Policy Number: 223 Effective Date: 06/13/95
Policy Title: Sabbatical Leave Revised: 05/01/06: 07/01/10
Approval Date: June 13, 1995 President’s Signature: on file

SECTION 1. GENERAL

1.1 Scope: This rule specifies the eligibility, conditions, compensation, and obligations regarding the granting of sabbatical leave for faculty members under the authority of the WV Higher Education Policy Commission.

1.2 Authority: West Virginia Code 18B-1-6, 18B-7-2, 18B-1-9 and Higher Education Policy Commission Policy, Title 131, Series, 10

1.3 Filing Date: July 10, 1992

1.4 Effective Date: August 9, 1992

1.5 Repeal of Former Rule: Repeals and replaces Series 10, effective July 2, 1990

SECTION 2. PURPOSE

2.1 Sabbatical leave may be granted to a faculty member so that he/she may engage in research, writing, or other activity calculated to contribute to professional development and his/her usefulness to the college.

SECTION 3.

3.1 Any person holding faculty rank is eligible for sabbatical leave after completion of at least six years of full-time employment at the institution where presently employed. After completing a sabbatical leave, a faculty member shall not again be eligible until the seventh subsequent year. Separate summer school employment shall not be considered for sabbatical leave.

SECTION 4. CONDITIONS GOVERNING the GRANTING of SABBATICAL LEAVE

4.1 The granting of sabbatical leave is not automatic, but shall depend on the merits of the request and on conditions prevailing in the colleges at the time. Sabbatical leave will be granted by the President of the institution and notification of such action communicated to the chancellor and kept on file in the chancellor’s office. The chancellor shall provide an annual report summarizing the number of sabbatical leaves granted by each institution during the previous year, the disciplines of the faculty members, and whether the leaves were for full salary for no more than half the contract period or for half salary for no more than the full contract period.

4.2 In consultation with the faculty, the Presidents of the state colleges and universities shall develop appropriate criteria for determining the usefulness of the proposed activity to the institution and equitable procedures and standards for processing applications for leaves.

SECTION 5. COMPENSATION

5.1 A faculty member on sabbatical leave shall receive full salary for no more than one half of the contract period or half salary for no more than the full contract period. If a faculty member’s salary is not paid wholly from state funds allocated by the Board of Governors, the President shall so inform the chancellor.

SECTION 6. OBLIGATIONS of the FACULTY MEMBER

6.1 An applicant for a sabbatical leave shall submit to the President in writing a detailed plan of activity which he/she proposes to follow.

6.2 In accepting a sabbatical leave, a faculty member shall sign a statement indicating that he/she is aware of and agrees to all conditions of the leave as specified herein.

6.3 While on sabbatical leave, a faculty member may not accept remunerative employment without the written consent of the president or his\her designated representative. Fellowships, grants, assistantships and similar stipends shall not be considered remunerative employment.

6.4 Upon completion of a sabbatical leave, a faculty member shall file with the president of the university a written report of his/her scholarly activities while on leave.

6.5 A faculty member is obligated to return for a full year of service upon completion of the leave. Failure to return will obligate the faculty member to fully reimburse the institution for salary received during the period of leave.

SECTION 7. OBLIGATIONS of the INSTITUTION/SYSTEM

7.1 A faculty member’s institutional position, status, and rank shall not be adversely affected solely by his/her absence while on sabbatical leave.

II. WEST LIBERTY UNIVERSITY SABBATICAL STANDARDS

A. Eligible WLU faculty shall be granted sabbatical leave only for the purposes of research, writing, or other activity which will contribute to that faculty member’s professional development and/or usefulness to West Liberty University.

B. Eligibility to apply for sabbatical leave, conditions of leave, compensation while on leave, faculty obligations upon acceptance and/or completion of leave, and institutional obligation to faculty members who accept leave are governed by all applicable WLU Board of Governors and WLU policies and procedures.

C. Priority consideration shall be directed to sabbatical leave applications of eligible WLU faculty based upon the following criteria:
a. Eligible faculty applicants who have not previously been granted sabbatical leave.
b. Application for leave to complete an advanced degree or professional certification.
c. Application for leave to complete advanced education not to be applied to degree work but to improve knowledge in a field of proven importance to the applicant or University.
d. Application for leave to carry out scholarly activity. The burden of proof of merit of the activity rests with the applicant when applying for the leave.

