Sam Fox School Faculty Voting Policy

Governance of the Sam Fox School depends on the commitment of its faculty to shared responsibility in a wide variety of matters shaping the future of the School. By receiving a faculty appointment to the Sam Fox School one assumes their role as part of this governing body.

Faculty regularly meet in committee and general faculty meetings to discuss and vote on important issues. For votes to accurately reflect the will of the faculty it is essential that faculty avail themselves of the relevant information, attend the discussions, and make their voice heard in the vote. General categories of voting include academic policy, curriculum, governance policy (how the school is operated and managed), committee membership, and matters of appointment, retention, promotion, and tenure.

A vote to amend the Policy on Faculty Appointment, Retention, Tenure, and Promotion requires a 2/3 quorum and a simple majority constitutes a positive vote. For more general policy matters, including academic policy and curriculum, a simple majority of faculty is required to hold the vote, and a majority vote will be accepted as positive. The committee chair presenting the material for faculty review on policy should circulate that material via email and request commentary and votes from anyone unable to attend the vote.

For those matters other than cases of tenure, appointment, or promotion, voice or show-of-hands may suffice for the vote. The faculty Chairperson will determine the need for a paper ballot at that time of the vote.

Votes on tenure, appointment, and promotion in the Sam Fox School require a quorum of 2/3 of eligible voting faculty present. For these cases a vote of less than 75% in support of a candidate will be characterized as being less than a positive recommendation of the faculty and will be conveyed as such to the Dean and Director. These votes, while not binding, are considered an important and essential advisory guideline to the Dean and Director.

Votes on tenure, appointment, and promotion require paper ballots to be on record with the Dean’s office. Faculty unable to attend the vote in person may file an absentee ballot provided they demonstrate they have reviewed the materials relevant to the vote. The anonymity of the absentee ballot will be maintained by the faculty chairperson conducting the meeting.

Tenured and Tenure-track faculty are eligible to vote on the following matters:


Academic Policy

Governance (tenured faculty only)


Tenure (tenured faculty only)

Promotion (for ranks commensurate to current or lower ranks)

Sam Fox School committee membership

Full-time Lecturers, Full-time Senior Lecturers, and Full-time and Part-time Professors of Practice are eligible to vote on the following matters:


Academic Policy

Visiting faculty and part-time faculty do not carry voting rights.

Absentee voters cannot be counted toward the quorum required to hold the meeting. However, when a quorum has assembled to consider the vote, absentee votes, as well as abstentions, will count in determining the outcome of the vote.

Abstentions will not have a negative effect on a vote; however, an abstention does not decrease the number of positive votes required to reach a simple majority.

Proxy votes (made by a designee) will not be permitted.


Approved on May 16, 2018