Sabbatical Program Overview

The AFT Negotiating Team won a major victory for full-time faculty in the 2002 contract settlement: the permanent reinstatement of a Sabbatical Leave program (officially called Extended Professional Development Leave), one option under the Professional Development Program. Application forms must be submitted to the office of the Vice President of Instruction on each campus by February 1 for full-year leaves beginning in the Fall of the following academic year, or one-semester leaves for either the Fall or Spring semester of the following academic year. Application forms are available on the AFT website ( or they may be picked up at the office of the Vice President of Instruction on each campus. Once applications are submitted, they will be sent on to the Chairs of the Professional Development Committees.

Although the Sabbatical option is not fully funded, there will be opportunities for a number of faculty members to receive these valuable leaves aimed at providing productive time away from normal academic duties. If you intend to apply for a Sabbatical, please plan carefully, working out the details of your plan with your Division/Department Dean. The following language, taken from Article 13 of the new contract, will help clarify the guidelines for the Sabbatical Leave program.

Extended professional development leave is intended to provide full release from regular duties and enable unit members to respond to changing educational conditions and to engage in substantive professional growth projects. Extended leaves allow time for advanced formal coursework, independent study, work experience, programs of study and/or research and other beneficial activities which do not fall under regular faculty responsibilities.

Compensation: All participants will receive their regular pay and fringe benefits for leaves up to a
full semester. For projects with full release from regular duties for an academic year, participants will receive all fringe benefits and eighty percent (80%) of their regular pay.

1. Participants on extended leaves may use previously banked time to bring their compensation up to 100% during a leave.

2. Overload pay or reassigned time activities shall not be used to bring compensation up to 100% while participants are on an extended leave.

Types of Activities for extended leave projects: For extended leaves of a full semester or academic year, activities will be considered according to one or more of the following categories; all categories will be considered equally.

1. Retraining of applicant to allow for future new assignment in a needed area;

2. Study, project or activity that provides an applicant with opportunities to upgrade skills and knowledge for current or future assignments;

3. Study, project or activity for the improvement of curriculum, educational delivery, student personnel services or other support services;

4. Study, project or activity for development or revision of certificate or degree program;

5. Study, project or activity related to feasibility or revision of new or existing programs.

Eligibility: All full-time academic employees who have completed six years of continuous paid service with the District directly preceding the term of the requested leave are eligible for extended leaves of a full semester or academic year. District authorized paid leaves will not constitute a break in service.

Selection Process: The Professional Development Committee on each campus shall consist of three AFT appointed faculty members, one Academic Senate appointed representative and two administrators.

Selection for extended leaves will be governed by:

a) relative merits of the application

b) potential of future service to the District

c) seniority

Applicants whose requests have been denied by the Committee shall be informed, in writing, of the reasons for denial.

Application Procedures for Extended Leaves: Eligible faculty must submit a proposal to the Chair of the Professional Development Committee by February 1 of the preceding academic year. Each application must be accompanied by: a) an outline of the planned project, program, activity or work experience including a statement of purpose and objectives; b) a description of the activities involved; and c) a plan for sharing or applying the result of the activity.

Return from Leaves: Within thirty (30) days after returning to regular duties, each leave recipient will submit one or more of the following, providing evidence of having met the objectives stated in the initial application. Documentation will be submitted to the President and the Chair of the Professional Development Committee.

a. A transcript of courses taken and grades earned

b. A report on the educational benefits of project or activity undertaken

c. A description of plans for application of new skills and knowledge to teaching assignment and/or campus program

d. Letter from an employer verifying work experience

e. Samples of creative work, summary of research, and other evidence of original work produced as a result of leave.

The Professional Development Committee may request further evidence beyond that which is submitted by the recipient; such evidence must be submitted within two weeks of the committee’s request.

Return Obligation: Recipients of extended leaves for an academic year must work for the District for two years after returning from such leave. Recipients of an extended leave for a full-semester must work for the District for one year after returning from such leave. If a faculty member fails to fulfill this return obligation, the District has the right to ratably recover salary and benefits costs, unless otherwise mutually agreed to between the District and the faculty member.