February 12, 2010

As Complaints Soar, British Student Ombuds Considers More Transparency

Rob Behrens, the Chief Executive of the Office of the Independent Adjudicator, says that the number of complaints about universities in England and Wales has continued to rise as students have been forced to pay fees, become more knowledgeable about their rights and less deferential to authority. Complaints to IOA increased 23% last year and a similar increase is expected for the current year. Beherns, who took office in 2008, is considering two significant changes to the program: publishing details of decisions, naming universities; and/or publishing the number of complaints it has received annually for each university, together with details of the outcomes. Beherns concedes that universities don't like the idea, but says: "My job is not to be popular but to do things that would add to the credibility of the scheme." (London Independent.)

Related posts: British Classical Ombudsman Reports Spike in University Complaints; British Higher Education Ombudsman Surveys Profession; Latest ENOHE Newsletter Traces Evolution of Campus Ombuds.

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