Erindale College Council

REPORT OF THE ERINDALE COLLEGE COUNCIL meeting held on Tuesday, April 6, 2004 at 3:15 p.m., in the Council Chamber, South Building, UTM.


RESENT: R. Beck (in the Chair), I. Orchard, P. Donoghue, J. Linley, S. Aster, J. Lim, J. Percy, H. Gunz, A. Lange, M. Rennie, J. Hendricks, G. White, J. Stevenson, S. Al-Abdul-Wahid, S. Abrahim, A. Vyas, L. Desouza, D. Kenney, L. Gaspini, W. Ghobriel, K. Chadder, G. Richter, K. Duncliffe, S. McCarthy, J. Poë, J. Seel, I. Haq, J. McCurdy-Myers, G. Keyser, D. Crocker, M. Overton, D. Schulze, C. Boyd, R. Baker, B. Schneider, S. Kessler, T. Abrahim, D. Swieton, A. Bellerby, B. Thompson, C. Capewell, J. Malcolm
REGRETS: M.A. Mavrinac, T. Rogers, C. McGrath

The Chair reminded members about the reception to take place immediately following the Council meeting in the Ante Chamber, to celebrate the end of term and the year’s accomplishments.

1. Adoption of Agenda
The agenda was adopted. (P. Donoghue/R. Baker)

2. Minutes of Previous Meeting (March 4, 2004)

A member stated that while he was not in attendance at the March 4th meeting of Council, from his understanding of the rules, the Council could not pass a motion while in camera. The Chair replied that he was not aware of such a rule and that the report is a true record of what had transpired. He offered to investigate the procedural question raised by the member.

The report of the previous meeting was approved. (J. Linley / P. Donoghue)

3. Business Arising from the Minutes.

There was no business arising from the Minutes.

4. Reports of Standing Committees

a) Academic Affairs Committee – Sidney Aster

Professor Aster reminded members that the Academic Affairs Committee approved the creation of a subcommittee to revise and update the terms of reference of the Academic Appeals Board. He invited Professor Anderson, Chair of the Academic Appeals Board to present the findings of the subcommittee.

i) Academic Appeals Board terms of reference – Gordon Anderson

Professor Anderson explained that the UTM Academic Appeals Board was operating under the Faculty of Arts & Science terms of reference and much of the work of the subcommittee was in updating the terms of reference to reflect UTM’s withdrawal from the Faculty and other changes relating to the recent departmental restructuring. The revised terms of reference are based on that of the Governing Council’s Academic Appeals Committee and reflect the current practices of the UTM Board.

It was duly moved and seconded,
THAT Erindale College Council approve the terms of reference of the Academic Appeals Board, attached hereto as Appendix “A”. (G. Anderson / D. Crocker)

Professor Anderson proceeded to discuss three friendly amendments, which are to be included in the main motion. The first amendment makes clear that the appeals board handles appeals from undergraduate students only, adjusting the language of the text accordingly. The second amendment deals with how the Chair of the Board is selected. The text of the membership section would be changed to specify that the Chair is to be “appointed by and from the members of the Academic Appeals Board.” The third amendment is also regarding membership, and increases the pool from which student membership is drawn to three members. This ensures that each meeting has adequate student representation.

The Chair opened the floor to questions.

A member commented that having more than 7 faculty members attend a Board meeting, may be intimidating to some students and suggested that “at least” be struck from the text referring to membership and be replaced by “exactly.” Professor Anderson expressed concern about requiring a precise number of members to attend each meeting, adding that seven members may not be able to attend each and every meeting. The member agreed and modified his earlier suggestion to read “no less than five and no more than seven.” Professor Anderson replied that since the quorum requirement was already established, it was not necessary to duplicate it and accepted the change in the text of “no more than 7” as a friendly amendment.

The member also expressed his concern that clause 1E, which pertains to the Board’s actions when students fail to attend a hearing, is inflexible to students who have legitimate reasons for absenteeism. Professor Anderson replied that in practice the Board delays each hearing in case of absenteeism, adding that the entire purpose of the Appeals Board is to provide the opportunity of a personal hearing to appellants, something that is not provided to them at lower levels in the petitions and appeal process.

