April 20, 2020

MEMORANDUM

TO:  Tenured and Tenure-Track Faculty

RE:  Faculty scheduled for reappointment review in Fall 2020: option to opt-out of the extension of first probationary term reappointment review but opt-in (if reappointed) for extension of second probationary term

You received the April 16 message below regarding extension of the probationary term of faculty employment (extension of “the tenure clock”) due to the impacts of COVID-19. This message is provided to confirm that tenure-track faculty on their first probationary term who are scheduled for reappointment review in Fall 2020 have the opportunity to opt-out of the automatic extension of the first probationary term, undergo reappointment review in Fall 2020, and (if reappointed) opt-in or opt-out for the one-year extension of the second probationary term.

Should a faculty member decide to forego (opt-out of) the extension of their Fall 2020 reappointment review, yet opt-in for the extension of the second probationary term (the mandatory tenure review date), they must submit a written notification to their head/chair or school director by May 15, 2020. Heads/chairs and directors must immediately share these notices with the Dean, who will forward a copy to the Provost by May 31, 2020.

As previously stated, given our extraordinary circumstances, the one-year extension due to COVID-19, whether taken in the first or in the second probationary term, will not count toward the two-year limit on term extensions, as permitted in Section 3.C of the University’s reappointment, promotion, and tenure policy.

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Original message regarding extension of the probationary term:

April 16, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has created significant disruptions and uncertainties for our faculty.  It has also generated increased stress related to forthcoming reappointment and tenure reviews.  After consultation with the Deans and Faculty Senate leadership, I have determined that it is appropriate to grant one-year extensions of the probationary period for all faculty members currently serving in a tenure-track appointment.  This action is consistent with the personal exigency provision of the Promotion, Tenure, Academic Freedom, and Due Process Regulations (Section 3Cii).  This action will be implemented at the end of the 2020 spring semester and will be applied to the current probationary term.

The extension will advance by one year the reappointment review schedule for those in their first probationary term and it will advance by one year the mandatory tenure review schedule for those in their second probationary term.

Should a faculty member decide to forego this one-year extension (electing to opt-out of the automatic extension), they must submit a written notification to their department head/chair or school director.  For faculty scheduled to undergo review in the upcoming 2020-2021 academic year, opt-out notifications must be forwarded to the Provost by May 31, 2020. For reviews scheduled in subsequent years, notifications must be forwarded by March 1, 2021.  Heads/chairs and directors must immediately share these notices with the Dean, who will forward a copy to the Provost.

Given our extraordinary circumstances, this one-year extension prompted by the impacts of COVID-19 will not count toward the two-year limit on extensions of the probationary terms, as stipulated by Section 3.C of the Regulations.  Any previous or future requests for extensions of the probationary term will be considered in accordance with the procedures outlined in Section 3C.