August 29 Email
From: OfficeoftheProvost@umontana.edu <OfficeoftheProvost@umontana.edu>
Sent: Wednesday, August 29, 2018 2:18 PM
Subject: Update on the Process for Refining Faculty Staffing Recommendations
As the campus community returns for fall semester, I write to provide an update on President Bodnar’s preliminary recommendations, released in May of 2018, and the process we are taking to revise them to ensure excellent service to our students, the State of Montana, and the world.
Since the release of these draft recommendations, the campus community has provided extensive feedback on the recommendations’ content and methodology. This feedback, especially as communicated through the Executive Committee of Faculty Senate, has resulted in revisions to both the recommendations for reorganization and the methodology for arriving at the faculty staffing levels that will best serve students across our programs. The University Planning Committee, the Executive Committee of Faculty Senate, and the University Faculty Association have been critical partners in this important work, helping to revise the methodology and to ensure an accurate picture of our needs as well as a strategic approach to our decision making. (This feedback will be posted on the University Planning Committee website later today.)
The preliminary recommendations currently are being updated, informed by the revised methodology, dean and chair feedback and strategic needs. The updated reorganization plans and staffing recommendations will be determined this fall, using both quantitative and qualitative input. Faculty Senate will conduct a review of recommendations that impact curriculum and will complete this review by early December.
Please note that while the staffing plans by department are being finalized, the overall budget target has not significantly changed.
Here is where we are in the process and where the process will lead over the coming months:
- Deans and chairs have been invited to review the FTE and SCH data generated by the new and agreed upon methodology and to provide input on the accuracy of the data.
- Once the deans and chairs provide input on the data and any necessary adjustments are made, a presumptive faculty staffing level will be calculated for each department based on its FY2018 student credit hours and the credit hour to faculty ratio it had on average for the period FY2009-13. These data will be used to calculate how student credit hours and the credit hour to faculty ratio it had on average for the period FY2009-13. These data will be used to calculate how many staff it would take to produce the FY2009-13 credit hour to faculty ratio for each department, but with the FY2018 student credit hours, both for all instructional staff and for T/TT faculty. These presumptive staffing levels will then be converted to an instructional budget.
- Next, the instructional budgets will be adjusted based on strategic considerations to set the final instructional budget target to be achieved by the end of FY2021. Final staffing budgets may be higher or lower than the levels calculated from the FY2009-13 ratios and FY2018 student credit hours. Those final staffing budgets will be determined through strategic decisions made by the executive team relying on three main inputs: a) First, we will look at the data on each academic program that the UPC looked at in its Stage 1 analysis in April; b) Second, we will assess programs in relation to their fit and importance to the vision for the UM Core and the Communities of Excellence; c) Third, we will rely on feedback from deans and chairs to inform us of programs with particular concerns regarding staffing levels given programmatic needs.
- Departments and Schools/Colleges will develop staffing recommendations that will fit within their new staffing budgets by mid-October. Meanwhile, the Administration will work with the UFA and Faculty Senate to develop a timeline for officially noticed attrition.
The timeline, therefore, is as follows:
Summer 2018 The president worked with the Executive Committee of Faculty Senate, the University Planning Committee, the deans and the provost to consider the feedback collected to date. This feedback led to revisions in both the staffing plan methodology and the reorganization recommendations.
Mid-fall semester 2018 Reorganization plans and staffing recommendations will be updated, informed by input from deans and chairs. Faculty Senate will conduct a review of recommendations that impact curriculum and will complete this review by early December.
Mid-October 2018 If, after considering officially noticed attrition, retrenchment appears to be necessary for particular units to achieve the requisite staffing, a Review Committee will be formed and retrenchment plans for those units will be developed and submitted to the Review Committee, in accordance with the terms of the CBA.
Early winter 2019 Any necessary retrenchment plans, by program, will be submitted to the Commissioner, then go to the Board of Regents.
I hope this information helps you understand this process. For more information, please check the University Planning Committee website. Feedback and next steps will be posted there regularly in the future.
Jon Harbor, Executive Vice President & Provost
This message was sent by the Office of the Provost to all UM administrators, faculty, staff, and affiliates.