ARTICLE XII: FACULTY MEMBERS
Section 1. Appointment. All appointments, re-appointments, and promotions of members of the faculty shall be made by the President with the approval of the Board of Regents. Recommendations shall originate with the department and shall be presented to the dean of the college or school for consideration. If the dean approves, the dean shall transmit a recommendation to the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost.
Section 2. Qualifications. Every appointment shall be made in accordance with the Policies of the Board of Regents and solely on the basis of merit and the special fitness of the individual. In the appointment and promotion of members of the faculty, special consideration shall be given to their teaching ability, research ability, achievement, and general usefulness or promise thereof to the University. The initial appointees to the rank of associate or full professor should have doctoral degree or equivalent in training, ability, or experience. Appointees as assistant professor or instructor must have, as a minimum, the master’s degree, except for persons of special learning and ability.
Section 3. Employment Contracts. Contracts shall be as prescribed by the Board of Regents.
Section 4. Duties. Members of faculty shall perform such responsibilities in instruction, research, and service and discharge such other professionally appropriate duties as may be assigned to them during the period of their contract.Section 5. Scholarship. Each faculty member shall be expected to maintain scholarship through continuous research and study, which should yield results in improved teaching and publication of research studies.
Section 6. Teaching Performance. No service to the University, however exceptional, shall be deemed sufficient to overcome failure to render adequate service in teaching. In the annual report the departmental chair shall include a statement concerning the performance of teaching faculty members in the department. Due attention shall be given in this report to special qualities of excellence in the performance of teaching faculty members in the department.
Section 7. Formal Academic Exercises. Members of the faculty are expected to attend formal academic exercises of the University and to wear on such occasions appropriate academic costume.
Section 8. Extra-Curricular Activities. Faculty members shall be encouraged to participate, in a manner befitting their academic position, in such extra-curricular activities as are proper extension of their professional field of interest, whether these be in the internal administration of the University or in representation of the University before outside groups. Annual departmental reports shall make references to such activities on the part of members of the faculty.
Section 9. Office Hours. Members of the faculty are expected to make available in the medium provided for that purpose such office hours and conference periods as they deem most advantageous to their students.
Section 10. Outside Activity. No members of the faculty of the University shall engage in any outside work or activity if it interferes with the regular and punctual discharge of their official university duties and responsibilities. Prior to engaging in remunerative outside work or activity, a faculty member must file a description of the nature and extent of the outside work or activity with the dean of the appropriate college or school and the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs. The faculty member shall not continue or undertake such employment if notified of the disapproval of such undertaking.
Section 11. Faculty Rewards. Instruction, research, and public service are the three (3) components of Georgia State University’s educational function. In determining faculty salary increases consideration shall be given scholarly attainment and professional growth as evidenced by each of the following: (a) teaching activity and effectiveness; (b) research, publication, creative scholarly activity, or artistic performance; and © university, professional, and public service activities.
Section 12. Evaluation. Each faculty member shall be evaluated at least annually by the person to whom that faculty member reports.
Section 13. Salaries. In determining salaries of members of the faculty and staff serving on an annual (fiscal year) basis, consideration shall be given to the fact that they are required to be on duty for a period over one-third longer than that of those whose appointments are on a two (2) semester basis.
Section 14. Promotion and Tenure.
A. Each college, school, department or other unit which recommends faculty promotions or tenure will specify and make available to its faculty written copies of the applicable criteria and procedures governing promotion and tenure.
B. Recommendations regarding promotion and tenure by the appropriate chair, dean or other administrator shall be made following consultation with an appropriate faculty committee from within the department, college, division or unit.
C. Consultations regarding promotion and tenure shall be documented and shall include the committee’s recommendation, if any.
D. All recommendations made under this section will be documented showing that all required criteria and procedures have been followed.
E. Tenure is established and governed by the policies and regulations of the Board of Regents.
F. Minimum criteria for promotion shall include a significant representation of the following qualifications.
- Superior teaching.
- Outstanding service to the University.
- Academic achievement.
- Professional growth and development.
- Length of service in the University.
- Outstanding public service.
G. This section does not apply to decisions about non-renewal or non-retention of untenured faculty or to dismissals.
Section 15. Degree Equivalents. As a general rule, no person will be advanced to the rank of associate professor who has not received the doctoral degree. Exceptions to this rule may be made in the case of members of the faculty who have served the University for a number of years and in the case of those who may qualify as having the equivalent of such degree. The following, in combination, may be as equivalent:
A. Established reputation in field of interest.
B. Research, scholarly publications, or creative production.
C. Superior teaching as shown by competence in the conduct of classes and seminars, effective relations with students, and use and development of appropriate teaching aids.
