evaluation of Chancellor performance and in its discretion, decide to not extend the term of a contract or give notice that a contract will not be renewed beyond the end of a current term. 6. The Board may dismiss the Chancellor for just cause during a contract term, following written notice of its intent to do so and an opportunity for an evidentiary hearing. The board may appoint a hearing officer or administrative law judge to conduct the hearing before the Board. 7. A tenured faculty member at an NDUS-governed institution who is appointed Chancellor shall may retain the tenured status at that institution during the term as Chancellor. The Board, at the time of initial appointment or thereafter and commensurate with qualifications, may award a Chancellor who is not tenured academic rank without tenure status tenured full professorship to an individual appointed Chancellor if the individual has had a tenured full professorship appointment at another institution prior to or at the time of the appointment. 8. A tenured faculty member who is appointed vice chancellor for academic affairs shall retain the tenured status during the term as vice chancellor. The Chancellor may recommend and the Board may, in its discretion, award a vice chancellor who is not tenured academic rank without tenure status. AMENDS OR REPEALS: Article I, Section 7.A., portion of Article I, Section 7.B HISTORY: SBHE Minutes, February 18-19, 1982, page 5003. Amendment SBHE Minutes, May 24-25, 1990, page 6003. Amendment SBHE Minutes, January 20, 1994, page 6427. Amendment SBHE Minutes, May 21, 1998, page 6889. Amendment SBHE Minutes, June 18, 1998, page 6903. Amendment SBHE Minutes, February 18, 2000. Amendment SBHE Minutes, April 15, 2004.
DRAFT 305.1 Sept 26 2012 Page 1 NORTH DAKOTA STATE BOARD OF HIGHER EDUCATION POLICY MANUAL SUBJECT: GOVERNANCE AND ORGANIZATION EFFECTIVE: April 12, 2012
Section: 305.1 College and University Presidents’ Authority and Responsibilities; Contract Terms 1. The president is the chief executive officer of the institution and a member of the Chancellor's executive staff. The president reports and is responsible to the Chancellor for all matters concerning the institution and is an advisor to the Chancellor in matters of interinstitutional policy and administration. 2. The Board delegates to the president of each institution full authority and responsibility to administer the affairs of the institution in accordance with Board policies, plans, budgets, and standards, including the management and expenditure of all institutional funds, within budgetary and other limitations imposed by law or by the Board. 3. Presidents have the authority to manage their institution on a day to day operational basis. Presidents shall consult with the Chancellor on decisions of mutual interest before those decisions are made or announced. Subject to Board policies, system procedures and Board and Chancellor directives, presidents: a. Are responsible for carrying out approved policies, guidelines, and regulations governing the management of academic, business, and student affairs, delegating execution to administrative aids and heads of appropriate functional areas. b. Have primary responsibility for the internal organization of the institution’s administration, including academic, administrative, and student affairs, and the development and management of the physical plant and auxiliary services. c. Ensure the assets of the institution are continually directed toward maintaining and sustaining the quality of teaching, research, and service that comprise the mission and goals of the institution. d. Are responsible for consensus building; facilitation of quality scholarship; careful management of resources; recruitment and retention of outstanding faculty, staff, and students; problem solving; and promoting the intellectual, physical, and fiscal health of the institution. e. Work with the Chancellor to develop, shape, and sustain the mission of their institution. f. Provide the necessary leadership and management skills, including planning and policy development, for the institution to achieve its mission and goals.
DRAFT 305.1 Sept 26 2012 Page 2 g. Have primary responsibility for the day-to-day operational leadership and control of their institutions. h. Ensure excellence in the institution’s teaching, research, and service missions while maintaining the strength of the institution’s academic and co-curricular programs and furthering the recruitment and retention of outstanding teachers, scholars, staff, and students. i. Maintain a productive relationship with faculty, students, staff, and alumni. j. Ensure a fair and appropriate distribution of resources to support and sustain the institution’s academic, research, and service assets. k. Develop and maintain effective and productive relationships with the institution’s adjoining communities, business, and government agencies by building strong towngown partnerships. l. Articulate to the institution community the Board’s and Chancellor’s goals and assigned mission of the institution. m. Secure grants, gifts, and contracts from private, state, and federal sources that further the mission and goals of the institution. n. Appoint academic and non-academic employees within the limitation of powers delegated by the Board and Chancellor. o. Assume primary responsibility for fund-raising and alumni relations. p. Shall have an annual performance review by the Chancellor based upon a statement of goals for the year of evaluation which were previously formulated by the President and approved by the Chancellor. 4. Each president shall: a. Insure Ensure effective and broad-based participation in the decision-making process from faculty, staff, students, and others in those areas in which their interests are affected. b. Develop and approve or recommend to the Chancellor and the Board, in consultation with appropriate committees or members of the institution, such policies, plans, budgets, programs, and standards affecting the institution as deemed necessary, advisable or as required by the Board. c. Make recommendations to the Chancellor concerning all requests for tenure.
DRAFT 305.1 Sept 26 2012 Page 3 d. Approve all personnel actions, except the award or change in tenure status, involving all faculty members and other institution employees. e. Explain dismissal or termination of the institution’s chief finance officer or internal auditor. f. Approve Review and evaluate all recommendations transmitted to the Chancellor and/or to or the Board from the institution. g. Define the scope of authority of faculties, councils, committees and administrative officers of the institution. h. Establish a process for adoption and implementation of institution policies and procedures that includes: (1) the president’s approval before a policy takes effect; and (2) authority for the president to adopt interim policies and procedures concerning matters for which legislative authority is delegated to campus legislative bodies. Adoption of an interim policy or procedure must include notice to the faculty senate or other legislative body prior to or at the time the policy or procedure takes effect. Not later than six months of its effective date, the president shall present the interim policy or procedure to the appropriate legislative body for review and its decision, subject to the president’s approval or veto, concerning whether the policy or procedure should be adopted, revised or discontinued. i. Assume responsibility for the establishment of guidelines for student conduct which set forth prohibited conduct and provide for appropriate disciplinary procedures and sanctions for violation of institutional rules, consistent with standards of procedural fairness. j. Maintain good relations and effective communication with the Chancellor and Chancellor’s staff, the Board and other North Dakota institutions of higher education and cooperate with other NDUS institutions to improve academic offerings, expand access to higher education, promote faculty development, improve support services, reduce unnecessary duplication and enhance efficiency. k. Inform and advise the Chancellor and Board regarding significant issues at the institution. j. Maintain good relations with the public by: 1. Developing sound relationships between the institution and the community and region in which it is located and the public it serves, 2. Establishing and administering a development program with alumni and other institutional supporters, 3. Interpreting the institution and its mission to the public, and
DRAFT 305.1 Sept 26 2012 Page 4 4. Developing effective communication good relationships with legislators and with other public policy makers in coordination with the Chancellor. k. Be accountable for all funds, property, equipment, and other facilities assigned or provided to the institution. l. Implement and enforce the provisions of N.D.C.C. sec. 15-10-17.1 regarding the conduct of students, staff, faculty, and visitors to the campus. m. Consistently support and adhere to, and require responsible institution officers and employees to support and adhere to, Board beliefs and core values, Board policies and NDUS procedures, and Board and Chancellor directives and guidelines. m. Exercise such other authority and perform such other responsibilities as may be assigned by the Chancellor or the Board. 4. A president may delegate duties and responsibilities as necessary or appropriate. 5. In exercising this authority and carrying out these responsibilities, a president shall strive at all times to conform to and advocate the Board’s beliefs and core values. 6. Presidents are hired by and shall serve at the pleasure of the Board. Presidents shall have a written contract. The term of an initial contract may not exceed three years; the term of a subsequent contract or renewal may not exceed five years. The Board may, with written notice of one year prior to expiration of a contract term, terminate the contract without cause. The Chancellor shall annually evaluate a president’s performance as provided in Policy 604.1. a. University presidents shall have an initial appointment of three years. Subject to review and recommendation of the Chancellor, the appointment shall continue thereafter on an annual basis. A tenured faculty member at an NDUS-governed institution who is appointed president at that institution may retain the tenured status during the term as president. The Board, at the time of initial appointment as president or thereafter and commensurate with qualifications, may award a tenured full professorship to an individual appointed president if the individual has had a tenured full professorship appointment at another institution prior to or at the time of the appointment. The Chancellor may recommend and the Board may elect to provide written notice of not less than 30 days of termination of the appointment. Upon termination of an appointment without cause by the Board, a university president is entitled to “retreat rights” at a salary commensurate with prevailing salaries in the department. “Retreat rights” means the president has a right to revert to a tenured faculty position in the department in which the president has received tenure. b. College (two-year institution) presidents shall be appointed to an initial term of three years, without a tenured faculty appointment. Subject to review and recommendation of the Chancellor, the appointment shall continue thereafter on an annual basis. The
