Faculty: Parental Accommodation Policy for Officers of Instruction

Last Updated: 
Effective Date: 
Reason for Policy: 

Policies that provide consistent family accommodation practices for childbearing and childrearing responsibilities are fundamental to an equitable and productive work environment, contributing broadly to a healthy educational community. In support of gender equity, this policy sets forth minimum institutional requirements for reduced workload to assist faculty members in balancing professional and family responsibilities when a child has been added to the family through birth or adoption.

This policy enhances the existing benefit of full paid leave, covered by accrued and borrowed sick leave, by adding the new benefit of a term or semester of modified duties for parenting leave for birth or adoption for officers of instruction.1

Recognizing the less flexible nature of teaching responsibilities and the need to provide family accommodation policies to recruit and retain faculty members, this policy applies to tenure-related or career NTTF faculty members. It is the hope of the Provost's Task Force on Gender Equity that this policy will provide a step toward a broader family accommodation policy for all UO employees.

1 In the case of the Law School, which is on a semester system, this new benefit would entail a semester of modified duties.


Modified duty for an eligible faculty member is defined as a release from teaching responsibilities for tenure-related faculty and a one-course reduction for eligible instructors, with full pay status, for a set period of time following birth or adoption. During this time, the eligible faculty member will continue to conduct scholarly work, student advising, research, and other professional responsibilities, including departmental and university service as applicable to his or her position description.

Paid parental leave for faculty is defined as the period of time an eligible faculty member is relieved of all responsibilities while receiving full salary and benefits following birth or adoption. This leave runs concurrently with all applicable federal and state leave designations.

Policy Statement: 


Upon request of the faculty member, a paid leave will be granted following the birth or adoption of a child. During such leave, full salary will be continued immediately following the birth of the child or adoption by the faculty member who is using his/her accrued sick leave.

  • Following giving birth to a child, the mother uses her accrued sick leave up to a maximum of 12 weeks. In the event that she does not have sufficient accrued sick leave, advanced sick leave may be borrowed for the remainder of the first six weeks from date of birth per OAR Sick Leave 580-021-0040 (5). 2 Based on the timing of the birth or adoption, this paid leave may extend into a second term or semester, in which case this paid leave extends into the term or semester designated for modified duties.
  • Following the birth of a child, the parent who has not given birth may use all accrued sick leave as applicable. Based on the time of the birth, this paid leave may extend into a second term or semester, in which case this paid leave extends into the term or semester designated for modified duties.
  • Following the adoption of a child, paid parental leave is similarly granted with any accrued sick leave to be used as applicable. Faculty may not borrow sick leave in the case of adoption. Should accrued sick leave be exhausted, the faculty member may continue on unpaid leave status. The department head will consult with the appropriate dean regarding arrangements for replacement teaching and/or related needs and funding.

These leave options do not constitute a change to existing sick leave policy.


In addition to the paid parental leave described above, an eligible faculty member has the option to take up to one term or semester of modified duties at full pay status. Modified duties status provides full or partial release from classroom and classroom-related teaching responsibilities (see definition of modified duties) at full pay following birth or adoption, without using accrued or advanced sick leave. This constitutes an extension of the existing leave policies regarding birth or adoption.

2 Because faculty members cannot borrow sick leave for a health condition other than their own, Unearned Sick Leave Advance is only an option for biological mothers. The advance can only be borrowed for the first six weeks from the date of birth as this is the period of time the mother is considered incapacitated for a normal delivery. Therefore, the amount that can be borrowed would be 240 hours based on a 1.0 FTE, less sick leave hours accrued at the onset of the leave. See the relevant Oregon Administrative Rule:https://hr.uoregon.edu/policy/leaves/sick-leave-oar for further information on Sick Leave Advance.

Exclusions and Special Situations: 

To be eligible for paid parental leave and/or modified duties as described in this policy, a faculty member must be employed .5 or more FTE in a tenure-related or career NTTF appointment.

When both parents are eligible faculty members, either parent is eligible to receive paid parental leave. The other parent may request leave as allowed under the applicable state and federal Family Leave Acts. Alternatively both parents may arrange to split paid parental leave.

Both parents are eligible to receive modified duties status as described in this policy.


The department head or other appropriate academic administrator is responsible for arranging for teaching replacements for both parental leave and the term or semester of modified duties.

Funding for both paid parental leave following adoption when accrued sick leave has been exhausted and for the coverage of classes affected by the teaching reduction during modified duties will be borne by departments, in consultation with the appropriate deans.

The university and its colleges expect that faculty members giving birth or adopting children will routinely use this benefit. Use of this benefit shall not adversely affect the faculty member's standing or salary in any manner.

Any release from or reduction of teaching responsibilities does not mean that the faculty member will be required to carry more than a normal load before or after the leave.

Because the timing of births and adoptions is not easily accommodated by academic quarters or semesters, the implementation of modified duties needs to be flexible. Department heads should consult with the appropriate dean regarding any questions or issues that arise regarding implementation.

Who is Governed by this Policy: 


Who Should Know This Policy: 


Reviewed and Approved By: 
Richard W. Lariviere, President
Issued by: 
Office of the Senior Vice President and Provost
Revision History: 
21 June 2010 - Approved by the Executive Leadership Team <document>
28 December 2010- Approved by the university president <signature document>
Original Source: 
UO Policy Statement