Another member noted that the terms of reference do not indicate that appellants have the right to appeal the decision of the Appeals Board to Governing Council. Professor Anderson explained that students are advised of this option at the time they are notified of the Board’s decision. In response to a member’s question regarding the provision of new evidence prior to being allowed to appeal, he further noted that since the Board is the first chance of the appellant to be heard in person, the Board did not wish to limit this opportunity by requiring the submission of additional evidence.

The Motion, with the above four amendments, was called to question. The Motion was carried.

Professor Aster thanked Professor Anderson for his work on such a complex document. He noted that the other item of business at the Committee meeting was a report on the work of the Library sub-committee. The Chief Librarian detailed some of the topics recently considered by the sub-committee, such as extended hours, collections management, the Library website, the development of GIS data capacity, training in academic technology and the “Introduction to Scholarly Research” course.

It was duly moved and seconded,
THAT the report of the Academic Affairs Committee be accepted.
The motion was carried. (S. Aster / G. Anderson)

b) Computing Committee – Joe Lim

Mr. Lim reported that members of the Computing Committee met on March 23rd and discussed the survey that was developed to gather input from the UTM community on the level of service and response times that are expected from the Computing Services and Micro Electronics areas. The survey would be revised to incorporate members’ comments before being distributed to the UTM community. In addition to an update on computer viruses, the Committee also heard a report on the results of the faculty needs assessment survey. Mr. Lim added that Computing Services was in the process of developing a better spam filter.

It was duly moved and seconded,
THAT the report of the Computing Committee be accepted.
The motion was carried. (J. Lim / J. Hendricks)

c) College Affairs Committee (Report of February 23, 2004 meeting) – J. Linley

Mr. Linley introduced the motion endorsed by the College Affairs Committee (CAC) by discussing the history behind the Committee’s recommendation. He explained that at the October 2003 meeting of the CAC, members discussed problems that prevented the CAC from functioning efficiently. The problems addressed were: poor attendance, limited agenda items, and a very large membership. Members also discussed that the CAC’s terms of reference appear to be an amalgam of issues, covering such topics as relations with campus associations, fundraising, transportation and parking. Some of these topics, especially those that have resource implications, are contained within other standing committees, such as the Resource Planning and Priorities Committee. At that time, the Executive Committee, endorsed by Erindale College Council, established a small working group to examine the terms of reference of the CAC. The working group was charged with producing a proposal to address the issue of efficiency, while also making sure that none of the important topics currently under the CAC’s purview were neglected. In February of 2004, the CAC received the proposal of the working group, which called for the dissolution of the current committee and its replacement by a new committee that would feature a smaller membership. This new committee would be tentatively called “Quality of Campus Life.” Members of the CAC rejected this proposal and directed the working group to consider eliminating the CAC and replacing it with other communication tools, such as email and web technology.
This resulted in the motion that is presented to Council members today. The working group’s proposal, which has been endorsed by the College Affairs Committee, is to replace that committee with a website that would feature a list of frequently asked questions and answers. This website would have an accompanying email address, directed to the Secretary of Council, whose responsibility would be to bring issues to the attention of the Executive Committee and to Erindale College Council as appropriate. In addition it is proposed that the two active subcommittees of the CAC be moved under the purview of the Resource Planning and Priorities Committee.

It was duly moved and seconded, (J. Linley / P. Donoghue)

i. THAT the Working Group of the College Affairs Committee (CAC), with input from members of CAC, develop the content of a web page linked to the web page of Erindale College Council and THAT this web page be a problem solving vehicle, featuring a comprehensive list of items of concern covered by CAC, (similar to a frequently asked question list) and provide a list of answers and where applicable, links to web pages and information for appropriate contacts;

ii. THAT for those items not addressed in the web page, an email address be provided for members of the community to raise their concerns and questions, and that said email be managed by the Secretary of Council, directing emails to the appropriate area, whether it be an operational department or the Executive Committee of Council as deemed appropriate by the Secretary;

iii. THAT upon the completion of the web page, the College Affairs Committee be dissolved and THAT the two subcommittees of the College Affairs Committee (1. Transportation and Parking; 2. Grounds Monitoring) be reassigned to the Resource Planning and Priorities Committee;
iv. THAT pending the approval of the dissolution of the College Affairs Committee, the necessary changes be made to the By-laws of Erindale College Council as follows: 1) Delete section 5,a, iii, which lists the College Affairs Committee among the standing committees; 2) Delete section 3 of Appendix 3, which describes the terms of reference of the College Affairs Committee; 3) Add the subcommittees of Grounds Monitoring and Transportation and Parking to the terms of reference of the Resource Planning and Priorities Committee, reflected in section 4.6 of Appendix 3.

