Initial Ratification: February 10, 2006
Amendments Ratified: February 16, 2007
Current By-laws Ratified: 11-20-07
Amended to Article IV, C. 2 - Ratified: 8 - 2009
INSTRUMENT OF GOVERNANCE
COLLEGE COUNCIL OF THE COLLEGE OF EDUCATION
THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS PAN AMERICAN
The College Council of the College of Education (COE), The University of Texas Pan American (UTPA), through the College Council By-Laws, provides
the organization, structure, and procedures by which and through which they function. This document hereby creates the framework for the organization,
structure and operating rules and procedures adopted by the College Council of the College of Education as its instrument of governance
designed to direct the performance of its functions and for the regulation of its affairs. The College Council will be the official voice of faculty
from the COE and will be closely involved in advising the dean on policy matters at the college level. It is expected that the dean will bring up
matters to the Council for their advice and that the College Council will bring up their own matters to the dean in an official regularly scheduled
forum. Through this voice, the College Council will strive to create a healthy and robust academic environment through dialogue that supports teaching,
learning, research, and general productivity and development of its faculty.
RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES FOR SHARED GOVERNANCE
Faculty has a duty to share in the rights and responsibilities of governance and administration of the college. These rights and responsibilities
include making recommendations to the Dean of the College of Education regarding but not limited to:
The form and structure of governance in the College Council.
New programs and courses, course changes, course content, and manner of instruction in present programs and courses.
Requirements for matriculation and degrees.
Faculty recruitment, hiring, retention, promotion, granting of tenure, dismissal, developmental leave, and emeritus status.
Selection of department chairs or division director and participation in the selection of the Dean and other college administrators, both
interim and permanent. Recommending committees, however established, shall include representation from the faculty.
Norms for teaching responsibilities and the evaluation of faculty.
Policies and procedures governing annual performance reviews and merit increases.
Other matters of concern to the faculty including, but not limited to:
general policies and procedures for determining class size, workload, course scheduling, and teaching assignments at all COE departments.
general policies and procedures for the allocation of financial resources in the College.
Formal authority is vested in the Dean by the University of Texas System Regents and administration and by the administration of The University of
Texas Pan American. The Dean represents College of Education faculty as their visible and expressive advocate. As such, the Dean is expected to
exhibit, exemplify, and call forth the best efforts of the faculty in teaching, research, and service. However, within the standard structure of
the College, the Dean is also accountable to the faculty, and effective authority is dependent on their support.
Faculty represents the academic heart and conscience of the College. In contributing to the intellectual life of the College, faculty represent
the best values of the profession in scholarship, teaching, and service in relation to academic professionals, non-faculty administrators, staff,
and students, as well as to faculty colleagues.
Academic departments are the fundamental organizing units for the general faculty in the College. For the purpose of this document, "department(al)"
shall refer to academic departments. As much of the business of the College as possible shall be conducted at the departmental level. Those
responsibilities specifically prohibited to the College or not delegated by this document or other documents are reserved to the departments.
These units are governed democratically in that policy and program decisions are made by faculty vote.
Department chairs/division directors are responsible for conducting the daily business of the academic units, and they serve as representatives
of their units in the administration of the College, ensuring strong representation of faculty concerns and sentiments in administrative matters.
The well-being of the College of Education as a whole is dependent upon shared responsibilities for governance and decision-making among the Dean
and faculty. This Instrument of Governance is designed to provide a structure for and to facilitate such a partnership. At the College level,
the College Council provides a public forum to promote joint decision making among the Dean and faculty. The College Council does not displace
the formal authority of the Dean but ensures explicit and ongoing consultation with faculty and consideration of their advice, recommendations, and actions.
The name of the organization is the College Council of the College of Education, The University of Texas Pan American.
VISION and MISSION
The vision and mission of the College Council of the College of Education (COE) is to employ a shared decision-making and an assets-based framework
through which it identifies the assets within the COE and participates in the development of those assets.
The College Council of the COE will achieve this vision through its mission of fostering a collegial environment based on mutual respect; fostering
productivity in the areas of research, teaching, and service; fostering impact in the area of education, as well as areas affecting the quality of
life of the residents of the region.
