Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Tenure Decisions? What Tenure Decisions? The Warren G. Harding of University Presidents Turns All His Attention to Protecting the Feelings of His Cronies

I ran across this quote, apropos of Wayne Watson's demonstrated administrative abilities. “I am not fit for this office and never should have been here.” Warren G. Harding quoted in Nicolas Murray Butler, Across the Busy Years: Recollections and Reflections, Vol. 1 (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1939) 411.

Wayne Watson cannot be bothered to extend any courtesy to the faculty members anxiously awaiting his tenure decisions. However, he has the wherewithal to assign his crack legal team to draft a new policy which will hopefully enable Watson to stifle free expression and control the message emanating from Chicago State. The newest iteration of the Computer Usage/Communications/Trademark Infringement fiascoes is headed for passage by a complicit board.

The Cyber-Bullying Policy posted recently by Corday has undergone rather substantive revision. In fact, the version she quoted no longer exists.The following are excerpts from the new and improved policy, revised March 3, 2014.

First, instead of one-plus pages, the new policy sprawls across eight pages and one paragraph on page nine. The important text begins with definitions on page three (at this point there is no electronic copy available). The university is defining “cyberbullying” as (i) “deliberate and repeated conduct or activity that threatens, harasses, intimidates an individual, places an individual in reasonable fear of harm to the individual or damage to the individual’s property or has the effect of substantially disrupting the individual’s daily life via the use of electronic information and communication devices; (ii) the use of information and communication technologies to support a deliberate, repeated, and hostile course of conduct that is intended to harm others.” Included are “internet blog postings, social media site postings, internet chat room postings, and/or other internet postings.” The university provides a number of other definitions, however, it offers no definition of how it intends to define “harm.”

The material on page five is amazingly vague. It prohibits all “Off-campus expressive conduct (verbal, physical, aural, graphic, symbolic, or written), including, without limitation, cyberbullying and electronic speech, that is intended by the speaker to reach the CSU campus and does, in fact, reach the CSU campus.” Any conduct that results in the following violates the policy:

1. “creates (i) a material and substantial disruption of CSU’s educational mission, operations, activities, or programs, or (ii) a reasonable foreseeable risk/likelihood of causing such a disruption:”
2. “materially and substantially denies, limits, or interferes with another’s ability to fully participate in or benefit from CSU’s educational programs or activities, or creates a reasonable foreseeable risk/likelihood of causing any such effect;”
3. “causes a material and substantial adverse impact on the work environment of a CSU faculty member or employee that amounts to a material and substantial change in the employee’s terms or conditions of employment, or creates a reasonable foreseeable risk/likelihood of causing such adverse impact;”
4. “is severe or pervasive, and objectively and subjectively has the effect of unreasonably interfering with another’s work or equal access to education, or is severe or pervasive and creates a reasonable foreseeable risk/likelihood of causing such interference;”

This is what our administration spends its time doing. As an aside, apparently none of the persons who are due to receive tenure in two days has been notified of their status by the administration. I guess they should just show up at the board meeting Friday to find out if they are going to be employed next year. This disgraceful administration will not adhere to contractual or university policy (the contract specifies the president’s tenure decisions by April 21), but it can create elaborate policies to deal with the problem of some persons at the university feeling bad because they have been “attacked” by having their lies publicly exposed. Clearly the feelings of some Chicago State employees deserve every consideration, the feelings of others—who cares? The tenure nonsense is another excellent example of how well the administration has responded to the concerns about communication and compliance articulated in the HLC accreditation report.


  1. Harassment, intimidation, duress is what fuels ww's reign of campus terror. But drama may be forthcoming---word is one of ww's paramours has enough secret recordings to do Wayne in ---like V. did Sterling. You go Girl!!!

  2. Is there more than one?....It seems as though, Dr. Watson did not check underneath the washroom stall doors before speaking. In addition, "loose lips sink ships".