D. Substantial, significant, and integrated program of study beyond the master’s degree.
E. Outstanding service to the University.
F. Activities related to professional growth and development.
Neither the possession of a doctoral degree nor longevity of service is a guarantee of promotion.
Section 16. Academic Freedom. All faculty members are entitled to enjoy and to exercise, without penalty for such exercise, all the rights of an American citizen as well as the rights of academic freedom as they are generally understood in the teaching profession.
Section 17. Tenure. Tenure is established and governed by the policies and regulations of the Board of Regents.
Section 18. Illness. The rights of employees who are incapacitated by illness are as established by the policies of the Board of Regents.
Section 19. Vacations. Members of the general administration shall be employed on an annual (fiscal year) basis. Vacation for such personnel and for faculty members employed on an annual (fiscal year) basis is as established by the Board of Regents.
Section 20. Leave. All leaves granted by Georgia State University must be in accordance with Regents’ regulations. When the members of the faculty desire to leave for the purpose of study, research, or other pursuit, the object of which is to increase their professional efficiency and usefulness to the University, they shall make known to the dean of their college or school the period during which they wish to be absent. The dean, in consultation with the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost shall try to schedule the work of the faculty member so as to make it possible for them to have the leave requested.
A. The President may, with the approval of the Chancellor and the Board of Regents, grant leaves of absence, with or without pay, to members of the faculty or administrative staff. Recommendations for leave without pay will be approved whenever it appears that the granting of such leaves will not be prejudicial to the interests of the University.
B. Leave with pay shall be granted only for the purpose of promoting scholarly work and encouraging professional development. The program or project on which the applicant proposes to work will be examined carefully by the President and the likelihood of the applicant’s being able to accomplish the purpose for which leave is requested also will be considered.
C. Leave with pay ordinarily will not be granted if the applicant has less than three (3) years’ employment in the University nor will leave with pay be granted to an applicant who has not already completed the requirements for a master’s degree or the equivalent.
D. Faculty members who have been granted a leave of absence with pay shall be required, before beginning their leave, to sign an agreement that they will return the full amount of compensation they received from the Institution while on leave if they should not return to the University for at least one (1) year of service after termination of their leave.
E. In evaluating a request for a leave, the President should take into consideration the effect that the granting of leave will have on the Institution or on the department of which the applicant is a member. If the applicant’s work cannot be handled by other faculty members, and if funds are not available for the employment of a substitute, the President will be justified in refusing to recommend that the leave be granted or in deferring action upon the request for a leave.
F. Military leave shall be granted as provided by Policies of the Board of Regents.
Section 21. Classified Personnel. Classified personnel are defined as professional and administrative personnel and staff personnel. Classified professional and administrative personnel are personnel who are exempt from the Federal Wage-Hour provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act and who are not identified as faculty or as graduate assistants. Classified staff employees are personnel who are not exempt from the provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act. These personnel are subject to the Classified Personnel Policy for the University System of Georgia adopted by the Board of Regents, including periodic evaluation as provided in this policy.
Section 22. Part-time Personnel. Persons of learning and ability in special fields may be employed on a part-time basis with academic titles, but they shall not be entitled to faculty rank, tenure, or voting rights in the faculty.
Section 23. The Policy Manual of the Board of Regents provide for the employment, resignation, and removal of a faculty member as follows:
A. From the Policy Manual, Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia, Section 803.06:
All tenured faculty members employed under written contract for the fiscal or academic year shall give written notice of their intention to resign to the president of the institution or to his/her authorized representative, postmarked no later than February 1, immediately preceding the expiration of the contract period.
- Each year, on or before the dates specified in Regents’ tenure regulations, the president of an institution, or his/her authorized representative, shall advise, in writing, all non-tenured faculty who have been awarded academic rank (instructor, assistant professor, associate professor, professor) and who are employed under written contract whether an employment contract for the succeeding academic year will be offered to them. Such written notice shall be delivered by hand or by certified mail, to be delivered to the addressee only, with receipt to show to whom and when delivered and the address where delivered.
- Notice of intention to renew or not to renew a non-tenured faculty member who has been awarded academic rank (instructor, assistant professor, associate professor, professor) shall be furnished, in writing according to the following schedule:
- at least three months before the date of termination of an initial one-year contract;
- at least six months before the date of termination of a second one-year contract;
- at least nine months before the date of termination of a contract after two or more years of service in the institution. This schedule of notification does not apply to persons holding temporary or part-time position, or persons with courtesy appointments, such as adjunct appointments.
