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Shared Governance at BCC

Governance is a process of consultation and communication by which decisions and policies are developed to meet the mission of an institution. Faculty, staff, students, administration and the Board of Trustees of Broome Community College, then, are committed to shared governance – a dynamic, open, and cooperative process which seeks input and recommendations from all campus constituencies to inform decision-making that will help the College best achieve its mission and goals. Such a participatory structure and process will assist the campus community to communicate and collaborate in a respectful, honest, and productive manner regarding decisions that are for the good of the College as a whole in terms of establishing its course and direction.

Guiding Principles for Shared Governance at BCC
  • We strive to create an atmosphere in which the following principles guide all levels of decision-making:
  • Consistent, accurate, and timely communication between and among participants to ensure the opportunity to meaningfully participate in the discourse that makes for good policy and practice.
  • There should be a predisposition toward mutual respect and trust among all parties, even when they seriously disagree.
  • Participants will not always be of one voice on matters of policy and practice, which makes it important that dissent from the majority view be respected by all involved.
  • Those who will be affected by a decision on policy or procedures are entitled to be informed of, and have opportunity to, influence the discussion of these governance issues.
  • The various stakeholder constituencies should select their representatives to governance committees.
  • While many governance issues will involve multiple constituencies, the process needs to acknowledge the fact that certain areas are the primary concern of one group – either because the matters considered are of almost exclusive interest of one group or because one group holds the expertise in these matters.
  • Committee representation should be in proportion to the level of interest of the stakeholder constituencies.
  • Shared governance recognizes the statutory authority of the President and the Board of Trustees. However, the spirit of shared governance requires that the administrative rejection of shared governance committee recommendations should be rare and for compelling reasons, provided in writing and subject to collective response so that reasons for a decision can be processed and understood.
  • The shared governance process should be open and transparent.
  • Committees should provide stakeholders with opportunities for discussion of policy and procedural issues prior to making final recommendations.
  • Recommendations and decisions on proposals need to be made in a manner that is timely and appropriate to the issue, yet does not overlook the governance process for the sake of expediency. The status of any proposal should be available to all stakeholders.
  • Responsibility for oversight and review of the shared governance process, and a mechanism for initiating oversight and review, are essential to ensure the process is working as intended. This would include primary oversight and review to ensure adherence to the spirit of shared governance at all levels of the College.
  • All participants in the shared governance process are accountable for the execution of their roles.

Background on Shared Governance

Feel free to view the slide show that follows for more background as to exactly what shared governance is and how the shared governance model affects this nation’s educational institutions. This presentation should also bring to light SUNY Regulations regarding institutional policy on governance and the role that the Middle States Commission on Higher Education plays regarding accreditation and standards for leadership and governance (Standard 4: Leadership and Governance).

Click here to view the presentation.


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