Family Support and Accommodation Plan

The Family Support and Accommodation Policy is designed to allow faculty members to request a modification of work duties for a specific time period due to an anticipated or unanticipated family event or situation (e.g., childbirth, adoption, eldercare, primary care for a serious health condition of a family member). The proposed and approved modifications of work duties for such reasons are known as a Family Support and Accommodation Plan (FSAP) and the maximum period of time for a plan is 18 weeks. The intent of the approved provision of modified duties is neither leave nor time away from the job. Rather, this program’s intent is to ensure a faculty member in need can continue to function and perform as a full contributor within the University while reaping the benefits of a more flexible work experience for a specific time period. A faculty member who has been granted modified work duties under these guidelines will continue to be employed in the same status and at the same level as before the plan was implemented, and their compensation will remain the same; the faculty member will continue to perform at a full-time capacity during their period of modified duties. Modification of duties simply alters assigned responsibilities to create flexibility that would not otherwise be available. This type of plan can include alternative assignments, altered schedules and/or a change in location of the faculty member’s performance of duties.

For detailed information about this plan, please visit

Download the Faculty Support and Accommodation Plan form


Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have to use FMLA before I can use the FSAP?
No, it is not a requirement to use FMLA prior to requesting FSAP, the two types of leave are completely independent of each other. However, for a faculty member desiring to take time off from work completely due to a qualifying event or situation that is covered by FMLA (not a modification of duties), FMLA as an option (as well as other forms of leave, such as, paid sick leave) and FMLA can be followed by utilization of FSAP.
If I’m using FSAP for the arrival of a child, when should I use it? In the semester I am giving birth/adopting or the semester after?
This is personal preference based on factors including spousal leave, due date, adoption date, etc. Note that the FSAP must be concluded within the 12-month period following the birth, adoption or placement of the child.
Can the FSAP be altered at all if my situation changes?
Yes, there are options for adjustments. If changes to an existing, approved plan are required, these changes must be submitted for approval in writing and go through the same review/approval process as stated within the “Procedures” section of the FSAP guidelines. In addition, give consideration to the development of a “contingency” plan as part of the original approval process should circumstances change.
My department chair isn’t sure how to use the FSAP… to whom might I refer them?
Your HR Generalist is a good resource for both department chairs and faculty regarding FSAP development. Contact information for your HR Generalist can be found here . To discuss how arrangements work into faculty evaluations (annual and TPR), contact Amy Lawton-Rauh, Associate Provost for Faculty Affairs, at  
My department has a policy that allows for a teaching release after a successful third year review, if I use FSAP does that make me ineligible for that release in a different semester?
No, the use of an FSAP does not supplant utilization of other benefits related to leave available to all faculty in the department.
Can my Chair require me to “make up” work either prior to FSAP or after?
No, a Chair cannot require a faculty member with an FSAP to complete additional duties before or after the plan is implemented; they should not be asked to make up released duties before or after the period of modified duties.
What is the maximum length of an FSAP?
18 weeks per family event or situation
How often can I request the use of the FSAP?
Barring extraordinary circumstances, a request for an FSAP may be granted no more than once per rolling 24-month period for each faculty member. Multiple FSAPs for the same family event or situation may be requested within a rolling 24-month period if the combined period of modified duties for the event or situation does not exceed 18 weeks, as stated in the “Plan Duration” section of these guidelines. Exception: As stated within the “Plan Duration” section of these guidelines, an FSAP due to the birth, adoption or placement of a child must be concluded within the 12-month period following the birth, adoption or placement of the child.
Does use of the FSAP mean my tenure clock is automatically stopped?
No. The FSAP and tenure clock extension are independent policies. Please see the Faculty Manual for details regarding an extension of the tenure clock.
What are examples of modified work duties?
Preparation of research proposals, papers and course materials; devotion of full-time effort to research; development of curricula and/or course materials; work on accreditation and/or certification materials; supervision of graduate student research; and academic service that is compatible with the need for modified work duties. In addition, please see examples of FSAPs used by Clemson faculty on the resource page.
Is the FSAP only available to tenure track/tenured faculty?
No, FSAP is available to all regular full-time equivalent (FTE), temporary time-limited and temporary grant faculty members.


