Wednesday, November 14, 2012

SALT responds to proposed changes in tenure standards

The new SALT statement on tenure declares that the:

artificial distinctions between doctrinal, clinical and legal writing faculty—a two-tiered system of protection that provides “tenure” to some and “reasonably similar” protections to others—undermines the legal education mission. Such artificial distinctions marginalize the faculty, programs and disciplines relegated to the “reasonably similar” status and create unnecessary and harmful hierarchies within the academy that adversely affects the quality of legal education.  As far as possible, all faculty deserve to be treated the same with respect to the standards governing access to tenure rather than being classified separately according to whether they are doctrinal, clinical, or legal writing faculty.

As an Adjunct I don't have a dog in this race, but it is my view that the upstairs-downstairs treatment of clinical faculty is unjustified.  As to tenure as an institution - academic freedom is an important principle as is the ability to terminate employees for cause.  If there is stagnation among faculty it is probably the case that faculty governance rather than tenure is at  the root of the reluctance to terminate tenured faculty.  But just my guess since I have never been on a tenure track nor participated in the administration of a law school. - GWC
"SALT Submits Statement of Principles on Proposed Standard 405 At its January 2013 meeting, the ABA’s Standards and Review Committee (SRC) will be considering amendments to Standard 405, the standard that governs tenure and security of position for law school faculty.  As you may be aware, the Committee has suggested changes that would severely undermine the current requirements and understanding of tenure.  SALT submitted a Statement of Principles to the Committee that we believe should guide any discussion and changes to the current standard.  We encourage you to review and share with your faculty SALT’s Statement of Principles, the current Standard 405 and the SRC’s suggested changes. Click HERE for the recently submitted SALT Statement of Principles  Click HERE for the current Standard 405. SALT statements to the SRC of the American Association of Law Schools are available on the American Bar Association Standards Review Comments Page." 'via Blog this'

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