Article I: Name
The name of this organization shall be the Seminole State College Faculty Senate.
Article II: Authorization
Section 1. The Faculty Senate is authorized by the Board of Trustees, the President, and the Faculty of Seminole State College.
Section 2. The Board of Trustees, President and/or faculty may review any action taken by the Faculty Senate.
Section 3. Any provision of these Bylaws enacted hereunder, which shall be in conflict with the regulations and statutes controlling activities of the College Administration and Board of Trustees, shall be null and void.
Article III: Purposes
The purposes of the Faculty Senate shall be the following:
- To represent the faculty in matters concerning College policies and programs.
- To serve as a channel of communication for the faculty in its relations with the Board of Trustees, the Administration, and the student body.
- To act for the faculty in matters pertaining to faculty standards and welfare, professional ethics, and public relations.
- To exercise initiative and leadership in fostering professional growth of the faculty and to encourage cooperative efforts toward that end.
- To promote excellence of the educational programs of the College.
Article IV: Membership
Section 1. The voting members of the Faculty Senate shall consist of faculty members, duly elected under Sections 3, 4 and 5 of this Article, who meet any one of the following classifications:
- Full-time teaching faculty including department chairs;
- Librarians classified as faculty;
- Counselors classified as faculty,
- Adjunct teaching faculty.
Section 2. The ex officio non-voting member of the Faculty Senate shall be the Immediate Past-President of Faculty Senate.
Section 3. One Faculty Senate representative shall be elected by faculty members within each of the following areas: Library, Counseling and Educational Planning, ABE/GED, and ESOL/EAP, and within each of the following Academic Departments: Adult High School, Automotive, Biological Science, Construction, Engineering and Design, Criminal Justice, Fire Science/EMS, English, Fine and Performing Arts, Health and Public Safety, Health Professions and Early Childhood Education, Humanities, Information Systems, Business & Legal Studies, Mathematics, Networking, Electronics & Digital Media, Nursing, Physical Science, and Social Science. Any time departments are reorganized, each of the new departments will elect a representative to serve until the next regular election for department representatives. The faculty member who had been department representative before the department was reorganized shall continue to serve until the elections take place.
Section 4. Members-at-large shall be elected by the entire full-time faculty who are eligible for Senate membership by ballot in Term II. The members-at-large shall be elected from the categories specified in Article IV, Section 1. The number of members-at-large shall not exceed a total of fifteen.
Section 5. Adjunct teaching faculty representatives will be elected by the adjunct professors. Up to four representatives will be elected, one from each academic area. Adjunct senators will have full voting rights and will be elected for a 1-year term in March of every year. Adjunct elections will be conducted in a manner agreed to by adjunct professors.
Section 6. The term of office for area representatives and members-at-large on the Faculty Senate shall be for two years and until successors take office. Area representatives of the Senate membership shall be elected in the odd years and members-at-large in the even years. The term of office shall begin with the first contracted duty day of Term I. The term of office for adjunct representatives shall be for one year and until successors take office.
Section 7. The electorate for members-at-large shall be faculty members eligible for membership as defined in Article IV, Section 1 of these Bylaws who are present at the election meeting. Written proxies are permissible.
Section 8. Election of members-at-large and Senate officers shall be conducted according to the Senate elections process (see Article VIII). Election of the members-at-large shall be held at a special faculty meeting immediately preceding the March Senate meeting in even years, and in odd years if needed. Department or area representatives of the Senate shall be elected the first week of March in odd years.
Section 9. Vacancies among department or area representatives shall be filled by the department or area involved as soon as possible. Vacancies among members-at-large shall be filled as soon as possible by vote of the faculty as defined in Article IV, Section 1 in accordance with procedures developed by the Faculty Senate. Vacancies among adjunct faculty representatives shall be filled by the adjunct faculty as soon as possible. Vacancies among members-at-large occurring during Term III shall be filled by election at the general faculty meeting at the start of Term I. The vacancy created by a member assuming the Office as President shall be treated in the same manner as other vacancies. If a department or area representative assumes the office of President, that department or area shall elect a replacement representative. No vacancy will count against the quorum.