Faculty Testimonials


Elizabeth Jemison
Assistant Professor
Philosophy & Religion
When, why and how did you use FSAP?
I used the FSAP the spring semester after the late December birth of my child. I used FMLA and paid sick leave for the first 6 weeks of the semester, and then began my FSAP plan. I chose this route because I did not want to have any work responsibilities during those first 6 weeks of the semester and that was manageable since my FSAP plan relieved me of teaching responsibilities.
What did your FSAP plan look like?
My FSAP plan relieved me of all teaching responsibilities. I handled my advising responsibilities and various other service that could be managed from home. I also took on several service jobs for a colleague who was on sabbatical. The FSAP plan specified that I would make significantly more progress on my research than any previous semester although at the same time there was a verbal acknowledgment that this likely was not a reasonable expectation of a new parent without childcare.

Danny Weathers
Associate Professor
When, why did you use FSAP?
I used FSAP in the fall after adopting a daughter in January.
What did your FSAP plan look like?
My plan involved teaching online instead of in-person. Teaching online provided flexibility so that my wife and I could arrange work schedules and child care.
Additional advice?
An unforeseen consequence was the substantial amount of time required to teach online, especially when teaching courses for the first time online. Before modifying your work schedule, carefully consider the potential effects.

Michelle Smith
Assistant Professor
When, why and how did you use FSAP?
I used FSAP the fall of 2019 after my child was born in April 2019
What did your FSAP plan look like?
I was on leave from teaching. I redirected the 40% of my workload normally assigned to teaching to research and service.
Additional advice?
I'm happy to talk especially about challenges around the timing of births and leaves given 9-month faculty contracts, summers, etc.

Erin Hawkins
Assistant Professor
When, why and how did you use FSAP?
Gave birth in the summer and used FSAP for fall semester after birth.
What did your FSAP plan look like?
Instead of teaching 2 courses in the fall semester and 2 courses in the spring semester, the academic year after my son was born, I taught 1 course in the fall that was condensed and 3 courses in the spring. The condensed course began in mid-October (instead of the "regular" August start date) so I essentially had maternity leave from July to mid-October.

Vivian Ezeh
When, why and how did you use FSAP?
I used FSAP during the spring semester for a spring birth of my child.
What did your FSAP plan look like?
A faculty colleague was my assistant during my FSAP. We devised a plan where the physical on-campus aspects of my job were carried out by this colleague. I had responsibility for work that could be done remotely.

Mashal Saif
Assistant Professor
Philosophy & Religion
When, why, and how did you use FSAP?
I used FSAP in the fall of 2019 after giving birth in July 2019
What did your FSAP plan look like?
For the first month of the fall semester I used paid sick leave to relieve me from all work responsibilities. No teaching duties for the semester, replaced with additional research during this period. Continued to advise students via Skype.

Ellen Breazel
Senior Lecturer
School of Mathematical & Statistical Sciences
How did you use FSAP?
I used FSAP in the fall and gave birth in the fall (November).
What did your FSAP plan look like?
My plan included moving my classes to asynchronous online courses after October 31. I recorded lecturers and provided Canvas notes for my students, I had a Graduate Student assigned to me to grade homework and the 3rd test, with an answer key and rubric that I created. The graduate student also hosted office hours and answered discussion posts. I graded the final exams and posted final grades.
Additional comments.
I was fortunate that my child was born within days of my due date. In hindsight, I should have had a plan B if things had not gone as smoothly. My FSAP plan required a great deal of work on my part right up until I gave birth but for me it was worth shifting duties so that I could spend time with my newborn during his first months of life and recover from childbirth.