Faculty Parental Leave Policy

Berea College is committed to full compliance with applicable federal and state laws pertaining to maternity, paternity, and adoptive leaves. This Faculty Parental Leave Policy (the “Policy”) goes beyond the requirements of the Pregnancy Discrimination Act and the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and supports College Faculty by making paid pregnancy, maternity, paternity, or adoptive leave (individually and collectively referred to as “Parental Leave”) available for full-time College Faculty members who satisfy the following requirements and procedures.

Policy Requirements and Procedures:

  1. Parental Family Leave is considered time used against the maximum twelve weeks of family medical leave under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and runs concurrently with FMLA. Only one Parental Leave is permitted per child.
  2. This leave of absence will not count against the timing or eligibility of sabbatical or other leaves.
  3. Unless the College Faculty member makes a specific, written request to the Dean of Faculty that the tenure date be altered, a Parental Leave will not alter one’s tenure date.
  4. The College Faculty member will consult with the Dean of Faculty far enough in advance, normally five to six months in advance, of the requested leave date to allow for sufficient time to review course arrangements and secure adequate replacement. The leave request should be in writing to the Dean of Faculty, though it is expected that conversations prior or after such a request will occur. The Dean of Faculty will respond in writing, copying Human Resources.
  5. The response from the Dean of Faculty will prompt Human Resources to provide the necessary FMLA paperwork to the College Faculty member to complete before the faculty member's leave.
  6. When more than two weeks of absence will fall within one fall or spring academic term, the eligible faculty member will be relieved of teaching responsibilities during the entire semester in which the child is born or adopted.
  7. The eligible College Faculty member will receive a two-course release during the term the child is born or adopted. This time will be paid, subject to all of the usual tax and other withholdings. Should the College Faculty member wish to have additional time beyond the two-course release, this may be arranged, in advance, without pay. The granting of additional unpaid leave (beyond that required under FMLA) is within the discretion of the Dean of Faculty, after considering individual and institutional needs.
  8. Should the birth or adoption of the child occur between May 5 and June 15, the College Faculty member will receive a one-course release, with pay, generally during the fall term. Regular advising and committee responsibilities would be unaffected by this release.
  9. A College Faculty member receiving a course reduction affirms to be the primary caregiver of the child during the time of the course reduction. Course reductions are only available to faculty serving in the role of primary caregivers. Secondary caregivers may receive time away from teaching, generally for one to two weeks, and this absence can be arranged through conversations and agreements with the Dean of Faculty and the secondary caregiver’s program and/or divisional colleagues. A secondary caregiver must be the spouse or partner of the primary caregiver.
  10. In the case that both parents are College Faculty members, then only the appropriate course release may be taken for a given birth or adoption. If one parent is a College Faculty member and the other is a Berea staff member, the parents are similarly limited to one leave benefit, which can be shared as discussed with the Dean of Faculty as well as the staff member’s supervisor.
  11. College Faculty members failing to return and work for the College for the term following the paid Parental Family Leave will be required to reimburse the College for the cost of the benefit.

Approved by the Administrative Committee on April 30, 2014.