Phased Retirement for Faculty

    Summary Plan Description

    A. Introduction

    The following description is of a phased retirement plan for regular faculty of Clark University. The faculty member will enter into an agreement with the University to retire at a specific date in the future, and to reduce overall workload during the phased period of one semester to three years. The specific terms of an agreement will be arranged between the individual faculty member and the Provost, to the mutual agreement of both parties. It is anticipated that specific agreements for individuals will differ.

    B. Establishment of the Plan

    This Plan Summary Description sets forth the provisions of the University’s Phased Retirement Plan for faculty, established by Clark University as of September 1991. Funding for this plan is provided from the University’s general operating funds.

    C. Eligibility

    Participants must be tenured faculty with ten years of service at Clark University who have attained age 59. A year of service is defined as two semesters of full- time employment, including semesters of sabbatical leave and leave for pregnancy, but excluding other leaves of absence.

    D. Salary

    Clark will continue to track the nominal salary of a faculty member in phased retirement as what his or her salary would be as a fulltime faculty member. All salary increases will be added to this nominal salary following the same decisions that apply to all fulltime faculty members. The actual salary while on phased retirement will be less, depending on the level of work negotiated for the period on phased retirement.

    E. Work Responsibilities

    During a period of phased retirement, work responsibilities will be reduced by an amount negotiated between the faculty member and the Provost.

    Core teaching responsibilities will be negotiated along the following lines. For a faculty member whose normal fulltime teaching load is four courses per year, the typical phased retirement arrangement will be 2 courses per year (potentially both in a single semester, but this needs to be part of the negotiation) for which the faculty member normally will receive 60% of his or her nominal fulltime salary. This typical arrangement can be modified up or down in responsibilities in a linear way. Thus, 1 course per year normally would be compensated at 30% of the nominal fulltime salary, while 3 courses per year normally would be compensated at 90% of the nominal fulltime salary.

    Normally, one would expect the level of effort expected for service and research to track that expected for teaching.

    For a faculty member with a different standard fulltime teaching load (e.g., a lecturer teaching 6 courses per year) the relationship between work expectations and pay should be similarly calculated, using the “8-unit” analysis of fulltime faculty work (4 units each semester; teaching one course is one unit). Thus, for a lecturer in phased retirement doing 50% work for 60% pay, we would expect three courses per year (50% of the fulltime load) with commensurate reductions in service expectations. Similar linear extrapolations would provide for other possible alternatives, e.g., a lecturer in phased retirement teaching 2 courses per year—33% work—normally would receive 40% of fulltime pay.

    F. Benefits

    Faculty will be eligible for full benefits except sabbatical leave, life, and long-term disability insurance. The University’s contribution to TIAA/CREF and Social Security shall be based on actual salary paid.

    The University’s contribution to the faculty member’s health insurance plan will be equal to that for full-time faculty. However, for any full-time faculty member, phased or not, if an individual is restricted by the health insurance carrier from continuing enrollment in their current health insurance plan, the University will allow its regular contribution toward another plan (e.g. the faculty member does not live in the carrier’s service area).

    Continued eligibility for any health insurance plan is subject to policies and practices of the carrier.

    G. Application for Participation

    An eligible faculty member must apply to the Provost for participation in the phased retirement plan. The terms of each phased retirement agreement are subject to the approval of the Board of Trustees of Clark University.

    H. Plan Administration

    The Director of Human Resources at Clark University, (508) 793-7294, is the Administrator of this plan and is responsible for performing the duties required for the operation of the plan. The Administrator may designate in writing other persons to carry out duties under the plan.

    I. Plan Year

    The plan year is September 1 through August 31 of each year. Records for each participant are maintained on a calendar year basis.

    J. Requests for Information

    Requests for information and questions concerning eligibility, participation, or other aspects of the operation of the plan should be in writing and directed to the Administrator of this plan.

    K. Amendment and Termination

    While it is expected that this plan will continue, the University reserves the right to modify or discontinue the plan at any time. The University may also delegate any of its powers and duties with respect to the plan, or amendments, to one or more officers or other employees of the University. Any such delegation shall be set forth in writing.

    L. Statements of ERISA Rights

    Participants in the Phased Retirement Plan are entitled to certain rights and protections under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA). ERISA provides that all plan participants shall be entitled to:

    1. Examine, without charge, at the Administrator’s office, all plan documents, including all plan documents filed with the U.S. Department of Labor such as annual reports and plan descriptions.
    2. Obtain copies of all plan documents upon written request to the Plan Administrator. The Administrator may make a reasonable charge for the copies.
    3. Receive a summary of the plan’s annual ERISA report to the Internal Revenue Service. The Plan Administrator is required by law to furnish each participant with a copy of this summary annual report.

    ERISA sets forth the duties of the people who are responsible for the operation of the Phased Retirement Plan. The people who operate this plan have a duty to do so prudently and in the interest of the plan participants. No one including the University, may discharge or otherwise discriminate against participants in any way to prevent them from obtaining benefits to which they are entitled.

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