8+4 honor referendum passes

With 1315 total votes and 1183 votes in favor, the 8+4 resolution to amend the College Statement of Academic Honesty passed with 68.8 percent of students voting and 90.0 percent of voting students showing approval. Students voted on the resolution from Thursday to Saturday. As a resolution to the Honor Code, the resolution required 2/3 of the student body to vote and 1/2 of voting students to approve.

The resolution states, “[The] Honor Committee shall serve as a jury of peers consisting of eight elected student members and four rotating student members. For each hearing, four rotating members – one from each class year – shall be randomly called upon to join the eight elected student members in the hearing as voting members.”

The resolution also addresses concerns about maintaining the confidentiality of cases: “Both elected and rotating student members shall sign a confidentiality agreement to protect the identity and privacy of any party involved in the hearing. Violation of this confidentiality agreement shall be considered a violation of this Statement of Academic Honesty.”

Bryan Jones ’16 and Student Chair of the Honor and Discipline Committee (HDC) Ahmad Greene-Hayes ’16 led efforts to pass the resolution with support from the HDC, College Council, and the Student Athlete Advisory Committee.

“We wanted to increase student understanding of the [HDC] and also increase student respect for the Honor Code,” Jones said. “Students mess up when it’s late at night and they aren’t engaged with the Honor Code, and they wish they could take it back.”

Given that the number of Honor Code violations has increased in recent years, from 14 violations in 2009-10 to 30 violations in 2013-14, the 8+4 referendum seeks to stop this trend.

Jones started working on the 8+4 resolution last year with Tyler Sparks ’15 and Jack Hoover ’15, who co-chaired the HDC in the 2014-15 academic year. He approached Green-Hayes at the beginning of the year to gain support from the HDC itself.

“It was inspiring for me to see how the student body could get behind something that really didn’t have a face and wasn’t really an attractive issue,” outgoing College Council President Marcus Christian ’16 said. “The Honor Code isn’t something people are thinking about on a daily basis, and I think that’s a big reason why [the] 8+4 [resolution] was brought about.”

With intentional flexibility in the language of the resolution, Jones and Greene-Hayes will work with the newly-elected Class of 2017 HDC representatives Walford Campbell and Scott Shelton to implement the resolution next fall, if the faculty vote to approve the resolution.

Correction: March 9, 2016, 4:23 p.m.

The article states that the 8+4 referendum needed 1/2 of voting students’ approval to pass. The referendum in actuality needed 2/3 voting students’ approval to pass.

One comment

  1. This article should have included an interview with the dean of the faculty, or some other relevant faculty member, about when the faculty will consider the referendum.

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