University improves upon student code of conduct

Tom Bonan, Opinions Editor

The University is beginning the “Know the Code” campaign, a program oriented around implementing fairly substantial changes to the Student Code of Conduct.

The most significant of these changes regards the points system, a new ordinance regarding social gatherings and downtown housing, and the way punishments for violations are to be administered.

The changes are sweeping and are generally moving the school in a much more positive direction with regards to the way students conduct themselves in the broader community. Most of the code is now affirmative, trying to orient the Code of Conduct as a means to build a stronger relationship with the community as opposed to focusing on infractions and how to punish students who have violated the policies.

Beginning this semester, any violation of the code will now be judged individually, whereas previously there was a specific punishment given out for any given offense. Students will also be able to admit responsibility for their actions before heading to a panel headed by teachers and administrators, improving the existing structure of how issues should be dealt with.

This drastically changes the overall tone of the Code. Generic punishments for specific actions make the problems appear like a chronic symptom that can’t be fought but has to be controlled. The new way of implementing a punishment, including a greater educational focus, creates an atmosphere where an infraction of policy is now a threat to one’s community as opposed to an inconvenience for the offender. Students will now see themselves within the greater context of being a University student, and the responsibilities that that entails.

Overall, the punitive measures previously enforced by the school were unnecessarily harsh and damaging to the relationship between students, administrators, and officers. The new system allows an avenue of growth between each group, and will hopefully tackle any potential issues that involve the student body.

By creating a more dynamic and purposeful Code that aims to include students in the discussion regarding conduct in the community, the University has taken an important step towards strengthening our social fabric.

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