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Parenting a New Child

Policy on Teaching Relief for Care of a New Child

Brown University provides one semester of classroom teaching relief for faculty members who are primary caregivers for newborn children or newly adopted children. This is not considered to be a leave, and the faculty member’s responsibilities to conduct research, advice students and participate in University and departmental affairs remain unchanged. The point of the policy is to provide sufficient time to faculty members coping with the demands of being primary caregiver to an infant or newly adopted child. For more on this policy, go to: The Handbook of Academic Administration (PDF; Policy #7.8.3)

Parental Teaching relief (PDF)

Leaves for Childbearing: Maternity Leave

A pregnant faculty member who is ineligible for parental teaching relief, or who chooses not to take it, is automatically eligible for six weeks leave with salary. Should her pregnancy disable her for a longer period (as attested by a physician), the University shall continue her salary up to the same six month period as for other disabilities. In cases in which the faculty member is supported by grants or contracts, the salary while on maternity leave continues to be paid from these sources, in proportion to effort and subject to the availability of funding.

Unpaid Parenting Leaves

Federal and state law entitles eligible employees unpaid leave due to:

  • Personal illness or disability;
  • Childbirth and/or care of the employee's newborn;
  • Placement and/or care of a newly adopted or foster child; or,
  • Care of a spouse, same-sex domestic partner*, child or parent with a serious health condition.

*Not specified by law; included by the University. This policy is explained fully at:

Personal Leaves

All University employees are covered by the Family Medical Leave Act and by relevant Rhode Island laws. Details regarding terms and eligibility may be obtained from the Human Resources Office.

Tenure Probation Extension Policy for Parenting a New Child

An untenured, tenure-track faculty member who becomes the parent of a child by birth or adoption during the probationary period for tenure may be entitled to an extension of his or her contract by one year. Unless the faculty member requests otherwise, such extensions are automatically awarded by the Dean of the Faculty (or the Dean of Medicine and Biological Sciences) at the same time as teaching relief for the care of a new child is granted. See more on this policy at: (Policy #10.2.1)