Modified Duties for New Parents

Applies to: Professors, Associate Professors, and Assistant Professors
  1. Policy


    The purpose of this policy is to provide eligible faculty members with a period of time in which to adjust to the demands of parenting newly born or adopted children under the age of six.

    The University’s Paid Maternity (Childbirth) and Parental Leave policy provides faculty with a paid leave (maternity (childbirth) leave plan for disability due to childbirth or related medical conditions as well as a paid leave (parental leave) to bond with a newborn, newly adopted, or newly fostered child, or a new legal guardianship of a child.  See Standard Practice Guide 201.30-6, Paid Maternity (Childbirth) and Parental Leaves. Eligibility faculty may choose to take the parental leave under the Paid Parental Leaves SPG in lieu of one semester of modified duties.

    An eligible faculty member who declines the 6-week parental leave under the Paid Parental Leaves SPG, and meets the criteria below, is entitled, upon request, to a period of modified duties without a reduction in salary:

    • Gives birth to a child, or becomes a parent of a newly born or adopted child (or children in the case of a multiple birth or adoption of more than one child simultaneously) under the age of six,
    • Takes significant and sustained care-giving responsibility for the child (or children) during the period for which modified duties are requested as a single parent or, where there are two parents, that is at least as time-consuming as the care-giving responsibility of the faculty member’s spouse or partner, and
    • Meets the regulations described in Section II of this policy.

    The relevant dean (or his or her designate), in consultation with the eligible faculty member, will determine the ways in which the faculty member’s duties will be modified. At a minimum the relevant school or college will make arrangements that relieve the faculty member from direct teaching responsibilities for the period of modified duties. For faculty members with significant direct clinical responsibilities or limited teaching obligations, other modifications will be provided appropriate to their circumstances. Faculty on modified duties status will typically be expected to fulfill their other professional responsibilities during the period of modified duties, including those responsibilities for which the faculty member is uniquely qualified, such as advising doctoral candidates.

    A period of modified duties does not affect a faculty member’s tenure probationary period. The relevant complementary policy is Standard Practice Guide 201.92, Tenure Probationary Period: Effects on Tenure Clock of Childbearing and Dependent Care Responsibilities, which provides guidelines about excluding time from the years of countable service that constitute the tenure probationary period due to the effects of pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions or due to the demands of dependent care.

    The schools, colleges, and campuses may adopt policies that provide periods of modified duties for other groups of faculty. The schools and colleges may define modified duties more broadly than the requirements set forth in this policy.

  2. Regulations

    1. This policy applies to eligible faculty upon employment.
    2. An eligible faculty member may take one term of modified duties for each birth or adoption that adds a child or children to his or her family. If both parents are employed in an eligible position at the University, each of them may take a period of modified duties for each birth or adoption that adds a child or children to their family if both of them meet the other eligibility criteria.
    3. For birth mothers who are eligible faculty only, a second term of modified duties (as provided for above) will be granted upon request.
    4. All periods of modified duties must begin within twelve months of the date of the relevant birth or adoption.



SPG Number
Date Issued
Last Updated
Next Review Date
Applies To
Professors, Associate Professors, and Assistant Professors
Office of the Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs
Primary Contact
Office of the Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs