View Current

Boards and Committees Policy - Conduct of Meetings of Academic Committees

This is the current version of this document. To view historic versions, click the link in the document's navigation bar.

Section 1 - Preamble

(1) This Policy applies to the convening and conduct of meetings of the Academic Senate and its committees established in accordance with the Rule for the Committees of Academic Senate 2006. It is intended to be a descriptive framework in which committees can conduct their business but is not intended to anticipate every possible aspect of meeting procedure. In the event of a dispute concerning any matter not covered by this Policy, a Presiding Officer may refer to Joske's Law and Procedure at Meetings in Australia by Eilis S Magner, (latest edition).

(2) In the interpretation of this Policy and any subsequent amendments, recognition must be given to the clauses in the Charles Sturt University Act 1989 No 76 and the Charles Sturt University By-law 2005 which relate to meeting procedure and which take precedence over this Policy.

Top of Page

Section 2 - Glossary

(3) In this Policy:

  1. Act - means the Charles Sturt University Act 1989 No 76 (as amended);
  2. By-law - means the Charles Sturt University By-law 2005 (as amended);
  3. committee - includes a board;

    where the Charles Sturt University By-law 2005 or the Charles Sturt University Act 1989 No 76 refer to the Council this includes the Academic Senate of the University and committees established in accordance with the Rule for the Committees of Academic Senate 2006;
  4. Presiding Officer - means the chairperson, or person acting or appointed as Presiding Officer for the particular meeting.
Top of Page

Section 3 - Secretary

(4) The Secretary to any committee established in accordance with the Rule for the Committees of Academic Senate 2006 shall be appointed by the Deputy Director Governance and Academic Secretary in consultation with the Presiding Officer of the committee.

Top of Page

Section 4 - Notice of Meeting

(5) A notice of meeting for any committee shall be given in accordance with clause 95 of the Charles Sturt University By-law 2005 which states that:

  1. "The Secretary must send a notice of the date, time and place of a meeting of the Council to each member of the Council at least five working days before the meeting;
  2. A notice under subclause (1) may be sent by electronic mail or by such other written means as determined by the Secretary;
  3. The notice is to be accompanied by a copy of the business papers for the meeting and any relevant supporting documents;
  4. The Secretary may, by a further notice sent by electronic mail delivered not less than two working days before the meeting, notify members of the Council of any supplementary business that is to be put before the meeting; and
  5. Where a special meeting is convened under clause 93, the Secretary must give such notice of the date, time, place and business of the meeting as is reasonable in the circumstances."
Top of Page

Section 5 - Agendas

(6) Agendas shall contain the order of business including particulars of business of which notice has been given. In the case of business requiring a decision, the precise wording of the proposed resolution shall be set out.

(7) Notices of motion for any meeting shall be made in writing and submitted to the Secretary of a committee, or if there is no Secretary, to the Presiding Officer of a committee, not less than fourteen days before the date of the meeting.

(8) The order of business for meetings shall be:

  1. acknowledgement of country;
  2. apologies;
  3. starring of items;
  4. confirmation of minutes of previous meeting(s);
  5. business arising from the minutes;
  6. report from the Presiding Officer;
  7. reports from sub-committees;
  8. new items of business;
  9. urgent business;
  10. date of next meeting.

(9) Minutes and agenda shall be produced in accordance with the "Style Manual for University Committees" produced by the Deputy Director Governance and Academic Secretary.

Top of Page

Section 6 - Attendance

(10) The Secretary shall record in the minutes the attendance of members at meetings. Such record shall be conclusive evidence of attendance.

Top of Page

Section 7 - Quorum

(11) Unless otherwise specified in the membership and terms of reference of the committee, a quorum shall be in accordance with clause 8 in Schedule 1 of the Charles Sturt University Act 1989 No 76 which states:

"At any meeting of the Council, a majority of the total number of members for the time being of the Council constitutes a quorum."
Top of Page

Section 8 - Confidentiality of Proceedings

(12) Matters which are discussed and papers which are considered in camera during a meeting shall be confidential to the committee.

Top of Page

Section 9 - Recording of Proceedings

(13) Electronic tape recording devices or cameras may not be used to record proceedings of any meetings of committees without the permission of the Presiding Officer.

