In November, AAUP president Rudy Fichtenbaum commended the University of Oregon faculty senate on its stand against the administration’s attempt to subvert faculty governance as a way to undermine a Graduate Teaching Fellows Federation's strike. The strike has ended, but concerns about attempts to undermine shared governance have not.
In December, the board of trustees considered a plan that would have radically changed the role of the faculty senate and of shared governance; the board plans to revisit the issue in March. And in January, a 2012 memo recommending the abolishment of the faculty senate came to light. The national AAUP is watching these developments at the University of Oregon with concern. The 1966 Statement on Government of Colleges and Universities affirms that the faculty “has primary responsibility for such fundamental areas as curriculum, subject matter and methods of instruction, research, faculty status, and those aspects of student life which relate to the educational process.”
This standard is reflected in the University of Oregon’s constitution and in the collective bargaining agreement at UO. Decisions related to these fundamental academic areas must involve the faculty, through the appropriate shared governance body.