Tenure Isn’t What Most People Think It Is

I have been guilty of playing into the hands of critics by joking about my tenure status. All tenure really means is that my position is subject to an “at will” form of employment. If it were, administrators could fire me for discussing a controversial topic or making my students uncomfortable in some way. What tenure does is ensure that the university of a place of a free exchange of ideas where faculty members can pursue their scholarship wherever it may lead.

“Tenure departs from this default rule because it requires employers to articulate reasonable grounds for firing an employee. Because grounds that are reasonable can rarely be identified instantaneously and without some due process, tenure also often effectively imposes a “notice” requirement that allows employees a chance to respond.”

Inside Higher Ed

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