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At times, lecturer faculty need to take a leave of absence for a term or for a year for medical reasons, to pursue a short-term employment opportunity, or to care for a new child. In this situation, lecturer faculty may worry about losing their rights to future employment or to a three-year contract if they take time off from teaching.

Know this: An approved leave of absence without pay protects a lecturer’s rights to future employment. For the purposes of future work, the period of the leave of absence is treated as if the lecturer had worked the semester they were on leave. For example, if a lecturer is scheduled to teach nine units in the Spring 2024 semester, but instead takes an approved leave of absence, then the university considers that lecturer to have been assigned nine units in the Spring 2024 semester for the purposes of calculating their 2024-25 workload.

Conversely, if a lecturer is hired as a substitute to replace a lecturer colleague on a leave of absence, then that substitute lecturer does not accrue any rights to additional employment. For example, if a lecturer picks up three units of substitute work to replace a colleague on an approved leave of absence, then that lecturer does not receive credit for teaching that course when calculating their workload for the next academic year. 

The contract language can be found in Article 22.2 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA), found here.

Want to learn more? Become active with your local CFA chapter Faculty Rights team. Find your representative here.

  • Browse the faculty contract here.
  • See an archive of Faculty Rights Tips.
  • If you have questions about a faculty rights tip or would like to suggest a tip, please write us with the subject line “Faculty Rights Tip.”
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