Swansea carry-on

August 21, 2014

What a carry-on at Swansea (“Upscaling dean claims his actions compensated for disgruntled staff”, News, 14 August). As Nigel Piercy, the dean of the management school, yells “Infamy! Infamy! They’ve all got it in for me!”, Swansea’s senior managers seem to be asleep at the wheel of the coach carrying, one assumes, a strangely uninformed university council.

With an external examiner questioning examining practice at the school, while the dean declares a unilateral declaration of independence in the face of the teaching and learning committee’s rulings, the threat to Swansea’s standing is, simply, immeasurable.

Alongside this, the good professor, being, it seems, quite oblivious to the lack of security attached to emails – even without the ubiquitous National Security Agency – goes on to suggest that a pro vice-chancellor may be an internet troll. Perhaps most serious (in terms of fallout for the school) is the claim that his colleagues deliberately marked students down to punish him for his management.

The example in the article of the move to raise a student’s mark from 2 to 31 per cent has to raise questions all on its own. Once upon a time, the changed mark would have moved the student from catastrophic failure to disastrous failure – so what has changed to make this anything other than a pyrrhic manoeuvre? That the school should then withdraw its recognition of the quality committee’s authority, would at any other time have sent the Quality Assurance Agency into orbit. Has the free market now become the free degree market?

Andrew Morgan
Brecon

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