Under the new policy, tenured professors can be terminated only for just cause, or if their department is being discontinued because of financial exigency or “educational considerations.” It defines educational considerations as “long-range judgments,” voted on by faculty, “that the educational mission of the institution as a whole will be enhanced by a program’s discontinuance.”
That is a narrower set of justifications than the language in the state budget, which allows for professors to be fired in the event their program is discontinued, curtailed, modified or redirected. If any of those changes were to occur, the policy states, administrators would have to place faculty in a position at the same rank in another department.
Protections like these go far beyond what is necessary to preserve academic freedom. They are just blunt protectionism. Unfortunately, they don’t have to pay for protecting useless departments and bad teachers. The taxpayers and the students do.