December 06, 2009

Outside Reviewers Recommend Ombuds for Grinnell College

Prompted by faculty concerns over employment practices in the Student Affairs division, the private liberal arts college in Iowa hired a team of outside administrators to review its policies governing hiring, performance review and disciplinary actions. The report by the task force made several recommendations, including recommended language for new policies and broad, overarching changes to the College’s employment and workplace philosophy. The reviewers also noted that an Ombuds would be a benefit. Presently, the College's faculty chair also serves as an Ombuds, but he admits often having conflict of interests.

The chair of an ad hoc committee looking into the Ombuds proposal, is considering three options: bringing the current Ombuds into compliance with IOA standards, abolishing the Ombuds position, or bringing in an independent Ombuds. The campus paper quotes Yeworkwha Belachew, the Oberlin College Ombuds, on the benefits of an Ombuds program for a small campus. (Scarlett & Black.)

Related post: Grinnell College Considering Ombuds Office.

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