Policy IV-G: Policies on Dismissal / Disciplinary Actions

Policy on Termination or Demotion for Contractual Employees

  1. INTRODUCTION

This policy establishes uniform standards for termination or demotion of an employee during the term of the employee’s contract. 

  1. DEFINITIONS
  1.  A “termination” is a decision by the College to cease employing an individual before the expiration date in the individual’s contract.  Non-renewal of a contract is not a termination.
  1.  A “demotion” is a reduction in position, responsibilities and pay.
  1. Terminations and demotions shall be based on evidence demonstrating the existence of just cause and/or good cause.  Just cause and/or good cause includes, but is not limited to:
  1. Failing to perform duties or to take action that another College employee reasonably would have done under the same or similar circumstances;
  2. Engaging in conduct that would tend to injure or impair the College’s interests, reputation or operations;
  3. Engaging in conduct that is contrary to the mission and values of the College or that is inconsistent with the employer/employee relationship.
  1.  GENERAL POLICY
  1. Discrimination Is Prohibited
  1. Termination or demotion decisions shall be made without regard to the employee’s race, creed, color, national origin, citizenship status, age, disability, pregnancy, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, marital status, or veteran status. 
  2. A decision to terminate employment or demote an employee shall not be based on an employee’s exercise of rights guaranteed by the Constitution or based upon an employee’s exercise of rights conferred by statute, including, but not limited to, federal or state statutes pertaining to medical leave, military leave, and protection of whistleblowers.
  1.  Administrative Leave

While a termination or demotion proposal is pending, or during the course of an on-going internal/external investigation, the Chancellor, or his/her designee, may suspend or reassign the affected employee with pay if it is determined that suspension or reassignment is in the best interest of the College or the College Community.

  1.  Only the Chancellor or his/her designee is authorized to approve a termination or demotion.
  2. Appeal of Termination or Demotion
  1. An employee whose employment contract is recommended for termination during the term of the contract, or who is recommended for demotion during the term of the contract, shall be afforded constitutional due process in accordance with published guidelines approved by the Chancellor.
  2. This policy does not apply to the non-renewal of Faculty, Staff or Administrator contracts at the end of the contract term.  Non-renewal is addressed in Board Policy IV-G-4.
  3. This policy does not apply to the appeal of a termination or demotion due to a Reduction in Force.  Terminations and demotions occurring in conjunction with a Reduction in Force are subject to Policy IV-G-5.

 

Policy #:

IV-G-1

Policy Name:

Policy on Termination or Demotion for Contractual Employees

Pages:

3

Adopted Date:

March 2, 1981

Revision/Reviewed Date:

March 7, 1983, September 7, 1993, February 5, 2008, April 28, 2014

Effective Date:

March 2, 1981, March 7, 1983, September 7, 1993, February 5, 2008, April 29, 2014

Associated Guideline:

Guideline 4.23

 

Policy on Termination or Demotion for Non-Contractual Employees

  1. INTRODUCTION

This Policy establishes a uniform practice for termination or demotion of non-contractual employees.

  1. DEFINITION
  1. Non-contractual employees are employed “at will,” an employment relationship in which either party can end the employment relationship at any time, for any reason, with or without cause.
  1. A “demotion” is a reduction in position, responsibilities and pay.
  1.  GENERAL POLICY
  1. Discrimination Is Prohibited

Termination and demotion decisions shall be made without regard to the employee’s race, creed, color, national origin, citizenship status, age, disability, pregnancy, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, marital status, or veteran status.  Additionally, the College shall not discriminate or retaliate against employees who exercise rights guaranteed by the Constitution or rights conferred by statute, including, but not limited to, the Family Medical Leave Act, Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act, and the Texas Whistleblower Act.

  1. Administrative Leave

While a termination or demotion recommendation is pending, or during the course of an on-going internal/external investigation, the Chancellor, or his/her designee, may suspend with pay or reassign the affected employee if it is determined that suspension or reassignment is in the best interest of the College or College Community.

  1. A non-contractual employee does not have a property right to his or her job.
  2. A non-contractual employee may be terminated or demoted with or without cause, except that if a reason exists, it is not an unlawful reason.
  3. A non-contractual employee is not granted the opportunity for an appeal of a termination or demotion; however, the employee is able to request a secondary review of his or her job termination or demotion.
  4. Only the Chancellor or his/her designee is authorized to approve a termination or demotion.
  5. This policy does not apply to Reduction in Force (RIF) decisions.  RIF decisions are subject to Policy IV-G-5.

 

Policy #:

IV-G-2

Policy Name:

Policy on Termination for Non-Contractual Employees

Pages:

2

Adopted Date:

March 2, 1981

Revision/Reviewed Date:

August 9, 1982, March 7, 1983 and June 1, 1992, April 28, 2014

Effective Date:

March 2, 1981, August 9, 1982, March 7, 1983 and June 1, 1992, April 29, 2014

Associated Guideline:

Guideline 4.15

 

Refer to Policy IV-G-1 Demotion and Termination of Contractual Employees

Policy on Non-Renewal of Contractual Personnel

  1. INTRODUCTION

This policy establishes a uniform practice for the non-renewal of contractual employees. 