- Non-tenured faculty and other non-tenured personnel employed under written contract shall be employed only for the term specified in the contract and subsequent or future employment, if any, shall result solely from a separate offer and acceptance requisite to execution of a new and distinct contract.”
B. From the Policy Manual, Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia, Section 803.09, Paragraphs J. and K.:
“J. Notice of the intention to renew or not to renew a non-tenured faculty member who has been awarded academic rank (instructor, assistant professor, associate professor, professor) shall be furnished, in writing, according to the following schedule:
- at least three months before the date of termination of an initial one-year contract;
- at least six months before the date of termination of a second one-year contract;
- at least nine months before the date of termination of a contract after two or more years of service in the institution. This schedule of notification does not apply to persons holding temporary or part-time positions in whatever rank stated.
K. A tenured faculty member, or a non-tenured faculty member, before the end of his/her contract term, may be dismissed for any of the following reasons provided that the institution has complied with procedural due process requirements:
- Conviction or admission of guilt of a felony or of a crime involving moral turpitude during the period of employment–or prior thereto if the conviction or admission of guilt was willfully concealed;
- Professional incompetency, neglect of duty, or default of academic integrity in teaching, in research, or in scholarship;
- Unlawful manufacture, distribution, sale, use or possession of marijuana, a controlled substance, or other illegal or dangerous drugs as defined by Georgia laws; teaching or working which interferes with the faculty member’s performance of duty or his/her responsibilities to the institution or to his/her profession;
- Conviction or admission of guilt in a court proceeding of any criminal drug offense;
- Physical or mental incompetency as determined by law or by a medical board of three or more licensed physicians and reviewed by a committee of the faculty;
- False swearing with respect to official documents filed with the institution;
- Disruption of any teaching, research, administrative, disciplinary, public service, or other authorized activity;
- Such other grounds for dismissal as may be specified in the statutes of the institution.”
Section 24. Institutional Regulations for removal of Faculty Members.
A. The Policy Manual, Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia, Section 803.11, provides the following procedures for removal of faculty members:
“The president of an institution may at any time remove any faculty member of other employee of an institution for cause. Cause shall include willful or intentional violation of the policies of the Board of Regents or the approved statutes of an institution. Further causes or grounds for dismissal are set forth in the tenure regulations of the policies of the Board of Regents and in the approved statutes or bylaws of an institution.
Introduction: These Procedures shall apply only to the dismissal of a faculty member with tenure, or a non-tenured faculty member before the end of the term specified in his/her contract.
It is intended that the procedures set forth below shall be considered as minimum standards of due process and shall not be construed as a limitation upon individual standards or procedures, consistent with the Policies Manual and Bylaws of the Board, which an institution of the System may elect to adopt for its own improvement or to make adjustments to its own particular circumstances. Such additional standards or procedures shall be incorporated into the statutes of the institution.
The president may at any time remove any faculty member for cause. Cause or grounds for dismissal are set forth in this Policy Manual and in approved statutes or bylaws of an institution. Whenever the words “president” or “administration” are used in these procedures, they shall be construed to include the designated representative of the president.
Preliminary Procedures: The dismissal of a tenured faculty member, or a non-tenured faculty member during his/her contract term should be preceded by:
- Discussion between the faculty member and appropriate administrative officers looking toward a mutual settlement.
- Informal inquiry by an appropriate faculty committee which may, upon failing to effect an adjustment, advise the president whether dismissal proceedings should be undertaken; its advisory opinion shall not be binding upon the president.
- A letter to the faculty member forewarning that he/she is about to be terminated for cause and informing him/her that a statement of charges will be forwarded to him/her upon request. The faculty member may also request a formal hearing on the charges before a faculty committee. Failure to request charges or a hearing within a reasonable time shall constitute a waiver of the right to a hearing.
- A statement of charges, if requested by the faculty member, framed with reasonable particularity by the president or his or her designated representative. Along with the charges, the faculty member shall be advised of the names of the witnesses to be used against him or her together with the nature of their expected testimony.
Provision for Hearing Committee: A dismissal as defined above shall be preceded by statement of charges or causes (grounds for dismissal) if so requested, including a statement that the faculty member concerned shall have the right to be heard by a faculty hearing committee.
