003.150 - Corrective Action and Dismissal of Non-Senate Academic Appointees

UCSC:APO:CAPM rev 2/05

A. POLICY REFERENCE

APM 150 - Non-Senate Academic Appointees/Corrective Action and Dismissal

B. POLICY & PROCEDURAL OVERVIEW

This policy provides the standards and procedures for instituting corrective action or dismissal of non-Senate academic appointees. Corrective action is intended to give the non-Senate academic appointee an opportunity to improve and/or correct conduct or performance. Non-Senate academic appointees are expected to maintain a standard of academic responsibility which requires performance and conduct consistent with the objectives of the University. Non-Senate faculty appointees are also subject to the standards set forth in the Faculty Code of Conduct (APM 015).

Corrective action may be instituted for good cause, including but not limited to misconduct, unsatisfactory work performance, dereliction of academic duty, or violation of University policy

Dismissal is the termination of an appointment prior to its ending date for good cause, including but not limited to misconduct, continued unsatisfactory work performance, dereliction of duty, or serious violation of University policy.

Corrective action and dismissal are serious measures with specific procedural and notice requirements. There are a variety of campus resources available for consultation and assistance in the implementation of these procedures. Supervisors and unit heads should contact the appropriate divisional academic personnel coordinator, the Academic Personnel Office, and Labor Relations prior to instituting any formal corrective action or dismissal to ensure that appropriate procedural requirements are met.

C. AFFECTED EMPLOYEES

This policy applies to all academic appointees of the University who are not members of the Academic Senate except as provided immediately below. For non-Senate academic appointees covered by a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), this policy applies only to the extent provided for in the MOU.

This policy does not apply to Postdoctoral Scholars. See APM 390 for the applicable corrective action and dismissal policy.

Student academic appointees not covered by an MOU are subject to this policy to the extent that the corrective action or dismissal is based solely upon their employment relationship with the University.

D. TYPES OF CORRECTIVE ACTION and DISMISSAL

Corrective action is a written warning, written censure, suspension without pay, reduction in salary, or demotion for good cause. An informal spoken warning or a letter outlining performance expectations is not an official corrective action.

Written Warning: A formal written communication that informs the appointee of the nature of the misconduct or deficiency in performance or duty. It shall describe a method for correcting the problem and state the probable consequence of continued misconduct, unsatisfactory work performance, or dereliction of duty. This is the only type of corrective action that may be instituted directly by the appointee's immediate supervisor.

Written Censure: A formal written expression of institutional rebuke which contains a description of the censured conduct, and which must be maintained indefinitely in a designated file or files, or be maintained for the period of time specified in the writing. A written Notice of Intent must precede the issuance of a written censure (see Section F below).

Suspension: Debarment without pay from appointment responsibilities for a stated period of time. Unless otherwise noted, the terms of a suspension will include loss of normal employee privileges such as access to University property and parking and library privileges. A written Notice of Intent must precede the issuance of a written notice of suspension (see Section F below).

Reduction in Salary: A reduction to a lower salary without a change in rank or step. The amount and duration of the reduced salary must be specified. A written Notice of Intent must precede the written notice of reduction in salary (see Section F below).

Demotion: A reduction in rank or step with a corresponding reduction in salary. A written Notice of Intent must precede the issuance of a written notice of demotion (see Section F below). For appointees subject to peer review for performance evaluation, see Section G below.

Dismissal: The termination of an appointment for good cause initiated by the University prior to the ending date of the appointment. A written Notice of Intent must precede the issuance of a written notice of dismissal (see Section F below). For appointees subject to peer review for performance evaluation, see Section G below.

E. AUTHORITY

The appointee's supervisor has authority to issue a written warning. The dean has authority to issue a written censure, suspension without pay, reduction in salary, demotion and, in some cases, dismissal. In the case of dismissal of a non-Senate faculty appointee who elects a hearing pursuant to Section 103.9 of the Standing Order of the Regents (S.O. 103.9), final authority to dismiss rests with the Campus Provost/Executive Vice Chancellor.