Article V: Officers
Section 1. The officers of the Faculty Senate shall be a President, First Vice-President, and a Second Vice-President.
Section 2. The President, First Vice-President, and Second Vice-President shall be elected by the faculty from among the total Senate membership for one-year terms. Elections shall be held in accordance with the time established by Article IV, Section 7 and using the procedures of the Faculty Senate (see Article VIII). The Immediate Past President will serve as a non-voting member of the Executive Committee. Officers elected in Term II will take office at the first general faculty meeting of Term I.
Section 3. In the event that the President of the Senate relinquishes his or her duties, the First Vice-President shall assume that office for the remainder of the term. The Senate shall fill vacancies of other officers by election of a member from the Senate at its next regular meeting.
Section 4. The President of the Senate shall:
- preside at and set the agenda for Faculty Senate meetings;
- appoint special committees to do the work of the Faculty Senate
- prepare a list of meeting dates to be approved by the Faculty Senate
- recommend to the President of the College and/or the Executive Council that at least one member of the Senate be appointed to each of the standing college-wide committees
- attend meetings of Executive Council when Deans are invited, be a member of the Educational Leadership Team (Dean's Council) and other College committees as requested by the administration
- give a Faculty Senate report at each meeting of the District Board of Trustees
- represent the Senate on appropriate occasions and
- perform other duties of President prescribed in the Senate's parliamentary authority as described in Article XI.
In the event that the President is temporarily unable to fulfill any of the above-mentioned duties, he or she may designate a faculty representative to fulfill them.
Section 5. The First Vice-President shall:
- act in the President's absence
- assist the President in his or her duties
- serve as Senate Parliamentarian or designate a Parliamentarian; and
- perform other duties prescribed in the Senate's parliamentary authority.
Section 6. The Second Vice-President shall:
- serve as the recording secretary at Senate meetings;
- provide the faculty (as defined in Article IV, Section 1) with access to the minutes and agenda of all regular and special meetings;
- publicize the Senate meeting dates and times; and
- perform other duties prescribed in the Senate's parliamentary authority.
Article VI: Executive Committee
Section 1. The Executive Committee shall be composed of the officers of the Senate. The President, First Vice-President, and the Second Vice-President shall be voting members of the Executive Committee while the Immediate Past President shall be a non-voting member.
Section 2. The Executive Committee shall meet at the call of any of its members or by vote of the Senate.
Section 3. The Executive Committee shall sit as an appeal body for any member suspended by the President for absenteeism.
Article VII: Committees
Section 1. A Senate member shall be appointed by the President to membership on each standing college-wide committee and to the Seminole State College Foundation. These members shall report on committee activities to the Senate and report Senate concerns to the college-wide committee.
Section 2. An Elections Committee shall be composed of Senate members selected by the Senate according to the Elections Process adopted by the Senate. The committee shall supervise and conduct the elections of members-at-large and officers as prescribed in the Elections Process. The President of the Senate may not serve as a member of the committee.
(a) Membership of Election Committee
An Election Committee, consisting of at least three Senate members, shall be elected by the Faculty Senate at its February meeting each year. Nominations of Senate members to serve on the Committee shall be from the floor. In accepting membership on the committee, each member of the committee agrees that he or she shall not be eligible for election as one of the officers of the Faculty Senate for the following term. Members of the Election Committee need not be members of the Senate the academic year following the elections; they do need to be members of the Senate during the nominating and electing process.
(b) Duties of Election Committee
- In planning the timetable for the election of Faculty Senate officers, the Committee shall stay within the requirements specified in the Senate bylaws of conducting officer elections within the last three weeks of Term II (Spring).
- The committee shall work cooperatively with the Senate President in running the election of members-at-large, in accordance with the description above. The committee shall handle both the nominating and electing process for officers of the Senate.
- The Committee shall prepare or obtain the following:
- a memo to faculty containing a list of persons elected as members-at-large and area representatives who are eligible for nomination and election as a Senate officer and instructions for completing the nominating ballot
- a nominating ballot, consisting of the names of each office and space on which names are to be placed in nomination
- an election ballot, containing the name(s) of persons nominated for President, First Vice-President, and Second Vice-President, in alphabetical order, and a line for write-ins for each office and instructions for voting in the election
- a list of persons eligible to vote for members-at-large and the officers, according to the Senate bylaws, acquired from the appropriate college office
- a form granting permission for someone to serve as one's proxy during elections of members-at-large.
