The student affairs caucus (SAC) of the University Senate announced that the student council proposal to resolve the academic calendar will be discussed at Friday’s plenary meeting. But, the Senate will most likely not formally vote on the issue at this meeting.
Columbia College Student Council President Sue Yang, CC ’10, and Engineering Student Council President Whitney Green, SEAS ’10, are expected to speak in the discussion, if recognized by a unanimous vote allowing non-senators to speak.
"We're glad the Executive Committee of the Senate and Education Committee chair Jim Applegate have decided to bring the student proposal for academic calendar reform to the Senate body," said Columbia College senator Alex Frouman, CC '12, a member of the Senate's Education Committee.
SAC “hopes that the Senate will take action before its last plenary of the academic year on April 30.”
"The Senate needs a concrete discussion before it is in a position to make a decision," said Frouman.
The student council proposal was created after the Fall 2009 semester ended on December 23, causing many students to complain about upset family and travel plan.
To resolve this problem, the proposal calls for a limited early start that begins the fall semester a week early on those years when Labor Day falls late. This applies to four out of the ten upcoming years, excluding the fall 2010 calendar which the councils are not seeking to change. A proposed early start time has been met with opposition by some Columbia faculty, out of concern for providing childcare the week before New York City public schools are in session.
CCSC and ESC unanimously passed the student council proposal earlier this week. The Student Government Association and General Studies Students Council will entertain the proposal in the near future.
The Education Committee has been considering revisions to the academic calendar since late January, in response to student objections to the December 23rd end date of the fall semester.
Friday's plenary meeting will start at 1:15 p.m. in room 106 of Jerome Green Hall. The plenary is open to all CUID holders.