CCCOER/Meetings/Weekly Nov 8 2010

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The following items were addressed:

  • Filling Communications & Elections
  • Organization leadership signed for actions
  • Schedule for governing board meetings
  • Future of Monday meetings
  • Organizational Issues & Questions – Geoff -- only barely started
  • NGLG proposals by Nixty and Tri-C

The following did not get addressed.

  • Most of Geoff's questions and issues -- Geoff would like these to be addressed at the bottom of this page. Please add your inputs.
  • Marketing book proposal
  • Intellectual property transfer

Stephanie agreed to move from Member-at-Large to Elections Chair. Thanks Stephanie!
Angela said that Lorah Gough is willing to be a Member-at-Large so we moved Lorah into that position. Thanks Laura!
The board decided that Communications Chair should not be a paid position.
The board decided to support CCCOER joining the Nixty bid for Gates NGLG provided that a contractual relationship is established.
The board decided to have bi-monthly meetings in the first half of 2011. The next governing board meeting will be at 10am or earlier on December 9 before the CCCOER quarterly meeting. At that meeting, the date of the next meeting will be set.

Please see the | action item page.


Note from Jacky: I expect this to be the last weekly meeting of the Governing Board. Future meetings of the Governing Board will be less frequent. There is an item on the agenda suggested by John to discuss if this Monday meeting time will be used for some other purpose.

Congratulations to the Governing Board, to Liza Loop, and to many others who contributed to creating a strong leadership group, bylaws, and a new membership agreement. CCCOER is poised to be a strong independent organization.

There is too much in this agenda to address in one hour. So this will be a crisp, informal meeting with assignments made to address the issues. These assignments will be given to individuals or to the leader(s) of a Board, Committee, or Working Group. So the first item is to reiterate the leadership roles.

  • Filling the two open positions on Communications CC and Elections EC
  • Insure that the leadership of each Board, Committee, and Working Group is prepared to move forward with its work.
    • Governing Board: Cable
    • Program Board: Susie & Cable
    • Publicity Committee: Cable & Geoff & CC
    • Membership Committee: John & Angela & CC
    • Finance Committee: Angela & Susie
    • Financial Development Committee: Cable & James
    • Elections Committee: John & EC
    • OER Standards Committee: Jo & Tom
    • 4Q10 Working Group: Monica
    • 1Q11 Working Group: Sharyn
  • Future of the Monday meetings
  • Organizational Issues and Questions posed by VP -- See bottom of this page - Geoff
  • Proposal for a marketing book to promote CCCOER
  • Tentative dates and times for Governing Board meetings for the next few months; bylaws require at least one meeting every 6 months; Suggested dates:
    • Mid-December to evaluate the quarterly meeting and to check to see if the criteria are completed to move into the interim phase.
    • Early January to plan the election
    • Immediately following the election to hand-off from interim to elected offices
    • May/June to move into the final phase

Note: CCCOER Funding was addressed thoroughly last week. It was about fees paid to CCCOER on grant-funded programs. This assignment was given to the Finance Development Committee.

Premeeting discussion below...

Filling the two open positions

Once we have a full GB this item will not usually be on the agenda. However, if one of the GB members finds him/herself unable to serve after being elected we will again want to resort to interim appointments. (Liza, 11/2/2010)

Future of Monday Meetings - John

Liza: I hope that the Governing Board will soon decide not to continue to meet weekly and will begin to refer both policy and operating items to the appropriate committees. A future schedule might have the GB meet the first Monday of each month to receive committee reports and recommendations. The other 3 or 4 Mondays in each month would then be available for each committee to hold its separate meeting. If this is not a convenient time slot committees would be free to move their meetings to some other time. (Liza, 11/2/2010)

Organizational Issues and Questions #1 - Geoff

Where are the budget documents for this organization located? Who has access to them? How does the governing board get access to this information?

