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Part 4. Personnel Policies
Section IV. Performance/Evaluation/Termination
B. Evaluation of Faculty/Tenure (Updated 9/02)
1. Annual Evaluation
Each year the chair of a department (or unit head) must submit to the Dean of the chair's college (or appropriate superior) an evaluation of each faculty member in that department (or unit). Any evaluation must include at least administrative access to all primary or raw evaluation data. This evaluation, together with the opinion of higher administrators, will be used as one (1) basis for the final recommendation relative to reappointment, nonreappointment, acquisition of tenure, or other personnel action, whichever is appropriate. The chair must communicate in writing an assessment of strengths and weaknesses to each faculty member evaluated.
Evaluation of faculty should be made in terms of the individual's potential effectiveness as a permanent member of the local academic community. The indices considered in annual faculty evaluations may vary by unit, from year to year, and by the faculty member's responsibilities and stage of career. However, the totality of any five (5) consecutive annual evaluations should be substantive by adhering to the following criteria:
a. address each relevant major faculty responsibility (e.g., teaching, service, research);
b. include consideration of multiple factors for each responsibility;
c. include informed collegial input on as many responsibilities as practicable. The faculty of each department shall formulate the procedure for collegial review;
d. and include student input as appropriate.
The annual evaluation should clearly indicate areas of excellence and areas needing development. The chair should identify and facilitate opportunities and resources for addressing those needs and rewarding excellence. At intervals not to exceed five (5) years, the chair will review the faculty member's five (5) most recent annual evaluations or other substantive reviews such as promotion and tenure and certify that a substantive review has been completed during the last five (5) years.
Any written recommendations that result from evaluation of a faculty employee will be given to the employee and a copy will be placed in the employee's personnel file.
Tenure is a condition of presumed continuous employment following the expiration of a probationary period and after meeting the appropriate criteria. After tenure has been awarded, the faculty memberís service may be terminated only for adequate cause, the burden of proof resting with the institution, except in the case of retirement for age, under conditions of financial exigency as declared by the State Board of Education, in situations where extreme shifts of enrollment have eliminated the justification for a position, or where the Board has authorized elimination or substantial reduction in an academic or professional-technical program.
Tenure status is available only to eligible full-time institutional faculty members whose initial appointments have been approved by the Board. Conferral of tenure status has been limited by the Board to seventy five percent (75%) of the institutional faculty. All new faculty appointments are subject to the approval of the Board. Nontenured members of the faculty should not expect continued employment beyond the period of his or her current appointment. Any commitment to employ a nontenured member of the faculty beyond the period of his or her current appointment is wholly ineffective without prior approval of the Board.
3. Evaluation For Tenure
It is expected that the President, in granting tenure, will have sought and considered evaluations of each candidate by a committee appointed for the purpose of annual evaluations or tenure status. Such committee must consist of tenured and nontenured members of the department, if available; equitable student representation; and one or more representatives from outside the department. Each member of the committee has an equal vote on all matters. The committee must give proper credence and weight to collective student evaluations of faculty members, as evidenced by an auditing procedure approved by the President.
The recommendation of the committee will be forwarded in writing through appropriate channels, along with written recommendations of the department chairperson or unit head, dean, and appropriate vice president, to the President, who is responsible for making the final decision.
a. Acquisition of Tenure
(1) Professional-Technical faculty hired under the division of professional-technical education prior to July 1, 1993 who were granted tenure may retain tenure in accordance with these policies. Individuals hired under the Division of Professional-Technical education subsequent to July 1, 1993 are hired and employed as nontenure track faculty and will:
(a) be afforded the right to pursue promotion; and
(b) be considered and granted an employment contract in accordance with these policies and be subject to continued acceptable performance and/or the needs of the institution; and
(c) be afforded an opportunity to serve on institutional committees.