S.O. 103.9 provides that termination of the appointment of any member of the faculty before the expiration of his or her appointment shall be only for good cause, after the opportunity for a hearing before the Committee on Privilege and Tenure, except as otherwise provided in a MOU. APM 110-14 defines "faculty" as an appointee who has independent responsibility for conducting approved regular University courses for campus credit. As an exception, students who teach independently within their discipline (e.g., Teaching Fellows and Associates In) are not considered faculty under this definition.

For non-Senate academic appointees who are subject to peer review for performance evaluation (e.g., review by the Senate Committee on Academic Personnel or Divisional-Committee on Academic Personnel), demotion and dismissal for unsatisfactory work performance shall involve the regular peer review process. Such peer review shall be advisory to the dean who will then determine whether to institute the demotion or dismissal action.

F. PROCEDURES FOR CORRECTIVE ACTION and DISMISSAL

Corrective action shall normally be taken in progressive steps, beginning with a written warning, except when corrective action is the result of performance or conduct which an appointee knows or reasonably should have known was unsatisfactory. However, prior to instituting corrective action or dismissal, the supervisor shall attempt, where appropriate, to resolve the problem informally, for example through coaching, training, or other action.

It may be necessary to place an appointee on immediate investigatory leave with pay prior to corrective action. An appointee may be placed on investigatory leave without prior written notice if the appointee's conduct requires immediate removal from University premises in the judgment of the supervisor, unit head, or dean. The dean shall be informed of such action, and the reasons for it, as soon as possible. The dean shall confirm such investigatory leave in writing to the appointee, normally within five working days after the leave is effective. The notice must include the reasons for and the expected duration of the leave, which normally shall not exceed 30 calendar days. While on such leave, the appointee's return to University premises without written permission may create independent grounds for dismissal.

Written Warning: A written warning may be instituted by the appointee's immediate supervisor. It shall describe a method for correcting the problem and state the probable consequence of continued misconduct, unsatisfactory work performance, or dereliction of duty. The written warning shall state the appointee's right to grieve the action under the provisions of APM 140. No Notice of Intent is required for a written warning.

Written Censure; Suspension; Reduction in Salary; Demotion; and Dismissal: The dean must provide a written Notice of Intent to the appointee prior to initiating any of these actions. The Notice shall state:

  1. The intended action, including reasons for the action and the proposed effective date;
  2. The basis of the charges, including copies of pertinent materials supporting the charges; and
  3. The appointee's right to respond to the dean, either orally or in writing, within 14 calendar days of the date of issuance of the written Notice of Intent.

Prior to instituting the dismissal of a non-Senate faculty member, the appointee should be apprised of the opportunity for a hearing before the Academic Senate Committee on Privilege and Tenure pursuant to S.O. 103.9. By selecting this hearing option, the appointee waives the right to grieve the dismissal action under APM 140 since the appointee is entitled to select only one grievance review mechanism. The appointee must make a written request to the dean for such a hearing within 14 calendar days of the date of issuance of the written Notice of Intent.

A Proof of Service Form (available at: www2.ucsc.edu/staff_hr/compensation/forms/service.pdf) shall be completed and shall accompany the written Notice of Intent to satisfy proof of delivery or mailing and to establish the deadline by which the appointee must respond.

Written Notice of Action: If the dean decides to institute the corrective action or dismissal following the review of a timely response, if any, from the appointee, the dean shall issue a written Notice of Action to the appointee within 30 calendar days of the date of issuance of the written Notice of Intent.

The written Notice of Action shall notify the appointee of the dismissal or the corrective action to be taken, the effective date, any salary and benefits consequences of the action, and the appointee's right to grieve the action under APM 140.

The written Notice of Action may specify corrective action less severe than that described in the Notice of Intent, or it may specify that no corrective action will be taken; however, the Notice of Action may not include an action more severe than that described in the Notice of Intent. A copy of the Notice of Intent and the Notice of Action shall be placed in the appointee's personnel file(s).

