Penn reports student disciplinary offenses was an important topic of debate on campus.
A University committee, chaired by the then-Dean of College of Arts and Sciences, was discussing whether Penn should release the names of students who were found responsible by the Office of Student Conduct of committing violent crimes or non-forcible sex offenses.
The discussion at the time was motivated a series of amendments in 1998 to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act. The Higher Education Amendments of 1998 allowed universities to release the names of student offenders, as well as what offense they committed and what sanctions were imposed on them, The Daily Pennsylvanian reported on Oct. 25, 2000.
In February 2001, a majority of Undergraduate Assembly members issued a statement urging that OSC release data on the type and nature of violations, how violations were resolved by OSC and the approximate time and location of the incidents. The majority statement also advocated for annual reports containing this data.
However, a minority of UA members — as well as Penn’s chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union — disagreed, claiming that the data wouldn’t make OSC proceedings more open or effective.
The data released in the most recent annual OSC report, which was published in 2010, included general information about offenses over the course of the academic year. It did not include any incident-specific data, nor the names of individuals found responsible for offenses. OSC has not released an annual report in four years due to technical issues, a former OSC director said.Comments powered by Disqus
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