The Chair opened the floor to discussion.

A member spoke in support of the motion and thanked the working group for its work throughout the year on this task. A member spoke against the motion and proposed the addition of a fifth clause to the main motion.

It was duly moved and seconded,
THAT following a one-year period, Erindale College Council examines the efficiency of the proposed change as stated in the above main motion to determine if it serves the system. (S. Al-Abdul-Wahid / S. O’Connell)

A member spoke against this motion, stating that the above proposal was endorsed and was recommended by the College Affairs Committee and that such a course of action was unnecessary. The member added that the Secretary of Council would perform ongoing monitoring of emails. This would ensure that issues not covered by the website would be brought to the attention of Council through the Executive Committee. The Chair explained that the College Affairs Committee would be dissolved only upon the completion of the webpage and after a final meeting of the committee. Another member commented that this course of action was very thoroughly discussed at the College Affairs Committee and represents the collective recommendation of that group.

The motion was called to question. The motion was defeated.

The Chair reminded members that the main motion was open for discussion.

A member spoke against the motion, making the following points:
1. The terms of reference of the College Affairs Committee were revised in 2003, with one of the main changes being an increase in the student membership. Until this revised committee is allowed time to operate under these guidelines, it should not be dissolved.
2. The structure of Council and its standing committees, although predating that of Governing Council, follows along parallel lines. For example, UTM’s Resource Planning and Priorities Committee is similar to the Business Board and the College Affairs Committee in turn, is similar to the University Affairs Board.
3. The terms of reference for the University Affairs Board include the following areas of responsibility: “Campus and student services, Compulsory non-academic incidental fees, Student societies and campus organizations, Ceremonials (excluding convocation), Extra-curricular programs and use of facilities, Use of the University of Toronto name, Campus security, Day care, Non-financial aspects of University investments, Governing Council elections, Relations within the University community, including non-academic discipline, Equity issues and initiatives. Campus and student services include the Counselling and Learning Skills Service, the Division of Athletics and Recreation in the Faculty of Physical Education and Health, the Career Centre, Student Crisis Response Program, First Nations House, Student Psychiatric Services, the International Student Centre, the University Health Service, the Housing Service, Accessibility Services and the following service ancillary operations: Hart House, residences, food services, beverage service, and parking.” The member suggested that the CAC has significant issues under the above headings, and with only a few of them finding coverage under the newly proposed structure could potentially mean a lack of accountability to college community.

It was duly moved and seconded,
THAT the main motion be tabled . (J. Poë / S. Al-Abdul-Wahid)

The Vice-President and Principal spoke against the motion, stating that most of the items the member listed were no longer in the purview of the CAC. Mandated by the government, the University had to create a protocol that resulted in the establishment of QSS, which has become the forum and the approving body for all of the student services mentioned, including accessibility, health services, athletics and recreation. This approval process is through the University Affairs Board (UAB). He noted that QSS consists of students representing all three student governance bodies and the athletics governance body of UTM. In addition, he noted that non-academic discipline does not go through the CAC as it conforms to the policy within the Code of Student Conduct. The Chair stated that the parallelism between the CAC and UAB was specifically discussed by the working group. Another member spoke against the motion and reiterated that the working group assessed each item in the terms of reference, with a view towards determining its value and function.

A member asserted that the increase in the number of students for CAC was made in response to complaints made by students that they were unsatisfied with their representation on QSS. She added that the CAC was an additional forum for those students who felt that QSS did not represent them. A member of the working group stated that the original reason for looking at the CAC was that there was a great deal of duplication between Council and QSS, with the same people discussing the same issues at Council. The member added that UAB has a very different membership from that of Governing Council, resulting in different view points.