DRAFT 305.1 Sept 26 2012 Page 5 Chancellor may recommend and the Board may elect to provide written notice of not less than 30 days of termination of the appointment. Upon termination of an appointment without cause by the Board within the initial three-year term, a college president is entitled to payment of an amount equal to current salary plus retirement plan contributions for the remaining term of the contract, not to exceed an amount equal to salary and retirement plan contributions for 12 months. 7. In consultation with the Board, the Chancellor may initiate dismissal of a president for just cause during the contract term and shall provide a written notice of intent to do so and an opportunity for an evidentiary a hearing conducted by the Chancellor. The Chancellor shall provide not less than five days for a response by the president following delivery of notice of intent, prior to a dismissal decision. The Chancellor may suspend a president with pay and benefits or reassign a president to other duties pending a decision. The hearing may be limited to Chancellor review of the president’s written response to the notice and opportunity to submit additional information or, in the Chancellor’s discretion, may include an opportunity for an informal meeting with the Chancellor. Following the hearing conducted by the Chancellor, the Chancellor may recommend dismissal or other appropriate action by the Board. Following a dismissal decision or imposition of other discipline by the Board, a president may, within 10 days of notice of the Board’s decision, file with the Board secretary or general counsel a written appeal and request for evidentiary hearing, which must be accompanied by a specification of reasons for the request. The Board shall then conduct or arrange for a hearing. The Board may appoint a hearing officer or administrative law judge to conduct the hearing and make findings of fact, conclusions of law and a recommendation to the Board, which shall then make it’s a final decision based on the hearing record. 8. A tenured faculty member at a Board NDUS institution who is appointed president shall retain that status during the term as president. The Board may, in its discretion, award a president who is not tenured academic rank, without tenure status.
HISTORY: See SBHE Minutes, February 19, 1982, page 5003. Amendment SBHE Minutes, March 14, 1989, page 5800. Amendment SBHE Minutes, May 24-25, 1990, page 6003. Amendment SBHE Minutes, January 20, 1994, page 6427. Amendment SBHE Minutes, May 21, 1998, page 6889. Amendment SBHE Minutes, February 18, 2000. Amendment SBHE Minutes, April 15, 2004. Amendment SBHE Minutes, May 5, 2005. Amendment SBHE Minutes, April 12, 2012.
DRAFT 608.2 Sept 10 2012 Page 1 NORTH DAKOTA STATE BOARD OF HIGHER EDUCATION POLICY MANUAL SUBJECT: PERSONNEL EFFECTIVE: May 3, 2007
Section: 608.2 NDUS Employees – Non-renewal and Dismissals
1. Employees excluded from the broadbanding system who are not members of the academic staff at an institution may be terminated, without cause, pursuant to written notice of termination in accordance with the following schedule: A. At least three months, if written notice is given during the first year of service; B. At least six months, if written notice is given during the second year of service or thereafter; C. At least twelve months, if written notice is given thereafter. As used in this section 1, “service” means employment at the same institution or agency in a position or positions excluded from the broadbanding system and not an academic appointment. 2. Employees excluded from the broadbanding system who are not members of the academic staff at an institution may be dismissed for just cause or based upon financial exigency as determined by the Board, loss of appropriations, loss of institutional or program enrollment, consolidation of organizational units or program areas or elimination of courses, in which cases the notice requirements of the preceding section shall not apply. If a dismissal other than for just cause is implemented pursuant to this subsection, no less than 90 days notice shall be given the employee. 3. Just cause means just cause for dismissal of staff employees as defined in the North Dakota University System Human Resource Policy Manual. Notice of intent to dismiss for cause, stating the reasons for the proposed action, shall be given by a department head or other designated official unless the employee is an institution officer who reports directly to the institution's chief executive, in which case the chief executive shall give notice, or a university system employee who reports to the Chancellor, in which case the Chancellor shall give notice. The notice shall be given at least five calendar days prior to the date of dismissal and the employee has the right, within that time, to respond in writing and request a pre-termination review. Following notice of intent to dismiss and, if requested by the employee, the pretermination review, the department head or other designated individual, if the notice
DRAFT 608.2 Sept 10 2012 Page 2 of intent to dismiss was not given by the chief executive or Chancellor, shall forward a recommendation to the institution's chief executive or Chancellor. The chief executive or Chancellor shall make a final decision and give written notice of that decision. 4. An employee who is dismissed for just cause pursuant to this policy may, within 20 days of dismissal, appeal the decision by filing a notice of appeal, accompanied by a specification of the reasons or grounds upon which the appeal is based, with the institution’s chief executive or the Chancellor. The chief executive or Chancellor shall appoint a hearing officer to conduct an evidentiary hearing and submit recommended findings, conclusions and a recommended decision. The hearing officer shall conduct the hearing according to appeal procedures governing hearings conducted by a staff personnel board that are set forth in Section 27 of the North Dakota University System Human Resource Policy Manual. The chief executive or Chancellor shall make a final decision and provide written notice of that decision to the hearing officer and the employee within 20 calendar days of receiving the hearing officer’s recommendation. 5. This Except for positions explicitly exempt as stated in this section 5 or section 6, this policy applies to all employees excluded from the broadbanding system who are not members of the academic staff, and, with respect to their positions as administrators or other non-academic positions, to employees with appointments to the academic staff. This policy applies to coaches unless the employing institution has adopted a different policy governing coaches and that policy is stated or adopted by reference in a coach's employment contract, in which case the institution's policy applies. Members of the academic staff This policy does not apply to faculty; employees with academic appointments are governed by SBHE Policy Sections 605.1, 605.2, 605.3 and 605.4. 6. This policy does not apply to the Chancellor and institution presidents. This policy does not apply to student residence hall assistants, work-study students and other students employed on a part-time basis for a limited term. The terms and conditions or employment for student resident hall assistants shall be stated in a written contract. HISTORY: This policy combines parts of what were formerly SBHE Policies 305.4, 306.3 and 608.1. SBHE Minutes, November 18-19, 1999, page ____. Amendment, SBHE Minutes, May 3, 2007
DRAFT 705.1 Sept 10 2012 Page 1 NORTH DAKOTA STATE BOARD OF HIGHER EDUCATION POLICY MANUAL
SUBJECT: COMPENSATION Section: 705.1 Executive Compensation
EFFECTIVE: May 9, 2011
1. Compensation Philosophy. To attract and retain highly-qualified individuals able to lead the North Dakota University System and its institutions, the Board shall, within the limits of available resources and subject to satisfactory performance, compensate its chancellor, vice chancellors, NDUS general counsel, NDUS chief information officer and other system senior officers, and NDUS presidents at levels that are competitive in the market place subject to variances related to differences in institution sizes and missions, internally equitable, and resource limitations. 2. Foundation Contributions and Other Income. An affiliated foundation may contribute to, and a president may receive part of the president’s compensation from foundation contributions, subject to the following: a. All contributions made by an affiliated foundation or its officers or directors must be made directly to the employing institution and disclosed in an agreement between the institution and foundation as provided in Policy 340.2; b. A president’s compensation for all services, including compensation from affiliated foundations, must be disclosed in an employment contract approved by the Board; and c. The institution shall account for and pay the president’s entire compensation, including amounts contributed by a foundation or its officers or directors, as provided in the employment contract. 3. The Compensation Executive Committee shall recommend and the Board shall establish compensation plans for the chancellor, vice-chancellors, NDUS general counsel, NDUS chief information officer and other system senior officers, and presidents that include salary ranges and salary matrices for each position based on relevant market data for equivalent positions and salary increases based on pay for performance as documented through the evaluation process and the approved salary matrices. Ranges for presidents shall be based on salaries only. A president’s salary may not exceed the ranges established under this subsection 3 without Board approval. Subject to compliance with subsection 2 of this policy 705.1, other forms of compensation contributed by foundations may exceed established salary ranges. The Board may in its discretion and in consideration of job duties pay to the chancellor a housing/hosting allowance.