The Hearing Committee shall consist of not less than three or more than five impartial faculty members appointed by the executive committee (or its equivalent) of the highest legislative body of the faculty, from among the members of the entire faculty (as defined by the Policy Manual of the Board) of the institution.
Members of the Hearing Committee may serve concurrently on other committees of the faculty. The Hearing Committee will meet as a body when it is called into session by the chair of the body which selected them either at his discretion or upon the request of the president or the faculty member who is subject to dismissal.
When the Hearing Committee is called into session, it shall elect a chair from among its membership. A member should remove himself/herself from the case, either at the request of a party or on his/her own initiative if he/she deems himself/herself disqualified for bias or interest. Each party shall have a maximum of two challenges without stated cause; provided however, that all challenges whether with or without cause shall be made in writing and filed with the chair of the Hearing Committee at least five days in advance of the date set for the hearing. The chair shall have the authority to decide whether a member of the committee is disqualified for cause. If the chair determines that a member is so disqualified or if a committee member removes himself/herself from a case, the replacement shall be made in the same manner as the original committee was selected. If the chair is thus removed, the committee shall elect a new chair after committee replacements have been appointed. A minimum of three (3) members is required for any action to be taken.
Dismissal Procedures: In all instances where a hearing is requested the following hearing procedures shall apply:
- Service of notice of the hearing with specific reasons or charges against the faculty member together with the names of the members of the Hearing Committee shall be made in writing at least twenty (20) days prior to the hearing. The faculty member may waive a hearing or he/she may respond to the charges in writing at least five (5) days in advance of the date set for the hearing. If a faculty member waives a hearing, but denies the charges or asserts that the charges do not support a finding of adequate cause, the Hearing Committee shall evaluate all available evidence and rest its recommendation upon the evidence in the record;
- The Hearing Committee, in consultation with the president and the faculty member, may exercise its judgment as to whether the hearing should be public or private;
- During the proceedings the faculty member and the administration shall be permitted to have an academic advisor and/or counsel of his/her choice. The Hearing Committee will be permitted to have advisory counsel;
- At the request of either party or the chair of the Hearing Committee, a representative of a responsible education association shall be permitted to attend as an observer;
- A tape recording or transcript of the proceedings shall be kept and made available to the faculty member and the administration in the event an appeal is filed;
- An oath or affirmation shall be administered to all witnesses by any person authorized by law to administer oaths in the State of Georgia;
- The Hearing Committee may grant adjournments to enable either party to investigate evidence as to which a valid claim of surprise is made;
- The faculty member and the administration shall be afforded a reasonable opportunity to obtain necessary witnesses and documentary or other evidence;
- The faculty member and the administration will have the right to confront and cross-examine all witnesses. Where the witness cannot or will not appear but the Committee determines that the interests of justice require the admission of his/her statement, the Committee will identify the witness, disclose his statement and if possible provide for interrogatories;
- The Hearing Committee will not be bound by strict rules of legal evidence and may admit any evidence which is of probative value in determining the issues involved. Every possible effort will be made to obtain the most reliable evidence available. All questions relating to admissibility of evidence or other legal matters shall be decided by the chair or presiding officer;
- The findings of fact and the decision of the Hearing Committee will be based solely on the hearing record;
- Except for such simple announcements as may be required covering the time of the hearing and similar matters, public statements and publicity about the case by either the faculty member or administrative officers should be avoided until the proceedings have been completed, including consideration by the Board of Regents in the event an appeal is filed. The president and the faculty member will be notified in writing of the decision and recommendation, if any, of the Hearing Committee;
- If the Committee concludes that adequate cause for dismissal has not been established by the evidence in the record, it will so report to the president. If the president does not approve the report, he should state his reasons in writing to the Committee for response before rendering his final decision. If the Committee concludes that an academic penalty less than dismissal would be more appropriate than dismissal, it may so recommend with supporting reasons. The president may or may not follow the recommendations of the Committee;
- After complying with the foregoing procedures, the president shall send an official letter to the faculty member notifying him/her of his/her retention or removal for cause. Such letter shall be delivered to addressee only, with receipt to show to whom and when delivered and address where delivered. The letter shall clearly state any charges which the president has found sustained and shall notify such person that he/she may appeal to the Board of Regents for review. The appeal shall be submitted in writing to the Chancellor within twenty (20) days following the decision of the president. It shall state the decision complained of and the redress desired. The Board or a committee of the Board shall investigate the matter thoroughly and render its decision thereon within sixty (60) days from the date of the receipt of the appeal or from the date of any hearing which may be held thereon;
- Upon dismissal by the president, the faculty member shall be suspended from employment without pay from the date of the final decision of the president. Should the faculty member be reinstated by action of the Board of Regents, he/she shall be compensated from the date of the suspension.”
