Community Council/Meetings/Third/Decision to establish an WCC Executive Committee

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The background for the motion is posted in this section with relevant links to any background papers, wiki pages or notifications on the main WikiEducator lists.

The intention with establishing an Executive Committee is to facilitate more frequent meetings (at least four per year) by a smaller group than is practicable with a large Community Council.

  1. The Interim Open Community Governance Policy provides Council the authority to establish an Executive Committee of Council.
  2. Therefore Council needs to assess and decide whether or not to establish an Executive Committee.
  3. There are clear guidelines regarding the establishment of an Executive Committee, with particular reference to:
    • Composition requiring a three fifths majority of elected council members
    • If an Executive Committee is established, Council must specify the authorities delegated to the Executive Committee.
    • Resolutions using consent procedures may not be effected by the Executive Committee for Modifications to the policies, bylaws or articles of incorporation.
    • There is a requirement for members to have demonstrated real and sustained contribution to WikiEducator in order to serve on the Executive Committee.
  4. There is a minority opinion which has questioned and criticised the need and appropriateness for establishing an Executive Committee.
  5. Council has the authority to decide against the establishment of an Executive Committee.
  6. WikiEducator subscribes to open philanthropy and transparent process. This means that meetings of the Executive Committee (if established) would also need to be conducted openly in the wiki as in the case of full Council meetings.

Pre meeting discussion on background issues prior to drafting motions

Pre-meeting discussions are posted in this area. Once the page for preparing a motion is uploaded to the wiki, this signifies that pre meeting discussions can commence. The page will be added to the "Under development" section of the homepage for the meeting. All discussions points should be duly signed. Once the meeting commences, the chair will call for a draft concept of the motion to be be presented below.

In preparation for council to consider the establishment of an Executive Committee of Council, we need the advice, thoughts and ideas on substantive questions:

What are the advantages of an Executive Committee?

  • Special roles may be defined which are not naturally arising in the community and need seeding. For example, coordination across silos (e.g. technical advances being shared with educators). --Kim Tucker 01:17, 30 April 2010 (UTC)
  • Convening team to co-ordinate and convene Council appointed Community Workgroups --Wayne Mackintosh 10:43, 3 May 2010 (UTC)

What are the disadvantages of an Executive Committee?

  • The term(?). Almost any of the functions could be achieved through other channels. --Kim Tucker 01:18, 30 April 2010 (UTC)
  • Community Workgroups provide an effective channel for carrying out the functions that could be delegated to an Executive Committe --Wayne Mackintosh 10:45, 3 May 2010 (UTC)

Does WCC need an Executive Committee? Are there any practical examples which would illustrate the need for the establishment of an Executive Committee?

  • I'm particularly interested in this question. The WCC seems to be working ok without an EC. There is pretty quick WCC response and informed participation when things come up. Timeliness is usually the main reason for an Executive Committee - a small group that can meet more frequently, provide high level guidance to the rest of the WCC, and, if necessary, make decisions quickly. Have there been any instances where the WCC has not provided the appropriate inputs, participation or timely decision making where an EC would have resulted in a "better" outcome? Are there other EC functions that WE could benefit from having? --Valerie Taylor 13:56, 29 April 2010 (UTC)
I agree -- it is a good question. If it ain't broke -- no need to fix it. To date, WE have not had a material need for any major decisions which could not be accommodated within the main Council meetings. There are also the provisions in our policy for special resolutions which can be made outside of normal meetings requiring a 2/3 majority. The fact that our meetings are conducted openly and transparently in the wiki also helps with decision-making and lessons the need for an EC. On the other side of the equation, as Chair I could do with a little more help in preparing for meetings, getting all the documentation in place etc. In this regard an EC would be a great help. I guess the issue is one of scalability -- as we grow, governance needs will increase and we need to think about ways in which we can manage these opportunities, taking into account the demands on time of Council members in the real world. --Wayne Mackintosh 22:27, 29 April 2010 (UTC)
The need may never arise, but if it does, the policy permits the Council to establish one and determine its general responsibilities .... Addressing all the issues raised in this meeting might require an Executive Committee responsible for coordinating a multitude of actions. --Kim Tucker 01:12, 30 April 2010 (UTC)
An executive Committee may never be needed at this rate/load of work to be done by the Council. With the speed we are able to reach consensus as a whole council, it may never be necessary to have a standing executive committee. While i will not advocate for the creation of one at the moment, we should leave room for the creation of Ad Hoc Executive Committees or basically, Committees/Task teams with Executive powers in the future. --Victor P. K. Mensah 19:04, 2 May 2010 (UTC)

What your your concerns with regard to an Executive Committee?

