3.7.J. Clinician Educator Appeal Procedure

3.7.J Clinician Educator Appeal Procedure

This Clinician Educator Appeal Procedure was adopted on September 21, 2022  and is applicable to appeals filed on or after that date. 

3.7.1 Definitions and Standards

  1. An appeal is a written request for review of a decision made by a person (or group of persons) acting in an official University capacity. The decision must have directly affected the academic or employment activities of the appellant as an individual. Dissatisfaction with a divisional, departmental, school, or University policy or practice is not grounds for appeal. This appeal procedure may be used by any member of the Clinician Educator Line, as defined in Section 3.1.B of the School of Medicine Faculty Handbook.
  2. The purpose of the appeal process is to determine whether appropriate procedures were followed in making certain kinds of academic and employment-related decisions, rather than to reevaluate the merits of the decisions themselves. The standard for deciding the appeal shall be limited to determining whether there were procedural errors (such as the failure to bring proper facts and criteria to bear on a decision, or the introduction of improper facts and criteria, or the existence of other procedural defects) that substantially affected the outcome to the detriment of the appellant. In rare cases, the reviewer may also overturn the decision if it was not one which a person (or persons) in the position of the decision-maker might reasonably have made.
  3. Because these appeal procedures are not those of a court of law, it is important that they be carried out with flexibility and in an atmosphere of collegiality, and that the participants avoid an excessively legalistic approach. Efforts should be made to resolve the dispute informally before beginning the appeal process, and those efforts may continue even after the process is underway.
  4. The appellant should file their appeal within 60 days of being notified of the decision. An unreasonable delay in filing an appeal may constitute grounds for rejection of the appeal.

3.7.2 Appeal Procedures

1. A Clinician Educator who wishes to appeal a decision made below the level of the School of Medicine Dean’s Office may file a written appeal with the Vice Dean.

a. After making a preliminary review of the matter, which may include consultations with whomever the Vice Dean deems appropriate, the Vice Dean may grant or deny the appeal or take any action that the Vice Dean deems appropriate. Alternatively, the Vice Dean may remand the matter to a lower administrative level, and/or appoint a Fact-Finder who will investigate the matter and report back to the Vice Dean. The Vice Dean may then grant or deny the appeal or take any action that the Vice Dean deems appropriate. The Vice Dean will inform the appellant of their decision. Unless the appellant seeks further review as described below in Section, the decision of the Vice Dean is final.

b. Upon receipt of the Vice Dean’s decision, the appellant may within 30 days request a further review by the Dean of the School of Medicine.  The Dean may make any inquiries that the Dean deems appropriate. Following examination of the case, the Dean may grant or deny the appeal or take any action that the Dean deems appropriate. The Dean’s decision will be conveyed to the appellant and is final.

2.  A Clinician Educator wishing to appeal a decision made by the Vice Dean on a reappointment or promotion matter (as distinguished, for example, from a termination decision made at the department level) may file an appeal with the Dean, who will designate an experienced faculty member (or emeritus faculty member, or member of the Clinician Educator line) to perform the functions assigned to the Vice Dean in Section, but who will operate independently of the Vice Dean and Dean.  When performing those functions, the designated individual will likewise be subject to the General Provisions in Section 3.7.3 below as would the Vice Dean.  Further review of the decision of the designated individual may be sought from the Dean under Section 

3. A Clinician Educator wishing to appeal a decision made by the Vice Dean (other than on a reappointment of promotion matter) or the Dean (other than on further review) may file a written appeal with the Dean, who will perform the functions assigned to the Vice Dean in Section At the end of the process, the Dean’s decision will be conveyed to the appellant and is final.

3.7.3 General Provisions

1. Delegation

The Vice Dean and the Dean may each delegate their duties under Section 3.7.2 to another person, who shall then serve in the role of the Vice Dean or the Dean, respectively, under this policy. 

2. Time Guidelines

Because it is important for all concerned that appeals be resolved expeditiously, the Vice Dean and the Dean (including any delegated or designated individual) should attempt to follow these guidelines: within 30 days from the receipt of the appeal, the Vice Dean should inform the appellant about the procedures to be used in their case. The Vice Dean should seek to decide the case within 60 days from receipt of the appeal (or, in the case of an appeal of a reappointment or promotion decision within 60 days of receipt of the relevant documentation), and the Dean should seek to make a final determination within 60 days from receipt of the appellant’s request for further review. The application of these guidelines to a particular case may be modified by the Vice Dean or Dean, at their discretion. If such modifications become necessary, the appellant will be informed of the delay.

3. Confidentiality

a. Any material that has been solicited or received with the understanding that it would be kept in confidence must not be revealed in the appeal process to any person, including the appellant, who was not a party to the confidential material. The material may, however, be examined by individuals who have been consulted by the Vice Dean or Dean as part of the appeal process, and who will in turn maintain its confidentiality.

b. Because it concerns individual personnel matters, the appeal process is not a public proceeding.

4. Advisors

The appellant, the person(s) whose decision is being appealed, and anyone else called to provide information on the appeal, may be accompanied by an advisor to any discussion with the Vice Dean, Dean or with their delegate (or designated individual), or with the Fact-Finder. The advisor’s role is to advise the relevant party; the advisor, therefore, may not directly address those considering the appeal. Advisors must be members of the Stanford Professoriate or the Clinician Educator Line.

5. Fact-Finders

The Vice Dean and/or Dean may select an individual to gather information about the appeal. The Fact-Finder is not an advocate for either the decision-maker or the appellant. The Fact- Finder’s role is to answer clearly defined questions and to report on unexpected aspects of the case. The Fact-Finder is not to make formal recommendations about how the case should be resolved.

6. Inquiries

Inquiries about these procedures should be directed to the Dean’s office.