Monday, April 20, 2015

Northwest Nazarene U. Puts Layoffs on Hold After Faculty Protest

The Chronicle of Higher Education
April 20th, 2015

Northwest Nazarene University, a Christian institution in Idaho, has put on hold a plan to lay off six employees, including a popular professor of theology whose pending removal had prompted protests and a faculty vote of no confidence in the university’s president, the Idaho Statesman reports.
The professor, Thomas Jay Oord, and the other affected faculty and staff members had been expected to leave Northwest Nazarene at the end of the academic year, as part of budget shifts announced by the university’s president in March. But on Saturday the president, David Alexander, said in an email to university staff members that he was placing the layoffs on hold while a panel reviewed the budget decisions. The university’s Board of Trustees commissioned the review as part of its response to the controversy last week.
Faculty critics had accused the university of trying to get rid of Mr. Oord because of theological differences. In an open letter last week, Mr. Alexander apologized to Mr. Oord for the manner in which his changes had initially been handled, but he denied that the move had been driven by theological issues.

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