The Graduate School of Design (GSD) Faculty approved on May 14 new ad hoe procedures to handle the appeal case of Chester W. Hartman, former director of the Urban Feld Service, whose contract was terminated last June.
The procedures-introduced by Peter P. Rogers, associate professor of City Planning-have brought strong objections from several faculty members who feel that the new guidelines undercut Hartman's right to a fair hearing.
Hartman's appeal has been pending since last spring, when he contended that the decision by Maurice D. Kilbridge, dean of the GSD, not to renew his contract was based on personal and political considerations and constituted a breach of academic due process.
A special committee; headed by Rogers, was established at the time to develop interim regulations for retention, promotion and the granting of tenure at the GSD. The GSD Faculty passed the so-called Rogers Motion last May 11.
But now, nearly a year after the adoption of the Rogers Motion and five months after Kilbridge abandoned attempts to establish a review committee under the original motion, the GSD Faculty has instituted new procedures to deal with Hartman's appeal.
Hartman, presently a member of the faculty at the University of California at Berkeley, has repeatedly criticized the delays and Thursday described the latest effort by the Rogers Committee as "totally unsatisfactory."
The objections to the ad hoe procedures stem largely from the fact that they modify and supplant Section 7 of the Rogers Motion in such a way as to preclude consideration of Hartman's claim that academic due process was neglected in the non-renewal of his contract.
Section 7-entitled "Non-renewal of Faculty with Term Appointments-provides that if a faculty member "alleges that considerations violative of academic freedom significantly contributed to a decision not to reappoint him or the decision was reached without adequate consideration, his allegation will be given preliminary consideration by a committee selected by the faculty (with at least one member of the committee acceptable to the individual involved) which will seek to settle the matter by informal methods."
The new procedures provide, in accordance with the Rogers Motion, that a five-man-review committee make up of faculty members outside the GSD Faculty will be selected by the GSD Faculty to handle Hartman's appeal.
But the procedures charge this committee only with determining. "whether there is substantial reason to believe that considerations violative of academic freedom significantly contributed to the decision not to reappoint [Hartman]." There is no mention of adequate "consideration" or academic due process.
Rogers refused Thursday to outline the reasons behind the change, saying that the Hartman case is "still very much an issue at the GSD" and that discussion of the ad hoc procedures could influence those persons who will consider Hartman's appeal.
Kilbridge himself has been unavailable for comment since Tuesday, but a memorandum written by him on December 31 and entitled "Difficulties with the So-called Rogers Motion" lays out most of the logic behind the change.
Kilbridge cites inconsistencies in interpreting Section 7 and a hazy definition of the review committee's function as the chief problem of the original motion.
As for Section 7, he says it confuses the protection of academic freedom "with almost any complaint about non-renewal that a faculty member wishes to bring up." Kilbridge contends that the phrase "the decision was reached without adequate consideration" is "meaningless, unless to say consideration to what."
He also holds that sections of the Rogers Motion "involve the president and Governing Boards in the procedures at several points in manners in which they may very well wish not to be involved."