ERIC Number: ED338143
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1989
Dismissal and Non-Renewal of Higher Education Probationary Faculty.
Nolte, Walter H.
This paper discusses the legal precedents and implications for non-renewal of elementary, secondary, and university and college probationary faculty. Selected federal and state cases are reviewed to show the evolution of case law from the early 1950s to the present day. Analysis of the court cases reveals that for the last 40 years the courts have been generally reluctant to interfere in personnel practices regarding probationary faculty, despite an evolution of state laws and court decisions requiring some forms of due process. Also, the courts have allowed institutions broad discretion in the application of these guidelines and the standards and criteria related to the granting of tenure or to non-renewal. Faculty, however, continue to file legal action on non-renewal or dismissal issues. It is recommended that school officials familiarize themselves with the rules and regulations pertaining to faculty employment contracts, that the terms of these contracts be written (avoiding oral agreements altogether), and that they be clearly explained to the faculty member at the beginning of employment. The suggestion is made that carefully documenting personnel procedures and factors relating to a faculty member's employment status will help avoid costly court litigation. (GLR)
Publication Type: Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Administrators; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: N/A