The fundamental values embedded in the Mission of the College Council are the creation and maintenance of processes and/or mechanisms that will:
Support the free flowing two-way communication with the Dean, and administration, including the Provost and the President of UTPA, regarding
policies affecting faculty at the department or college level
Provide a forum for raising collective concerns regarding policies established by the Dean and administration
Ensure transparency of process particularly of decision-making processes underlying policies
Support an environment of collegiality that encourages and recognizes varied scholarly activities and achievement
The College Council of the COE Instrument of Governance and actions taken thereto shall be consistent with the official policies, rules, and
regulations of The University of Texas System and The University of Texas Pan American Handbook of Operating Procedures.
COLLEGE COUNCIL MEMBERSHIP
Faculty membership on the College Council shall be representative of the voting faculty of the departments. Eligible members of the College Council
and voting faculty are defined as full- time faculty members who are not currently serving in a department chair or dean position. Lecturers who
have worked for 6 continuous semesters (3 years) are also eligible to vote. Emergency one-year hires and adjunct faculty are not eligible to vote.
B. Structure of the College Council
The College Council will be comprised of the following members:
1- Curriculum and Instruction Department Faculty Member
1- Educational Leadership Department Faculty Member
1- Educational Psychology Department Faculty Member
1- Health and Kinesiology Department Faculty Member
3- At-Large Faculty Members from any of the above departments
C. Election Procedures
All tenured and tenure-track faculty members are eligible to vote. Only those members who are eligible to vote can serve as a Council member.
Departmental Representatives - Each department will elect their representative to serve on the College Council of the COE at the first department
meeting or at the earliest time possible within each academic year. The department chair will ask for nominations and/or self-nominations to serve
on the College Council. If only one nomination or self-nomination is forwarded for consideration, the faculty in this department will be asked to
vote by verbal acclamation to accept this person as their representative. If two or more nominations and/or self-nominations are forwarded for
consideration, the department chair will conduct a secret-ballot vote. A minimum of 50% of the department’s voting faculty must be present
for the election to be considered valid. In order for a faculty member to be elected as their departmental representative, s/he must receive
more than 50% of the votes cast. In the event of a tie, the department chair will cast the tie-breaking vote.
At-large Representatives - During the first working week of April of each academic year, the COE College Council Chair will announce at-large
representative vacancies that will become available in the following academic year and will initiate the nomination process. Nominations will be accepted
using a form, which will be distributed at a college-wide meeting, via electronic mail, and/or through campus mail. To be considered valid, the
nomination form must be signed by two faculty members and by the person being nominated indicating their acceptance to serve on the Council if
elected. A faculty member can elect to self-nominate him or herself but will need to obtain the signature of two of their colleagues in order to
validate their nomination. The time period to submit nomination forms will be exactly seven days following the announcement of a vacancy and will
end at 3:00 p.m. Nomination forms will be submitted to the COE College Council Chair. If nominations received do not exceed the number of vacancies,
the COE faculty will accept those nominations by default. Otherwise, the College Council Chair will send an e-mail to all voting faculty announcing
the individuals who have agreed to be nominated. The email will be sent within three days of the closing date for receiving nominations. The following
procedures must be adhered to:
Election of the at-large faculty representatives will be conducted on a designated election day to be held no later than one month following the
announcement of a vacancy.
If the number of nominations received exceeds the number of vacancies, a secret ballot election will be held to further narrow the number of
The number of candidates for which an eligible faculty member can vote should not exceed the number of vacancies. If an individual votes for
more candidates than there are vacancies, their vote will be invalidated.
Before tabulating votes, the Chair and Vice-Chair will verify the eligibility of each voter. After this process is complete, the Chair and
Vice-Chair will tabulate votes.
The candidates who receive the most votes will be elected as at-large representatives.
Election results will be announced to voting faculty by the Chair and Vice-Chair via electronic format.
The College Council Chair’s vote will only be used in the event of a tie.
The tie-breaking procedure will be used if
there is one vacancy and a tie exists among multiple top-ranked nominated faculty members,
there are two vacancies and tie exists among multiple second-ranked nominees, and
there are three vacancies and a tie exists among multiple third-ranked nominees.
Any faculty member unable to attend the election meeting will be allowed to vote by requesting an absentee ballot from the COE College Council
Chair or Vice-Chair and turning in the ballot no later than 3 p.m. on the date prior to the election meeting.
A minimum of 50% of the College of Education’s voting faculty must cast a vote for the election to be considered valid.
D. Terms of Membership
The typical length of service term for each representative will be three years. During the first election period, a staggered term limit will be
developed in order to establish continuity. Serving on the Council is viewed as a privilege and entails certain expectations including regular
attendance at council meetings, active participation in council matters, and good standing as a faculty member as governed by formal university
guidelines. In the event that a Council Member cannot meet these minimum expectations, s/he may be asked to resign by the members of the College Council.