  • Note from Jacky: I found these documents (discussions) about the budget on the steering/governing google group:

The slides I presented at the Sept 17 meeting are at

Slide 37 is called Budget-Past and here is the content:
Spending from Hewlett grant on CCCOER July09-Sep10 (15 months)
- $60,000 or $4,000/month
- for employee time (Jacky, Judy, Una, Monica, Judy)
- contractor time (Liz Yata, Liza, Happy About, Micheline, Randy)
- catering
- travel
- TAA sponsorship
In-kind funding from Foothill De Anza and California Community Colleges
- $7,500 or $500/month (estimate) for web conferencing, toll-free calling, conference rooms, internet access
Volunteer work by Barbara, Una (in 2009), Pheo, steering committee, and others

Slide 38 is called Budget-Future:
Anticipated spending from Hewlett grant on CCCOER
- 4Q2010: $26,000
- 1Q2011: $17,000 if budget improves; otherwise less
- 2Q2011: $3,000 or less
In-kind will continue; volunteering will increase

Long-term budget depends on
- programs
- definition of Executive Director role
- other paid staff
- membership growth minus attrition

The bylaws mention the budget in a couple of places.

Prior to April of 2008, CCCOER relied entirely on volunteers. Since then, CCCOER has benefited from three grants from the Hewlett Foundation and one from California Digital Marketplace. CCCOER's goals are about 10% of the current grant. I believe that CCCOER has been receiving more than 10% of the funds. The grant budget is divided by type of spending (salaries, benefits, travel, computers, supplies, etc.) and not by project except where there is a specific contractor called out in the grant (research, open licenses, porting, marketing, accessibility).

We are about 2/3 of the way through the 2-year grant and the primary document we use is a combination of past spending and future forecast by month. This forecast is stored on Bill Buxton's computer; he sends the latest version to me weekly and I often share it with others. Yesterday I sent the latest version to Liza. Angela and I and any other officers can review this document in detail. Spending is recorded in a system call Banner. We obtained a Banner dump on November 5 and Bill will spend hours making the forecast more accurate.

Others please add comments here:

This is a question of transparency and oversight. I would think you would want a governing board to have a copy of the budget and a flow chart on what financial decisions have been made so far and how you think, as a director, they will be made in the future. - Geoff Cain

Organizational Issues and Questions #2 - Geoff

What is the relationship between CCCOER and commercial corporations? In one meeting we gave time to Dynamic Books and in the next we are accepting money for travel to conferences from Flatworld Knowledge. We should be deciding as a group what organizations best represent the message of OER. We should have some clarification on our relationship with these organizations and what contracts or understandings we may have with them. We should be concerned about the appearance of possible conflicts of interest.

Note from Jacky:

  • CCCOER is a member of a the College Open Textbook Collaborative as are several commercial organizations: Dynamic Books, Happy About, Words & Numbers, and Textbook Media.
  • FlatWorld Knowledge was a member of the Collaborative in 2008-2009 and will be again soon.
  • All of the 16 members of the Collaborative are enthusiastic supporters of open resources. The presentations by FlatWorld Knowledge and Words & Numbers in 2009 and by Textbook Media and Dynamic Books in 2010 at CCCOER meetings were about open textbooks, a subset of OER.
  • All of the members of the Collaborative assist each other. CCCOER's assistance to the other members has been primarily in publicizing those organizations.
  • CCCOER has also helped commercial organizations that are not members of the Collaborative; Tatamae, Nixty, and Irynsoft are examples.
  • CCCOER also promotes non-commercial and educational organizations. Some are members of the Collaborative (League of Innovation, Virtual Ability, Benetech BookShare, Carnegie Mellon, MERLOT, Rice Connexions, OER Center for California) and others are not (Brigham Young, UBC, MITE, others).
  • In turn the Collaborative members help CCCOER including making its quarterly meetings more interesting. As another example, MERLOT offers OER peer reviewer training to CCCOER.
  • Florida Distance Learning Consortium is very special because it is a member of both CCCOER and COT. FDLC has provided much assistance to CCCOER and to other members of the Collaborative.
  • CCCOER has decided to open its memberships to organizations of all types including for-profits; I hope that the organization will continue to cooperate with organizations of all types. It is possible for there to be conflicts of interest among organizations of all kinds; if these are severe enough, cooperation between the two with conflicts would cease.

