Revised Parental Leave Policy, Effective January 1, 2017

Memorandum dated December 8, 2016 from June Pierce Youatt, Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs stated: 

MSU’s Parental Leave policy was originally adopted in December 2000 as one of many efforts to support the career and family life needs of faculty and academic staff. The policy provides six weeks of paid leave for the birth or adoption of a child. As was common for many such policies adopted by our peers during that time period, it was decided that if both parents were MSU faculty or academic staff, they must share the six weeks paid parental leave between them. Given the passage of time, this policy seemed to be not in the best interest of our faculty and academic staff, and worthy of review.


As a result, the Office of the Associate Provost for Academic Human Resources recently conducted a review of our parental leave policy relative to our peer institutions in the Big Ten Academic Alliance. While our policy of providing six weeks of paid parental leave for the birth or adoption of a child is still in the mainstream, we were not surprised to learn that many of our peers no longer require a sharing of this leave when both parents are faculty or academic staff.


As a result, the MSU policy will be revised to provide six weeks of paid parental leave to each parent employed by MSU as a faculty or academic staff member, effective January 1, 2017. The intent of this policy change is to support our faculty and academic staff in the integration of personal and family life with work life. This change has been shared with the University Committee on Faculty Affairs, the Women’s Advisory Committee to the Provost, and the Academic Specialist Advisory Committee. We are proud to provide practices, programs and policies that contribute to MSU’s ability to recruit and retain the best faculty and academic staff, and see this revision as supporting that commitment. The revised policy will be available in the Faculty Handbook on January 1, 2017.

View the Memorandum here