Faculty Rules and Procedures

1. Article I Membership

a. Section 1

Automatic Eligibility

By reason of their rank or of their office, the following are automatically entitled to membership in and upon the faculty of Middlebury College and have the right to vote at all faculty meetings except as noted in c. Section 3. Voting Membership, below.

i. Faculty serving in rank: professor, associate professor, assistant professor, and instructor.

ii. Regular faculty serving on associate status.

iii. Full-time faculty with special appointments.

iv.  Coaching faculty serving on special appointments with the rank of instructor in physical education, assistant in physical education, associate in physical education, and senior associate in physical education.

v. Full-time faculty on term appointments, including assistants and associates in instruction whose positions are potentially subject to review by the Reappointments Committee.

vi. Part-time faculty on special and term appointments.

vii. The president, the provost, the vice president for Academic Affairs and dean of the faculty (VPAA/DOF), the dean for faculty development and research (DFDR), the dean of curriculum, the dean of the College, and the vice president for Language Schools, Schools Abroad and Graduate Programs.

viii. The dean of the Library and the dean of Admissions.

b. Section 2

Additional Eligibility

Additions to the above general rule will be allowed by a majority of the entire voting faculty. Requests for such additions are to be submitted to the faculty by the vice president for Academic Affairs and dean of the faculty.

c. Section 3

Voting Membership

Adjunct appointees are entitled to attend all meetings of the faculty, but they do not have the right to vote. On-leave faculty are eligible to vote in online balloting for the election of faculty committees, or on mailed ballots conducted according to the provisions of subsection 3.f.iii. below. To be counted, mailed ballots must be returned by the time designated on each ballot.

2. Article II Organization of the Faculty

a. Section 1

Officers

i. The faculty moderator, elected in accordance with the provisions in b. Section 2 below, will serve as the presiding officer at all plenary sessions of the faculty. The moderator may vote in plenary sessions. If the moderator is unable to attend a plenary session of the faculty, the Faculty Council will decide on an appropriate replacement for that meeting, after consulting with the moderator if at all possible.

ii. The parliamentarian, to be appointed each year by the Faculty Council, will serve at all plenary sessions as adviser to the faculty moderator on questions of order and procedure.

iii. The recording secretary, to be appointed each year by the Faculty Council, will compile proper minutes and other necessary records of the faculty proceedings and will see to the proper custody of such records.

b. Section 2

Moderator

i. The faculty will elect a moderator to serve as the presiding officer at the plenary sessions of the faculty. The duties of the moderator will be:

(a) To coordinate the overall agenda for each plenary session of the faculty in collaboration with the Faculty Council and the vice president for Academic Affairs and dean of the faculty (VPAA/DOF);

(b) To consult with faculty committees, individual members of the faculty, and members of the administration who wish to make reports or presentations at plenary sessions of the faculty;

(c) To receive suggestions from faculty concerning the agenda for plenary sessions of the faculty;

(d) To ascertain the presence of a quorum of voting members for a plenary session of the faculty;

(e) To introduce each item of the agenda at plenary sessions of the faculty;

(f) To ensure that each item on the agenda is discussed fully, by calling on speakers to present their views;

(g) To determine the results of voice votes, and to assist in counting votes taken by show of hands or by written ballot;

(h) To ensure that the business of plenary sessions of the faculty is conducted in a timely fashion.

ii. In all these duties, the moderator should maintain good order, behave impartially, and avoid presenting personal opinions on the merits of specific items on the agenda.

iii. The moderator may vote in plenary sessions of the faculty.

iv. The moderator will be elected for a two-year term.

(a) No faculty member serving in the administration, or as a member of an elected faculty committee will be eligible to serve as moderator. All other voting members of the faculty are eligible to serve as moderator. The moderator may be elected to a committee, or appointed to a position in the administration, so long as such service begins after the end of the final academic year in which the faculty member is serving as moderator.

(b) Elections for the faculty moderator will be held after those for the elected faculty committees. Nominations for the position of moderator will be accepted by Faculty Council until the end of April. Faculty members may nominate themselves, or may submit the name of another voting member of the faculty. Nominees will be contacted by Faculty Council, and must give their consent to be listed on the ballot.