(2) Academic faculty members, after meeting certain requirements set forth in Section 4., may acquire tenure. Acquisition of tenure is not automatic, by default or defacto, but requires an explicit judgment, decision, and approval. A faculty member will usually be evaluated for the acquisition of tenure after at least five (5) full years of service and in no case later than during the faculty member's seventh (7th) full academic year of employment at the institution.
An individual eligible for tenure must be informed, by proffered written contract, of appointment or nonappointment to tenure not later than June 30th after the academic year during which the decision is made.
c. Nonappointment to Tenure
In case of nonappointment to tenure in accordance with the standards of eligibility set forth in Section 4., the faculty member must be given, in accordance with the provision for nonrenewal, a written notice that tenure was denied.
4. Standards of Eligibility for Tenure Status
a. Until the acquisition of tenure, all appointments are made for a period not to exceed one (1) year. Ordinarily, appointments are made for periods of one (1) year each before a tenure decision becomes mandatory. A faculty member will usually be evaluated for the acquisition of tenure after at least five (5) full academic years of employment and in no case later than during the faculty member's seventh (7th) full academic year of employment at the University.
b. All satisfactory service in any professorial rank may be used to fulfill the time requirement for acquiring tenure. The University must develop criteria and rules by which prior service may be evaluated for inclusion in experience necessary for acquiring tenure.
c. A maximum of two (2) years satisfactory service in the rank of instructor at the University will be allowed in partial fulfillment of the time requirement in the professorial ranks. Faculty members who hold the rank of instructor may be eligible for tenure status if provided for by the University even though they teach in fields that have established professorial ranks.
d. Tenure may be awarded prior to completion of the usual eligibility period in certain exceptional cases. Prior to attaining tenure status in such cases, the burden of proof rests with the individual.
5. Award of Tenure
The awarding of tenure to an eligible faculty member is made only by a positive action of the President. The President must give notice in writing to the faculty member of the approval or denial of tenure status. Notwithstanding any provisions in these policies to the contrary, no person will be deemed to have been awarded tenure because notice is not given or received by the times prescribed in any sections of these policies. No faculty member may construe lack of notice of denial of tenure as the awarding of tenure. If the President has not given notice to the faculty member as provided for in these policies, it is the duty of the faculty member to make inquiry to ascertain the decision of the President.
6. Interpretations Relating to Tenure
a. Terminal Contract of Employment - If a faculty member is not awarded tenure, the President must notify the faculty member of the decision not to award tenure and may, at his or her discretion, either issue to the faculty member a contract for a terminal year of employment, or, at the sole discretion of the President, issue to the faculty member contracts of employment for successive periods of one (1) year each. Such appointment for faculty members not awarded tenure must be on an annual basis, and such temporary appointments do not vest in the faculty member any of the rights inherent in tenure and there shall be no continued expectation of employment beyond the annual appointment.
b. When authorized by the President, or his or her designee, the year in which the tenure decision is made may be the terminal year of employment.
c. Effect of lapse in service, transfer, reassignment, reorganization, and administrative responsibilities.
(1) A nontenured faculty member who has left the institution and is subsequently reappointed after a lapse of not more than three (3) years may have his or her prior service counted toward eligibility for the award of tenure. Eligibility for the award of tenure must be clarified in writing before reappointment.
A tenured faculty member who has left the University and is subsequently reappointed after a lapse of not more than three (3) years must have tenure status clarified in writing by the President or his or her designee before appointment. The faculty member may be reappointed with tenure, or may be required to serve additional years before being reviewed for tenure status.
(2) Before a nontenured faculty member holding academic rank is moved from one position in the University to another, the member must be informed in writing by the Academic Vice President, after consultation with the receiving department, as to the extent to which prior service may count toward eligibility for tenure status.
(3) No faculty memberís tenure in a discipline may be adversely affected by the reorganization of the administrative structure. A faculty memberís tenure is not affected by reassignment of administrative responsibilities.