Top of Page

Section 10 - Open Meetings

(14) Meetings shall be opened to members of the University, that is: staff, students enrolled in award courses, and members of the University Convocation, to attend as observers subject to the following provisions:

  1. an observer may not vote on any matter at a meeting;
  2. an observer may not speak on any matter nor communicate with any member of the committee during the meeting, unless invited to speak and to respond to questions from members of the committee at the discretion of the Chair;
  3. the Presiding Officer of a meeting may exclude from any meeting for the whole or part of its term, all or any observers;
  4. where a confidential matter arises, the committee may go into camera;
  5. all observers must be seated separately from the committee and there shall be as many seats provided as can be accommodated but the number of seats provided shall not exceed twenty-five;
  6. seats may be reserved with the Secretary up to two weeks prior to the meeting;
  7. any places not reserved will be allocated on a first-come, first-admitted basis; and
  8. papers of a non-confidential nature will be posted or delivered to those who book seats as observers at meetings, to the libraries and to designated places at each campus prior to the meeting.
Top of Page

Section 11 - Voting

(15) Voting shall be in accordance with clause 9 in Schedule 1 of the Charles Sturt University Act 1989 No 76 which states:

"A decision supported by a majority of the votes cast at a meeting of the Council at which a quorum is present is the decision of the Council."

(16) The Presiding Officer shall have a casting vote in accordance with clause 96 of the Charles Sturt University By-law 2005 which states:

"(1) The person presiding at a meeting of the Council has a deliberative vote and also has a casting vote if the votes for and against a motion are equal. A motion lapses if the person presiding declines to exercise a casting vote when the votes for and against the motion are equal."

(17) The manner of voting on any motion shall usually be by voice or by a show of hands but may be by another method approved by the committee.
Proxy votes shall not be permitted.

Top of Page

Section 12 - Motions

(18) Amended Motions - a motion may be amended by leaving out, substituting or adding words. Any number of amendments may be proposed and discussed sequentially with the original motion. When amendments have been put to the meeting and carried, the amendment shall become part of the motion. When amendments have been put to the committee and lost, the original motion shall then be put to the meeting.
Foreshadowed Motions - notwithstanding the provision of clause 7, the Presiding Officer may allow a foreshadowed motion if during consideration of an item of business it is considered that such a motion would expedite the matter under consideration.
Procedural Motions - a procedural motion shall be put to the meeting without further discussion.

Top of Page

Section 13 - Adjournment

(19) No business shall be transacted at any adjourned meeting other than the business left unfinished at the meeting from which the adjournment took place.

Top of Page

Section 14 - Urgent Business

(20) The Presiding Officer shall have the discretion to accept or reject items of business raised at a meeting under urgent business.

Top of Page

Section 15 - Attendance of Substitutes

(21) A substitute may only attend a meeting for an ex officio member of a committee where they are acting in the position which has ex officio membership of the committee.
Committees, or officers who have the right to nominate members to a committee, may nominate substitutes.
Elected members of committees may not nominate a substitute to a meeting when they are unable to attend.

Top of Page

Section 16 - Leave of Absence

(22) In the case of a period of absence by an official member, the member will be replaced by the officer acting in that specific office.
In the case of a nominee taking a period of absence covering at least three ordinary meetings, the committee or officer making the nomination will nominate an alternate member who shall hold office for the period of absence. In the case of a nominee taking a period of absence covering fewer than three ordinary meetings, the committee or officer making the nomination may, at its discretion, nominate an alternate member who shall hold office for the period of absence.
Elected members who anticipate an extended leave of absence should consider resigning from their position on the committee to enable the casual vacancy to be filled in accordance with the terms of reference of the committee.
In the event that an appointed or elected member of a committee of the University is absent from three consecutive meetings of a committee of which reasonable notice has been given to the member personally or in the ordinary course of post and is not, within six weeks after the last of those meetings, excused by the committee for his or her absence; or

in the event that an appointed or elected member of a committee of the University notifies his or her intention to be absent for three or more consecutive meetings or it is otherwise established that the member will be so absent and the member has been notified accordingly - then the position occupied by that member is deemed to be vacant and should be filled in accordance with clause 29 of this Policy.