Others please add comments here:

Organizational Issues and Questions #3 - Geoff

What is the status of the OER definition that was meant to be included in the mission statement? If we are being asked to encourage people to join this organization, our mission statement should reflect we are promoting.

Add comments here:

Organizational Issues and Questions #4 - Geoff

What is the relationship between COT and CCCOER?

Randy Fisher: My understanding is that COT is a project under the CCCOER umbrella. Thus far, it has been the 'flagship' project. - Randy Fisher 17:38, 1 November 2010 (UTC)

Note from Jacky:

  • As Randy has written, College Open Textbooks is one of CCCOER's projects. Until recently, it was the only project that CCCOER was working on. Now CCCOER has two other projects: Nixty/NGLC and DOL grant proposals. COT is a fairly easy project for CCCOER because it would have done the work (growth, participation, self-sustainability) even if it were not a member of the Collaborative.
  • The Collaborative is also one of ISKME's projects, one of Connexion's projects, one of Virtual Ability's projects, etc.
  • CCCOER is one of 16 members of the College Open Textbooks Collaborative. Here is a splash diagram of all Collaborative members. The Collaborative has ten projects, one is related to CCCOER:
    • Accessibility Reviews
    • ADOPTIONS OF OPEN TEXTBOOKS (The most important project and the purpose of all projects)
    • Association Endorsements
    • CCCOER Growth, Participation, and Self-Sustainability
    • Marketing
    • Open licensing
    • Peer reviews
    • Porting to Open Repositories
    • Research and Publication
    • Workshops
  • Four of the sixteen members of the Collaborative have financial contracts with Foothill De Anza Community College District. The other 12 Collaborative members including CCCOER do not have such contracts but receive assistance from FHDA in the form of staff time, facilities, travel expenses, catering, etc.
  • Most of the funds for this assistance comes from the Hewlett grant to the Collaborative but some comes from FHDA's general budget.
  • FHDA has agreements with each member of CCCOER; these agreements pre-date and are completely separate from the Collaborative and the Hewlett grant.
  • The Collaborative has monthly meetings to which several CCCOER people are invited.

Others please add comments here:

Organizational Issues and Questions #5 - Geoff

How are people, resources, and funds allocated between the two organizations? Who makes those decisions? What processes are in place for in-put into making these decisions?

Note from Jacky:

  • The Hewlett funds are allocated, not among two organizations, but among six organizations and more than 150 individuals.
  • The Hewlett grant earmarks amounts for some of the specific projects/goals in the grant: reviews, workshops, marketing, etc. Most of these are performed by contractors. Three of the ten goals mentioned above do not have funds earmarked: Adoptions, Endorsements, and CCCOER. The staff, resources, etc in the overhead part of the budget are spread around among the ten goals based on how difficult it is to achieve those goals.
  • As an example, the project to work with Dynamic Books involved more than 20 people starting in May 2010 and continuing now. An outside financial consultant recommended DB at a meeting of the entire Collaborative in June 22; the Collaborative members agreed that DB could join. Bill Buxton worked with Connexions and many others to select the 25 open textbooks, etc. When Geoff objected to a couple of statements on DB's website, I spent several hours in email conversations with him, arranged for him to talk with Clancy, and made sure there was plenty of time for Geoff to debate with Clancy in the September 15 meeting. Clancy was very open to Geoff's questions and comments.
  • We were not aware that Geoff found a date error on the twitter book and was unable to locate the CC BY downloadable version of the twitter book. (It is on the front page of wiki educator.) We will ask Happy About to fix the date error in the PDF immediately and in the third print run of the bound copy.
  • Mitchell and Sharyn asked me, Judy, and Una in turn to be the 'author' of the twitter book. There was no way we were going to take credit for the hundreds of hours of work Sharyn did.
  • I am eager to receive inputs from any Collaborative member organization. The Collaborative members welcome input from each other. However, the Collaborative members do not dictate how other members do their parts of the program. We do ask the Collaborative to approve new members. There has been no dissent.
  • Judy Baker is the administrative manager of the Collaborative and the administrative director of CCCOER; she and at least one Foothill College VP have to approve every expenditure. Sometimes we consult the grant manager at the Hewlett Foundation. The processes are dictated by the grant and by FHDA's accounting and management rules.
  • I am the primary decision-maker and I consult with the specific Collaborative members and the people who are involved in the work and occasionally with outside experts. When needed, I get approval from Judy, our Hewlett grants manager, FHDA executives, and/or the Collaborative board that meets twice yearly. Whereever possible, Collaborative members, contractors, and employees make decisions for their own areas. In a recent meeting, Geoff referred to my 'unilateral decision making'; I disagree that this is unilateral.

