As an institutional trainer, I must know what the institution would have wanted if it were a natural person. Our policy on reading policy specifically stated that all policies must be read before a decision based on them can be given. The institution in question could not have been more specific about the importance of freedom in academia if it had tried.
The Freedom of Inquiry Statement that was a part of Andrew J. Szeri’s department outlined exactly why allowing members of an academic institution to have free rein on whatever piques their interest is so vital, not just for the institution but for the progress of knowledge. The statement warned the institution that the most significant risk to that progress was academic instructors tied to a way of thinking that only works in their old modality.
But it was completely ignored like all the other warnings that advised administrators they could lose their jobs by acting in the manner they had. If a man told his institution a student’s complaint was not liking how the class was taught — even if it actively harmed the majority of its learner base and violated academic freedom — then the complaint could only ever be about personal preference.
New Decision Makers could consider the matter closed despite their duty to be a New Decision Maker in the appeal process.
I will never forget my conversation with Director Narain when I tried to get her to understand that a complaint based on academic freedom must be taken. The statement states that academic freedom is fundamental to the institution’s primary purpose.
To this day, it still quotes a hypocrite.
The institution decided it could decide that my complaint was not liking how the class was taught because it didn’t believe students had the academic freedom to be heard in their complaint process. The policy change request below doesn’t have an impact statement about the change. It doesn’t state removing any mention of a student’s right to appeal any decision made regarding their academic standing has both legal (v) and government (Sections 4.3.9 and 4.3.10) concerns.
University Counsel decided the Investigations Policy could go from saying the Provost must investigate any complaint that doesn’t fall under another policy:
To stating this:
The only way to determine if a complaint is sufficiently substantive or material in nature to warrant an investigation IS TO DO AN INVESTIGATION.
The 1996 harassment policy states that any respondent wrongfully accused can apply for remedy as much as a complainant having to put up with institutional harassment may. Worrying that an investigation might possibly limit the rights of an innocent person is not a valid reason to create a grey hole that complaints like “student didn’t like way class was taught” can be dropped into without any oversight.
The University did not put anyone in charge of deciding which officer’s misconduct is minor enough to ignore.
UBC Persons must not commit scholarly misconduct is a complete sentence.
Because of UBC, institutions must disclose to their reporting institutions the true nature of all complaints — signed off by the complainant — that they failed to investigate. The complainant must agree that the uninvestigated complaint is a true reflection of their entire complaint.
Self-reporting has proven it fails.
By infringing on what a student can say, the institution doesn’t just violate academic freedom; it also violates a member of their organization’s freedom of expression. But because no public sector employee personally valued the freedoms UBC stripped from its member to not have to report its own wrongdoing, they couldn’t have cared less about it.
And if each person I spoke to couldn’t personally understand the freedoms stolen from me, they couldn’t understand why their loss was so upsetting. And if they couldn’t understand why I was so upset, they believed the respondent. If it didn’t matter to each officer personally that the institution had chosen to crush its member’s right to have their side of the complaint heard before it was decided on, UBC had to be right.
In an institutional setting, the person least upset by an unfair decision must be correct.
Getting upset just means the natural person is in the wrong.