  1. DEFINITION

Non-renewal of an employee contract occurs when the College declines to offer further employment at the expiration of the term of the contract.  Non-renewal may occur with or without cause, except that, if a reason exists, it is not an unlawful reason. 

  1. GENERAL POLICY
  1. Decisions regarding contract renewal and non-renewal shall be made without regard to the employee’s race, creed, color, national origin, citizenship status, age, disability, pregnancy, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, marital status, or veteran status.  Additionally, the College shall not discriminate or retaliate against employees who exercise rights guaranteed by the Constitution or rights conferred by statute, including, but not limited to, the Family Medical Leave Act, Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act, and the Texas Whistleblower Act.
  2. Written notice of non-renewal for employees will be provided as soon as practicable prior to the expiration date of the contract.   
  3. Upon notification to an employee that his or her contract will not be renewed, or while a non-renewal proposal is under consideration, the Chancellor, or his/her designee, may place the employee on paid administrative leave if it is determined that administrative leave is in the best interest of the College or College Community.
  4. In accordance with Texas Education Code § 51.960, full-time faculty may file an appeal regarding a non-renewal decision in accordance with the procedures specified in Guideline 5.17:  Contract Periods and Non-Renewal of Contractual Employee.
  5. Administrators and staff may not appeal a non-renewal decision; however, nothing in this policy precludes employees from appearing before the Board of Trustees during the hearing of citizens. 

 

Policy #:

IV-G-4

Policy Name:

Policy on Non-Renewal of Contractual Employees

Pages:

2

Adopted Date:

May 2, 1994

Revision/Reviewed Date:

April 6, 1998, April 28, 2014

Effective Date:

May 2, 1994, April 6, 1998, April 29, 2014

Associated Guideline:

Guideline 5.17

 

Policy IV-G-5: Policy on Reduction in Force

  1.  INTRODUCTION
    This policy establishes a uniform process for implementing a reduction in force (RIF) at the College.
  2. DEFINITION

A “reduction in force” is an action to downsize the size of the College’s work force within a particular unit, department, division, support area, campus, or location. A reduction in force may become necessary in the event of a financial exigency, program change or elimination, reorganization or restructuring, legislative directives, or other circumstances affecting the efficient operation of the College and the delivery of quality services.

A “financial exigency” is an event or occurrence that creates a need for the College to reduce financial expenditures.

  1. GENERAL POLICY
  1. A reduction in force (RIF) decision will be made without regard to the employee’s race, creed, color, national origin, citizenship status, age, disability, pregnancy, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, marital status, or veteran status.  Additionally, no RIF decision shall be based on an employee’s exercise of rights guaranteed by the Constitution or rights conferred by statute, including, but not limited to, the Family Medical Leave Act, Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act, and the Texas Whistleblower Act.
  2. Modification in or the elimination of jobs due to changes in funding for grants or external contracts are not subject to this policy.
  3. This policy does not address or govern dismissal of an employee for misconduct, unacceptable performance, or other reasons specified in other Board policies.
  4. The Chancellor will:
    1. Determine when circumstances necessitate a RIF and present a written recommendation to the Board of Trustees that demonstrates the need for the RIF.
    2. Consider and examine available alternatives that may eliminate the need for a RIF or limit its scope.
  1. The Board shall determine whether a financial exigency or other circumstance exists that warrants a reduction in force under this policy. The Board’s determination constitutes sufficient cause for termination of an employment contract during the contract period.
  2. The Chancellor shall establish a guideline for implementation of this policy. The guideline shall identify the criteria that will be utilized when determining which employees will be dismissed or released.
  3. The Chancellor may reassign employees to positions or locations at his or her discretion to meet operational needs.
  4. Eligibility for Rehire
    1. A former employee who is dismissed pursuant to this policy may apply for other available positions for which he or she is qualified. A former employee shall be responsible for reviewing posted vacancies and complying with College procedures to be considered for a particular vacancy.
  5. Appeal of Dismissal Due to Reduction in Force
  1. Termination During the Term of the Contract: An employee whose employment contract is terminated during the term of the contract shall be afforded due process.
  2. Nonrenewal of Faculty Contracts at the End of the Contract Term: Full-time faculty members whose contracts are not extended due to a RIF shall be afforded appeal rights as required by §51.960 of the Texas Education Code. 
  3. Nonrenewal of Professional Contracts; Dismissal of At-Will Employees and Adjunct Faculty: Affected employees may present a written appeal in accordance with a procedure established by the Chancellor.

 

Policy #:

IV-G-5

Policy Name:

Policy on Reduction in Force

Pages:

2

Adopted Date:

January 10, 2005

Revision/Reviewed Date:

June 6, 2011, April 28, 2014

Effective Date:

January 10, 2005, June 6, 2011, April 29, 2014

Associated Guideline:

Guideline 4.22