- After the election of area representatives or members-at-large (in March), the Committee shall provide each faculty member eligible to vote with
- a list of area representatives and members-at-large who are eligible to be officers,
- a nominating ballot, and
- instructions for completing and submitting the nominating ballot.
- After the deadline for submission of nominating ballots, the Election Committee shall contact all persons nominated for each office to seek their permission to have their names placed on the election ballot. Should an individual be nominated for more than one office, that person may choose which office he or she wishes to be nominated for, or the nominee may choose to have his or her name submitted for more than one office for which nominated.
- The Committee shall prepare the election ballot containing the names of all persons nominated for each office, listed in alphabetical order. For each office, there will be a line for write-ins.
- The Committee shall provide each employee eligible to vote in Senate elections with an announcement of the time frame and instructions for voting. The announcement shall include a ballot, containing the names of the nominees for each office.
- At least one week should be allowed for persons to cast their ballots. Each ballot shall be accompanied by a signature or individual password from an eligible voter.
- After the voting period, the Election Committee shall count the ballots, or obtain results of electronically counted ballots, and prepare an announcement of the results. Persons nominated may be present or have a representative present during the counting of the ballots.
- In the event that an individual whose name has been placed in nomination for more than one office receives a majority of the votes cast in more than one office, thatperson shall select the office in which he/she wishes to serve. If only two persons had been nominated for the office that the nominee turns down, the other nominee shall be declared the winner. In the event that more than two persons had been nominated for the office that the nominee turns down, the two persons receiving the next highest number of votes shall participate in a run-off election.
- Should no nominee receive a majority of votes cast for an office, a run-off election shall be conducted between the two nominees with the most votes. The run-off election shall be conducted by the Election Committee in the same manner as the first election.
- All nomination and election results shall be retained until the following December.
Section 3. Special committees, as they are deemed necessary or useful to carry out the work of the Senate, shall be appointed by the President of the Senate or the Executive Committee.
Article VIII: Elections Process
Section 1. Election of Area Representatives: odd years
The Senate Second Vice-President will remind departments and areas of the need for the election by a memorandum sent in mid-February. Election of area representatives from those areas specified in the Senate bylaws shall be conducted during the first week of April within each area. The incumbent representative from each area shall report the results of that area's election to the Senate President as soon as the results are known, but no later than the end of the first week of March.
Section 2. Election of Members-At-Large: even years
Nominations for persons to serve as members-at-large are made from the floor during a special faculty meeting preceding the March Senate meeting in even years.
Ballots, if required, shall be distributed after the nominations. Persons eligible to vote shall complete a ballot by writing on it the names of those persons the voter wishes to see elected. After completing a ballot, the voter shall hand his/her ballot to a member of the Election Committee who shall place it in the ballot box and have his/her name checked off of the list of eligible voters.
The persons receiving the most votes become members of the Faculty Senate. The Senate members serving on the Elections Committee shall supervise the voting and the count of the ballots. The call of the meeting shall include instructions for using a proxy vote, a list of current area representatives, and a list of current members-at-large whose terms of office are ending. Persons submitting written proxies for absent faculty members shall place a ballot and a form giving permission to act as one's proxy in an envelope, one ballot and one permission form to an envelope. The name of the person for whom the vote is being cast shall be written on the outside of the envelope. Proxy votes shall be kept in the envelopes until it is determined by the Election Committee that those persons whose names appear on the front of each envelope did not themselves attend the meeting and vote. After that determination, the ballots and permission forms shall be taken from the envelopes and the ballots shall be put with the other votes.
Section 3. Election of Adjunct Faculty Representatives: every year
Up to four adjunct teaching faculty members, one from each academic area shall be elected by the adjunct faculty from that area by the end of March. Adjunct senators will have full voting rights and will be elected for a 1-year term. Adjunct elections will be conducted in a manner to be determined by the adjunct professors of each area.