DRAFT 705.1 Sept 10 2012 Page 2 4. Contract Term. As provided in Policy 304.1, the contract term for the chancellor may not exceed three years; as provided in Policy 305.1, the initial contract term for a president may not exceed three years and subsequent terms may not exceed five years. Prior to the end of a president’s or chancellor’s second-to-last year of a contract term and provided the president or chancellor has not given notice of resignation or retirement, the Board shall, in conjunction with annual performance assessments, renew or extend the contract for an additional term or provide notice that the contract will not be renewed or extended beyond the final year remaining in its term. In addition, and notwithstanding language in any other policy, the Board, without cause and at any time, may terminate a chancellor’s or president’s employment contract with 30 days written notice and payment of a sum as provided in this section 5. If the term remaining on the employment contract is one year or greater, the payment amount shall be the current annual salary plus retirement plan contributions and health plan premium payments for one year, less mandatory withholding. If the remaining term is less than one year, the payment amount shall be the salary for the remaining term plus retirement plan contributions and health plan premium payments for that term, less mandatory withholding. 5. For the necessity and convenience of the University of North Dakota, North Dakota State University and Dickinson State University, the presidents of those institutions shall be provided an unfurnished residence with a furnished public area, free of rent, with all utilities and maintenance paid by the university. The UND, NDSU and DSU presidents are required to reside in the residence and to use the residence for entertainment purposes designed to further the interests of the university. MaSU, MiSU and VCSU presidents are entitled to a housing allowance in a uniform amount recommended by the chancellor. 6. In lieu of mileage reimbursement for use of personal vehicles for official business, presidents or chancellor receiving a vehicle allowance prior to the effective date of this policy shall continue to receive the vehicle allowance until June 30, 2008 according to terms of their employment contracts. Further, those presidents or chancellor may elect to continue the vehicle allowance in lieu of mileage reimbursement beyond June 30, 2008, or until retirement, resignation or other termination of their employment, provided the election is made prior to July 1, 2008. Presidents or chancellor who do not elect to continue a vehicle allowance and presidents or chancellor appointed on or after the effective date of this policy are entitled to mileage reimbursement for use of personal vehicles and not a vehicle allowance.
SBHE Minutes, February 18-19, 1982, page 5003. Amendment SBHE Minutes, June 27-28, 1988, page 5731. Amendment SBHE Minutes, March 10, 1994, page 6454. Amendment SBHE Minutes, December 15, 1994, page 6524. Amendment SBHE Minutes, June 26, 1995, page 6568.
DRAFT 705.1 Sept 10 2012 Page 3 Amendment SBHE Minutes, November 16, 2001. Amendment SBHE Minutes, June 17, 2004. Amendment SBHE Minutes, October 18, 2007. Amendment SBHE Minutes, May 9, 2011.
The following draft minutes have not yet been approved by the ND State Board of Higher Education Minutes – September 5, 2012 The State Board of Higher Education met Wednesday, September 5, 2012, at 9:00 a.m. CT, at Microsoft Fargo, 4550 42nd Street South, Fargo, ND 58104. Members present: Mr. Duaine Espegard, President Dr. Kirsten Diederich, Vice-President Mr. Grant Shaft Dr. Terry Hjelmstad Mr. Sydney Hull, Student Member Ms. Janice Hoffarth, Staff Senate Adviser Dr. Douglas Munski, Faculty Adviser Mr. Don Morton Ms. Kathleen Neset Ms. Kari Reichert Staff members present: Dr. Hamid Shirvani, Chancellor Mr. Pat Seaworth, General Counsel Ms. Laura Glatt, Vice Chancellor for Administrative Affairs Mr. Randall Thursby, Chief Information Officer Dr. Joshua Riedy, UND CIO Mr. Bill Eggert, Director of Internal Audit and Risk Assessment Ms. Aimee Copas, Academic Affairs Associate Ms. Linda Donlin, Director of Communications and Media Relations Ms. Erika Lorenz, Secretary Mr. Morton welcomed everyone to the meeting. SBHE new member orientation Ms. Laura Glatt, Vice-Chancellor for Administrative Affairs, Mr. Bill Eggert, Director of Internal Audit and Risk Assessment, Ms. Aimee Copas, Academic Affairs Associate, Mr. Randall Thursby, NDUS CIO, and Mr. Pat Seaworth, NDUS General Counsel presented overviews of their individual areas. Chancellor Shirvani introduced Ms. Linda Donlin as the new NDUS Director of Communications and Media Relations. Board Policy Manual Revisions Introduction and final adoption 302.10 Executive Committee 302.11 Academic Committee 302.12 Audit Committee It was moved by Morton, seconded by Hjelmstad, to waive the second meeting requirement and to approve the introduction and final adoption of Policy 302.10 Executive Committee, Policy 302.11 Academic Committee, and 302.12 Audit Committee, and delete Policy 302.7 Budget Audit and Finance Committee and Policy 302 Compensation Committee, effective immediately. Diederich, Hjelmstad, Hull, Morton, Neset, Shaft, Reichert, and Espegard voted aye. The motion carried unanimously. 330 Policy Introduction, Amendment, Passage
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State Board of Higher Education – September 5, 2012
601.1 Presidential Search and Screening Committee It was moved by Diederich, seconded by Hull, to waive the second meeting requirement and to approve the introduction and final adoption of Policy 330 Policy Introduction, Amendment, Passage and Policy 601.1 Presidential Search and Screening Committee, effective immediately. Hjelmstad, Hull, Morton, Neset, Shaft, Reichert, Diederich, and Espegard voted aye. The motion carried unanimously. 604.1 Performance Evaluations: Presidents 604.2 Performance Evaluations: Chancellor It was moved by Hull, seconded by Diederich, to waive the second meeting requirement and to approve the introduction and final adoption of Policy 604.1 Performance Evaluations: Presidents and Policy 604.2 Performance Evaluations: Chancellor, effective immediately. Hull, Morton, Neset, Shaft, Reichert, Diederich, Hjelmstad, and Espegard voted aye. The motion carried unanimously. Approve draft responses to performance audits regarding fees at NDSU and UND Chancellor Shirvani presented a brief overview of the draft responses to the performance audit on fees at NDUS and UND. It was moved by Diederich, seconded by Morton, to approve draft responses to performance audits regarding fees at NDSU and UND. Morton, Neset, Shaft, Reichert, Diederich, Hjelmstad, Hull, and Espegard voted aye. The motion carried unanimously. Approve NDUS action plan in response to fees performance audit Chancellor Shirvani said the action plan is tied closely to the three-tier access plan. Mr. Shaft expressed concern regarding the March 30, 2012, completion date for the Chancellor’s Office review of all remaining non-mandatory fees occurring during a legislative session. Chancellor Shirvani agreed to change the completion date from March 30, 2013, to June 30, 2013. It was moved by Neset, seconded by Diederich, to approve the NDUS action plan in response to fees performance audit. Neset, Shaft, Reichert, Diederich, Hjelmstad, Hull, Morton, and Espegard voted aye. The motion carried unanimously. Presentation of three-tier system access plan Chancellor Shirvani said the three-tier access plan was developed in response to concerns and issues raised by legislators, the SBHE, and other stakeholders. Board members Hull and Hoffarth expressed concern regarding the use of class rank percentages in the admissions index because of very small graduating classes and inconsistencies regarding class rank calculations by various school districts. Chancellor Shirvani said an appropriate algorithm will be used to adjust for class ranks. Chancellor Shirvani reported that his office is meeting with campuses to work out the details. Two sets of meetings have been scheduled with campus leadership, presidents and vice presidents to work through any issues. Mr. Hull expressed concern that the high index scores will severely limit the number of students who would be eligible to attend the two research universities. Chancellor Shirvani stated the indexes can be adjusted as needed. Chancellor Shirvani said institution presidents have the discretion to admit the equivalent of 5 percent of the previous year’s students who do not meet the minimum index scores (i.e. minority students, veterans, and possibly student athletes). He
