Tenured Faculty

The former dean of Texas Southern University’s law school just sued the university. I’m Amy E. Feldman.

The now-former dean of Texas Southern University’s law school had been a tenured professor at the university before she became the dean. But when she was let go from her role as dean, she was also stripped of her tenured faculty position, so she just sued the university. 

Turns out, being a tenured professor is a pretty sweet deal. Tenure is a status awarded to a professor after a several years-long probationary period, and it generally comes with a guarantee of job security for life. It’s intended to protect academic freedom by shielding professors from the fear of losing their jobs over unpopular beliefs, and depending on the university, can usually only be revoked if the institution has a financial crisis or is closing the department.  

Simply not liking the tenured faculty member—even one who files a lawsuit against those who awarded it—is usually not enough to revoke it.

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