The most recent APA Newsletter on Teaching Philosophy has a provocative article by Lou Matz wherein he describes his denial of tenure at Xavier University. The basis of Matz' tenure denial was teaching-related: Matz taught material in an Introduction to Philosophy course that, in the judgment of his department colleagues, focused more on contemporary politics than on the core theoretical questions in ethics that his colleagues preferred. Matz then went through a series of appeals, claiming that his academic freedom was violated.
There's a great deal of detail in Matz' article, so I'd encourage everyone simply to read it. But I'd be interested in knowing people's thoughts about the central question here: What is academic freedom with respect to pedagogy? My sense is that academic freedom is conceptualized, first and foremost, in terms of research: what a faculty member may investigate, what methods are appropriate for investigation, how the findings are presented, etc. But what does academic freedom amount to in the classroom? Most discussions of pedagogical freedom seem mostly concerned with a professor's professional neutrality, which is really not about the professor's academic freedom, but students' academic freedom. Does academic freedom extend to instructors' choice of content or subject matter? Does it extend to instructors' pedagogical methods? Is Matz' contention that his academic freedom was violated credible?