In response to a member’s question about whether QSS reports to Council, the Vice-President and Principal explained that the approval mechanism of QSS is through the University Affairs Board and is governed by a protocol or memorandum of understanding between the University and the three student governments. The protocol is for the establishment and modification of student service fees. In reply to a member’s suggestion, the Dean of Student Affairs agreed to present informal reports of the activities of QSS to future Council meetings.

Another member commented that restructuring always presents a challenge, and questioned the need for redundancies in the system.

The motion was called to question. The motion was defeated.

The Chair reminded members that the main motion was open for debate.

A member expressed his regret that Council would no longer have the business of the CAC to discuss. The Chair pointed out that members could still discuss items that do not fall under the other standing committees and have such items brought to the consideration of the council if said items are not treated satisfactorily by the Executive Committee, or by the FAQ website. The Vice-President and Principal added that the reason QSS was mandated with the responsibility over student services was that in 1996 funding of all of those operations went on a student service fee for which students paid separately (tuition and student service fee that funds athletics centre, health services, career centre etc.) and when government allowed universities to create a fee to fund all of those services, they required a protocol by which those fees are initiated and changed. Therefore, membership makeup, route of approval and student fee changes are mandated in this way.

In response to a member’s question, the Chair of the CAC alleviated concern about airing any potential problems over the World Wide Web by explaining that the FAQ website would not be designed as a ‘chat room’ concept. The CAO observed that what was being described was an effectively balanced means of an open and transparent communication.

A member commented that among other areas that are in the terms of reference of the CAC, which are not discussed at QSS, are security issues, press relations, and fundraising policy. She then suggested that administrative departments perform these functions without accountability. The Chair of the CAC stressed that these items had not been discussed with any regularity and many of them would be covered by the FAQ website, which would be opened up to the UTM community. A member stated that it might be easier to bring matters to a committee populated by peers as opposed to establishing contact via a website. In response to a member’s question about not having access to personal contact such that committee interaction provides, Mr. Linley explained that the proposed website would be accompanied by an email vetted by the Secretary of Council. In the event that a member is dissatisfied with responses from the various administrative units, the Secretary of Council will bring these issues to the attention of Council through the Executive Committee. In response to a member’s questions about the scale of appropriateness that would be used for taking issues to Council, the Chair explained that any decision would err on the side of going through governance.

Discussion ensued regarding possible duplication of issues between the CAC and Erindale College Council, with a member indicating that duplication may occur at Council meetings if issues are brought directly to the attention of Council, while another member argued that the FAQ website would ensure more transparent communication.

The Vice-President and Principal commented that members should not confuse management of facilities with student life. The elimination of CAC does not eliminate opportunities for discussion of the student experience at other venues such as Residence Council, QSS and Athletics Council. He stressed that discussion at all of these groups occurs on a regular basis and the FAQ website directs members to the right forum. He noted that as mentioned before, if satisfaction is not received from an administrative unit, members have the option to submit issues for the consideration of Council. He added that the development and fundraising related activities go through a formal approval process in the Office of the Provost, not through the CAC.

A member commented that students should be encouraged to bring issues to the attention of administration through their respective constituencies, which are all represented on Council and its various standing committees.

The Chair reminded a member who suggested that the FAQ website should be reviewed before the CAC is dissolved and that a formal motion in this regard had been duly considered and defeated.

The motion was called to question. The motion was approved, with 8 members voting in the negative.

The Chair noted that student participation in the governance process is very important and ensuring that student members are well briefed on both their responsibilities and on how they can constructively influence policy can increase the effectiveness of their participation. To this end, the Chair announced he, along with the Secretary of Council would give a workshop on governance to Council members in the fall.

It was duly moved and seconded,
THAT the report of the College Affairs Committee be accepted. The motion was approved. (J. Linley / I. Orchard)

5. New Business

a) Space Planning and Management Committee (SPMC)– Paul Donoghue

The Chief Administrative Officer noted that the terms of reference of the Space Planning and Management Committee are posted on the Council website for information. He explained that the committee was established because of the complex approval process that currently exists with central administration for any capital project or expenditure that is in excess of $30,000. UTM negotiated the transfer of approval power for any project under $500,000. The Space Planning and Management Committee was created to oversee this process, with the primary purpose to coordinate and facilitate the informed review of proposals for the construction, renovation, alteration or change in occupancy or use of space. The overall objective of SPMC is to ensure the optimal utilization of space on the UTM campus. Its procedures are coordinated with those of the Accommodation and Facilities Directorate (AFD) at the University of Toronto and its terms of reference are consistent with those of AFD. The Chief Administrative Officer also noted that the committee would coordinate its procedures and operations with those of the Resource Planning and Priorities Committee.

