I. Call to Order
Chairperson Roth called the meeting of the Board of Regents to order at 4:03 p.m. in the Kansas Room of the Memorial Union.
II. Roll Call
Present were: Mr. Blair, Mr. Engel, Mr. Ferguson, Mrs. Lee, Mr. Roth and Mrs. Warren.
III. Approval of Minutes of May 14, 2004 meeting as mailed.
It was moved and seconded to approve the Minutes of the May 14, 2004 meeting as mailed. Motion passed unanimously.
IV. Officer Reports
A. Chair's Report
Chairperson Roth noted that an Executive Session would be combined with dinner for the purpose of discussing a possible real estate acquisition, possible litigation, and evaluation of the president. Dr. Farley will attend the session until the evaluation discussion takes place.
Chairperson Roth stated he had received a report from Mr. Jere Noe. The WEA Audit Committee had been asked by the Board of Regents to review Dr. Farley's reimbursements and expenditures through WEA. Mr. Noe's letter stated that all was found to be proper, no unusual items were purchased and all accounts balanced. No inappropriate expenditures were found by the WEA Audit Committee.
Chairperson Roth noted that the current outdoor sculptures would be removed by the end of June with the new sculptures in place in July.
B. Committee Report(s)
1. Finance Committee
Mr. Blair reported that the Finance Committee reviewed items to determine the budget and will ask the Board of Regents at its next meeting to approve the budget guidelines before the public hearing.
C. President's Report
President Farley reported that approximately 230 new freshmen and transfer students were currently enrolling at an orientation session. Approximately 5,000 students have already completed enrollment for the Fall 2004 semester.
Dr. Farley noted the Sunflower Music Festival begins June 18 and continues through June 26 with concerts being be held at White Concert Hall. All concerts are free and open to the public.
Dr. Farley presented a draft of the 2004-2005 Board of Regents meeting schedule. A brief discussion last month at the Board of Regents meeting led to the proposal to schedule four longer, expanded meetings focusing on policies, long range plans, etc. In other months, brief meetings may be held, often in conjunction with other University functions. Dr. Farley indicated some tele-conference meetings may be needed for special case approvals. He stated that if the proposed schedule is not satisfactory, it can be altered later.
He noted that the October 8-9, 2004 meeting may be moved to October 29, 2004 in order to accommodate a day of discussion among Regents which would precede a dinner meeting with members of the WEA Board of Trustees regarding fund-raising priorities.
Dr. Farley introduced Chris Leach, Director of Finance, and Abe Cole of BKD, LLP who presented the Internal Control Review to the Board. Mr. Cole is head of the College and University Division of BKD's Kansas City office and works with 19 other colleges and universities. He assembled a team of internal auditors to review Washburn's internal controls. The report was distributed to and reviewed by the Board of Regents Audit Committee which went through the report very thoroughly. Mr. Cole expressed appreciation for the cooperation of the Washburn staff members, all of whom he described as being very open and concerned about internal controls. Some recommendations made by BKD are already being implemented. Mr. Cole outlined the process and procedures used to conduct the review, described the areas reviewed and indicated that the team had conducted interviews with employees in all areas under review. Test samples of numerous areas were taken. He stated that of the thirty items mentioned in the report, the team found no "material weaknesses" (the most serious type of deficiency). Only a few "reportable conditions" were noted, primarily related to segregation of duties. He stated that all these issues are being resolved now. Most of the BKD team's comments were being addressed by mitigating conditions currently in place which address the issues. The majority of the findings took the form of "suggestions for improvement" which he characterized as the sorts of issues one would find at all the other 19 institutions he works with. There were, he reported, no surprises in the review of Washburn's system.
Mr. McClinton arrived at 4:20 p.m.
Mr. Cole invited Board members to address questions either to him or to members of the Board's Audit Committee.
Mr. Engel inquired how Mr. Cole assessed the new Banner software system. Mr. Cole stated that the Banner system is helpful and he has seen no major issues with other clients. He emphasized the need for the University to provide upgrades to the system and to assure ongoing training for employees.
