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On administrative leave for nearly a year, Paxton has received a 'notice of dismissal.'

COURTESY PHOTO - Richard Paxton, a tenured professor at Pacific University, has been on leave since fall 2020.A faculty committee at Pacific University has sent suspended professor Richard Paxton a "notification of dismissal."

The three-page memo from Pacific's University Personnel Committee sent to Paxton on Wednesday is presented as a recommendation and lays out appeal options, but it essentially constitutes the professor's termination.

Paxton was placed on administrative leave last year following complaints from students about alleged comments he made about gender and ethnicity while teaching. Specific alleged comments Paxton made in a class include saying that "every person has a gender," ignoring the gender identity of agender and nonbinary students. Students in a separate class alleged Paxton described Native Americans as "warlike" and "aggressive," among other comments.

Paxton sued the university for his suspension earlier this year, stating that the university did not award him due process. That lawsuit is ongoing. The U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights opened an investigation into the private university's treatment of Paxton, which is also still underway.

Oregon Public Broadcasting is a news partner of Pamplin Media Group. Read the full story on OPB's website.


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