Wayne State's Tenure Proposal Stirs Academic Controversy

Ann McClure's picture
Tuesday, July 24, 2012

As Wayne State University's faculty negotiates a new labor contract, school officials are offering proposals that faculty members say would abolish tenure for academic staff — and make Wayne State among the first research universities in the nation to do so.

The proposal does this by putting all of the power to eliminate a tenured faculty member into the hands of the administration and eliminating the traditional peer review process, said Charles J. Parrish, president of the American Association of University Professors-American Federation of Teachers, WSU chapter.

"It is pretty clear that … this would eliminate tenure," Parrish said. "There is none of the traditional peer review that is characteristic at every university that I know of any reputation whatsoever."

But WSU President Allan Gilmour dismissed the claims as inaccurate on Monday, saying the purpose of the proposal is to address problems fairly and quickly with a small minority of faculty.

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