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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Grads progress on bill of rights

Timothy Galaz / Arizona Daily Wildcat

Icecats Practice/GSPC
Timothy Galaz
Timothy Galaz / Arizona Daily Wildcat Icecats Practice/GSPC

Graduate student leaders took their first steps toward approving a graduate student bill of rights this weekend and agreed upon a tentative rough draft.

The unofficial document, released to the Daily Wildcat, is largely based on a graduate student bill of rights passed by the Graduate and Professional Student Council several years ago. That bill was killed by university administrators due to legal complications after being passed by GPSC.

The proposed rough draft will be presented to President Robert Shelton in a meeting next week, before it goes to the whole GPSC. It outlines a broad range of administrative procedures, First Amendment-style freedoms, academic responsibilities and teaching policies.

A small group of current and former GPSC representatives — including former president Stephen Bieda — met Saturday in preparation for the upcoming meeting with Shelton. The group decided to move ahead with a largely unchanged version of the older bill, although some changes will be made before the meeting with Shelton, said GPSC President David Talenfeld, a second-year law student.

“”I’m going to give it some provisions to really give it some teeth,”” Talenfeld said.

Talenfeld gave particular attention to a clause added during the weekend that calls for a governing board comprised of faculty and students to resolve disputes related to the bill.

“”I don’t think the document can function without a body to enforce it,”” he said.

Shelton has been supportive of GPSC’s efforts on the bill thus far, Talenfeld said.

The president, who could not be reached by telephone over the weekend, called the bill of rights a “”good idea”” in an e-mail to the Daily Wildcat.

“”We have numerous policies along these lines, but reviewing them, improving them and gathering them into a single document makes sense,”” the e-mail said.

Momentum for the bill has been gathering since the council’s meeting Sept. 30, when it decided to assign bill preparation to the policy subcommittee and the special bill of rights committee that met this weekend.

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