PULLMAN, Wash.–Washington State University has reached settlement agreements with three education professors on their pending discrimination lawsuits, officials announced Friday [Sept. 19].
“WSU has recognized that there were serious concerns within the College of Education, and we’ve addressed some of those issues,” Geoffrey Gamble, vice provost for academic affairs, said. “As a result, we have been able to resolve these lawsuits and allow the parties involved to move forward.”
The lawsuits were filed in Whitman County Superior Court in January of this year by Sue Durrant, Marilyn Mowatt and Joanne Washburn, all education professors. All three charged they experienced gender discrimination in salaries, work load and promotional opportunities. They also charged they experienced retaliation when they opposed budget-cutting plans proposed by the college’s administration.
“The agreements provide payment of damages to the plaintiffs and programmatic changes suggested by the plaintiffs and adopted by WSU,” Gamble said. Salary adjustments, computer equipment and additional professional support will also be provided from university funds under the terms of the agreements.
“They also requested steps such as added computer technical support to improve the college itself, and we agreed to those steps in the settlement,” Gamble said. “It is important to recognize that these long-time, valued faculty care about the university and turned the outcome of their lawsuits to the benefit of their academic programs.”