lundi 5 janvier 2009

Denis Rancourt suspendu...

Voici une lettre d'appui du professeur Claud Lamontagne afin d'appuyer le professeur de physique Denis Rancourt qui s'est fait suspendre par l'université d'Ottawa. Le professeur en question a d'ailleurs un blog qui est présent dans nos liens depuis un certain temps. Comme quoi l'université lieu de connaissance et de débat, n'est pas réalité dans notre société libéral!

Physics professor Denis Rancourt has been suspended awaiting dismissal,barred from campus, removed from his graduate students, and escorted offcampus by university police, for having attributed all A+’s in one physicscourse 8 months ago.

The suspension and move for dismissal came during the December break at ameeting with the upper administration, with campus police waiting at thedoor to expel Denis from campus grounds.

While Denis’ pedagogical innovations are rejected by the university, thegrading question is only the latest pretext to attempt to silence Denis.The university’s actions are blatantly political (see backgroundinformation below) and are intended to remove a vocal critic of theuniversity administration, a dissident, and a practitioner of democracy inuniversity governance.

Following the high grades, Denis was removed from all teaching in May, including his popular activism course which uses only pass-fail grading.In July he was barred from reserving rooms for public events (the weeklyCinema Politica series). In September his undergraduate research studentMarc Kelly was unilaterally deregistered by the university. In NovemberRancourt and his graduate students and employees were expelled and lockedout of his laboratory without warning or explanation.

Fortunately, following the lab lockout, the Canadian Association ofUniversity Teachers (CAUT) announced that it would run an IndependentCommittee of Inquiry (ICOI) into the ongoing disputes between Denis and the university. The CAUT considers this to be a major academic freedomcase in Canada and has only ever run a handful of ICOIs in its history.

The ongoing broad public battle is one that is helping to define thesocietal role of universities, at a time when Canada is joining theAmerican geo-political project.

The next steps in the official procedure to dismiss Denis are as follows. On January 5th Denis will submit a letter of disagreement with theuniversity plan to fire him. He then has 20 working days to submit alegal brief presenting his case to the Board of Governors. Following thisa required meeting for possible resolution is scheduled within a month orso. Following an unsuccessful meeting, the case goes to the ExecutiveCommittee of the Board of Governors (EBOG) for a final decision at itsnext monthly meeting. The EBOG decision must be approved by President Allan Rock.

A core support committee for Denis and in defence of education has beenformed that I chair.

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