Others add comments here:

Just so you know, after Jacky "introduced" us, Clancy ignored my emails of introduction and my questions, and had nothing to say about my concerns over Macmillan's comments on the "Dynamic Books" website about control of content and copyright. My feelings are not hurt - but it seems awfully short-sighted and un-consortium-like. I am not looking for debates or to upset anyone's apple cart here. I think that IF we are a non-profit organization promoting open texts, then we have a responsibility to that vision. If that is not what this organization is going to be, then lets get the word out about that as well. What could happen here is that consortium members with cash who pay for travel and conferences will get more of a voice and access than others - they will have more influence. This gives the appearance of unethical behavior on the part of the "nonprofit." - Geoff Cain

Organizational Issues and Questions #6 - Geoff

    • The goals of the COT and CCCOER seem to be different. Why are COT staff being used to represent COT goals at an event that is supposedly a CCCOER event?

Note from Jacky:

  • Every member of the Collaborative has different goals than the Collaborative itself but our goals are aligned enough that we have been delighted to appear at each other's meetings.
  • Collaborative staff has also presented COT goals at meetings of other Collaborative members: FDLC, Rice University Connexions, OER Center for California, ISKME.
  • Other members of the Collaborative also present at CCCOER meetings, e.g., MERLOT, Chancellor's Office, OER Center for California, Rice Connexions, Virtual Ability, Benetech Bookshare. etc.  
  • Collaborative staff has monthly meetings and the member organizations including CCCOER present some of their goals at those meetings.
  • The entire Collaborative meets twice per year and CCCOER leadership attends. The last meeting was June 22. There will be a meeting in early 2011. Cable and Liza will be invited. Geoff is also welcome to attend.
  • In September of this year, I invited the Governing Board to find people in their colleges to plan and manage the December 9 CCCOER meeting. James and John expressed an interest and may create, manage and host the 2Q11 meeting. With no other volunteers, we created a working group headed by Monica Sain. The transactions and meetings of that working group are open to all and Geoff has been attending.
  • The CCCOER Governing Board agreed without discussion or dissent that Clare Middleton-Detzner can present at the upcoming CCCOER quarterly a very important COT goal: open textbook research. When I presented Clare's offer, I emphasized that it is yet another presentation on open textbooks.
  • I try to arrange for CCCOER members to present Best Practices at the quarterly meetings. We missed this important agenda item in March and September but had 3 in June and will have 3 in December. For the 1Q11 meeting, we have open time for every attending college to present its practices.
  • I am disappointed that so few CCCOER members attend the quarterly meetings in person. That is why I arranged to have the 1Q11 meeting at a conference that dozens of our member colleges and hundreds of other community colleges attend. That conference is managed by a Collaborative member and co-sponsored by SDCCD, a CCCOER member college. That decision will cost about $6000 and so I arranged for an open textbook publisher and former Collaborative member to be the co-sponsor. Others were consulted about that choice. The conference calls about the 1Q11 meetings are open to all. The workload from planning 1Q11 was becoming too great so I asked one of our Collaborative members (Happy About) to provide a manager. Mitchell Levy of Happy About agreed to have Sharyn take on this project. Sharyn has strong event management skills and experience. Happy About pays her for her time from the funds it receives from the Collaborative.

Others add comments here:

Geoff Cain: My goal here is to foster transparency - I am looking for information that will allow me to make informed decisions. I understand that this is an organization in flux. If some of these questions have already been answered, I apologize in advance, but lets get them in writing somewhere to help others who may be asking the same questions or who will ask those questions later.

More to come...