If the final corrective action is a written censure, it must be hand-delivered to the recipient, or mailed via US mail with a proof of service form, and a copy must be maintained in the personnel file indefinitely, or for the period of time specified in the writing.

Final authority to dismiss a non-Senate faculty member who elects a hearing under S.O. 103.9 rests with the Campus Provost/Executive Vice Chancellor. The Campus Provost/Executive Vice Chancellor shall issue a written Notice of Action within 15 calendar days following receipt of the findings and recommendation of the Committee on Privilege and Tenure hearing panel.

G. DEMOTION and DISMISSAL of NON-SENATE ACADEMIC APPOINTEES SUBJECT to PEER REVIEW for PERFORMANCE EVALUATION

In the case of demotion or dismissal for unsatisfactory performance of an appointee whose regular performance is subject to review by the Senate Committee on Academic Personnel or the Divisional Committee on Academic Personnel as appropriate to the title, the following procedures shall apply:

  1. The unit head shall forward a review file to the dean, including a letter describing the nature of the unsatisfactory work and copies of any supporting materials. The dean shall review the file for completeness and shall forward the file to the Senate Committee on Academic Personnel or the Divisional Committee on Academic Personnel as appropriate to the title.
  2. Within 30 calendar days of receipt of the file, the Senate Committee on Academic Personnel or the Divisional Committee on Academic Personnel shall review the file and add a written recommendation.
  3. The file shall be forwarded by the Senate Committee on Academic Personnel or the Divisional Committee on Academic Personnel to the dean who shall review it.
  4. If the dean determines that demotion or dismissal is warranted, s/he shall issue a written Notice of Intent in accordance with Section F of these procedures.
  5. If the appointee is entitled to the opportunity for a hearing pursuant to S.O. 103.9, and the dean has issued a Notice of Intent to dismiss, the appointee must make a written request to the dean for such a hearing within 14 calendar days of the date of issuance of the written Notice of Intent. For the hearing, good cause shall be defined as set forth in APM 150-0. If such a request is received, the dean shall forward the review file, the Notice of Intent, the appointee's response, and all supporting materials to the Chair of the Academic Senate Committee on Privilege and Tenure. The Campus Provost/Executive Vice Chancellor shall have final authority to dismiss the non-Senate faculty member after receipt of the findings and recommendation of the Committee on Privilege and Tenure. If the hearing has not commenced by the ending date of the appointment, the dismissal becomes a non-reappointment effective at the end of the appointment. The appointee has 30 calendar days from the ending date of the appointment to grieve the non-reappointment pursuant to APM 137 and APM 140.
  6. If the appointee is not entitled to a hearing, or does not elect that option, then following the review of an appointee's response to the Notice of Intent, if any, the dean shall issue a written Notice of Action to the appointee within 30 calendar days of the date of issuance of the written Notice of Intent.

H. REPRESENTATION

An appointee may be self-represented or may be represented by another person at any stage of the corrective action or dismissal process, except that supervisory appointees shall not represent non-supervisory appointees, and non-supervisory appointees shall not represent supervisory appointees (pursuant to Higher Education Employer-Employee Relations, Section 3580.5(a)).

I. TIME LIMITS

Upon written request, and prior to the expiration of any time limit stated in this policy, the administrator authorized to take the final action may grant extensions to the appointee for good cause. In the case where the administrator charged with taking the final action requests an extension, the appropriate higher-level administrator may grant an extension for good cause.

J. RECORDS

A copy of the written warning, written censure, written Notice of Intent, written Notice of Action, and a copy of all supporting documents upon which the decision to take corrective action or dismissal was based, shall be placed in the appointee's official personnel file. Such materials shall normally be considered in connection with a recommendation or decision in a personnel action involving the appointee.

In accordance with APM 160-30, an appointee shall have the right to have inserted into the personnel file any statement or response to these materials.