Mr. Engel inquired whether it is possible to override the system or whether employees could conspire to go around the system. Mr. Cole stated that the Banner system contains safeguards which control access, and segregation of duties addresses this concern.
Mr. Roth asked whether any management responses were found by BKD to be unacceptable. Mr. Cole replied that management had been cooperative and in agreement with their suggestions and the Board of Regents should feel comfortable with management's response. He added that there were no holes and a good job was being done but because risk always exists, the Board Audit Committee should continue to monitor internal controls.
Mrs. Warren asked how frequently an external review of internal controls should be conducted. Mr. Cole stated it was not a common practice among colleges and universities. He recommended sharing the report with the University's auditors so they could ascertain whether the report's suggestions were being implemented. He further recommended that another complete review should be conducted if a new system were put into place in the future or if a large turnover in employees were to occur.
Mr. Blair asked how the new software system integrated with the University's practices. Mr. Cole answered that the new system is working appropriately as it has been implemented. Mr. Blair asked how staff had accepted the system. Mr. Cole replied that staff members were pro-active in getting necessary controls in place and the team had not found instances of "foot-dragging" among employees.
Dr. Farley stated that the conversion to a new software system from the legacy system, as well as the need to comply with the SARBANES-OXLEY regulations, presented the University an opportunity to conduct this review. He added that he found the team's comments helpful and the report pointed out that Washburn is doing the right kinds of things to address the issue of internal control.
Mrs. Lee stated she felt very comfortable now that the review had been completed and asked that the Baord of Regents review the implementation of the team's recommendations in the future. Mr. Roth said that the Board's Audit Committee would review and make recommendations to the Board of Regents for their future action.
D. Treasurer's Report
Dr. Farley presented for approval the 1. Liquidated Claims Approval - May, 2004, and 2. Public Budget - Publish Notice of Hearing. It was moved and seconded to approve the Treasurer's Report as presented. The motion passed unanimously.
V. New Business
A. Consent Agenda:
It was moved and seconded to approve the Consent Agenda. Motion passed unanimously.
As approved by the Board of Regents:
1. Revisions to Classified Compensation Schedule
revisions to the 2004-2005 Classified Compensation Schedule to be effective Ocxtober 10, 2004 as outlined in the agenda item;
2. Changes in Promotion and Tenure Requirements - CAS
changes in promotion and tenure requirements for the College of Arts and Sciences as detailed in the agenda item;
a. Personnel Actions - Administrative Staff - Bauman
appointment of Valerie M. Bauman as Programming Associate, KTWU, at an annual salary of $31,100;
b. Faculty and Academic and Administrative Staff Changes
personnel actions as detailed in the attachments to the agenda item; and,
c. Faculty Personnel
unpaid leave of absences for the 2004-2005 academic year to School of Law professors Megan J. Ballard and Peter A. Cotorceanu.
B. Action Items:
1. Continuation of Fiscal Year 2004 Budget into Fiscal Year 2005
Dr. Farley explained that this will be the third year we have extended a fiscal year into the next. He stated that the new budget will be recommended to the Board in October. Any new positions for FY 2005 will be covered by the FY 2004 budget.
It was moved and seconded to continue the FY 2004 budget into FY 2005. Motion passed unanimously.
Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dr. Wasserstein, stated that all three proposed policies had been taken through the University's approval procedure and had been approved by the General Faculty.
Dr. Wasserstein addressed items a. and c. as they are policies relating to students and their grades.
a. Revision of Course Repeat Policy
Dr. Wasserstein stated that the current policy is hard to explain to students and provides no mechanism for any intervention in a situation in which a student has multiple repeats. The proposed policy addresses these shortcomings.
Mr. Roth asked how many students repeat three different courses. Dr. Wasserstein indicated it is not prevalent, but is approximately 1% of the student body. Mr. Roth asked if guidelines were in place for the Deans in the intervention process. Dr. Wasserstein replied there are and the goal is to help assure students will have the best chance for success.
