University of Wisconsin-La Crosse

Proposed University-Wide Part-Time Faculty Appointment Policies

Draft, September 12, 2007

 

Faculty Senate Recruitment and Retention Task Force Members:  Jeff Bryan, Melanie Cary, Sandy Grunwald, Sharon Jessee, Susan Kelly, Tom Krueger, Jennifer Miskowski, Beth Hartung (Consultant), Karen McLean (Consultant), Jennifer Wilson (Consultant), Jodi Vandenberg-Daves (Chair)

 

Wisconsin statute and UW-L Faculty Personnel Rules allow for faculty to have any fraction of appointment at or above 50 percent.  (See end of document for statue and personnel rules.) Below are proposed policy options, along with workload expectations and procedures for part-time appointments.

 

Pre-Tenure Options:

 

1. Conversion to Part-Time Appointment (50-99%), for up to two contract years, with a return to full-time (100% tenure-track faculty) position expected based on positive retention decisions.  Tenure-eligible faculty may request such an appointment only for reasons of personal or family care needs, similar to those needs covered by UW-L’s Tenure Clock Stoppage Policy.*  Such appointments may be requested more than once.  Permanent conversion to a part-time appointment may be made, subject to approval by the department chair and Dean and Provost/Vice Chancellor.

 

2. Part Time Tenure Track at Time of Hire:  Faculty contract reflects expectation of permanent part-time status with tenure eligibility.  Increases in the appointment are not guaranteed; however they may be negotiated at some point in the future, based on department and college needs.

 

Note:  Length of probationary period is discussed in Faculty Personnel Rules at end of document.)

 

Post-Tenure Options:

 

1. Reduced Appointment for Tenured Faculty:  Only for reasons of personal or family care needs, similar to those needs covered by UW-L’s Tenure Clock Stoppage Policy,* tenured faculty may request a part-time appointment for up to two years, with a return to full-time position expected (assuming satisfactory post-tenure review, if applicable during reduced appointment period).  Such appointments may be requested more than once.  Permanent conversion to a part-time appointment may be made, subject to approval by the department chair and Dean and Provost/Vice Chancellor.

 

2. Tenured Faculty Career Flexibility Appointment.  Tenured faculty may apply for a part-time appointment for any reason.  Departmental needs and university budget considerations would need to be considered in granting reductions in appointment for this option.  Increases in the appointment are not guaranteed; however they may be negotiated at some point in the future, based on department and college needs. Permanent conversion to a part-time appointment may be made, subject to approval by the department chair and Dean and Provost/Vice Chancellor. 

 

*For reduction to part-time appointment for personal or family care needs, the definition of these needs spelled out in UW-L’s Tenure Clock Stoppage Policy is useful:   “responsibilities with respect to childbirth or adoption, significant responsibilities with respect to elder or dependent care obligations, disability or chronic illness, or circumstances beyond the control of the faculty member” are considered in this policy, which is a SEPARATE policy from the proposed Part-Time Appointment Policies.

 

Workload Expectations: 

For part-time faculty appointments, the expectation should reflect the part-time nature of the appointment, with prorated expectations for teaching, scholarship and creative activity, and service.

 

Teaching:  Reductions in the teaching appointment should conform to department by-laws and take into account individual situations and department needs.  Issues of class size, number of course preparations, advising duties, and type of course will be considered, with the goal of ensuring that part-time teaching appointments actually constitute part-time work, commensurate with the percentage of appointment.

 

Scholarship and Creative Activity:  The general recommendation is that the university may expect the same quality of scholarship and creative activity from a part-time as a full-time appointee, but that the research will be accomplished at a pace commensurate with the proportion of the faculty appointment.

 

Service:  Service responsibilities for faculty on part-time appointments are generally seen as proportional to their faculty appointments.  Faculty on such appointments are not excused from regular institutional service and university commitments because of the part-time appointments.

 

Professional Development:  A faculty member on a part-time appointment is as eligible as full-time appointees for professional development opportunities and research funds.

 

Work Space:  Office and/or research space may be adjusted with part-time appointment.

