Senate Appeals Committee
(NOTE: Appeals to the Senate Appeals Committee are limited to:
(i) Appeals of student suspensions under Section 61(3) of the University Act; and,
(ii) Appeals of election results under the TRU Board, Senate, and Planning Council Election Procedures document)
(requires five members of senate, one of whom is the vice-chair of senate, who chairs the committee and is a voting member)
- Mark Paetkau, Vice-Chair of Senate, and Committee Chair (senator until August 2022 unless re-elected)
- Gregory Anderson, Dean, Faculty of Science; appointed until April 26, 2024 (ongoing senator)
- Rien Okawa, support staff; appointed until April 26, 2024 (senator until December 2023 unless re-elected)
- Gordon Rudolph, teaching staff, Open Learning; appointed until April 26, 2024 (senator until December 2023 unless re-elected)
- Elizabeth Templeman, Faculty of Student Development; appointed until March 2023 (senator until August 2022 unless re-elected)
Pursuant to TRU Policy ED 7-0 – Suspension of Students and the TRU Board, Senate and Planning Council Election Procedures and sections 43 and 61(3) of the University Act
Composition of committee
1. The Vice-Chair of Senate will Chair the Committee.
2. The Committee shall be comprised of five members of the Senate, including the Chair of the Committee who is a voting member. Subject to the Committee having a quorum when it meets, vacancies on the Committee do not prevent it from meeting to consider an appeal.
3. Members of the Committee, other than the Chair, shall be appointed by the Senate for a term of up to three years. Members may be re-appointed.
4. An appeal brought to the Committee must be based on the University failing to act with procedural fairness or failing to follow applicable policies. The Committee does not re-hear matters.
Senate decision is final
5. The Committee will make a recommendation to Senate as to the outcome of the appeal. The Senate’s decision on an appeal is a final disposition of that appeal with no further right of appeal to any body at the University
Initiating an appeal
6. A student who wishes to file an appeal shall submit a written notice and statement of appeal to the Secretariat within 30 days of the student being informed of the decision or outcome being appealed.
7. The notice and statement of appeal is limited to 10 pages and must contain:
- a statement of the decision being appealed, including a copy of that decision if it was provided in writing (which is not included in the 10 page limit);
- a summary of the background to the appeal;
- a statement identifying the grounds for appeal;
- a statement of the relief or remedy sought; and
- a list of the key documents, and copies of the documents, that are relevant to the appeal and upon which the Appellant relies.
8. The Secretariat shall send the Appellant’s notice and statement of appeal to the Office of the Provost normally within 5 business days of its receipt.
Response to appeal
9. The University, through the Office of the Provost, may elect to file a Response to the appeal in which case the Office of the Provost will designate who at the University will be responsible for the Response. The University’s Response is limited to 10 pages and will normally be submitted to the Secretariat within 10 business days. The Secretariat will send the University’s Response to the Appellant promptly, normally within 5 business days of receipt.
Reply to response
10. The Appellant may submit a Reply to any matter raised in the University’s Response which the Appellant has not already addressed in the Appellant’s notice and statement of appeal. The Reply, if any, is limited to 5 pages and will normally be submitted to the Secretariat within 5 business days. The Secretariat will send the Appellant’s Reply to the Respondent promptly.
Scheduling the consideration of the appeal
11. After the final date for receiving the Reply has passed, the Secretariat will schedule a date for the appeal to be considered taking into account the availability of the Committee members. The consideration of the appeal will normally take place within three months after the notice and statement of appeal were submitted to the Secretariat by the Appellant.
12. After the final date for receiving the Reply has passed, the Secretariat will prepare an Appeal Record which shall consist of:
- The Notice and Statement of Appeal;
- The Response, if any; and
- The Reply, if any.
13. The Secretariat shall provide each party and each member of the Committee a copy of the Appeal Record at least 10 business days in advance of the date that the Committee will consider the appeal.
Quorum and appeal record
14. A quorum of the Committee is three members.
15. Unless the Chair of the Committee determines otherwise, all appeals will proceed based on the written materials submitted by the parties, as contained in the Appeal Record.
16. Subject to the rulings of the Chair of the Committee, the Committee shall meet to deliberate and make a recommendation to Senate on the appeal. Members of the Committee may participate in a meeting by means of teleconference or video conference in which all members at the meeting can speak to, and hear, all other members at the meeting.
Committee deliberations and recommendation
17. All deliberations of the Committee are confidential. Members of the Committee shall not discuss the substance of an appeal other than when the Committee is meeting to deliberate and make its recommendation to Senate.
18. Meetings of the Committee shall be in-camera. Recommendations of the Committee to Senate shall be made in-camera.
Committee’s decision-making process
19. In coming to its recommendation, the Committee shall limit its considerations to the Appeal Record. The onus is on the Appellant to prove that the Appeal should be successful.
20. The Committee shall arrive at its recommendation by majority vote of the members of the Committee present at the meeting to consider the appeal.
Committee’s recommendation and report
21. The Committee shall provide its recommendation and the reasons for its recommendation in a written report signed by the Chair of the Committee. The Committee shall limit its recommendations to those matters referred to in section 23 below.
22. The Chair of the Committee will provide the written report to the Secretariat, who shall provide it to Senate for final consideration. After Senate decides the appeal, the Secretariat will provide the Committee’s report to each of the parties, along with notice of the Senate’s decision of the appeal.
23. After considering the report of the Committee, Senate may:
- Dismiss the appeal;
- Allow the appeal and
- in the case of an appeal of a decision by the President regarding discipline of a student, refer the decision back to the President for review or reconsideration in accordance with the reasons of the Committee;
- in the case of an appeal of an election result:
- Order the registrar to overturn the result and award the position or positions in question to the candidate or candidates with the second highest number of votes;
- Order the registrar to call a new election for the position or positions in question.