Cleveland State University Faculty Leaders to Consider "No Confidence" Vote in Administration

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Cleveland State University faculty leaders, saying administrators and trustees ignored their opposition to converting nearly all undergraduate classes from four credits to three credits, are poised to take a vote of no confidence in the administration.

A draft resolution to be considered by the Faculty Senate Wednesday says that administrators misstated its views on curriculum changes -- and the effect on students' education -- to trustees, who approved the conversion on March 18.

"The Administration's public misrepresentations have degraded the Faculty and the University itself, in ways as unprecedented as they are inexplicable," says the resolution.

CSU President Ronald Berkman said Tuesday that the faculty has discussed credit hour revisions for two years and it is time to move forward to align CSU with other four-year universities, which have adopted three-credit hour models. He said the move will also help CSU meet mandates from Gov. John Kasich and the Ohio Board of Regents to improve retention and graduation rates, which will be factors in determining state funding in the next two-year budget.

Berkman, meeting Tuesday with Plain Dealer editors to discuss the impasse with faculty, said the proposed no confidence vote "certainly saddens me."

He said that at a time when other public universities in Ohio are mandating that faculty teach more courses, laying off faculty and facing major budget issues, judging him based on curriculum conversion "is a really minor part of the university picture."

The president said the faculty will play a pivotal role in the curriculum revision.

"I am willing to hear other alternatives and ideas," he said.

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