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Faculty Workload Release Plan (Policy 4700)

University Policy 4700

Download a Printable Version of Policy 4700


Effective Date

November 03, 2020

Responsible Party

Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, (208) 426-1202

Scope and Audience

This policy applies to full-time faculty who teach, including tenured and tenure-track faculty, librarians, clinical faculty, research faculty, lecturers, and instructors. This policy does not apply to non-teaching administrative faculty.

Additional Authority

  • University Policy 4340 (Tenure and Promotion Guidelines)
  • University Policy 4215 (Part-Time Tenure Eligible Faculty)

1. Policy Purpose

To support faculty as they balance professional and family duties before and after the birth or adoption of a child.

2. Policy Statement

Boise State University recognizes the unique needs of faculty who teach who must balance research, teaching, and parental obligations. The University, as well as the individual, benefits from arrangements that help faculty pursue their academic careers while raising a family. A Faculty Workload Release Plan provides continuation of pay and benefits for faculty during times of adoption or birth of a child.

3. Definitions

3.1 Workload Release

An exemption from teaching available to eligible faculty. During this Release, faculty will attend to other reduced workload responsibilities as per department/unit policy.

4. Responsibilities and Procedures

4.1 Eligibility

Applies to full-time faculty who teach including tenured and tenure-track faculty, librarians, clinical faculty, research faculty, lecturers, and instructors who are the parent of a newborn child, or who have adopted a child under the age of eighteen (18) or who are seeking to adopt a child after the birth of that child but the adoption has not yet been finalized. Surrogate mothers, the adoption of a new spouse’s child, and sperm donors do not meet the eligibility criteria.

a. Faculty will return to full workload for a period of at least one (1) year after utilizing a Workload Release.

b. Workload Release for Two Parents. The University will grant all eligible faculty a Workload Release.

4.3 Workload Release

a. A faculty member with teaching responsibilities who meets the eligibility requirements in Section 4.1 of this policy is entitled to relief from teaching responsibilities with no loss of pay or benefits.

b. Workload Release includes one full teaching load release during any single semester. It also includes a reduction of other duties (such as advising, departmental service, and committee work) for the entire semester.

4.4 Workload Release Timing

The faculty member shall work with their department and Dean to determine whether the Workload Release is applied to the semester in which the birth or adoption occurs, or in the following semester.

4.5 Other Considerations

a. Teaching that would otherwise be carried out during the Workload Release period may not be shifted to other semesters against the wishes of the person taking such paid leave.

b. The University will continue to pay the employer’s share of the cost of fringe benefit programs such as health care insurance, group life insurance, etc. on behalf of the employee. This does not apply to off-contract periods.

c. Optional Part-time Status: Tenure track faculty may request a temporary part-time appointment under exceptional circumstances due to Administrative caregiving responsibilities. See University Policy 4215 (Part-Time Tenure-Eligible Faculty) to review details for such a request.

4.6 Tenure Clock

When a Workload Release is granted for non-tenured tenure-track faculty, a one-year extension of the tenure probationary period will be automatically granted. Faculty may opt out of the automatic extension by requesting to seek tenure and promotion on the original timeline.

4.7 Sabbatical Eligibility

Any Workload Release utilized under this policy will not interrupt the service eligibility requirement for sabbatical leave.

4.8 Administration of Workload Release

a. It is the Department’s responsibility to create the written plan for staffing the period of Workload Release. Development of this plan can be done in consultation with all parties.

b. When possible, the plan should be submitted in advance of the semester in which the birth or adoption is anticipated to occur and requires approval by the College Dean.

c. Ultimately, the faculty member’s supervisor, not the faculty member, is responsible for developing the staffing plan for the period of the Workload Release.

d. The Dean’s office will maintain a file with these plans for reference and to ensure consistency over time.

5. Related Information

University Policy 4440 (Faculty Sabbatical Leave)
University Policy 7220 (Shared Leave Policy)
University Policy 7230 (Family and Medical Leave)
University Policy 7610 (Paid Parental Leave)