Once an allegation is made against a student (or member of academic staff), either by another student, a member of staff or someone outside the university, it is important that that the University takes stock of the issue and acts carefully to ensure fairness to all parties.
University providers owe a duty of care towards staff members and students; this duty takes on particular significance during a disciplinary process and it is essential that Universities provide appropriate and relevant information and support to all parties involved in allegations of misconduct.
What happens when a complaint is made to a University about the conduct of a student or a member of academic staff? What should the procedures for the resolution of these complaints look like and how can all parties be reassured that such allegations will be resolved fairly?
At last week’s Westminster Higher Education (HE) Conference, speakers from Student Unions, Universities, to regulators and law firms discussed how best to tackle sexual violence and harassment in high education, including how to change campus culture and improve complaints and disciplinary processes. This blog summarises those discussions and reflects on where the sector’s key focus areas should be now.