D. The timeframe in which sabbatical leave applications shall be received and considered shall be as follows:
1. Applicant must file the WLU Application for Sabbatical Leave with his/her department chair no later than December 1 of the academic year preceding the academic year in which leave is proposed. The applicant must also file a completed BOG Application for Sabbatical Leave. WLU Sabbatical Application and BOG Sabbatical Application forms are available from the Provost by request. No application received after this date or no application which is incomplete by this date will be considered.
2. The Department Chair must approve or deny the application by December 15 and forward WLU and BOG forms with his/her recommendation to the appropriate Dean by December 15.
3. The Dean must approve or deny the application by January 15 and forward WLU and BOG forms with his/her recommendation to the Provost by January 15.
4. The Provost must approve or deny the application by February 1 and forward WLU and BOG forms with his/her recommendation to the President by February 1.
5. The President has the final authority to approve or deny any application for sabbatical leave and will render decision(s) by March 1. The President will notify WLU faculty of his/her decision and will also notify the Board of Governors of sabbatical leaves granted, disciplines of faculty members granted leave, and terms of leaves granted.
6. WLU faculty granted sabbatical leave will be required to complete the BOG Sabbatical Leave Agreement upon notice of approval of their sabbatical leave.

No sabbatical leave may be initiated nor may compensation be tendered unless this form has been signed by the faculty member, signed by the President of the University, and witnessed by a notary public.

E. WLU department chairs, deans, Provost, and President shall consider the following to determine if the University will grant an application for sabbatical leave:

1. No more than 5% of the full time teaching faculty of the University may be granted sabbatical leave for any given academic year. The Provost shall annually in September establish the number of sabbatical leaves available for the next academic year based upon the number of full time faculty on the University roster in that month. All decimal equivalents shall be rounded up to the next highest integer.
2. If the sabbatical leave application is for one (1) term only, the leave applicant must satisfactorily demonstrate that his/her faculty teaching duties during absence due to sabbatical will be assumed by teaching colleagues during the leave or that his/her teaching duties have been substantially satisfied prior to or immediately after the sabbatical by him/herself.
3. If the sabbatical leave application is for one (1) term and the applicant’s course load will be assumed by colleagues, the leave applicant must satisfactorily establish that colleagues have agreed to assume these duties with no additional remuneration.
4. If colleagues will assume without remuneration any or all of the courseload of a faculty member on sabbatical leave, each WLU faculty member who agrees to cover leave-vacated courses must provide the WLU Human Resources office with a signed WLU Voluntary Services Form for each course which he/she teaches without additional remuneration. This form is available at the Human Resources Office.
5. If the sabbatical leave application is for one (1) term and the applicant will cover prior to or after the leave those courses which he/she would have taught during the leave, the applicant and the applicant’s department chair must attest, in writing, that all of the applicant’s scheduled courses will have been taught, that students will have courses available in a reasonable sequence, and that no adjunct faculty or regular faculty overload contract will have been necessary to have achieved this course coverage.
6. If the sabbatical leave application is for one (1) term and it will be necessary to provide any of the applicant’s teaching assignment by adjunct or regular faculty overload contract, the applicant’s department chair must attest, in writing, how the additional instructional expense will be covered by encumbrance of some other legitimately transferred departmental budgeted funds.

F. Upon completion of sabbatical leave and within 60 calendar days of the beginning of the academic term in which the faculty member who has returned from sabbatical leave resumes his\her regular duties, the faculty member must submit a written sabbatical leave report to the President with copies to the Provost, department chair and dean. The report must detail activities of the sabbatical leave, providing appropriate evidence of successful completion of the professional improvement(s) proposed by the leave application.

G. Upon completion of sabbatical leave and within the first semester of resumption of his/her normal instructional duties, the faculty member who has returned from sabbatical leave is responsible to schedule and conduct a formal, oral presentation based upon his/her sabbatical leave to his/her department or school. This requirement may also be met by oral presentation of the sabbatical to a university-wide group within the same timeframe given above.