Section 4. Election of Officers: every year
A list of eligible Senators, a nominating ballot, and instructions for completing a nominating ballot shall be sent to each employee eligible for Senate membership. Nominations of oneself or someone else must be submitted to the Elections Committee by the date specified by the committee. Each person nominated, regardless of the number of nominating votes received, shall be contacted by the Elections Committee for permission for that person's name to be placed on the election ballot. Names of persons who have given permission shall be listed, in alphabetical order, for each position, with a line for write-ins. Elections shall be held within the last three weeks of Term II by the means established by the Elections Committee. A nominee must receive a majority of votes cast in order to be elected to an office. In the event that no individual receives a majority of the votes cast for an office, a run-off election shall be held between the two nominees receiving the highest number of votes. The Elections Committee shall establish the time frame and means for the run-off election.
Article IX: Meetings
Section 1. The regular meeting of the Senate shall be held each month at a time and place fixed by the Senate. Additional meetings may be called at the request of any one member of the Senate. The faculty shall be notified at least three days in advance of the time and place of Senate meetings.
Section 2. Anyone may attend regular meetings of the Senate, and anyone may speak at Senate meetings.
Section 3. Executive sessions may be called by three-fourths vote of the Senate members present at that meeting. Executive sessions shall be attended by duly elected Senate members and anyone else invited by the Senate.
Section 4. Any one member may call for a ballot vote.
Section 5. A quorum shall be a majority of the voting members of the Senate. Proxies are permissible (see Section 8).
Section 6. In the event that a quorum is not available, members present may discuss issues and make non-binding recommendations to be presented to the next Senate meeting at which there is a quorum.
Section 7. Any member absent, except for conflicts with scheduled classes, from three consecutive regular meetings shall be notified in writing by the President of the Senate that he or she is subject to suspension from the Senate. If the Senate member does not respond in writing within thirty days that he or she wants to retain Senate membership, the member will be suspended. The suspension is subject to appeal to the Executive Committee within one month. If the suspension is upheld, a new member will be elected to fill the remainder of the term.
Section 8. If a voting member is unable to attend a Senate meeting, it is their responsibility to notify a proxy (from the same area in the case of area representatives) that his or her attendance is required and to notify the Second Vice-President as to the proxy.
Article X: Censure and Investigative Functions of the Senate
Section 1. The Faculty Senate, when requested by a person eligible for membership in the Faculty Senate (as defined in Article IV, Section 1) shall hear from that person a concern or question pertinent to the general welfare of the College or any individual associated with the College. After hearing the individual's question or concern, the Senate, by majority vote, shall decide whether it will investigate and/or act upon the information presented.
Section 2. Areas of concern may include such matters as professional ethics, general welfare, tenure, academic freedom, hiring and dismissal procedures, the misuse of confidential records, organizational guidelines, and disciplinary actions and procedures.
Section 3. Any findings, conclusions, or recommendations by the Faculty Senate shall be purely advisory to the College Administration and Board of Trustees and no provisions herein shall take precedence over presently existing regulations or regulations hereinafter promulgated which are or may be binding upon the College Administration or Board of Trustees.
Section 4. Should the Senate decide to investigate, the Senate President shall appoint and the Senate shall approve a committee to investigate the individual's concern and report to the Senate its findings and any recommendations.
Article XI: Parliamentary Authority
The rules contained in the current edition of Robert's Rules of Orde shall govern the Faculty Senate in all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are not inconsistent with these bylaws and any special rules of order of the Senate.
Article XII: Amendment of Bylaws
The Bylaws of the Faculty Senate may be amended at a general faculty meeting by a two-thirds vote. Proposed amendments must be submitted to the Faculty Senate prior to their distribution to the faculty. Notice that amendments are to be considered, along with a copy of the proposed amendments and the Senate's recommendations, must be distributed to the faculty at least two weeks prior to the meeting. Proposed amendments may be further amended during the meeting called to consider the amendments. However, amendments that increase the proposed modification, amendments that make substantive changes and amendments to the document not distributed in the notice of the meeting may not be considered by the faculty without review by the Faculty Senate. Amendments to the Bylaws shall be approved by the President and Board of Trustees of the College.