Mr. Engel asked if courses with a high repeat rate have been identified. Dr. Wasserstein stated that some courses had been identified.
It was moved and seconded to approve the Course Repeat Policy. Motion passed unanimously.
Mr. Blair asked if there were potential implications of the repeat policy for students eligible for Latin Honors or the Sibberson Award. Dr. Wasserstein explained that for Latin Honors, the grade point average is always the determining factor, but for the Sibberson Award, the entire transcript of a student is available to the committee for its review and evaluation.
c. Revision to the Pass/Fail Policy for Undergraduate Courses
Dr. Wasserstein explained the proposed policy changes two aspects of the current policy: (a) changing calendar date to change grade status to coincide with the date for course withdrawal, and (b) adding "A" grade to the pass-fail option to allow a student who earned an "A" in a course which was taken as a pass-fail course to receive the "A" grade. He noted that 5% of students in the Spring 2004 semester were nerolled in a course for pass-fail credit. He also explained that faculty members have no way of identifying students who enroll for pass-fail credit.
It was moved and seconded to approve the revision to the Pass/Fail Policy for undergraduate courses. Motion passed unanimously.
b. Policy on Controversial Material
Dr. Wasserstein said that the proposed policy was in voluntary response to state Senate Substitute for House Bill 2444. The substantive portions of the proposed policy are identical to the Kansas Board of Regents' policy. He explained that the overall effect of the language was to assure that a faculty member could not refuse to teach a student on the basis of his/her beliefs.
Mr. Engel stated that he found the language vague and the policy poorly drafted and he questioned limiting the policy to sexually explicit materials only. He also questioned that there was a compelling reason for Washburn to adopt such a policy.
Mr. Ferguson explained the genesis of the policy as a response to the legislation arising from the dispute at the University of Kansas regarding sexually explicit materials in a course. He urged the adoption of the policy.
Dr. Wasserstein acknowledged that the language was perhaps imperfect but drawn to address a particular potential problem. He assured that other policies are currently in place to address students' concerns about classroom materials.
It was moved and seconded to approve the Policy on Controversial Material. Motion passed with Regent Engel voting no.
3. Request for Proposal - Technology Systems Consulting Services
President Farley stated concerns about the University's telephone system have arisen and the University needs expert advice in assessing the wide range of options for a new system and to evaluate what kind of new system is needed for long-term communication needs.
It was moved and seconded to award the technology systems consulting services contrct to Elert & Associates in the amount of $115,424. Motion passed unanimously.
C. Election of Board Officers
Chairperson Roth stated he had initially appointed a nominating committee comprised of Mrs. Warren and Mrs. Paul. Mrs. Paul asked to be relieved of the responsibility because she was going to be out of the country. Mr. Roth then appointed Mr. Ferguson to serve. Mrs. Warren and Mr. Ferguson met, and recommend to the Board that Mr. Roth serve as chairperson for one year and Mrs. Paul serve as vice-chairperson for one year. It was so moved and seconded. The motion passed unanimously.
It was moved and seconded to appoint Wanda Hill Treasurer of the Board of Regents, Kenneth Hackler as secretary to the Board, and Carol Vogel as Assistant Secretary. Motion passed unanimously.
Dr. Farley acknowledged Dr. Ron Ash's last appearance as a faculty representative to the Board and expressed his appreciation for the manner in which he had carried out this service.
VI. Executive Session
It was moved and seconded to adjourn to Executive Session for one hour to discuss a real estate matter, potential litigation and the evaluation of the President, with no action to be taken at the conclusion. Motion passed unanimously. The Board adjourned to Executive Session at 5:38 p.m.
At 7:01 p.m. the Board reconvened in Open Session. Chairperson Roth noted the Board had been in Executive Session for the purpose of discussing a real estate matter, potential litigation and the evaluation of the President and that no action had been taken.
It was moved and seconded to adjourn. The Board of Regents adjourned its meeting at 7:02 p.m.
Respectfully submitted by
Assistant Secretary, Board of Regents