(c) The election for moderator will be conducted by the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Faculty using online balloting. The first ballot will include the names of all those who have consented to have their names put before the faculty as nominees. Faculty members will vote for one name from this ballot. If a candidate receives more than fifty percent of the votes cast on this ballot, that person will be elected as moderator. If no candidate receives more than fifty percent of the votes cast on the first ballot, a second ballot will be held listing the names of the two candidates who received the highest number of votes. Faculty members will vote for one name from this ballot. The candidate with the largest number of votes will be elected as moderator. In the case of tied votes for first or second place on the initial ballot, all of the names of the tied candidates will appear on the second ballot. If no candidate obtains more than fifty percent of the votes cast, a third ballot will be held listing the names of the two candidates who obtained the highest number of votes on the second ballot. Faculty members will vote for one on this ballot. The candidate with the largest number of votes will be elected as moderator.

c. Section 3

Divisions and Departments

The several divisions and departments of instruction comprising the administrative organization for the instructional work of the College will serve also as component parts of the faculty, where appropriate.

d. Section 4

Committees

i. Major Councils and Committees

(a) The Council on Reviews (COR) consists of a Promotions Committee and a Reappointments Committee. The Promotions Committee will advise the president on each case in which a faculty member is under review for promotion to tenure or to full professor, or is facing dismissal. The Reappointments Committee will advise the provost on each case in which a faculty member is under review for reappointment. The Reappointments Committee will also conduct ten-year reviews. The Council on Reviews shall hold an annual open meeting to explain review procedures and respond to questions and concerns from the faculty.

(b) The Faculty Council is the executive committee of the faculty. It coordinates faculty business, represents the College faculty when working with the administration and/or Board of Trustees on all matters related to the College faculty, and, on its own or in conjunction with other faculty committees, acts on matters of collective interest to the College, the Schools, and the Institute, and acts as the Committee on Committees.

(c) The Educational Affairs Committee will make recommendations to the faculty on matters of academic policy, and will make recommendations to the provost or provost's designate on matters of staffing the academic program.

(d) The Strategy Committee represents the College faculty in long-term strategic planning with the administration and the board of trustees.

(e) The Resources Committee represents the College faculty in shared-governance discussions with the administration and the board of trustees regarding Middlebury’s financial stability, especially as it relates to the College.

(f) The Appeals Council will hear the cases of faculty members who believe their non-reappointment to involve procedural errors or violations of academic freedom.

ii. Standing Committees

There will be standing committees of the faculty as provided below in 4. Article IV. There will be such other standing committees as may be found convenient by the faculty for the discharge of its business.


3. Article III Plenary Sessions of the Faculty

a. Section 1

Time and Scheduling of Plenary Sessions

i. Plenary sessions of the faculty will be scheduled in September, November, January, March and May. The specific schedule for any given academic year will be determined by the Faculty Council, in consultation with the VPAA/DOF, in accordance with the following guidelines:

The September meeting will be held during the week before the start of classes, at a time and place established in conjunction with other activities of that week.

The November, January, and March meetings will normally be held on the first Friday of the month. These meetings will normally be scheduled to begin at 2:45 p.m. The Faculty Council may choose to reschedule these meetings in order to avoid having them fall in the first week of classes in a term or on a Friday immediately before a vacation.

The May meeting will be scheduled on the Monday or Tuesday following the end of spring semester classes. This meeting will normally be scheduled to begin at 3:00 p.m.

ii. Special plenary sessions of the faculty may be called as follows:

(a) At the request of the Faculty Council;

(b) At the request of another standing committee of the faculty that is sponsoring a motion requiring a vote;

(c) At the request of the president;

(d) In response to a petition signed by at least twenty voting members of the faculty and presented to the moderator through the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Faculty.

A special plenary session will be held in lieu of the next regularly scheduled small group meetings of the faculty, or at another time if necessary.


b. Section 2

Attendance and Quorum

i. Voting members of the faculty are expected to be present at all plenary sessions and small group meetings.

ii. Voting members, and others invited by the Faculty Council or the faculty moderator, will be privileged to participate in discussion in plenary sessions of the faculty. At any plenary session, the Faculty Council may introduce a motion that other persons be allowed to participate in discussion, for either the entire meeting or for a particular item on the agenda.

iii. A quorum in plenary sessions of the faculty will consist of one-third of the voting members of the faculty who are not on leave. The secretary will inform the moderator of the presence of a quorum.