  • Add your points here

Other questions?

Lazy consensus poll

The purpose of this poll is to establish a rough consensus for the need to establish a WCC Executive committee. This will assist in identifying whether a positive or negative formulation of the motion is preferred before formal tabling and voting on the motion.

Do we need to appoint an Executive Committee for Council? Yes (Vote = +1), No (Vote = -1), Abstain/not sure (Vote = 0).

  • Leighblackall 11:28, 3 May 2010 (UTC) NO -1
  • Savithri Singh 13:30, 3 May 2010 (UTC) NO - I do not think we need one at the moment. We can consider later if the need arises.
  • Valerie Taylor 17:19, 3 May 2010 (UTC) No - not at this time, although this may be reconsidered if a need arises in the future.
  • Kim Tucker 17:24, 3 May 2010 (UTC) No - not at this time, although this may be reconsidered if a need arises in the future.
  • Peter Rawsthorne 19:08, 3 May 2010 (UTC) No - I agree with the sentiments; only when the need arises
  • brent simpson 21:07, 3 May 2010 (UTC) No.
  • Ioana Chan Mow 22:07, 3 May 2010 (UTC) NO.
  • Christine Geith 12:00 4 May 2010 (UTC) No, there's not a compelling need at this time to add to organizational complexity.
  • Ken Udas 22:43, 4 May 2010 (UTC) Not Sure/Abstain - I am sympathetic to the majority view, but if there is a clear charge and a provisional element (time frame for evaluation), I would not be opposed.
  • Sanjaya Mishra 05:11, 5 May 2010 (UTC) No, at this stage, it is not clear what would be the specific functions of EC. It calls for further amendments to existing bylaws of WCC. Clarification: The policy determines that, in the event that an EC was appointed, that Council would "determine the general responsibilities and powers of the Executive Committee". Therefore the specific functions of EC would be specified by Council - thus no further amendments would be needed to the policy to achieve this objective. However Council would need by general resolution to specify the functions. This clarification is purely theoretical at this point -- but worth noting. --Wayne Mackintosh 05:57, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
  • Add vote here.

Draft concept for motion

The draft concept for a motion is entered here drawing on the pre-meeting discussions. Due to the asynchronous nature of our meeting, it is standard practice to allow a reasonable period of time (usually 24 to 36 hours) from the time when the draft concept is posted in the wiki to when the motion is formerly tabled. This drafting phase is needed for the wiki format of the meeting. In this way, we avoid unnecessary motions to amend the tabled motions resulting from ambiguity or lack of clarity in the wording of the original tabled motion.

Judging by the rough consensus emerging so far, as Chair I would like to entertain a motion (based on Steve's advice ;-)) for Council not to establish an Executive Committee and to use the existing channels at its disposal for executing its responsibilities. --Wayne Mackintosh 02:50, 4 May 2010 (UTC)

Once formerly tabled and seconded, we can proceed with voting on this motion. --Wayne Mackintosh 02:50, 4 May 2010 (UTC)

Discussion on draft motion

The discussion of the draft motion is intended to refine the text for a tabled motion to avoid ambiguity and to improve clarity of the motion before requesting the assembly to consider tabling the motion.


