It seems some of you felt my original post was a "troll" to stir up
dissent. It was not. I have tried not to breach the privacy of others and
don't think I have. Comments received have been very helpful-- this has
been a difficult week for me.
For those of you interested in how this incident was resolved-- I chose to
consult some senior faculty (women) and ask their advice. A senior faculty
person outside our department is going to speak with this individual and
let her know (whether info circulating is true or not) that the behavior
in question is DEAD WRONG and if continued, tenure is not possible.
Further, we will follow up with official grievance procedure on behalf of
students in class who have legitimate concerns about what happened during
the semester, with grades, etc.
This issue is one that of course involves persons of both sexes, and both
must of course be held to same standards-- but it is an unusual
circumstance, and brought out a lot of weaknesses in our system. First of
all, our college has no sexual harassment policy!! I was shocked, and
felt a little responsible. Secondly, I discovered that my male Chairperson
was grateful that I had taken this "head-on" myself, becasue he was a
little reluctant to pressure a female faculty person-- the fear being
that he himself would be accused of gender bias!! These are real issues,
folks, and we need to be able to talk about them. Please don't be angry
with me for bringing them up- I'm interested in all points of view.
By the way, as I investigated this case, I learned that a male colleague
had engaged in some much more serious innapropriate behavior. This was
very shocking to me, since I had always admired and trusted this senior
individual. Suffice it to say, this week has been hell, and I have been
tempted to wash my hands of it completely, but I do know I have serious
responsibilities, given the things I believe in. Your support is