FACULTY SENATE HOME
PROVOST'S OFFICE HOME
Resolution One - Sense of the Senate Resolution on Suspension Policy
FACULTY AFFAIRS STANDING COMMITTEE, FACULTY SENATE
Charge Two (ADOPTED BY THE FACULTY SENATE 16 APRIL 2009)
The Committee continued the work begun by Professor Donaldson of Arts and Sciences and
Professor Johnson of the Collins College of Business to draft a “Sense of the Senate” resolution
that provides interpretative language for actions specified by The Statement on Academic
Freedom, Responsibility, and Tenure (revised 2004).
In its Preamble, the Statement on Academic Freedom notes that the document “is not a
comprehensive code.” “Matters, procedures, and options not specified are left to the judgment,
imagination, and wisdom of the faculty and administration. Where policies and procedures do
not spell out or restrict, a variety of sound practices is expected to develop.”
The Sense of the Senate resolution we recommend provides a more detailed description of sound
practices relating to the faculty suspension policy found in Sections VII.A.1.f and VII.A.3.b.
The Faculty Affairs Committee of the Faculty Senate hereby moves that the Faculty Senate adopt
the following Sense of the Senate Resolution to provide interpretive language regarding faculty
suspensions found in Sections VII.A.1.f and VII.A.3.b of The Statement on Academic Freedom,
Responsibility, and Tenure (revised 2004).
VII.A.1.f - Immediate Suspension: In cases where in the judgment of the college dean immediate
suspension is necessary for reasons of gross personal misconduct, a faculty member may be suspended
with pay pending a hearing before the Committee on Rights and Responsibilities.
VII.A.3.b - Immediate Suspension: In cases where in the judgment of the president immediate suspension
is necessary for reasons of gross personal misconduct, a faculty member may be suspended with pay
pending a hearing.
1. Immediate Suspension of Faculty Members for Gross Personal Misconduct
A faculty member may be involuntarily suspended immediately from teaching duties pursuant to
the Statement on Academic Freedom, Responsibility and Tenure, Section VII.A.1.f. (by the college dean)
or VII.A.3.b (by the president of the University) only if:
a. The suspension is ordered by the dean, provost, or president or, during their absence or
unavailability, their designee (the “administrator”); and
b. The administrator ordering the suspension believes there is clear and convincing evidence of
gross personal misconduct; and
c. The administrator ordering the suspension believes there is clear and convincing evidence that
there is an imminent risk of immediate harm to the faculty member or others as a result of the faculty
member’s continuance of teaching duties before the matter can be heard by the Committee on Rights and
d. Within two working days of issuing the suspension order, the administrator ordering the
suspension provides a written statement to the faculty member that describes the alleged gross personal
misconduct, the threat of immediate harm to the faculty member or others, and the reasons for an
immediate suspension; and
e. The faculty member has been given a reasonable opportunity to respond to the statement.
Within three working days after the suspension order, the chair of the Committee on Rights and
Responsibilities must be given notice of the suspension and provided with a copy of the statement that
describes the alleged gross personal misconduct, the threat of immediate harm to the faculty member or
others, and the reasons for an immediate suspension. Otherwise, the suspension shall terminate, unless it
is reinstated by an appeal or other action under the Statement on Academic Freedom, Responsibility, and
2. Review of Immediate Suspension by Committee on Rights and Responsibilities
The suspended faculty member may request a hearing before the Committee on Rights and
Responsibilities on whether the suspension should be continued, modified or terminated. The request for
a hearing may be made at any time the suspension is in effect, and the Committee on Rights and
Responsibilities must make reasonable efforts to hold the hearing within five working days after receiving
the request for a hearing. At the hearing, the administrator responsible for the suspension must provide
information to justify the action and the suspended faculty member may respond. The Committee may
call other witnesses it deems essential in determining if the required criteria in subparagraph 1 are met.
The Committee on Rights and Responsibilities will recommend to the President that the suspension be
discontinued if it concludes that the requirements in subparagraph 1 have not been satisfied.
If attempts at informal resolution by the Committee on Rights and Responsibilities pursuant to
Section VII.A.1.b. do not produce a settlement, the dean with supervisory responsibility of the faculty
member, or his or her designee, will investigate the alleged misconduct and, if warranted, provide a
detailed statement of charges as specified in VII.A.1.b. If the Dean or the suspended faculty member
should feel that investigation of the charges cannot be done with impartiality by the dean with supervisory
responsibility of the faculty member, or his or her designee, either may file a written request for recusal
with the Committee and, if approved, the investigation will be conducted by the Provost, or his or her
If both the faculty member and the administrator bringing formal charges agree that they have
been afforded adequate opportunity to prepare for the hearing on dismissal, the hearing on review of
suspension and the hearing on dismissal may be combined.
Matters related to the confidentiality of suspensions and suspension proceedings are governed by
Sections VI.B. and VI.B.1. of the University of Tulsa Faculty Senate Statement on Academic Freedom,
Responsibility, and Tenure and by Sections VIII.1 and 2 of the Procedures of the University Faculty
Appeals Board of the University of Tulsa.
For questions regarding this policy, please contact the Office of Personnel Services.
The authority to grant exception to one or more of these policies and procedures is vested with the President of The University of Tulsa or his/her delegated representative(s).
Policy Effective Date: April 16, 2009
Top of Page