A motion is formally tabled by a member of the meeting once rough consensus is achieved through discussion of the draft concept for the motion above. The mover should table the text for the motion below, for example "I move that ....." Remember to sign the motion.
  • I motion that we vote on establishing an Executive Committee - Randy Fisher 08:40, 4 May 2010 (UTC)
Note: The motion is tabled in its neutral form. When voting, an approval means WCC should establish an Executive Committee, whereas a disapproval means WCC should not establish an Executive Committee. --Wayne Mackintosh 21:50, 4 May 2010 (UTC)
Is this motion equivalent to "I motion that we establish an Executive Committee" (except that the votes would go under 'Approval' and 'Disapproval' below?) - Kim Tucker 23:45, 4 May 2010 (UTC). To clarify this procedurally -- I would concur that the motion is the equivalent of "I motion that we establish an Executive Committee" -- and Members of the meeting need to cast their votes below. --Wayne Mackintosh 00:12, 5 May 2010 (UTC)


A second is required to indicate that the motion should come before the meeting. The second should sign below. Seconding a motion does not necessarily indicate support of the motion, it is an agreement that the motion should come before the assemble. Voting can commences once a motion is before the meeting. At this point the chair will place the motion under the "Active: Please discuss and vote" section of the home page for the meeting.

Discussion on tabled motion

This is the area where points, clarifications and discussions on the motion take place once the motion is formerly tabled and seconded above. This discussion is not restricted to Council members --any WikiEducator may add their views.


WikiEducator Council uses an open ballot where members of Council are required to cast their votes or abstentions publicly in the wiki. Voting can commence once a formal tabled motion has been seconded. The votes of Council members in attendance are counted to determine the outcome in accordance with the majority provisions for the particular motion.


  • List votes for approval here and sign


  • Leighblackall 10:08, 29 April 2010 (UTC) Sorry to say I stand by my concerns raised at the first meeting, and disapprove of the establishment of an executive committee that include members not directly elected from the community. Experts should be brought in as consultants, on an as needed basis.
Hi Leigh -- your concerns are noted -- but a little premature. The motion has not been tabled yet and we're discussing the issues before tabling a formal motion. First, we're exploring the questions, issues, advantages and disadvantages so we can take an informed decision. So voting has not commenced on this agenda item, but will assume that your vote stands when the motion is officially tabled, unless you indicate otherwise. --Wayne Mackintosh 10:25, 29 April 2010 (UTC). Now that the motion is formerly tabled and seconded, Leigh's early vote is now presumed to be a formal vote. --Wayne Mackintosh 22:24, 4 May 2010 (UTC)
  • Randy Fisher 22:50, 4 May 2010 (UTC)
  • Kim Tucker 23:46, 4 May 2010 (UTC) - no need to vote - the (so far 9 unanimous) "lazy consensus" above suggests (to me) that an Executive Committee is not required at this time. Comment: Except that the Lazy consensus is not a formal vote on the motion --- I see the Lazy consensus poll as as pre motion discussion. Technically we cant vote unless a motion is formerly tabled. Not sure if I've interpreted your comment properly. --Wayne Mackintosh 00:06, 5 May 2010 (UTC) -- kt: your clarification above under 'Motion' also clarifies my comment (no need to vote that we vote). Thanks - Kim Tucker 21:04, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
  • Erik Moeller 00:11, 5 May 2010 (UTC) (I trust the judgment of the majority in the poll above; an EC can potentially cause conflict between those who are on it and those who are not, and it looks like there's no strong case yet for such an entity to be created)
  • Valerie Taylor 00:29, 5 May 2010 (UTC) No compelling argument for an executive committee thus far.
  • Christine Geith 02:39, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
  • Rob Kruhlak 02:43, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
  • Peter Rawsthorne 02:45, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
  • brent simpson 02:51, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
  • Ioana Chan Mow 4:06, 5 May 2010 (UTC)No need for an EC at this point in time
  • Anil Prasad 08:55, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
  • Sanjaya Mishra 11:53, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
  • Victor P. K. Mensah 17:52, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
  • Vincent Kizza19:09, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
  • SteveFoerster 20:11, 5 May 2010 (UTC) I too see no benefit to an Executive Committee at this time.
  • Günther Osswald 09:23, 7 May 2010 (UTC)


  • Nellie Deutsch 05:24, 10 May 2010 (UTC)I missed this one for some reason.
  • Any abstentions must be listed here


The outcome of the vote is posted by the Chair in accordance with the majority requirements of the motion being tabled. Once a motion is approved, not approved or put on hold, this is updated on the home page of the meeting.

A majority of the Council have voted and the motion to establish an Executive Committee for Council is not approved at this time. --Wayne Mackintosh 21:55, 5 May 2010 (UTC)