Bill to increase tenure-track positions referred to committee

From staff reports

From staff reports

A bill to establish the intent to create new full-time tenure track positions passed in the Committee on Higher Education Tuesday in Olympia.

According to House Bill 1238, student completion and success in college improve when students are taught by tenured faculty. The bill reports that in 2016 only 45 to 55 percent of state and regional educators were on full-time tenure track.

For every two tenure-track positions a four-year university creates in 2017-2019, the program must award the university $100,000 for that fiscal biennium as well as $100,000 for the 2019-2021 fiscal biennium.

The money awarded through this program must be used solely to fund a third full-time tenure track position with the four-year university.

According to the bill, a new full-time tenure track faculty position means a post that did not exist at the institution before the fall of 2017.

Vacant tenure positions needing to be filled due to retirement or other reasons do not count toward this new program and will not be considered a new position.

Four-year public institutions can receive up to $500,000 dollars, according to the bill.

According to the bill, the duties of the newly created full-time tenure track positions must include a full-time teaching load, advising and curriculum development.

If specific funding for this act is not provided by June 30, this legislature is null and void, according to the bill.

This is the second version of the bill to be read to the House Committee on Higher Education. The first was read during a public hearing Jan 24.

Reporting by Kaia Johnson