LSU Supervisors' 'Disregard' Garners National Attention

Feb 1, 2013

The rules of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, the organization that issues LSU's accreditation, mandate that "the governing board is free from undue influence from political... bodies."
Credit K. K. Murray

A report  in the Chronicle of Higher Education detailed a letter received by LSU’s Board of Supervisors. A national organization that monitors academic freedom at colleges and universities shook their finger at what they called the mistreatment of faculty at LSU.

The members of LSU’s Board of Supervisors are all appointees of the Governor. Not one member of the university’s board has a background in education. The board is now looking for a new president-chancellor, and the job posting doesn’t require that a candidate have a background in education either – and that concerns the faculty.

Robert Kreiser is with the American Association of University Professors, the organization which wrote the letter.

Academic credentials seem not to be of concern. Respect for academic values does not seem to be what’s going on at the heart of the activities of the Board of Supervisors. It’s an indication that someone without those qualifications and who may be connected to the governor is being given serious consideration.

Undue political interference is cause for the University to have its accreditation revoked. The university is up for reaccreditation in 2014. An LSU degree will have less value on the job market if the university loses accreditation.

For full disclosure, members of LSU’s faculty sit on WRKF’s Board of Directors.