 

Advancement:  For part-time appointments, the expectations for advancement should reflect the part-time nature of the appointment (department by-laws about part-time work, JPC guidelines, PTS guidelines)

 

Process for Conversion to Part-Time Appointment:

1.       Process is initiated by the faculty member, with initial conversations occurring with Human Resources or department chair, depending on nature of request. 

 

a. Faculty requesting leave due to family or personal care needs should contact Human Resources first.  HR will provide the faculty member with information on rights and responsibilities pertinent to part-time appointments as well as tenure clock stoppage and FMLA/WFMLA options.  Similar to faculty rights when using Family Medical Leave Act, employees are not required to discuss the nature of the leave for personal or family care needs with a supervisor.

 

b. For Post-Tenure Career Flexibility Appointments, it is suggested that the faculty member first approach his or her department chair.

 

  1. The faculty member and department chair will consult with the college dean and Human Resources on the logistics of the appointment, with details such as how long the part-time appointment will last, whether or not tenure clock stoppage wil be involved, the faculty member’s right to return to full-time appointment after a designated period of time and any salary, pay play, or benefit issues.  Human Resources will create a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) detailing the agreement.  The MOA must be signed by the faculty member, department chair, dean and provost to be implemented.  Human Resources will track the MOA and inform parties when/if action is required

 

  1. Based on department by-laws about part-time appointments, the faculty member and department chair negotiate a new Position Responsibility Statement (PRS) for the faculty member that includes specific expectations for teaching, scholarship and creative activity, and service.  This Position Responsibility Statement should be updated annually, and, for untenured faculty, should constitute part of the documentation submitted to members of the department’s Tenure Committee, and, where applicable, the Joint Promotion Committee.  The PRS signed by the faculty member, chair , and dean should become part of the permanent personnel file housed in Human Resources.

 

  1. If the requesting faculty member and the department chair fail to agree on any aspect of the MOA or PRS, the faculty member has the option of pursuing an appeals process (to be developed by the Recruitment and Retention Committee).  In the process, the faculty member and/or department chair may request assistance from Campus Climate Office, Faculty Ombudsperson, Affirmative Action/Diversity, and/or Human Resources.   

 

State Statue:

Wisconsin State Statutes (36.13(2)(c) indicates that:     


(c) A tenure appointment may be granted to any ranked faculty member who holds or will hold a half-time appointment or more. The proportion of time provided for in the appointment may not be diminished nor increased without the mutual consent of the faculty member and the institution subject only to sub. (5) and s. 36.21.

 

Faculty tenure appointment percentages of 50-100% is also in the Faculty Personnel Rules Chapter 3,  specifically UWS 3.04.

 

UW-L Faculty Personnel Rules:

UWL 3.04 Probationary appointments.   http://www.uwlax.edu/hr/facperrut3_8.html#3.04

(1) Probationary appointments may be for one year or for other stated periods, subject to renewal. The total period of full-time service prior to the awarding of tenure shall not exceed seven years. Full-time service with the rank of instructor or higher in other institutions of higher learning and/or full-time service with an instructional staff appointment (or equivalent) at UW-La Crosse or other institutions of higher learning may be counted as part of the probationary period.  The length of the probationary period shall be stated by the chancellor in writing at the time of initial appointment.

(2) There shall be two kinds of faculty appointments, full-time appointments and part-time appointments, either of which may be tenure appointments. The maximum probationary periods prior to the awarding of tenure for full-time appointments and part-time appointments of half time or more are as follows:

(a) Maximum probation for full-time tenured appointments shall be:

    (i) seven full-time years, or
    (ii) for any combination of full-time and part-time appointments in which the final three years are consecutive full-time years:
        four part-time semesters and six full-time years, or
        eight part-time semesters and five full-time years, or
        twelve part-time semesters and four full-time years, or
        fourteen part-time semesters and three full-time years.

 

(b) Maximum probation for part-time tenured appointments (See Merger Law 36.13 (2)) shall be:

    (i) fourteen part-time semesters, or
    (ii) any combination of full-time and part-time appointments accumulating to seven academic years.