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Family Friendly Policies

Stanford boasts some of the most comprehensive services, resources and policies that support faculty with family responsibilities.

Download PDF of programs and policies here.  [School of Medicine users, download PDF here.]

Family and Medical Leave                                       

Unpaid leave up to 12 weeks in any 12 month period to care for:

  • A faculty member’s spouse (including same-­sex domestic partner), child or parent who has a serious health condition.
  • A faculty member’s  serious health condition.
  • A childcare leave as described above.

Faculty members must have been employed by Stanford (within the U.S.) for at least 12 months and 1,250 hours worked in the previous year, at 50% time or more; an individual is not eligible if he/she has used the maximum yearly leave provided by law. University continues its contributions toward medical and dental group health plans. The faculty member continues to be responsible for paying his or her own premium.

For more information, visit the Cardinal at Work website or contact the HR Service Team at (650) 736‐2985, option 4. To start a claim, visit Cardinal at Work, Steps for Taking Leave. Faculty members are encouraged to initiate the process with the department chair and/or the school's Faculty Affairs Officer.


Pregnancy Disability Leave

  • Up to four months paid leave as certified by a physician.

During pregnancy disability leave, the faculty member is expected to apply for disability insurance according to established procedures. Specific instructions are available on the Cardinal at Work website. The length of pregnancy disability leave is determined by the faculty member’s physician, who certifies the number of weeks that she is disabled, both before and after delivery. The University will pay the faculty member the difference between her disability benefit and her full academic base salary while she is on disability due to pregnancy.

For more information, contact the HR Service Team at (650) 736‐2985, option 4. Faculty members are encouraged to initiate the process with the department chair and/or the school's Faculty Affairs Officer.


Childcare Leave                                                     

  • Faculty member (male or female) who becomes a parent by birth or adoption may take an unpaid leave of up to 1 year at full or part-­time for the purpose of caring for the child. This leave could be in addition to pregnancy disability leave (above); for all parents such leave should be in addition to a period of reduced teaching and clinical duties.

Requests for childcare leave are subject to the normal approval process, but department chairs and deans are urged to give priority to such requests. Upon request of the faculty member, the first twelve weeks of childcare leave may be taken as family leave (see below) provided the faculty member meets the eligibility requirements, so as to continue Stanford’s usual contribution to group medical and dental health plans. After the first twelve weeks, a faculty member on full leave without salary must pay the University’s portion of the monthly premium in addition to his/her own premium to insure continuous insurance coverage. For faculty members on partial leave, the University’s contribution may continue, depending on the percent time of the leave.

For more information, contact Faculty Affairs or view the Faculty Handbook, Sec. 3.5.6.


New Parent Tenure Clock Extension

  • A one-­year extension to the seven year tenure clock for tenure line faculty (but not the ten year appointment clock).
  • A one-­year extension to current appointment for non-­tenure line and MCL faculty.

A faculty member who becomes a parent by birth or adoption. The extension applies even if a faculty member becomes a parent during an off-­duty quarter and returns immediately to his or her regular work load. The extension form should be submitted before the final year of the faculty member’s appointment.

For more information, contact Faculty Affairs, or consult the Faculty Handbook, Sec. 2.1.4(2) and Faculty Handbook, Sec. 2.5.3.


Reduced Teaching or Clinical Load               

  • Relief from teaching and/or clinical duties during the quarter of the birth of the child and/or the quarter following (100% pay continues).

A faculty member who becomes a parent by birth or adoption, and who certifies that he or she will be the sole caregiver for at least twenty hours from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday. The faculty member must continue to carry a full complement of professorial activities other than classroom teaching or clinical service.

For more information, consult the Faculty Handbook Sec. 3.5.5.


School of Humanities and Sciences Junior Faculty Leave Program

Tenure-track assistant professors in the School of Humanities and Sciences who are re-appointed to a second term may take a full year of sabbatical at 100% pay (on the nine-month base salary) during their fifth or sixth year. The intent of this program is to provide every re-appointed assistant professor with a full year of leave to enhance the preparation for tenure review and to provide a period of time for pure research leave.  Read more about the Junior Faculty Leave Program - Policy.


Part-­Time Appointments                     

  • Temporary reductions from full -time to part-time status for family related needs.

University policy allows appointment of faculty members at any rank on a part-‐time basis. Department chairs and deans must take into consideration the impact on programmatic need, but are encouraged to grant such a request for family related needs.

For more information, consult the Faculty Handbook Sec. 2.6.4.


Tuition Grant Program

The program helps eligible faculty, staff and retirees pay for the cost of college education for their eligible children. TGP pays all or a portion of college tuition at accredited institutions for up to four years of course work required for an undergraduate degree.  More


Dual Career Assistance                                     

  • Support for spouses or partners of faculty in finding positions at Stanford or elsewhere in the Bay Area. 

Available to spouses and partners of faculty recruits and current faculty. For academic or professional positions, contact Matt Snipp, Vice Provost for Faculty Development and Diversity, or Robert Weisberg, Special Assistant to the Provost for Faculty Recruitment and Retention.