State Board of Higher Education – September 5, 2012 Page 2 of 3
also noted the index model is the same as the one used by the University of Iowa to determine admissions. Chancellor Shirvani stated a report will be generated for high schools that will show how firstyear students are performing in institutions of higher learning in North Dakota. Responding to a question from Mr. Hull regarding institution readiness for potential declines in admissions, Chancellor Shirvani said he believes the four-year institutions will be able to manage a potential decline. He said that there is a plan to institute developmental course offerings from community colleges at regional and research institutions. According to Chancellor Shirvani, the admissions process will continue with the current model for 2013. The new index will be calculated to mirror admissions for 2014, which means no impact in that year as well. The first year the index model will have an impact will be 2015. Board members discussed the impact of the three-tier access plan on staff dependent tuition waiver benefits. Chancellor Shirvani will look into the dependent tuition waivers across the system, and if the benefit is not available it may be possible for it to be revised. He said changes in tuition waiver policy would not be instituted until 2014 to give institutions time to minimize the impact. Chancellor Shirvani reported that NDSCS has been asked to develop a proposal to expand technical programs in Fargo and LRSC has been asked to expand programs in Grand Forks and to offer classes in the evenings and on weekends. The promotion and marketing of these programs will also be expanded. The SBHE continued discussion of the three-tier access plan, its impact on campus recruiting, marketing the types of institutions, and future consideration of graduate student admissions. There was also extensive conversation regarding the impact of the three-tier plan, including a tuition-per-credit model and tuition waivers. Approve revised SBHE 2013 meeting dates It was moved by Shaft, seconded by Diederich, to approve the revised SBHE 2013 meeting dates. Shaft, Reichert, Diederich, Hjelmstad, Hull, Morton, Neset, and Espegard voted aye. The motion carried unanimously. The meeting adjourned at 3:30 p.m.
Executive Secretary November 15, 2012 Date
State Board of Higher Education – September 5, 2012
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ND State Board of Higher Education Minutes – September 26, 2012
Tuesday, September 25, 2012 Members present: Mr. Duaine Espegard, President Mr. Grant Shaft Ms. Kathleen Neset Mr. Sydney Hull, Student Member Ms. Janice Hoffarth, Staff Senate Adviser Staff members present: Dr. Hamid Shirvani, Chancellor
Dr. Kirsten Diederich, Vice-President Dr. Terry Hjelmstad Ms. Kari Reichert Mr. Don Morton Dr. Douglas Munski, Faculty Adviser
A dinner social was held for Board members at Chancellor Shirvani’s residence, 524 Slate Drive, Bismarck, ND. Dinner began at 7:00 p.m. CT. During the dinner, Board members discussed some of the issues raised by students, faculty and staff including student concerns revolving around tuition waiver and admission policies. Conversation was held regarding past tuition issues and public reaction to them. Dinner ended at 9:45 p.m. Wednesday, September 26, 2012 The State Board of Higher Education met Wednesday, September 26, 2012, at 8:50 a.m. in the Multipurpose Room, Bismarck Public School Career Academy, 122 College Drive, Bismarck, North Dakota. Members present: Mr. Duaine Espegard, President Mr. Grant Shaft, Ms. Kathleen Neset Mr. Sydney Hull, Student Member Dr. Douglas Munski, Faculty Adviser Staff members present: Dr. Hamid Shirvani, Chancellor Mr. Pat Seaworth, General Counsel Ms. Erika Lorenz, Secretary
Dr. Kirsten Diederich, Vice-President Dr. Terry Hjelmstad Ms. Kari Reichert Ms. Janice Hoffarth, Staff Senate Adviser
It was moved by Shaft, seconded by Hull, for the State Board of Higher Education, staff, SBHE secretary, and general counsel to meet in Executive Session with Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem pursuant to NDCC 44-04-19.1 and NDCC 44-04-19.2 regarding negotiations between the Attorney General and the National Collegiate Athletic Association regarding the Ralph Engelstad Arena. Diederich, Hjelmstad, Hull, Neset, Reichert, Shaft, and Espegard voted aye. Morton was absent. The motion carried. The Board entered Executive Session at 8:57 a.m.
State Board of Higher Education – September 26, 2012
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The Board reconvened to open session at 9:09 a.m. It was moved by Shaft, seconded by Hjelmstad, to approve the recommendation of the Attorney General regarding the acceptance of the addendum to the Settlement Agreement and Mutual Release dated October 26, 2007, between State of North Dakota, by and through the North Dakota State Board of Higher Education, University of North Dakota, and the National Collegiate Athletic Association, and direct the Attorney General to execute the addendum to that Settlement Agreement and Mutual Release. Hull, Neset, Reichert, Shaft, Diederich, Hjelmstad, and Espegard voted aye. Morton was absent. The motion carried. Mr. Espegard thanked Attorney General Stenehjem and the Board for their work with the NCAA on the Fighting Sioux nickname/logo issue. Attorney General Stenehjem then signed the agreement. The meeting recessed at 9:15 a.m. The Board reconvened at 1:10 p.m. in the Multipurpose Room, Bismarck Public School Career Academy, 122 College Drive, Bismarck, North Dakota. Members present: Mr. Duaine Espegard, President Dr. Kirsten Diederich, Vice-President Mr. Grant Shaft Dr. Terry Hjelmstad Ms. Kathleen Neset Ms. Kari Reichert Mr. Don Morton Mr. Sydney Hull, Student Member Dr. Douglas Munski, Faculty Adviser Ms. Janice Hoffarth, Staff Senate Adviser Staff members present: Dr. Hamid Shirvani, Chancellor Dr. John Haller, Interim Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs Ms. Laura Glatt, Vice Chancellor for Administrative Affairs Mr. Randall Thursby, Chief Information Officer Mr. Pat Seaworth, General Counsel Mr. Bill Eggert, Director of Internal Audit and Risk Assessment Ms. Aimee Copas, Academic Affairs Associate Ms. Lisa Johnson, Director of Articulation and Transfer Ms. Linda Donlin, Director of Communications and Media Relations Ms. Erika Lorenz, Secretary Board President’s Remarks Mr. Espegard said there are many critical items for the Board to review including important policies and the Pathways to Student Success Plan. With the upcoming legislative session, he indicated that the Board is interested in moving these items forward so there is sufficient time to inform and engage legislators and the public in Higher Education’s vision for the future. The Pathways to Student Success Plan is intended to be the foundation for that vision. North Dakota Student Association (NDSA) Report Mr. William Woodworth, NDSA President, updated the Board regarding NDSA’s newest elected officers: Jody Ferris, DSU, Legislative Lobbyist; Liana Hansen, VCSU, Webmaster; and Caitlyn Drogemuller, NDSU, Public Relations Coordinator. NDSA passed a resolution encouraging the Board to
