No shot, no school: Western University turfed dozens of students over COVID vaccine policy breaches | #coronavirus | #kids. | #children | #schools

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Fifty-nine Western University students were withdrawn from their courses and banned from campus due to COVID-19 vaccination violations, according to the recently released annual report on the code of student conduct.

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School officials investigated 1,349 student incidents related to noncompliance of its COVID-19 vaccination policy from May 1, 2021 to April 30, 2022, according to the new report prepared by the student support and case management. The code “applies to instances of non-academic misconduct which can include behaviour that is disruptive, dangerous, or causes a personal safety concern,” officials say.

The COVID-related incidents were the result of students not adhering to Western’s policy that everyone on campus needs to be fully vaccinated or have an approved exemption due to a medical condition or other grounds under Ontario Human Rights Code, according to the report. Complaints were dismissed once students produced their proof of vaccination, the report stated, which often happened once formal proceedings began against a student.

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“While the number of complaints related to the COVID-19 vaccination policy resulting in sanctions represented the largest number of all violation categories in 2021-2022, the number is considered relatively small in the context of a student population of more than 32,000,” university officials said in an emailed statement.

When compared year-over-year, without the vaccination violations, the number of student code violations declined to 20, from 122 investigated, during the most recent school year, from 30 in 2020-21 and 28 in 2019-2020.

Those incidents included violations such as misconduct against people or property, providing false information, alcohol- or drug-related offences, as well as the contravention of university regulations or other laws. Sanctions ranged from written warnings, exclusion from class, loss of privileges or a no contact order, the report stated. Three students were suspended and one was expelled.

The majority of complaints, 98, came from students.

“Students continue to be the best advocates for addressing their peers’ behaviour on-campus and in campus-adjacent spaces,” Western officials said in a statement. “Education sessions have helped ensure that students have a general awareness of the options available for reporting concerning behaviour.”

Other complaints may come from Western’s housing and ancillary services or campus safety and emergency services or other sources.

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