Faculty Development Leaves (E-23A)
Original Implementation: April 26, 1983
Last Revision: January 25, 2011
A traditional means of enhancing instruction and research in colleges and universities is the faculty developmental leave for additional study or for research and writing. The Texas legislature adopted legislation in 1967 permitting such leaves for qualified persons and set forth guidelines for awarding developmental leaves. This policy stipulates the conditions under which such leaves may be granted by the Board of Regents (BOR) for field observations, research, study, writing, or other scholarly/creative activities.
Faculty Development Leaves should not be used as a mechanism to assist faculty in completing work for a terminal degree.
This policy applies to full-time faculty whose duties include teaching, research, administration, or the performance of professional services. The definition includes professional librarians but not classified (non-exempt) employees. Except for special circumstances, faculty members as defined above shall be eligible for a developmental leave after they have served full time for at least three consecutive years.
Not more than six percent of university faculty members may be on faculty developmental leave at any one time. The recipient of a developmental leave shall be ineligible to receive another until after the expiration of four years following the leave. Recipients of faculty developmental leaves must guarantee the university that they will return to their regular duties, or others that might be assigned, for a period of at least one year following the expiration of the leave, provided they are offered a contract by the university.
Applications for faculty developmental leaves shall be reviewed annually by the Faculty Development Leave Committee which shall be elected by the faculty for staggered two-year terms. The committee shall consist of full-time faculty members, one from each academic college and one from the library. When an elected member cannot serve, the college dean shall appoint a substitute.
The committee shall determine the required format of applications and evaluate them. An applicant for a developmental leave must provide adequate evidence that the leave activity can be appropriately completed. The committee shall make recommendations to the provost and vice president for academic affairs and the president, who will make the final leave recommendation to the BOR.
A faculty developmental leave may be awarded for one long semester at full base salary or for two long semesters at half the base salary. Payment of salary may be made from the funds appropriated by the legislature specifically for that purpose or from such other funds as might be available to the institution.
Faculty members on faculty developmental leave, under law, may accept a grant or stipend for study, teaching, research, or travel from any institution of higher education or from a charitable, religious, or educational corporation or foundation, from any business enterprise, or from any federal, state, or local governmental agency. However, they may not accept employment from any other person, corporation, or governmental agency, unless the BOR determines that it would be in the public interest to do so and expressly approves the employment. An accounting of all leave funds shall be made by faculty members to the BOR through the provost and vice president for academic affairs and the president.
The university shall cause to be deducted from the salary of faculty members on developmental leave the deposit and membership dues required to be paid by them to the Teacher Retirement System of Texas or to the Optional Retirement Program or both, the contribution for Old Age and Survivors Insurance, and any other amounts required or authorized to be deducted. Faculty members on faculty developmental leaves shall continue to participate in the programs and receive the benefits (retirement, insurance, etc.) made available by or through the university or the state to all other faculty members. Faculty members on faculty developmental leaves shall be eligible for salary increases, merit pay, and all other fringe benefits awarded for the year following the expiration of the leave.
Within ninety days following completion of a faculty development leave, each recipient will present to the academic unit chair/director, dean, and provost and vice president a brief written report on the activities and accomplishments resulting from the leave.
Cross Reference: Faculty Handbook; Tex. Educ. Code § 51.101-.108
Responsible for Implementation: Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs
Contact for Revision: Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs
Forms: Faculty Development Leave Request Form; Faculty Development Leave Proposal Format; and Faculty Professional Development Form
Board Committee Assignment: Academic and Student Affairs