U. of Illinois Chancellor Expects AAUP Censure in Response to Salaita Dispute

[Updated (6/1/2015, 11:35 a.m.) with news of Saturday's AAUP committee vote.]

The chancellor of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign expects it to be censured by the American Association of University Professors over the treatment of Steven G. Salaita, The News-Gazette reports. Phyllis M. Wise told a faculty committee on Thursday that she had been “told by people who know better than me that we should expect to be censured.” The association’s academic-freedom committee recommended on Saturday that the university be censured.

The Urbana-Champaign campus offered Mr. Salaita a tenured professorship in 2013 but opted not to hire him last year after the professor drew fire for anti-Israel tweets. Mr. Salaita and his supporters said the university’s decision amounted to a violation of academic freedom, and the professor has sued the university over the revoked job offer.

The newspaper also obtained communication from Ms. Wise to the AAUP committee stating that the university had made “significant” settlement offers to Mr. Salaita before he sued.

The association said in a report last month that the university had violated principles of academic freedom in withdrawing Mr. Salaita’s appointment.

URBANA – Chancellor Phyllis Wise says the University of Illinois made “significant” settlement offers to Steven Salaita and reiterates her commitment to academic freedom in documents prepared for a national organization considering a censure of the campus. The documents, obtained by The News-Gazette, were sent this week to the American Association of University Professors’ Committee A on Academic Freedom and Tenure.

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