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study the merger of tuition and non-mandatory fees and a proposal to increase state academic and CTE scholarship to $2,500 per year and $10,000 total per undergraduate student. While NDSA supports no tuition increase in the 2013-15 biennium, Woodworth said the NDSA supported a 2.5 percent maximum tuition increase at four-year campuses and a tuition freeze at two-year campuses as long as state appropriations made up the difference in funding. Mr. Woodworth thanked Chancellor Shirvani and Dr. Shirley for attending the NDSA meeting. He then requested a motion on behalf of the NDSA to postpone the final approval of Pathways to Student Success Plan to allow time for more study. He said the MiSU student government passed a resolution recommending the plan be delayed to allow for a third-party contract to be obtained for additional research on the impact of the plan. Council of College Faculties (CCF) Report Dr. Douglas Munski recognized the CCF members present at the meeting. He said Chancellor Shirvani met with CCF and discussed the Pathways to Student Success Plan. Dr. Munski said CCF is generally pleased and supportive. He also the NDUS Arts and Humanities Summit will be held at VCSU on October 11 and 12. The public is invited to attend. Staff Senate Report Ms. Hoffarth said Staff Senate will have an Executive Committee conference call before each Board meeting to discuss the upcoming agenda. Kristi Swartz, UND, has been elected as the incoming Staff Senate President. She said all the Staff Senate concerns regarding the Pathways to Student Success Plan have been addressed by the Chancellor and the NDUS Office. Approve July 17, 2012, and July 19, 2012, meeting minutes It was moved by Shaft, seconded by Morton, to approve the July 17, 2012, and July 19, 2012, meeting minutes. Diederich, Hjelmstad, Hull, Morton, Neset, Shaft, Reichert, and Espegard voted aye. The motion carried unanimously. Approve Chancellor’s 2012-13 goals Mr. Espegard said he is supportive of the Chancellor’s goals, and he appreciates the vision the Chancellor has developed for the university system. It was moved by Hjelmstad, seconded by Hull, to approve the Chancellor’s 2012-13 goals. Hjelmstad, Hull, Morton, Neset, Shaft, Reichert, Diederich, and Espegard voted aye. The motion carried. Appoint Centers of Excellence members It was moved by Hull, seconded by Shaft, to appoint Mr. Hjelmstad to the Center of Excellence Commission for the term of September 26, 2012 to June 30, 2015, and to appoint Mr. Morton to the Center of Excellence Commission for the term of September 26, 2012 to June 30, 2014. Hull, Morton, Neset, Shaft, Reichert, Diederich, Hjelmstad, and Espegard voted aye. The motion carried. Ratify SBHE committee memberships Mr. Espegard appointed Ms. Reichert to the Academic and Audit Committees. It was moved by Shaft, seconded by Diederich, to appoint Don Morton to the Executive Committee. Neset, Shaft, Reichert, Diederich, Hjelmstad, Hull, Morton, and Espegard voted aye. The motion carried.
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Board Policy Manual Revisions It was moved by Diederich, seconded by Shaft, to approve the introduction and adoption of the following policies including amendments by the Executive Committee to Policy 305.1 College and University Presidents’ Authority and Responsibilities. These amendments to Policy 305.1 are: to Section 7(a), add as a new sentence at end of section 7(a): “ “Retreat rights” means the president has a right to revert to a tenured faculty position in the department in which the president has received tenure”; and add as new first and second sentences to Section 8: “In consultation with the Board, the Chancellor may initiate dismissal of a president for just cause during the contract term and shall provide a written notice of intent to do so and an opportunity for a hearing conducted by the Chancellor. The Chancellor shall provide not less than five days for a response by the president following delivery of notice of intent, prior to a dismissal decision.” These policies are effective immediately. 100.6 Authority and Responsibility of the SBHE 304.1 Chancellor/Commissioner of Higher Education Authority and Responsibilities 305.1 College and University Presidents’ Authority and Responsibilities 608.2 NDUS Employees – Non-renewal and Dismissals 705.1 Executive Compensation 802.8 Internal Audit Functions 403.5 Secondary-Postsecondary Articulation Agreements; Dual Credit Postsecondary Enrollment Options 404.1 Delivery Format Approval for Credit Activities 430.3 Posthumous Degrees Shaft, Reichert, Diederich, Hjelmstad, Hull, Morton, Neset, and Espegard voted aye. The motion carried unanimously. Consent Agendas It was moved by Shaft, seconded by Neset, to approve the Chancellor’s recommendations for the 2011-13 deficiency appropriation recommendations for MiSU, VCSU and ND State Forest Service: MiSU – Emergency flood-fighting costs not covered by FEMA $201,369 MiSU – Building/Infrastructure restoration costs not covered by FEMA $1,646,613 VCSU – Permanent hillside stabilization $505,800 ND Forest Service – Wildland fire emergencies $250,000 Reichert, Diederich, Hjelmstad, Hull, Morton, Neset, Shaft, and Espegard voted aye. The motion carried. It was moved by Shaft, seconded by Diederich, to approve the NDSU requests from the Financial and Facility Consent Agenda. Authorization to proceed with a coffee shop addition to Residence Dining Center at an estimated cost of $350,000 funded from Dining Services local facilities operating funds. Authorization to proceed with fundraising $950,000 through the North Dakota 4-H Foundation for renovation of the Western North Dakota 4-H Camp at Washburn, ND and construction of a multi-purpose building at the camp. Authorization to include $35,404,356, an increase of $6,304,356 over the currently authorized amount of $29,100,000, for the Sanford Health Athletic Complex (formerly Bison Sports Arena), funded from private funds. Furthermore, authorize NDSU to proceed with a fundraising campaign of $35,404,356 for the project. Reichert, Diederich, Hjelmstad, Hull, Morton, Neset, Shaft, and Espegard voted aye. The motion carried.
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It was moved by Diederich, seconded by Shaft, to approve the following Academic Consent Agenda items: DSU requests: o New programs with a Minor in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and a Minor in Soil Science o Institutional Organizational Termination: China Center at Sichuan International Studies University o Program Terminations: B.A. in Business Administration P.C. in Entrepreneurship (16 hours) NDSU requests: o Institutional Organizational Change From: Department of Music To: School of Music o New program with a P.C. in Construction Management o Degrees offered: From: M.S. in Construction Management To: Master of Construction Management o Degrees Offered: Master of Construction Management UND requests: o Institutional Organizational Change From: Department of Information Systems & Business Education To: Department of Information Systems & Business Communication o Program terminations: B.S.Ed. in Business Education B.S. Ed. in Industrial Technology Minor in Office Administration WSC request for program terminations of A.A.S. and P.C. in Information Processing Hjelmstad, Hull, Morton, Neset, Shaft, Reichert, Diederich, and Espegard voted aye. The motion carried. Personnel Agenda It was moved by Diederich, seconded by Shaft, to approve the NDSU request to grant an honorary doctorate to Mr. Gregg Halverson. Hull, Morton, Neset, Shaft, Reichert, Diederich, Hjelmstad, and Espegard voted aye. The motion carried.
