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North Dakota Higher Education Board Approves Change in Tenure Policy

BISMARCK, N.D. — The North Dakota Board of Higher Education has voted to allow college presidents the option of laying off tenured professors with a three-month notice, rather than the current one-year period.

The move is meant to give presidents the leeway they need in case programs are cut because of budget constraints. Board members say it’s likely that most schools would continue with the one-year notice, but each campus should be able to decide on its own.

University system officials say the change is needed because low oil and crop prices have put the state and its institutions in a financial quandary. Opponents say it could hurt recruiting efforts for professors and affect employee morale.

The new policy has a sunset clause that would allow for it to expire in 2019.

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