The Chair opened the floor to questions.

A member commented that the committee membership consists entirely of administrative positions, and that a student member should be added. In addition, the member stated his concern that study space is not included in the terms of reference. Mr. Donoghue explained that the committee would be open to hear study space related issues, adding that the group’s work would have overall responsibility for building and space developments at UTM. He noted that the Dean of Student Affairs would bring issues related to study space to the committee’s attention. He pointed out that the Resource Planning, Priorities Committee, a standing committee with which the SPMC would have a close association, has student members, and that QSS has a working group on study space through which these issues could be brought to the attention of the SPMC. A member commented that faculty members had been omitted from the membership of the Committee. Another member pointed out that there are two faculty members on the committee.

The Chair noted that this item is reported to Council for information only. Another member commented that the interests of administration, faculty and students coincide. In response to a member’s question about the allocation of space in the CCIT building, Mr. Donoghue stressed that fundamental to the use of space is the principle that space of any kind is an institutional resource: it does not belong to any individual department, unit, or person. He added that with the exception of purpose built space, exclusive access and use rights would not be granted to any one group. As one recent exception to the rule he cited the CCIT building, where two areas were designed and built for one particular user group. In this instance, priority allocation of that space would be accorded to that group.

6. Report of the Vice-President and Principal

The Vice-President and Principal congratulated and welcomed Ms. Kathy Chadder, on her appointment as Executive Director of Advancement.

He reported that the Executive Committee of Governing Council approved the naming of the Academic Learning Centre as the Hazel McCallion Academic Learning Centre. The Advancement department is currently in the process of establishing a campaign cabinet to work with the community at large, with a fundraising target of $6.0M, and with Bill Davis agreeing to be the honorary chair of this cabinet. According to fundraising convention, this naming announcement would not be made public in the broader community until a substantial part of the capital goal is reached.

Professor Orchard reported that a second round of need based funding for students, similar to the Ontario Student Opportunity Trust Fund or OSOTF, has been announced by the provincial government. Called, OSOTF II, the program matches pledges made at any funding level dollar for dollar in 2004 and 2005. The University has agreed to match all pledges made by staff. He encouraged faculty and staff to learn more about this program on the Advancement department’s website.

He thanked the Chair of Erindale College Council, Professor Roger Beck and the chairs of the Council’s standing committees, Mr. Jim Linley, Mr. Joe Lim, Professors Robert Baker and Sidney Aster, and sub-committee chairs, Professors Scott Munro and Nicholas Collins, for steering governance activities throughout the past year.

He thanked all outgoing student leaders for their contributions to UTM, including Adil Mirza (ECSU), Shaila Kibria (EPUS), Jennifer Harkness (AGSAE), Karla Kaun (AGSAE), Gengiz Ali Seyhun (SAC), Dave Hamilton (UTMAC), and Andrew McLeod (Residence). He also welcomed incoming student leaders, including Sean O’Connell (ECSU), Moneeza Ahmed (SAC), Danial Raza (UTMAC), Dinesh Ramachandran (Residence) and congratulated Ms. Shaila Kibria for being elected as a student representative on Governing Council.

7. Other Business

A member suggested introducing a motion with respect to requiring the Dean of Student Affairs to report on the activities of QSS at the first fall meeting of Council. The Chair pointed out that the Dean of Student Affairs had agreed earlier in the meeting to give this report and therefore it was not necessary to entertain a formal motion in that regard.

The Chair reminded members to attend the reception immediately following the Council meeting in celebration of the end of term and the last meeting of Erindale College Council. He thanked members for their contributions throughout the academic year and wished them a happy and successful summer.

The meeting adjourned at 5:10 p.m.

Secretary of Council_________________________ Chair_______________________

May 18, 2004