(4) When a tenured faculty member is serving as department chairperson, college dean, or in some other administrative or service capacity, retention of membership, academic rank, and tenure in the subject-matter department or similar unit is maintained. Should the administrative or service responsibilities terminate, the member takes up regular duties in the discipline within which membership, academic rank, and tenure was retained.
7. Periodic Performance Review
It is the policy of the Board that at intervals not to exceed five (5) years following the award of tenure to faculty members, the performance of tenured faculty must be reviewed by members of the department or unit and the department chairperson or unit head. The review must be conducted in terms of the tenured faculty memberís continuing performance in the following general categories: (a) teaching effectiveness, (b) research or creative activities, (c) professional related services, (d) other assigned responsibilities, and (e) overall contributions to the department.
a. Procedures for Periodic Review - The University must establish procedures for the performance review of tenured faculty members at the University. Such procedures are subject to the review and approval of the Board. Each year the academic vice president or designee is responsible for designating in writing those tenured faculty members whose performance is subject to review during the year.
b. Review Standards - The University may establish its own internal review standards subject to approval by the Board. Absent such University standards, the University must use the following standards.
If during the periodic review, the performance of a tenured faculty member is questioned in writing by (a) a majority of members of the department or unit, (b) the department chairperson or unit head, (c) the appropriate dean, (d) the Vice President for Academic Affairs, or (e) the President, the Vice President for Academic Affairs must decide whether a full and complete review must be conducted in accordance with the procedures established for the initial evaluation for tenure.
If during the periodic review, the performance of a tenured faculty member is not questioned in writing as described in the preceding paragraph, members of the department or unit and the department chairperson or unit head must prepare a written review statement that the performance review has been conducted and that a full and complete review is not required.
c. Exception for Associate Professors in the Promotion Process - Generally, the promotion from the rank of associate professor to full professor is considered no earlier than the fifth (5th) full year after attaining the rank of associate professor, which is generally contemporaneous with the granting of tenure. In such cases, if review for promotion to full professor is scheduled during the fifth (5th), sixth (6th) or seventh (7th) full year after the award of tenure then the promotion review may, if it meets substantially similar criteria and goals of the periodic review, take the place of the periodic performance review described here.
d. Termination of Employment
If, following a full and complete review, a tenured faculty memberís performance is judged to have been unsatisfactory or less than adequate during the period under review, the President may initiate termination of employment procedures for the faculty member. In other words, an unsatisfactory or less than adequate performance rating shall constitute adequate cause for dismissal.
8. Dismissal for Adequate Cause
Tenured faculty members may be dismissed for adequate cause as provided for in Part 4., Section IV.E.2 of the ISU Policies and Procedures and Subsection L of the Idaho State Board of Education Governing Policies and Procedures.
9. Tenure for Academic Administrators
a. "Academic administrators," for purposes of this topic, means the chief academic officers of the Office of the State Board of Education and the University and the deans and department chairs and their associates/assistants of the academic units of the University, and shall not include persons occupying other administrative positions.
b. An employee with tenure in an academic department or equivalent unit who is appointed to an academic administrator position retains tenure in that department or equivalent unit.
c. An individual hired for or promoted to an academic administrator may be considered for a tenured faculty rank in the appropriate department or equivalent unit. Such consideration is contingent upon approval by the President.
d. Upon termination of employment as an academic administrator, an employee with tenure may, at his or her option, return to employment in the department or equivalent unit in which he or she holds tenure unless such employee resigns, retires, or is terminated for adequate cause.
e. An individual hired for a nonacademic administrator position from outside the University will not be considered for tenured faculty rank in conjunction with such appointment. However, he or she may be granted an adjunct faculty appointment, upon the recommendation of the appropriate department and dean and with the approval of the provost or chief academic officer and President, if the individual will teach and otherwise contribute to that department.
f. Notwithstanding the above, each administrative employee who is granted tenure shall be reviewed in the same manner as tenured faculty.