Pathways to Student Success proposal Mr. Espegard said the Board charged the Chancellor with the task of moving the university system to the level of distinction that North Dakota deserves. There have been numerous presentations, conversations, consultations, and dialogue with large numbers of legislators, community leaders, faculty, students and staff. As a result, there have been numerous revisions, including a title change from the Three-Tier Access Plan to the Pathways to Student Success Plan. Chancellor Shirvani said the Pathways to Student Success Plan focuses on student success and raising standards as a foundation to move the system forward. The five initiatives in the plan are access, quality, affordability, learning, and accountability. He said the plan follows the Carnegie Classifications for institutions, which is based on institutional mission. As a result of input received, the name of the plan has been changed from the Three-Tier Access Plan to the Pathways to Student Success Plan to more
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closely reflect the ultimate goal of the plan. Admission to four-year institutions will be based on a mathematical index system. Class rank will be excluded from the admission index and North Dakota residents will be awarded 10 bonus points in the admissions index. The implementation of the new admissions index is intended to have no negative impact for current high school students. The first graduating high school class to be impacted by the plan will be the graduating class of 2015. Thirty-eight states currently provide feedback to high schools regarding first-year college students. The NDUS will begin providing this feedback in Fall 2013 and will work closely with K-12 to ensure that students and parents are informed of the new admission index and how it can be used to provide greater transparency for students’ transitioning from high school to college. Financial aid will be requested to support needs-based aid, adult learners, and refinements will be made to merit-based aid. Community colleges will have the responsibility for the delivery of all developmental course work. Two-year and four-year campuses will share the responsibility for dualcredit courses subject to enhanced criteria according to an agreement regarding the Common Core State Standards partnership between K-12 and the NDUS. Standard and uniform tuition rate criteria will be followed by all institutions with regard to in-state, outof-state, contiguous states (including Canadian provinces), and international students. A per-credit hour tuition rate structure will be phased in according to low, medium, and high cost programs where appropriate and non-mandatory program and course fees will be included with tuition. The new tuition/fees model will be implemented in 2014. Undergraduate tuition waiver reductions will not exceed 5 percent of total undergraduate tuition revenue of the previous academic year for all institutions. At two-year and four-year campuses, waivers are for Native American students, U.S. Veterans, and athletes. Tuition waivers at research universities will include Native American students, U.S. Veterans, and special cases as determined by the Presidents. Student athletes in Division I athletics will be outside the 5 percent waiver cap. They will be admitted based on NCAA rules and regulations. Employee tuition waivers will also be outside the 5 percent cap at all campuses. In response to questions from Mr. Hull, Chancellor Shirvani said campuses will be given the opportunity for input. Student input will be heard through the campuses. Changes will not be retroactive but certain components of the plan (i.e. per-credit tuition structure) will affect some students currently enrolled. The expedited approval process is a demonstration to the legislature to show the system is on the way to building a quality system. The bonus points for North Dakota residents will make only a marginal difference in admissions. An appeals process for admissions will be in place and presidents have the discretion to resolve special cases up to 5 percent of the previous academic year. Mr. Hull said the MiSU student government passed a resolution urging a third-party examination of the plan. He said student reaction to the plan is primarily positive, but there is concern about the rapid timeline. It was moved by Mr. Hull to table the Pathways to Student Success Plan until the November Board meeting, to allow for further study. The motion died for lack of a second. Chancellor Shirvani said he has received a resolution from MiSU Faculty Senate requesting a third-party study and recommendation of the Pathways to Student Success Plan. The Chancellor questioned whether the plan had been clearly communicated to the MiSU academic community inasmuch as the plan is
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conceptual and a work in progress. He said only five campuses will be affected by the tuition waivers. His intention is to have the plan fully implemented over three years. Ms. Neset said she has also received concerns from the community but believes the plan is a work in progress. The Chancellor noted that some North Dakota students leave the state to attend institutions in other states with higher standards. Mr. Espegard said the plan is the foundation to build a better system and is a living document. It was moved by Diederich, seconded by Morton, to approve the NDUS Pathways to Student Success Plan, including implementation timelines, as the NDUS Strategic Plan; delegate to the Chancellor the details of implementation of the plan; and further, authorize him to make all changes necessary to align SBHE policies and NDUS procedures consistent with the plan. Morton, Neset, Shaft, Reichert, Diederich, Hjelmstad, Hull, and Espegard voted aye. The motion carried unanimously. Public Comment Robert Vallie, NDSU student, asked for clarification on public comment regarding policy changes prior to SBHE approval. Chancellor Shirvani said comments were taken during the Executive Committee meeting. The Chancellor said there has been outreach to numerous groups including students, legislators, MiSU Board of Regents, the Department of Commerce, the 20/20, CCF, and Staff Senate regarding the Pathways to Student Success Plan. Dr. Fuller, MiSU and DCB President, said the verbatim process and program from the Chancellor’s office were disseminated to students, faculty, and staff. There was concern expressed by these groups because of MiSU’s special circumstances including the flood and its proximity to the Canadian border. The community, faculty, staff, and Board of Regents all support a third-party study to assess the impact the plan will have on MiSU and the system. Roger Herman, MiSU student, said the current the plan was made public on September 21 allowing only five days for comments. He said it is unclear to him what changes the revised version contains what impact the changes will have. Dr. Don Poochigian, UND law professor, said the last three statements by the Board, regarding the purpose of higher education, focus on economic development. He questioned if that meant the intent was to effectively eliminate liberal education in North Dakota. Chancellor Shirvani assured him that NDUS institutions have the responsibility to help workforce/economic development and to increase the quality and standards for admission. However, the fundamental premise of a college education is to ensure that a liberal arts education is provided. Mr. William Woodworth, NDSA President, said NDSA would be willing to assist in communicating the plan and its impacts to students. Chancellor Shirvani said he would be happy to make presentations to students on each campus. The meeting adjourned at 2:45 p.m.
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November 15, 2012 Date
State Board of Higher Education – September 26, 2012
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University system general counsel finds no evidence of violations
University system general counsel finds no evidence of violations
14 HOURS AGO • BY HANNAH JOHNSON
The North Dakota Board of Higher Education and Chancellor Hamid Shirvani did not violate open meeting laws, according to the University System’s chief attorney. Claire Holloway, the University System general counsel, said Thursday she found no evidence the board had violated the laws. Former board attorney Pat Seaworth, who retired in early November but said he was forced out when he tried to prevent open meetings violations, called Holloway’s findings disappointing but not surprising. Seaworth said the board should have asked the state attorney general’s office, as an independent agency, to conduct the inquiry. The report, available on the university system’s website, found that the board had not violated open meeting laws. While Holloway found no violation of open meetings laws, she said that under a “conservative interpretation” of the laws, the board should retroactively post an agenda and meeting minutes for one or two earlier meetings. The executive summary of her report says the board, not Shirvani is responsible for complying with open meeting laws. The report also addressed other allegations presented to the board at its March 7 meeting by student member Sydney Hull. Thursday’s meeting was via conference call since several board members were traveling. All members took part, including Hull, a North Dakota State University student who was listening in from South Africa while on spring break. Among the allegations presented last week by Hull were that the board had delegated improper authority to the chancellor, that the board approved policy changes through improper procedures and that Shirvani misrepresented himself in his resume. Holloway said many of the allegations already had been “publicly addressed and resolved” and
University system general counsel finds no evidence of violations
others were based on rumors. The report found no evidence of wrongdoing by Shirvani. Information presented by Hull included a letter in the Modesto, Calif., Bee newspaper that said Shirvani had falsely taken credit for a new science building in his former position as president of California State University Stanislaus. Holloway said Shirvani had responded with a letter printed in the same newspaper and she found no evidence he had misrepresented any of his accomplishments. Seaworth said Holloway’s report seemed to be pre-ordained. He said he was not contacted, despite the fact that his lengthy emails describing the chancellor’s disregard for open meeting laws were included in the information presented to the board last week. Seaworth also said he knew a number of other current and former employees who had knowledge of wrongdoing by the chancellor but were not contacted. After the meeting, Shirvani said he hopes the “distractions” can go away so he can concentrate on the real issues facing the university system. He said he felt the allegations were based on “innuendo and rumors” for the purpose of “public humiliation (and) public dislike.” It involves a small group, he said, whose members are frightened by some of the policies he has been working on within the system. “I hope they give me a chance and they work with me,” Shirvani said, “because I don’t think they should be frightened.” Sen. Tony Grindberg, R-Fargo, was in a Senate Appropriations Committee hearing during the board’s meeting and said late Thursday that he couldn’t comment without looking at the details of Holloway’s report. Grindberg did say, however, that he found the events of the past week involving the board to be unique. Board members originally said they would not discuss the allegations until May. “I think it’s highly unusual to receive information and then say they’ll release findings in May, and then, within days, call an emergency meeting,” he said. Grindberg has been a critic of Shirvani’s actions and the board. He introduced an amendment to the Senate’s higher education budget last month providing $854,000 for the board to buy out Shirvani’s contract. The measure hasn’t cleared the Legislature. Also last month, the North Dakota Student Association, which represents more than 48,000 public university students, approved a vote of “no confidence” in Shirvani. A group of six former North Dakota college and university presidents expressed similar sentiments in a letter this week to board members. Jim Ozbun, Ellen Chaffee, Garvin Stevens,
University system general counsel finds no evidence of violations
Kermit Lidstrom, Al Watrel and Sharon Etemad wrote that Shirvani should be fired. Board member Kirsten Diederich said she sent an email to Chaffee thanking her for the report. “Past presidents have a lot of insight. They have a lot of experience,” Diederich said. “It’s been a while since they’ve been sitting in the seats here, kind of in the trenches. Not that what they had to say isn’t relevant now, but it’s something we should look into, ourselves.” The next North Dakota Board of Higher Education meeting is scheduled for May 9. (Reporter Nick Smith and The Associated Press contributed to this story.)