B. The following additional standards or procedures apply to Georgia State University:
- A hearing committee which shall consist of five (5) faculty members shall be appointed by the Executive Committee of the University Senate from the entire faculty of the University in the manner described below. At the beginning of the year during which the Executive Committee is to serve it shall elect by secret ballot fifteen (15) faculty members from the entire faculty of the University, as the faculty is defined by the Board of Regents and as referenced in Article V, Section 1, of these Statutes. These faculty members shall be ranked from the highest to the lowest in order of the number of votes received. The five (5) faculty members with the highest number of votes shall be appointed by the Executive Committee as members of the Hearing Committee. The remaining ten (10) members shall serve as alternates in the order of the number of votes received. In the event that two (2) or more persons are elected by the same number of votes the presiding officer of the Executive Committee shall determine how they shall be ranked. The presiding officer of the Executive Committee shall serve when regular members are not available and are excused by the chair of this Hearing Committee for good reasons, as set forth above in Section 24, A.
- During the proceedings the parties shall have the right to be represented by an academic or other personal advisor or legal counsel of their own choice. The Hearing Committee shall also be permitted to have advisory counsel. The role of counsel shall be to advise the faculty member, administrative official, or the committee, but no party to the hearing shall have the right to address the committee in an intimidating or harassing manner, or to conduct the hearing in a manner inconsistent with the canons of civility, decorum, and academic propriety. In the event that any party to the hearing disrupts the proceedings or makes it impossible to continue an orderly hearing, in the judgment of the committee, such hearing may be recessed or terminated.
- The hearing committee in consultation with the President and the faculty member, may exercise its judgment as to whether the hearing should be public or private.
- The hearing referred to herein shall constitute the original hearing and all allegations, causes of action, or rebuttals of the charges must be specified at the time of such hearing; any subsequent appeal of the decision determined after the original hearing shall constitute the complete substance of any further appeal and shall be restricted solely to parties and matters originating on the hearing record. Thereafter, the appeal shall be reviewable only on the hearing record and there shall be no de novo hearings, except those which may be authorized by the Board of Regents, unless there is a showing with respect to the original hearing of fraud, lack of jurisdiction, substantial error materially prejudicing the right of the faculty member, or a finding that the hearing committee was arbitrary and capricious in its findings.
- The faculty member and advisor or counsel and the university administration, at the expense of each party, shall have the right to be present at and to participate in the questioning of any witness who cannot or will not appear before the hearing committee, with the witness’s answers to all questions being entered into the affidavit.
- The hearing committee shall make specific findings relative to each of the charges made. If the hearing committee concludes that an academic action less than dismissal would be more appropriate than dismissal, it may so recommend, with supporting reasons. The report shall be made to the President. Upon receipt of such report the President may refer the document to the appropriate vice president who must communicate the vice president’s recommendations on the charges and on the findings and recommendations of the hearing committee to the President.
- The President may approve an action less than dismissal, or may approve a recommendation for dismissal and remove the faculty member. If the President does not approve the recommendation of the hearing committee the President should state the reasons in writing to the committee for response before rendering a final decision. The faculty member shall be informed of the action taken and shall have the right to appeal any adverse recommendation to the Board of Regents in accordance with paragraph 14 of the preceding section on Dismissal Procedures.
Section 25. Other Appeals and Complaints.
A. Each college, school, or other comparable administrative unit (hereinafter referred to as “college”) of the University, which has assigned faculty members as defined in these Statutes, shall incorporate in its bylaws, or in official instructions, these procedures for the establishment of a fair and impartial hearing panel for its faculty and for the handling of faculty complaints related to matters other than removal of a faculty member for cause or non-renewal of faculty contract.
B. Applicability. This procedure shall apply to complaints relating to allegations of discrimination including those on the basis of race, creed, color, national or ethnic origin, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, or handicap in any educational or employment program, policy, procedure, or practice of Georgia State University; allegations of arbitrary or capricious decisions affecting the faculty member’s employment or professional reputation; and allegations by a faculty member or group of faculty members that the faculty member’s contract has been violated, EXCEPT that this procedure shall NOT apply to matters covered under Article XI, Section 24, “Institutional Regulations for Removal of Faculty Members” or to matters related to administrative appointments or responsibilities.
