Faculty Handbook, Policies and Handbooks | Earlham College
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Faculty Handbook


The Earlham Faculty consists of all teachers and administrators at the College. While there is a division of labor and a corresponding distinction between administrative faculty and teaching faculty, the distinction is not a sharp one. All of us are educators in one way or another; the unity of the faculty reflects the fact that the College educates students in the way
it operates as well as in the classroom. Moreover, the College strives to be a community of persons living and working together to reach common aims. This handbook reports policies and procedures related to both groups, when applicable, and to each group the teaching faculty and the administrators separately when appropriate.

This document contains two parts. The first is the faculty handbook which is an extension of the College's contract with teaching and administrative faculty.

The second part contains the administrative policies and procedures of the College that pertain to faculty. These policies and procedures are not considered extensions of the College's contract with faculty members.

The aim of the faculty handbook is to provide faculty members with a clear, accurate and comprehensive overview of their contractual relationship to the college so that important personnel practices and related matters are as transparent as possible. In particular it describes the processes and criteria of evaluation for hiring, renewal, and tenure (where appropriate), as well as the conditions under which faculty positions may be eliminated. This handbook has evolved over time and been revised approximately every ten years. It has been approved by the faculty meeting and the Board of Trustees. Unless noted on the specific page, this text is the version approved in 2013.

The College will use the processes and definitions in this handbook to guide its decision making. It is important that faculty members understand their rights as well as the limits to those rights and the handbook strives to make this clear. The policies in the handbook aim to be equitable and fair to both the College and to faculty. We emphasize the decision making
processes of the College with special attention to the consultation leading to the formation of consensus, as well as the special role of the President and Board of Trustees who, in addition to being part of the consultation and consensus process, have independent decision making authority. Faculty members should be clear that they have control over some aspects and parameters of their review files and other aspects of the decision making process, but not others; the handbook strives to make clear where each is the case.

The previous edition of the handbook cited the Elders of Balby Friends Meeting of 1656 who urged that rules be interpreted with the measure of light that is pure and holy in order to avoid narrow rule making, for the letter killeth and the Spirit giveth life.* While we affirm that rules should be interpreted in the spirit of community building and not be used punitively when creative solutions to problems may be found, we also believe that a clear articulated set of guidelines and policies for making important decisions is an important basis for equity. Accordingly, we have tried to provide sufficient detail and specificity to eliminate confusion and uncertainty yet to resist specifying guidelines and policies for every conceivable situation. Good decision making must achieve a balance between impersonal rules and personal judgments, founded on the evidence under consideration, and this handbook contains our latest effort to provide a framework to lead us to good decisions.

* II Corinthians 3:6

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Earlham College, an independent, residential college, aspires to provide the highest-quality undergraduate education in the liberal arts and sciences, shaped by the distinctive perspectives of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers).

Earlham College
801 National Road West
Richmond, Indiana
1-765-983-1200 — Main Switchboard
1-800-EARLHAM (327-5426) — Admission


Earlham admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin, age, gender and sexual orientation to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin, age, gender and sexual orientation in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.