Faculty Referendum

A significant portion of the SMU faculty has asked the Faculty Senate to hold a referendum on the Bush Institute. On this page I’ll be posting information and resources that may be of assistance to my faculty colleagues at SMU as they discuss this possibility.

Why the focus on the Bush Institute? Philosophy Professor and former Faculty Senate Secretary Steve Sverdlik offers one set of reasons. Here is his article from the Daily Campus.

How much has the Senate discussed the Bush Library and Institute to date? Judge for yourself: Here are the minutes from past Faculty Senate discussions of the Library.

Could or should the Senate decide to hold a referendum? The Senate’s constitution is silent on the question of referendums. Here are excerpts.

Here is the text of the petition:

Whereas the prospect of the George W. Bush Presidential Library coming to campus could offer SMU valuable opportunities;

Whereas on December 21, 2006, President Turner announced that Southern Methodist University was declared the sole finalist as the site for Bush Library;

Whereas the Bush Foundation has proposed, as part of its vision for a library and museum, an Institute that would remain independent of SMU;

Whereas President Turner stated in his letter to the faculty of January 5, 2007, that “the proposed Bush Institute would report to the Bush Foundation” rather than to the University;

Whereas Article IV, sec. 2b of the Faculty Senate Constitution states that the Senate’s “powers and duties” include monitoring “the activities of non-School academic institutes and programs”;

And whereas Article VI of the Faculty Senate Constitution provides that the signatures of thirty full-time faculty members can mandate a subject for Faculty Senate consideration;

THEREFORE we, the undersigned full-time faculty members of Southern Methodist University, request that by February 12, 2007, the Faculty Senate hold a referendum of the entire faculty on the acceptability of the Bush Institute as currently proposed.

SMU faculty won’t vote on Bush institute,” Holly K. Hacker, Dallas Morning News, February 7, 2007

Philosophy Professor Describes Faculty Senate Meeting,” Steve Sverdlik, February 7, 2007

Faculty Senate rejects motion to conduct survey,” Sarah Scott, SMU Daily Campus, February 8, 2007

Faculty Senate Meeting Causes Confusion,” Sam Merton, Dallasblog.com, February 8, 2007

Philosophy Prof Reports on Senate Faculty Meeting,” Steve Sverdlik, February 14, 2007

SMU faculty opposes executive order limiting release of documents,” Angela K. Brown, Associated Press, February 14, 2007

Faculty Senate Resolution on Executive Order 13233, passed by the Senate on February 14, 2007

Faculty Senate Resolution On Institute, prepared by the Executive Committee of the Senate, passed by the Faculty Senate, Feburary 14, 2007

“Faculty Senate resolution challenges Bush order,”Sarah Scott, SMU Daily Campus, February 15, 2007

Faculty Senate Update: SMU President Responds to Resolutions,” February 21, 2007

SMU President, Board Formally Respond to Faculty Senate . . . Or Not,” March 4, 2007

Faculty Senate Passes One Resolution, Ties on Other,” March 7th, 2007

SMU faculty split on ties to Bush institute,” Holly K. Hacker, Dallas Morning News, March 7, 2007

Guest Blog Report on Faculty Senate Meeting,” Steve Sverdlik, March 8th, 2007

Fallout over faculty senate vote,” A. Neely Eisenstein, SMU Daily Campus, March 9, 2007

New SMU Faculty Petition Launched,” Benjamin Johnson, April 4th, 2007

Faculty members launch anti-institute petition,’ Sarah Scott, SMU Daily Campus, April 5, 2007

Continued Faculty Wariness of Bush Institute on Display in Senate,” Benjamin Johnson, April 12th, 2007

Faculty Senate approves two resolutions,” Sarah Scott and Mark Norris, SMU Daily Campus, April 12, 2007

Clear separation of SMU, Bush institute urged,” Sommer Saadi, Dallas Morning News, April 12, 2007

Guest Blogger Reports on Faculty Senate Meeting,” Steve Sverdlik, April 12th, 2007

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