- A complaint is an allegation of a misinterpretation, incorrect application, or violation of a policy, practice, or procedure not pursued by the faculty member in a forum outside the University. The use of this appeals procedure is not available if a formal complaint is filed with a governmental agency or a court action has been initiated based upon substantially similar facts, in which case any investigation then in progress by the University will be terminated relative to the appeals process.
- A complainant is a faculty member who seeks resolution of a complaint through the informal or formal procedures as outlined herein.
- A respondent is a person against whom a complaint is filed.
- The College Faculty Appeals Committee is an elected body to which complaints are referred by the dean, which responds to complaints and from which hearing panels are derived. The College Faculty Appeals Committee must have this charge as its sole function.
- The Hearing Panel, derived from the College Faculty Appeals Committee, is charged with hearing complaints, and making recommendations regarding the complaints.
- For purposes of counting, a day is any weekday (Monday-Friday) on which classes or exams are scheduled in the college applicable to the appeal during fall or spring terms. Complaints arising during the summer term or ones not resolved at the end of spring term, shall be continued into fall term unless both the complainant and respondent (and if applicable, the mediator or the Hearing Panel) agree to continue through the summer term.
D. Informal Procedures.
- Before a faculty member brings a formal complaint, the faculty member must first attempt to resolve the matter informally by discussion with the respondent. This informal discussion shall be initiated by the complainant within ninety (90) days of the knowledge of the consequence of event(s) upon which the complaint is based.
- If the matter is unresolved by informal discussions, and the complainant wishes to pursue the matter, the complainant must, within one hundred ten (110) days of knowledge of the consequence of event(s), submit a written complaint to the respondent. The written complaint shall state the exact nature of the complaint and the remedy sought.
- If no resolution has been reached within fifteen (15) days after presentation of the written complaint, the informal procedures are considered ended. The complainant may request mediation or the complainant may request a hearing. Such a request must be filed with the dean within ten (10) days of the conclusion of these informal procedures. During the mediation process, the time within which to present a written complaint is suspended (see F.2.).
- The Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost with the approval of the Faculty Affairs Committee of the colleges shall provide a standing Faculty Counselor to provide information to complainant during the appeals process.
E. Optional Mediation Procedures
1. Each college will include mediation as an option within the appeals procedure of the college. If the complaint is not resolved by informal procedures, then the parties in the complaint may agree to mediation following the informal procedures and preceding the complainant’s request for a hearing.
2. The Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost with the approval of the Faculty Affairs Committee shall provide a list of mediators.
3. The criteria listed below shall pertain to any college mediation procedure:
a. The mediation procedure shall be a part of the college’s appeals procedure or college bylaws.
b. The mediation procedure shall be used only upon mutual agreement of the complainant and respondent and shall provide for a mediator or mediators to be nominated by the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost and to be agreed upon by the complainant and respondent.
c. The mediation procedure may be terminated by either the complainant, respondent, or mediator at any time.
d. Each participant in the mediation procedure shall be encouraged to participate in good faith in an effort to resolve the dispute.
e. The mediation procedure shall contain explicit limits which are reasonable, but in no event shall maximum time exceed thirty (30) days. These limits shall be observed by the complainant and respondent. Immediately upon conclusion of mediation, the mediator shall notify in writing the respondent and complainant that mediation has been concluded and explain the terms of the mediation agreement. While the results of the mediation shall be recorded, no other University records shall be created or maintained of the mediation process.
f. Concessions and offers made during mediation shall not later be used by either the complainant or respondent if the dispute continues beyond mediation. A complaint based on failure to comply with an agreement reached in mediation may be the basis of a subsequent appeal.
F. Formal Procedures
1. The College Faculty Appeals Committee.
The College Faculty Appeals Committee shall consist of faculty members without administrative appointments elected to serve designated terms. The College Faculty Appeals Committee shall have a minimum of five (5) members and shall elect a chair and vice chair from its membership.
College Faculty Appeals Committee members shall exercise prudence and caution, taking extreme care to discuss cases only in appropriate committee meetings or hearings.
