A contract proposal for Wayne State University's faculty is creating a firestorm, with union officials saying the plan would make the school one of the nation's first to abolish academic tenure.
But WSU officials call that portrayal misleading, arguing the proposal merely aims to make faculty members more accountable while giving the university more flexibility.
The language proposes to put all of the power to eliminate a tenured faculty member into the hands of the administration and eliminate the traditional peer review process, said Charles J. Parrish, president of the American Association of University Professors-American Federation of Teachers, WSU chapter. He did not understand why the proposal is coming from the administration of WSU President Allan Gilmour.
"This is not something that major research universities do," Parrish said. "The president is not from a university background, and it may be that he thinks this is something that Wayne State can pioneer in. But frankly, it would ruin Wayne State in terms of its standing as a research university."