6 former college, university presidents want Shirvani fired, call him 'wrong for North Dakota' | INFORUM | Fargo, ND
Published March 14, 2013, 03:11 PM
6 former college, university presidents want Shirvani fired, call him 'wrong for North Dakota'
FARGO – In a highly critical letter to state Board of Higher Education members, six former North Dakota college and university presidents today recommended the board fire University System Chancellor Hamid Shirvani, calling him “wrong for North Dakota.” By: Mike Nowatzki, INFORUM
FARGO – In a highly critical letter to state Board of Higher Education members, six former North Dakota college and university presidents today recommended the board fire University System Chancellor Hamid Shirvani, calling him “wrong for North Dakota.” Jim Ozbun, president of North Dakota State University from 1988 to 1995, said he and the five other retired presidents who wrote the letter – all of whom still live in the state – wanted to express their concerns to the board and give members an opportunity to interact with them if they so choose. “I just thought that we had some expertise amongst us that might be helpful, and we wanted to share it,” he said. In the letter obtained by Forum News Service, the former presidents note that while tensions between the Board of Higher Education and the Legislature are inevitable, “This time is different from anything we have seen in our 40-plus years.” Specifically, they contend the board has: – Allowed Shirvani to deprive the board of advice and counsel from its executive leaders. – Approved a chancellor-recommended termination policy for presidents “that guarantees you will not attract many, if any, highly qualified candidates as new presidents except perhaps those whose first love is North Dakota and who are otherwise financially secure.” – Apparently committed multiple open-meetings violations in the last eight months “at the urging and by arrangement of the chancellor.” Those alleged violations are the subject of a board meeting being held this afternoon. “If legally upheld, these violations undermine the Board’s reputation and credibility,” the letter states. “In any case, the behaviors about which we have read indicate a level of mistrust and inside dealing that is both unprecedented in our experience and well outside the expectations of North Dakota taxpayers.” The letter also is critical of a three-tier admissions system, the centerpiece of a new strategic plan, saying it’s “neither new nor evidence-based” and there are “far more effective strategies for improving student success, most of which were already under way in the NDUS before last summer.” Shirvani’s threeyear contract began July 1. Last month, the Senate approved adding $854,520 to the University System’s budget to buy out Shirvani’s remaining contract. Current university and college presidents haven’t spoken publicly about Shirvani’s leadership since state lawmakers began calling it into question. “That’s our intent, to provide a voice when they are – and rightly so – they’re not in a position to speak out,” Ozbun said, adding he didn’t personally receive any input from sitting presidents in crafting the letter. The letter states that none of the current presidents has created trouble for himself or his institution, and that there’s “no need to punish good leaders for the sins of their predecessors. “We expect that North Dakota will soon lose the services of these talented, dedicated men,” it states. Ozbun said he didn’t consult any current presidents about whether they’re planning on leaving. “But on the other hand, I think the situation is such that if I was in their shoes, I would be looking for other opportunities, because the situation hasn’t been very pleasant for them,” he said. The letter states the situation "is so out of hand that what is arguably the best state higher education governance structure in the country (and certainly the one most used in other states) may be replaced with a bureaucracy or a political machine. The outcome could jeopardize all the institutions’ regional accreditation, which has happened twice before under Shirvani’s leadership. “All sides are entrenched in their current positions. This will only get worse unless someone steps forward with principle and courage to put the students, the institutions, and the future of the state first – very soon. We hope that will be you, individually and collectively.” The former presidents recommend the board fire Shirvani “for cause or by negotiation” and then find a new chancellor, “noting that truly effective change agents are also trusting and trustworthy.” Also listed as authors of the letter were Ellen Chaffee, president of Valley City State University from 1993-2008; Garvin Stevens, Williston State College 1967-2000; Kermit Lidstrom, Bismarck State College, 1977-1995; Al Watrel, Dickinson State University, 1977-1994; and Sharon Etemad, Lake Region State College, 1987-2008. Ozbun said Chaffee emailed the letter to board members. He said he didn’t know if she emailed it to anyone else. Chaffee couldn’t immediately be reached for comment. Former presidents' letter
March 14, 2013 Dear Members of the State Board of Higher Education, As North Dakota residents with many years of executive experience in higher education here, we are often asked for comment, especially in these difficult times. We have a unique perspective that we hope will be helpful to you. In the system’s brief 22-year lifespan, the institutions have changed significantly to achieve a true state system. For example, campus Master Plans rationalized and reduced competition for facility funds. The community colleges together developed workforce training programs that are second to none. Common course numbering, common general education requirements, and common calendars and schedules have streamlined student transfer. The university system provides an extraordinary biennial accountability report to the legislature. An enterprise software system has standardized all important data across campuses. Legislators were key participants in many of these developments. More is possible and needed, but the institutions have stepped up to every opportunity so far. The State Board of Higher Education has always faced significant challenges in advancing the best interests of students and the state. Tensions among participants and with the legislature are inevitable. It’s a huge responsibility, especially for volunteers. We appreciate your service individually, but the buck stops with you collectively. The students, institutions, and taxpayers are counting on you to do the right thing. This time is different from anything we have seen in our 40-plus years. For example: You have allowed the chancellor to deprive the Board of advice and counsel from 11/12 of its executive leaders. A president who answers your question the wrong way or in the wrong setting risks termination for insubordination. Since cabinet meetings do not engage the presidents in reasoned discussion, system recommendations on your agenda have not benefitted from their experience and expertise. This is irresponsible, wasteful, and unprofessional. You have approved a chancellor-recommended presidential employment termination policy that guarantees you will not attract many, if any, highly qualified candidates as new presidents except perhaps those whose first love is North Dakota and who are otherwise financially secure. Multiple open-meetings violations appear to have occurred in the last eight months at the urging and by arrangement of the chancellor. If legally upheld, these violations undermine the Board’s reputation and credibility. In any case, the behaviors about which we have read indicate a level of mistrust and inside dealing that is both unprecedented in our experience and well outside the expectations of North Dakota taxpayers. Discussion of important public business in
seclusion without notice and opportunity for involvement of constituent groups or the general public is contrary to the will of the people of this state and often leads to unpopular decisions lacking the support required for implementation.
The three-tier system of admissions, centerpiece of the new strategic plan, is from the 1960 California Plan. It is neither new nor evidence-based. Significant research now documents a number of far more effective strategies for improving student success, most of which were already underway in the NDUS before last summer.
