P14: Academic Professional Release Process

Effective Date: March 23, 1987

Revised Date: July 1, 2011

Release During an Appointment Term

When the reorganization proposed by the administration calls for the release of any academic professional with continuing status or a probationary academic professional before the end of an appointment term, the following procedures shall be observed:

  1. The president shall ask the Academic Senate to designate a review committee composed of faculty, academic professionals and students to review and evaluate the proposed plan for reorganization. The committee’s review shall include a public forum to provide an opportunity for all members of the university community to present their views on the impact of the proposed reorganization.
  2. Each academic professional whose position may be affected by the proposed reorganization shall be notified promptly in writing of the proposed action and shall be given an early opportunity to present his or her views in person to the review committee and to the responsible administrator. Any written statement submitted by the academic professional shall become part of the official record.
  3. The review committee shall provide the president with a written evaluation of the proposed reorganization no later than 90 days following the president’s request, unless the president specifically requests that the evaluation be provided in a shorter period. This evaluation shall include an assessment of the impact of the proposed reorganization upon students, faculty, academic professionals, staff, the university as a whole, related activities outside the university, and the interest of higher education within the state. The committee shall maintain a record of its proceedings, including all written documents and statements submitted to it.
  4. The president shall decide whether or not to recommend the reorganization following receipt of the review committee’s evaluation. If the president rejects the committee’s evaluation, the president shall furnish the committee a written statement of the reasons for doing so.
  5. The president shall present his or her recommendation relating to the proposed reorganization to the Board of Regents for approval.
  6. If the Board of Regents approves the reorganization, each academic professional whose position is to be eliminated shall receive written notice when the decision to eliminate his or her position is final.

Review of a Decision to Release

An academic professional with continuing appointment who is to be released, or a probationary academic professional who is to be released during an appointment term, shall be entitled to a review of this decision by filing a written request with the president within 15 days of receipt of notice of such release.

The review shall be conducted according to the following procedures:

  1. The president shall ask the Academic Senate, with advice from the chair of the Committee on Academic Professional Status, to designate a review committee to review the decision to release.
  2. The review committee shall be convened no later than 20 days following the request by an academic professional to determine whether the release is consistent with the objectives to be served by the reorganization.
  3. The review committee shall take into consideration the basis for the university’s decision to release and shall provide the opportunity for the academic professional to respond.
  4. The review committee may consolidate proceedings in order to expedite its reviews, but shall review each decision to release on its own merits and render its recommendations accordingly.
  5. The review committee shall forward its written recommendation to the president no later than 45 days following receipt of an academic professional’s request for review. If the decision to release is deemed to be reasonable, the committee shall recommend that the decision to release be upheld. If the decision to release is deemed not to be reasonable, the committee shall recommend that the decision to release be reversed. This review committee shall make no recommendation as to the reorganization.
  6. The university president shall consider the committee’s recommendation and render a final decision to uphold or reverse the decision to release no later than 15 days from the receipt of the committee’s recommendation.

An academic professional with continuing appointment who is released shall be given a terminal year appointment unless the board’s approval of the reorganization includes a specific determination that budgetary considerations do not permit such an appointment.

Grievance Hearing if Discrimination is Alleged

An academic professional who alleges that he or she was the victim of discrimination in the review of the decision to release proceedings described above may be heard before the Academic Professional Grievance Committee. If more than one academic professional is affected by the action, the academic professionals may, but are not required to, request that the committee consider their cases collectively at one hearing. The committee shall hold a hearing no earlier than 30 days or later than 45 days after receiving a written request filed by the academic professional. With consent of both the university and the academic professional, the hearing may be advanced or delayed. The president shall be notified immediately when the committee receives a written request for a hearing. At the conclusion of the hearing, the recommendation of the committee shall also be forwarded immediately to the president.

The hearing shall provide the following rights to the academic professional and to the university:

  1. the right to an impartial hearing committee
  2. the right to present witnesses and evidence and to cross-examine witnesses
  3. the right to be advised and represented by counsel
  4. the right to a written summary of the hearing
  5. the right to a copy of the written recommendation made by the Grievance Committee, subject to applicable law
  6. the right to reconsideration for the final decision of the president, based on the grounds outlined in ACD 509–03, “Grievance Policy for Academic Professionals.”

For more information, see ACD 508-05, "Release of Academic Professionals and Faculty".