Why theological schools need tenure Pakistan Accrediting Association of Theological Education PAATE Pakistan www.paate.org
Why theological schools need tenure
Feb 18, 2016 by Greg Carey
Theological schools occupy a unique place within higher education. With relatively small enrollments and modest endowments, seminaries feel the cutting edge of change. Online learning, new degree programs, and nontraditional scheduling proliferate. And rumors abound that one school or another might shut down.
In the fall, Andover Newton announced a radical restructuring that involves selling the campus and downsizing faculty and staff; it may also entail a merger into (not with) Yale Divinity School. Pennsylvania’s two Lutheran seminaries, in Gettysburg and Philadelphia, announced a reboot last month: both schools will close in order to create a new, multi-campus institution. One news reportplaced tenured faculty at the center of the problem:
combining into one institution…could solve the thorny problem of what to do with tenured faculty, whose salaries and benefits weigh heavily on each school’s budget.
The logic: if a school ceases to exist, then it’s no longer obligated to retain faculty members, even if they had tenure. A new school has the flexibility to start over.
It’s true. Tenured faculty entail great cost. They command higher salaries than entry-level and contingent (adjunct) faculty. They can be reluctant to embrace radical change, as their positions are closely tied to past decisions. Schools cannot easily redesign their instructional staffs when tenure is common. And so long as tenured professors perform adequately, institutions cannot get rid of them without announcing a financial crisis — not the sort of public message an institution wants to deliver.
Association for Biblical Higher Education (formerly Accrediting Association of Bible Colleges, now replaced by ABHE), Agencia Acreditadora de la Iglesia Adventista, Asia Baptist Graduate Theological Seminary, Association for Biblical Higher Education, Brazilian Association of Institutions of Baptist Theological Education, Association of Centres of Adult Theological Education, Association of Canadian Bible Colleges, Accreditation Commission Czech Republic, Accrediting Commission International, Association of Christian Schools, Australian College of Theology, Accrediting Council for Theological Education in Africa, ACTS Seminaries, Trinity Western University, Association for Evangelical Theological Education in Latin America, American Federation of Christian Colleges & Schools, Asociacion Latinoamericana de Instituciones de Educacion Teologica, Australian and New Zealand Association of Theological Schools, Asia Pacific Theological Association, Agentur für Qualirätssicherung durch Akkreditierung von Studiengängen, Australian Quality Training Framework, Romanian Agency for Quality Assurance in Higher Education, Association of Reformed Theological Seminaries, Association of Southern African Theological Institutions, Association of Seminaries and Theological Institutions, Australian Skills Quality Authority, Asociacao de Seminarios Teologicos Evangelicos, Association of Theology Institutions in Francophone Africa, Asia Theological Association, Australian Tertiary Education Qualifications and Standards Agency, Association for Theological Education in South East Asia, Association of Theological Institutions in East Africa, Association for Theological Schools in the Middle East, Association of Theological Institutions in Southern and Central Africa, Academia Teologii Katholikiej, Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada, African Theological Training Service, Association of University Departments of Theology and Religious Studies, British Accreditation Council, Bulgarian Evangelical Theological Institute, Brussels Theological Faculty, British Universities of Academics, Council for Christian Colleges and Universities, Carribbean Evangelical Theological Association, Comunidad de Educacion Teologica Ecumenica Latinoamericana y Caribe, Cheltenham & Gloucester College of Education, Commission of Higher Education of the Philippines, Conseil des Institutions Théologiques d’Afrique francophone, Conference of Catholic Theological Institutions, Committee on Theological Education of China Christian Council, Comunidad Teológica de México, Catholic University of Eastern Africa, Euro-Asian Accrediting Association, European Evangelical Accrediting Association, European Pentecostal Theological Association, French Ministry of Education, Gimlekollen Media Høgskole, Hungarian Ministry of Education, International Accrediting Commission for Schools, International Association for Theological Accreditation, International Council for Evangelical Theological Education, International Correspondence Institutute, Institut Catholique de Paris, Institut de formation théologique de Montréal, Japanese Association of Theological Education, Korean Association of Accredited Theological Schools, Magyar Akkreditációs Bizottság, Malaysia Association of Theological Schools, Middle East Association for Theological Education, Ministério da Educação e Cultura, The National Accreditation Board of Ghana, Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges, North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, National Evaluation and Accreditation Agency, North East Asia Association of Theological Schools, National Home Study Council, Norwegian Agency for Quality Assurance in Education, Namibia Qualifications Authority, NSW Department of Education and Training, New Zealand Qualification Authority, Oxford Centre for Mission Studies, Philippine Accrediting Association of Schools, Philippine Association of Bible and Theological Schools, Persekutuan Antar Sekolah Teologi Injili in Indonesia, Papieska Akademia Teologiczna w Krakowie, Indonesian Association of Theological Schools, Państwowej Komisji Akredytacyjnej, Quality Assurance Agency UK, Southern Accrediting Association of Bible Colleges, Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, South African Theological Seminary, South Pacific Association of Bible Colleges, South Pacific Association of Evangelical Colleges, South Pacific Association of Theological Schools, Sekolah Teol. Gereja Kemah Inji, The Association For Theological Education by Extension, Tanzania Commission of Universities, Tertiary Education Commission Sierra Leone, Tasmanian Qualifications Authority, Transnational Association of Christian Colleges and Schools, Uganda National Council for Higher Education, West African Advanced School of Theology, West Africa Association of Theological Institutions, Western Association of Schools and Colleges, World Conference of Associations of Theological Institutions, Pakistan Accrediting Association of Theological Education PAATE Pakistan www.paate.org