E. Election of College Council Officers
The College Council Chair, Vice-Chair, Secretary and Parliamentarian shall be elected by the majority of the College Council members during their
first official meeting and shall serve a minimum of one year in their respective position.
F. Officers and Duties
The Chair of the College Council shall act as a liaison with the Dean to ensure ongoing interaction and consultation.
The Vice-Chair of the College Council shall assume the duties of the Chair, if the Chair is not available.
The Parliamentarian of the College Council shall inform the Council members about rules, procedures, and
precedents governing the deliberative actions and recommendations of the body in accordance with latest edition of Robert’s Rules of Order.
The Secretary of the College Council shall be responsible for maintenance and dissemination of records
and minutes of the College Council meetings and proceedings and shall ensure records of College Council meetings be maintained in the office of the Dean.
The College Council shares with the Dean responsibility for ensuring that College policies and procedures are monitored systematically and
that any concerns about College policies and procedures are brought to the attention of the faculty.
College Council members elected from each of the four departments are expected to serve as a conduit between the Council and their
respective faculty; as such, they are expected to provide updates to their colleagues at regularly scheduled department meetings. If a Council
member does not fulfill this obligation, it may lead to his or her replacement.
G. Attendance at Meetings
College Council members are expected to regularly attend scheduled meetings. If for some reason, a Council member is unable to regularly attend
scheduled meetings, the Chair, at his or her discretion, may ask the Council to consider replacing this individual through a secret ballot vote.
The By-Laws of the COE College Council may be ratified, amended or repealed when at least 50 percent of the eligible faculty cast ballots and
two-thirds of those voting agree to the proposal. Amendments to the by-laws must be proposed in writing and disseminated to the voting faculty
twenty-one days prior to the vote. The College Council COE By-Laws will be reviewed on an as-needed basis. Any voting faculty member may propose
an amendment for consideration.
RULES OF ORDER
Meetings of the College Council shall be conducted in a respectful, collegial and participatory manner.
PROCEDURES FOR MAKING RECOMMENDATIONS & ENDORSEMENTS
The procedures for discussing and making a recommendation to the Dean on matters affecting the efficiency of faculty members to fulfill their
teaching, research, and service expectations shall consist of the following:
Any voting faculty member (per Article 4C) shall have the right to submit in writing, or express verbally, any concern or recommendation.
The faculty member shall direct his or her concern or recommendation to a member of the College Council.
The member of the College Council will then ensure that the concern or recommendation be discussed by the Council with the purpose of examining
its collective faculty impact or disparate impact.
If the concern or recommendation is deemed not to consist of an individual grievance or benefit, the Council will bring it to the Dean or the
When the Dean does not act upon a concern or recommendation of the faculty or College Council, he or she will provide a formal explanation
to the College Council, which in turn, shall disseminate the explanation to the general faculty.
The procedures for communicating faculty support for or feedback on policy changes being contemplated by the Dean and/or administration shall consist
of the following:
The Dean shall direct his or her matter to the Chair of the College Council.
The Council shall bring the matter to the attention of voting faculty during a College-wide meeting or through an electronic format.
Voting faculty will provide feedback to the Council and the Council will in turn share the feedback with the Dean.
A. PRINCIPLES FOR SHARED GOVERNANCE
Governance should be conducted according to the highest standards of ethical, scholarly, and collegial behavior.
Governance assumes varying points of view that are welcomed, debated, and acted upon without fear of threat or reprisal.
Governance operates within the framework of University, System, and Legislative policies, rules, and statutes.
The well being of the College of Education depends upon strong faculty and strong administrators working
jointly towards excellence through mutually developed goals within an agreed-upon governance structure.
Authority to participate in the decision-making structure of the College is a right and responsibility of
faculty, administrators, academic professionals, students, and staff.
Faculty governance and program decision-making are a shared responsibility. Faculty and administrators are
obliged to contribute time, energy, and ideas to the development and maintenance of the College of Education.
The involvement of faculty in the governance of the College, through a democratic process, applies to principles,
policies, and processes that affect academic personnel, curricula, resources, and the mission of the College.
Decision making in the College is explicit and carried out in open forums.
Representation and participation in College decision-making are accompanied by the requirement of accountability
for the nature and consequences of such participation.