iv. The president and vice president of the Student Government Association, and the student members of the Community Council and Student Educational Affairs Committee, will be permitted to attend all plenary sessions of the faculty with the right to speak. Student members of other College committees will be permitted to attend those plenary sessions in which their committees’ recommendations are on the agenda with the right to speak when those recommendations are being debated. Two representatives each from the Middlebury Campus and WRMC will be permitted to attend plenary sessions of the faculty.


c. Section 3

Notice and Agenda

i. Notice and a statement of the agenda of each plenary session of the faculty will be sent to all members prior to the meeting.

ii. Items to be placed on the agenda must be submitted in writing to the secretary at least one week prior to the meeting, and these items, including written reports and proposals, will be circulated to the faculty by the secretary in advance of the meeting.

iii. Matters not included among those on the agenda may be brought before the meeting when in order, but, in the case of important matters, as determined by the moderator, will be presented only for discussion.

iv. The following rules will govern the consideration of major policy matters, defined as (1) Faculty Council proposals to change the rules of reappointment and tenure, (2) Faculty Council proposals to change Handbook language regarding other terms of appointment for faculty members, (3) Educational Affairs Committee proposals to change Handbook language regarding requirements for the degree, or (4)Educational Affairs Committee proposals to create or abolish departments, program, stand-alone minors, and majors;

(a) Major policy matters must be referred to small group meetings of the faculty for discussion before being taken up for a vote at a plenary session of the faculty. Draft versions of those policies must be circulated to the faculty for discussion in small group meetings according to the following timeline. Final versions of those policies, reflecting the input from small groups, must be included in the agenda packet for the plenary session at which the vote will take place.

(b) Drafts of motions to be voted on at the November plenary session must be presented to the recording secretary for circulation to the faculty no later than the first Friday of October.

(c) Drafts of motions to be voted on at the January plenary session must be presented to the recording secretary for circulation to the faculty no later than the first Friday of December.

(d) Drafts of motions to be voted on at the March plenary session must be presented to the recording secretary for circulation to the faculty no later than the first Friday of February, or the second Friday of February if the first Friday is during the break between winter and spring terms.

(e) Drafts of motions to be voted on at the May plenary session must be presented to the recording secretary for circulation to the faculty no later than the first Friday of April, or the second Friday of February if the first Friday is during spring break.


d. Section 4

Order of Business

In plenary sessions of the faculty the normal order of business will be:

i. Call to Order

ii. Quorum Call

iii. Minutes of Previous Plenary Session of the Faculty

iv. Reading and Ratification of Minutes of Administration Committee and Off-Campus Study (Programs Abroad) Committee.

v. Unfinished Business

vi. Action Reports of Committees

vii. New Business

viii. Information Reports of Committees and Officers

ix.  President's Announcements

x. Adjournment

 

e. Section 5

Rules of Order and Suspension of Rules

i. The rules of parliamentary procedure as found in Robert'sRules of Order will govern the plenary sessions of the faculty in all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are not inconsistent with the regulations of Middlebury College.

ii. Rules and procedures governing the conduct of plenary sessions of the faculty may be suspended by two-thirds of those voting.

iii. The faculty at any point in its proceedings may, by majority vote, declare itself in executive session, thereby limiting the meeting to voting members only. All discussions and actions taken in executive session will be held in confidence until released by proper authority.


f. Section 6

Voting

i. In faculty actions, decisions will be taken by a majority of those voting unless otherwise specified.

ii. Voting at plenary sessions of the faculty may be by voice, by show of hands, or by written ballot. A written ballot may be used at the discretion of the moderator and will be used when requested by ten members.

iii. On matters affecting general educational policy, a vote of the faculty may require that balloting be conducted electronically through the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Faculty.

iv. Questions involving votes upon faculty members by name will be decided by written ballot.

v. If the discussion of any motion extends beyond 4:30 p.m. at any given plenary session of the faculty, voting on that motion will be automatically suspended until the following session.


g. Section 7

Committee Reports

i. The Faculty Council and the Educational Affairs Committee will report at each plenary session of the faculty. The Faculty Council’s report will include a summary of the discussion of small group meetings of the faculty held in the previous month.

ii. The Strategy Committee will report at plenary sessions as appropriate, but at least twice each year.

iii. The Resources Committee will report at plenary sessions as appropriate, but at least twice each year.

iv. All other committees will report, when appropriate, at least once a year.


