On Monday, May 11, the Kenyon Board of Trustees met virtually for the second time in three weeks to discuss future plans for dealing with the COVID-19 crisis.
The majority of the May 11 meeting revolved around Kenyon’s 2020- 21 budget and the different ways it could be affected by the COVID-19 crisis. The Board was presented with several financial models, all depicting various levels of economic disruption.
While in an ideal world, the Board of Trustees would have been able to set an official budget for the upcoming academic year, President Sean Decatur said the Board will continue to meet as the uncertain national situation evolves, however they are “mindful that the College has balanced its budget for 49 consecutive years,” according to the Office of Communications’ meeting report.
The Board also discussed the impending changes to the Department of Education’s Title IX procedures. The new changes, laid out by Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos on May 6, must be adopted into practice by August 14. The Board of Trustees’ Title IX and Nondiscriminatory Policies Committee will use the coming weeks to propose changes to the College’s Sexual Misconduct and Harassment Policy that will adhere to the new guidelines, and will propose those changes to the full Board in the summer.
After dealing with the timely national issues, the Board moved on to topics that were more Kenyon-specific. They passed a resolution memorializing former Professor of Physics and Provost James Gunton, who died in February at the age of 82. The board also approved Cleveland-based firm Maloney + Novotny LLC to audit Kenyon’s financial statements and retirement plans and extended their gratitude to outgoing Provost Joseph Klesner, who will rejoin the faculty and lead the College’s next strategic planning process.