Carnegie Mellon University

Faculty Parental Leave 

POLICY TITLE: Faculty Parental Leave Policy
DATE OF ISSUANCE: This policy was approved by the President's Council on November 16, 2001. The effective date is January 1, 2002.
ACCOUNTABLE DEPARTMENT/UNIT: Office of the Provost. Questions on policy content should be directed to the Office of the Provost at 412-268-3260.
ABSTRACT: Details entitlement, policy and procedures regarding parental leaves of absence for regular faculty members (tenure-track, teaching-track, librarian and archivist-track, and research-track).
RELATED FORMS: Online forms can be found on the Faculty Leaves page of the Vice Provost for Faculty website.

Policy Statement

A regular faculty member (tenure-track, teaching-track, librarian and archivist-track and research-track) who is the parent of a newborn child, or who has adopted a child of pre-school age, and who is the primary care giver of the child, is entitled to a one semester paid leave of absence. Teaching or other duties that would otherwise be carried out during the period of leave may not be shifted to other semesters against the wishes of the person taking such paid leave. Tenure-track faculty members without tenure who take a one-semester paid parental leave, may, at their discretion, exclude one year from current service for the purpose of determining the tenure decision deadline. Reappointment and promotion clocks may similarly be delayed by one year for all regular faculty taking one semester of paid parental leave.

This policy will be implemented subject to the following:

  1. For a period of three years following the commencement of this policy (effective date: January 1, 2002), requests for paid faculty parental leave, and specifics about each case, will be submitted to the Provost for approval. After three years, refinements and elaborations (if any) to procedures set forth below will be codified, requiring approval by Employee Retirement and Welfare Benefit Plan Committee (ERWBPC) and the Executive Committee of the Faculty Senate.
  2. During the first three years, at least once a year, or more frequently if requested by the Faculty Senate, the Provost will meet with the Faculty Senate Executive Committee to report on any issues that may have arisen regarding paid faculty parental leaves.
  3. Except in exceptional circumstances, the leave should occur within the first 12 months of the birth or adoptive placement of a child. In some instances, some part of the leave may occur before the birth of the child, but generally the bulk of the leave will be taken after the birth of the child.
  4. The CMU Benefits Pool will cover the salary and benefits of the faculty member during this paid leave of absence.
  5. The Provost will, in the first three years of this policy, seek to clarify and adjust criteria for status as a "primary care giver," starting from the presumption that primary care givers have fewer than 30 hours of child care assistance per week, paid or otherwise.
  6. It is not the intent of the policy to provide salary support when otherwise there would be none, e.g., during the summer.
  7. The intent of the policy is to provide paid leave for parents of children of pre-school age. So, for example, if a faculty member marries someone with older children, and proceeds to adopt these children, he or she is not necessarily entitled to receive benefits under this policy.
  8. The university, deans, and department heads shall communicate these benefits to all regular faculty and be supportive during their use.
  9. Nothing in this Policy is intended to interfere with or supersede a faculty member's right to unpaid leave in accordance with the university's policy under the Family and Medical Leave Act or the right to paid disability leave under the university's disability benefits plans, although parental leave under this Policy may be required to run concurrently with such other leaves.