4. Article IV Small Group Meetings of the Faculty

a. Section 1 Time and Scheduling of Meetings

i. Small group meetings of the faculty will normally be scheduled in October, December, February, and April. The specific schedule for any given academic year will be determined by the Faculty Council, in consultation with the VPAA/DOF, in accordance with the following guidelines:

The October, February, and April meetings will normally be held on the first Friday of the month. These meetings will normally be scheduled to begin at 2:45 p.m. The Faculty Council may choose to reschedule these meetings in order to avoid having them fall in the first week of classes in a term or on a Friday immediately before a vacation.

The December meetings will be held on the Monday following the end of fall semester classes. These meetings will normally be scheduled to begin at 3:00 p.m.

ii. Special small group meetings of the faculty may be called at the request of the Faculty Council.

b. Section 2 Purpose of Small Group Meetings

The agenda for the small group meetings will be determined by the Faculty Council, the moderator, and the VPAA/DOF.

Topics to be considered at small group meetings of the faculty may include, but are not limited to the following:

i. Motions before the faculty, as introduced by committees or by individual members of the faculty;

ii. Matters under discussion within a committee in preparation for bringing a motion;

iii. Members of Faculty Council will normally moderate the small group discussions. Members of other committees or groups may assist in or lead discussions, as appropriate. The chair of Faculty Council will solicit reports from the moderators of the small groups and provide summaries of the small group discussions at the next regularly scheduled plenary session of the faculty.

iv. The purpose of the small group meetings is to allow for full and open discussion among all faculty members. Since votes will not be taken at small group meetings, they will not be governed by Handbook language pertaining to faculty voting procedures, or by Robert’s Rules of Order.

5. Article V Committees

a. Section 1

General

i. The standing committees of the faculty, their respective objectives, duties, and functions, composition and method of election or appointment, will be as described in the Faculty Councils and Committees section in this chapter of the Handbook.

ii. The president of the College will be a member ex officio of all councils and committees.

iii. When, in the judgment of the president, or upon vote by the faculty, it is necessary to constitute a special committee to discharge a particular task that does not fall within the domain of any existing committee, such a committee may be established. The measure establishing such a committee will specify its instructions, its composition and method of appointment or election, and other necessary information.

iv. Matters brought to the attention of the faculty with a view to action thereon that fall within the sphere of any standing or special councils or committees will be referred to the appropriate councils or committees for consideration and for report or recommendation to the faculty, before being voted upon at any faculty meeting.

v. All councils and committees of the faculty will maintain such records of their proceedings as may be deemed necessary and will render report upon their deliberations and actions to the faculty.

vi. Unless otherwise specified in the provisions contained in the Handbook, the term of office of a member of any standing council or committee will commence on September 1.

vii. Should a vacancy occur on an elective standing council or committee before expiration of the normal term, the vacancy will be filled for the remaining period of that term by an election to be held within one month of the occurrence of the vacancy, or in September for vacancies occurring after May 15, in the manner prescribed for that committee. Vacancies occurring on appointive councils or committees will be filled by the Committee on Committees. Vacancies which occur on the Council on Reviews or the Educational Affairs Committee will be filled by means of the same procedures as are used to determine the original membership of those committees. Vacancies occurring because of leaves or termination of employment should, when possible, be filled at an appropriate time in the academic year preceding leave or termination of employment.

viii. All councils and committees with the exception of the Council on Reviews, the Educational Affairs Committee, the Faculty Council, the Strategy Committee, the Resources Committee, and the Appeals Council, may have student members. Student members will be chosen as determined by the Community Council. The number of students, if any, for each committee, and the condition of membership, whether voting or non-voting, will be set by the faculty. No later than the March plenary session of the faculty, the Faculty Council, in its role as the Committee on Committees, will make recommendations regarding changes in composition and function of any committee for the following academic year.


6. Article VI Amendments

a. Section 1

Proposed amendments to these Rules and Procedures, with the exception of changes in the scheduling of meetings that are described herein, will be initiated at a regular plenary session of the faculty.

b. Section 2

Any such proposed amendment, if supported by at least twenty voting members, will then be referred to small group meetings for discussion prior to the next plenary session of the faculty.

c. Section 3

Notice of such proposed amendment will be included in the notice of the next plenary session of the faculty, and may there be adopted by a vote comprising at least a two-thirds majority of those present, provided at least a quorum is in attendance.

 

rev. 6/25/15

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