Not one of the current presidents has created trouble for himself or his institution - quite the contrary. There is no need to punish good leaders for the sins of their predecessors. We expect that North Dakota will soon lose the services of these talented, dedicated men. An effective system relies on a strong Board, strong presidents, and a strong chancellor who trust each other and can work well together. The situation is so out of hand that what is arguably the best state higher education governance structure in the country (and certainly the one most used in other states) may be replaced with a bureaucracy or a political machine. The outcome could jeopardize all the institutions’ regional accreditation, which has happened twice before under Shirvani’s leadership. All sides are entrenched in their current positions. This will only get worse unless someone steps forward with principle and courage to put the students, the institutions, and the future of the state first – very soon. We hope that will be you, individually and collectively. The students have it right. Hamid Shirvani is wrong for North Dakota. We recommend that you terminate the current chancellor for cause or by negotiation and then find a new chancellor, noting that truly effective change agents are also trusting and trustworthy. We also believe that if the Board pursues a proactive plan to improve its own governance of the system, such a chancellor can be found. Sincerely, Garvin Stevens, President, Williston State College, 1967-2000 Kermit Lidstrom, President, Bismarck State College, 1977-1995 Al Watrel, President, Dickinson State University, 1977-1994 Sharon Etemad, President, Lake Region State College, 1987-2008 Jim Ozbun, President, North Dakota State University, 1988-1995 Ellen Chaffee, President, Mayville State University, 1993-2002 and President, Valley City State University, 1993-2008
13.3048.02000 Sixty-third Legislative Assembly of North Dakota Introduced by Representatives Carlson, Martinson, Nathe, Vigesaa Senators Grindberg, Hogue, Schaible
HOUSE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION NO. 3047
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A concurrent resolution to create and enact a new section to article VIII of the Constitution of North Dakota, relating to the creation of a department of higher education; to repeal section 6 of article VIII of the Constitution of North Dakota, relating to the state board of higher education; and to provide an effective date. STATEMENT OF INTENT This measure would create a department of higher education beginning on July 1, 2015, with the charge that the department oversee and administer the provision of all public higher education in this state. BE IT RESOLVED BY THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF NORTH DAKOTA, THE SENATE CONCURRING THEREIN: That the following proposed new section to article VIII of the Constitution of North Dakota and the repeal of section 6 of article VIII of the Constitution of North Dakota are agreed to and must be submitted to the qualified electors of North Dakota at the general election to be held in 2014, in accordance with section 16 of article IV of the Constitution of North Dakota. SECTION 1. A new section to article VIII of the Constitution of North Dakota is created and enacted as follows: 1. The department of higher education is created for the purpose of overseeing and administering the provision of public higher education at sites that include Bismarck, Bottineau, Devils Lake, Dickinson, Fargo, Grand Forks, Mayville, Minot, Valley City, Wahpeton, and Williston. 2. The governor shall appoint the director of the department of higher education, who shall serve as the chief executive officer of the department. The appointment must be for a term of three years and may be renewed for like terms. The director may be removed by the governor for cause. 3. The director must: Page No. 1 13.3048.02000
Sixty-third Legislative Assembly
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Have a dossier that reflects national stature as a scholar and leader; Have a record of senior level managerial experience in education, business, the public sector, or government;
Be uniquely familiar with the broad spectrum of higher education administration and delivery; and
Be committed to the development and maintenance of an educational system that provides opportunities for students, through academic pursuits and technical training, to meet the educational and workforce challenges of the current decade and beyond.
The director has full executive responsibility for the management and operation of the North Dakota university system, within constitutional and statutory requirements and limitations.
The director shall hire a president for each institution within the system and each president shall report to the director.
SECTION 2. REPEAL. Section 6 of article VIII of the Constitution of North Dakota is repealed. SECTION 3. EFFECTIVE DATE. If approved by the electors, this measure becomes effective on July 1, 2015.
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In 2011, the state board of higher education dismissed the Dickinson State University president based on evidence the president directed university employees to ignore statutory and board policy requirements governing enrollment reporting and degree requirements. The board’s action followed comprehensive investigations and reports by the state auditor and university system staff. Recently, the board voted 5-3 to support its new chancellor, Hamid Shirvani, despite close similarities with the DSU situation. The board accepted a report of a rushed investigation that contained several misstatements, ignored allegations of chancellor misconduct, and was done by an employee who reports to Shirvani. The investigator did not even speak to individuals who made some of the most serious allegations. Last July, Shirvani directed employees to ignore open meetings laws and not post or distribute a required notice and agenda in scheduling a dinner meeting for board members. When an employee pointed to statutory requirements Shirvani insisted on ignoring, Shirvani responded by saying “I don’t care. Just do what I say.” Following intervention by board general counsel and a report by telephone to the attorney general, notice of the July dinner meeting was posted. In September, again in the face of staff objections, Shirvani directed employees not to list agenda topics or mention discussion of board business for another board dinner meeting. The failure to provide notice of plans to discuss board business created a false impression the dinner was only a social event. Having the dinner at Shirvani’s home discouraged public participation. Several private board dinners have followed at which discussion regarding important board business occurred without public notice of plans for those discussions, all in violation of state law, opinions of the attorney general, and advice of the attorney general’s chief deputy given in July and conveyed to Shirvani. During this same time, at least two meetings of the board’s executive committee occurred without required public notice. On September 5, 2012, Shirvani told an employee the executive committee met September 4 and decided to fast track approval of a new plan revising admissions requirements in order to limit opportunities by institution presidents and others to “nitpick” the plan. An initial draft of a September 26 board meeting agenda included board action adopting the new plan but Shirvani instructed a secretary to remove the reference and substitute language that indicated only a report on the plan would be provided. The board approved the plan at the September 26 meeting with no public notice of plans to do so, ignoring a request by the student member to postpone discussion to allow time for feedback from students and others. Also, the board amended the board’s strategic plan without prior notice or consultation with constituent groups, contrary to state law and board policy. Prior to the meeting, Shirvani ordered a secretary to not send the draft agenda to the board’s legal counsel so counsel would not have advance notice of these plans. When employees complained, Shirvani squelched an investigation by an officer assigned responsibility to investigate misconduct. Shirvani discussed his plans with Board President Duaine Espegard and Espegard approved meeting agendas. Board members annually received a memorandum summarizing open meetings requirements. The memorandum was sent to all board members and Shirvani on June 26, 2012 and an updated version was distributed to board members and Shirvani prior to a September 5 board meeting. At the September 5 meeting, board general counsel reviewed open meetings laws and specifically discussed the distinction between a purely social function at which board business is not discussed, which is not subject to open meetings laws, and a lunch, dinner or other function where a report or discussion of board business is planned or occurs, which is subject to open meetings laws and requires public notice and an agenda.
The board’s failure to request an investigation by someone not subject to Shirvani’s control regarding not just open meetings violations but also other serious allegations stands in stark contrast to how the board responded to similar concerns involving DSU and raises questions regarding the board’s credibility. Given Shirvani’s history, it was inevitable there would be problems here. More than 90% of the faculty at California State University Stanislaus voted no confidence in his leadership and the faculty senate adopted a resolution stating faculty would not tolerate bullying of students by Shirvani or his administrators. Contrary to assertions of Shirvani apologists, the faculty vote of no confidence was not a response to budget cuts or an academic calendar change but a reaction to Shirvani’s bullying, management by fear and intimidation, and lack of consultation with faculty and others. Recently, university system employees reported a Shirvani attempt to intimidate them into manipulating or selectively reporting data, again raising parallels with what happened at DSU. System office employees have been forced out or resigned, key positions are vacant, advertised position openings attract few or no qualified applicants, and Shirvani has surrounded himself with an inner circle of employees with no prior higher education experience. It is apparent that new leadership is necessary in order that North Dakota continue to have one of the best performing higher education systems in the nation. It is time for Espegard to resign and other board members to assert board authority and replace Shirvani with a chief executive with integrity and respect for the law and North Dakota values. Pat Seaworth
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