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Dec. 4, 2014 Volume 36, No. 14

Faculty Council requests revisions to Title IX syllabi insert

Faculty Council has asked for revisions of a statement on Title IX that was proposed as an optional addition to course syllabi for spring semester. Of 23 council members at the Nov. 20 meeting, only two voted to approve the statement.

Tim Evans, chair of the council’s Student Affairs committee, presented the resolution to approve the statement drafted by the Title IX office. The statement could be inserted into course syllabi at the discretion of the professor, Evans said.

The short draft presented to council members said that, unless exempted by a legal obligation, all employees must report sexual misconduct “regardless of whether that information was shared in person, via email, and/or in classroom papers or homework assignments” to the Title IX coordinator.

Several council members were concerned about the broad language. Ben Trachtenberg, a law professor, pointed out that the draft fails to establish a time limit on an alleged incident. What if a professor overhears a rumor of a rape from 1976? Should that be reported to the Title IX coordinator?

Karen Piper, an English professor, said that in creative writing courses students are often assigned to write on personal matters. What if a student writes about inappropriate sexual behavior? She wondered if that should be reported.

Faculty Council requested a revised draft of the statement that is more focused.

Meanwhile, four candidates for the Title IX administrator position have been selected to give open forum talks this month on campus. The first candidate, Joe Gilgour, dean of student and academic support services at State Fair Community College in Sedalia, Missouri, spoke Wednesday.

Remaining candidates are scheduled as follows:

Today, 3:30­–5 p.m.: Andrea Hayes, a Boone County assistant prosecuting attorney, speaking at 194B General Services Building

Wednesday, 3:45–5:15 p.m. Dec. 17

Thursday, 3:30­–5 p.m. Dec. 18

Information about a finalist will be emailed prior to his or her open forum. Attendees will have a chance to offer feedback on the candidates via an online form.