2. Initiating a Hearing.
a. If the complaint has not been resolved by informal procedures and if the complainant wishes to pursue the matter, the request for a formal hearing must be filed by the end of the tenth (10th) day following the conclusion of the informal procedures (see item D.2. above). If the complainant and respondent have participated in mediation, the request for a formal hearing shall be made by the end of the tenth (10th) day following the date of notification to the respondent and complainant by the mediator that mediation has concluded. The request for a hearing shall be written and shall be addressed to the chair of the College of Faculty Appeals Committee with a copy to the dean or designee and to the respondent. The dean shall acknowledge in writing receipt of the complainant.
b. The dean or designee shall notify the College Faculty Appeals Committee of the Request within ten (10) days of the receipt of the complaint. The notification should include only names of complainant and respondent. By the conclusion of this same ten-day (10-day) time period, the complainant shall set forth in detail the nature of the complaint and the redress sought along with any supporting documents. A copy of all of these materials shall be sent to the respondent and to the chair of the College Faculty Appeals Committee by the complaint.
c. The respondent shall submit a written response to the complaint, along with any supporting documents, to both the chair of the College Faculty Appeals Committee, and the complainant within ten (10) days of receipt of the complainant’s materials.
d. Upon receipt of the response the chair of the College Faculty Appeals Committee shall organize in consultation with the complainant and respondent to form a Faculty Appeals Hearing Panel of no fewer than five (5) people.
3. Formation of Hearing Panel.
a. The members of the College Faculty Appeal Committee who will serve as the Hearing Panel shall be drawn by lot within ten (10) days of receipt by the College Faculty Appeals Committee of the response to the complaint. These procedures shall include the following provisions.
(1) The complainant and respondent each shall be allowed to disqualify without cause one member of the Hearing Panel.
- The complainant and respondent shall be allowed to request the disqualification, for cause, of any member of the Hearing Panel. The chair of the College Faculty Appeals Committee shall determine whether a statement of cause is valid grounds for removal of a member from service on the Hearing Panel. If the complainant or respondent requests the removal of the College Faculty Appeals Committee chair for cause, the vice chair shall determine whether the statement of cause is valid grounds for removal.
(3) College Faculty Appeals Committee members may remove themselves from service on the Hearing Panel for cause (subject to the agreement by the chair of the College Faculty Appeals Committee) without prejudice to serving the remainder of their term on the College Faculty Appeals Committee.
(4) In the event of disqualification of Hearing Panel members such that fewer than five (5) members remain for hearing a complaint, additional members from the college faculty at large may be considered for the Hearing Panel subject to agreement by both complainant and respondent and subject to disqualification as outlined above. If a hearing committee cannot be constituted according to these guidelines the matter is referred to the University Hearing Committee.
(5) If the complainant or respondent feels that a fair hearing cannot be conducted by the College Faculty Appeals Committee, the complainant or respondent may petition the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost before the Hearing Panel is selected for a hearing by the University Hearing Committee. The hearing will be conducted by the rules of the College Faculty Appeals Committee.
b. The Hearing Panel chair will be elected by the committee.
c. Until the hearing procedure in the college is complete, the group responsible for considering all matters related to the complaint shall be the Hearing Panel as constituted by these procedures.
4. Hearing procedures shall be conducted according to the following:
a. The first order of business for the Hearing Panel after the determination of its chair is the determination of the rules of the hearing. Because each appeal is unique, the conditions under which a given hearing will be conducted (rules, order, agenda, etc.) will be determined by the Hearing Panel after consultation with the complainant and respondent and with University Counsel. The hearing shall be considered closed unless all participants agree to the contrary. The Hearing Panel will notify the complainant and respondent in writing of the conditions under which the hearing will be conducted at least ten (10) days in advance of the hearing.
b. A hearing will be scheduled to begin within fifteen (15) days of the notification of the rules of the hearing.
c. The complainant has the right to be in attendance throughout the presentation by the respondent, and the respondent has the right to be in attendance throughout the presentation by the complainant; the complainant and respondent have the right to be accompanied by counsel, have the right to call witnesses, and to question witnesses. Witnesses have the right to be accompanied by counsel. Counsels for the complainant and respondent and counsel for witnesses shall not have the right to address the Hearing Panel nor the witnesses unless requested to do so by the Hearing Panel. The Hearing Panel may have counsel throughout the proceedings.
d. An audio tape of the hearing will be kept at college expense. The complainant and respondent may receive one copy upon request.
G. Procedures Following the Hearing
1. Decision of the Dean.
a. Within ten (10) days of the close of the hearing, the Hearing Panel will transmit in writing, confidentially, its finds, arguments (if any), and recommendations to the dean, complainant, and respondent by personal delivery or registered mail. Committee recommendations are not binding on the dean. The report shall be signed by all members of the Hearing Panel. In the report, dissenting opinions to the majority shall be signed by the appropriate Hearing Panel members.
b. Within thirty (30) days of receipt of the final report, the dean will transmit in writing to the Hearing Panel, to the complainant and to the respondent the dean’s decision in reference to the formal record and the actions, if any, which will be taken.
c. The Hearing Panel has, at this point, fully discharged its obligations and shall have no further role. Because the case may yet be appealed, Hearing Panel members shall not comment on the hearing proceedings.
d. If the complaint is against the dean of a college, then the College Hearing Committee report will be forwarded to the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost.
2. Appeal to the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost.
a. The complainant may appeal the dean’s decision to the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost. The appeal must be submitted in writing within ten (10) days of receipt of the dean’s decision. No new or additional charges may be added to the complaint.
b. The appeal to the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost shall state the complaint, the redress sought, and include any supporting documentation.
c. The Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs shall consider the appeal based upon the formal record. The Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs shall render a decision within thirty (30) days of receipt of the appeal request.
d. If complainant or respondent charge that proper procedures were not followed in the College Faculty Appeals Committee, the complainant or the respondent may petition the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost and provide evidence of misconduct for a new hearing by the University Hearing Committee. The hearing will be conducted following the rules of the College Faculty Appeals Committee. The granting of such a hearing should be based on failure of the original hearing committee to follow procedures and not on discontent with conclusions.
3. Appeal to the President.
a. The complainant may appeal the decision of the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost to the President of the University. To do so, the complainant must submit an appeal, along with reasons for doing so and redress desired, in writing, to the President within ten (10) days of receipt of the decision of the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost.
b. The President shall consider the appeal based upon the formal record and other information or materials requested by the President. The complainant and respondent will both be notified of the request for additional information, and will be allowed to respond. The President shall render a decision within thirty (30) days of receipt of the appeal request.
4. Appeal to the Board of Regents.
Further appeal of the President’s decision shall be in accordance with University System Bylaws.
H. Miscellaneous General provisions.
- Withdrawing Complaints: A complainant may withdraw, in writing, the complaint prior to the distribution of materials (as outlined in F.2.b.) to the College Faculty Appeals Committee members. Upon the agreement of the respondent, the complainant may withdraw the complaint at any subsequent time.
- Waiving the Hearing: Upon agreement of the respondent, a complainant may waive the hearing, requesting that the Hearing panel’s report and recommendations be reached only on the basis of the formal complaint, the written response and any documentary evidence submitted by either party and available to both parties for examination and rebuttal. Having waived a hearing, the complainant is not entitled to rescind the waiver.
- Point of Decision: These procedures presume that the Hearing Panel will make recommendations to the dean of the college. In the event that the primary respondent is the dean of the college, the Hearing Panel recommendations will be made to the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost. Any appeals of the decision of the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost will be made to the President.
- Remedial Action: If at any administrative level, the complainant’s charges have been substantiated, or the parties agree to conclude the appeal, the appropriate administrator may confer with the complainant in determining appropriate action. The University will implement the action upon the directive of the properly authorized administrator.
- Legal Sufficiency: Any agreements reached by the parties shall be reviewed by the university legal counsel for legal sufficiency and compliance with University System and university policy and procedure.
- Burden of Proof: The complainant has the burden of proving allegations raised in the complaint.
- Non-retaliation: Any individual exercising his or her rights under this appeals procedure will be treated fairly and the complaint will be given unbiased consideration. Neither individuals using this procedure, nor individuals providing information so that the facts can be determined, will be penalized or harassed for their participation in the appeals process.
- Time Limits: Each step of these procedures has specific time limits that shall be observed. The counting of time during the appeals procedure will begin on the next day following the effective date of knowledge of the consequences of the alleged event upon which the complaint is based; it will continue for each step on the next day after completion of the preceding step. All time limits contained in the foregoing procedures may be extended by written consent of the parties during the informal stage, by the mediator during mediation, by the chair of the Faculty Appeals Committee during the initiation of the formal process, and by the chair of the Hearing Panel during a hearing. Once recommendations of the Hearing Panel have been forwarded to the dean or other appropriate official, or appeals of the dean’s decision have been filed, time limits may be extended by mutual agreement of the complainant and the dean or other official.
- Confidentiality of Proceedings: When appropriate, the University shall take all reasonable steps to insure the confidentiality of all proceedings, hearings, and records. However, should confidentiality be breached regarding these proceedings, all parties reserve the right to issue statements.
- Retention of Hearing Materials: Following a hearing and any appeals which may be filed thereafter the college will retain written documents presented by the complainant, the respondent, or any parties to the appeals, along with the audio tapes of the proceedings of the hearing for four years.