BYU Confirms: Bishops Can Expel Students for Inconsistent Reasons

BYU Bible

Image from Daily Beast article referenced in post


Last month, FreeBYU sent a formal complaint to the NWCCU, BYU’s accreditor. Among other things, we highlighted the fact that BYU bishops have full authority to have a student expelled for any reason without chance for appeal to the University. This violates the NWCCU’s governance standard that requires that

Policies and procedures regarding students’ rights and responsibilities—including academic honesty, appeals, grievances, and accommodations for persons with disabilities—are clearly stated, readily available, and administered in a fair and consistent manner.

Because bishops have unilateral ability to expel a student for any reason, and because students cannot know before hand what their bishops will consider an expulsion-worthy offense, BYU’s policy is not “clearly stated, readily available,” or “administered in a fair and consistent manner.”

Yesterday, The Daily Beast published an article that covered the religious conditions at BYU in detail (check it out here when you get a chance). In the article, BYU’s Carrie Jenkins confirms that bishops have individual power to decide what does and does not violate the honor code:

The bishops are asked to apply the same standards of the Honor Code,” she wrote. “Given they are ecclesiastical leaders to individual members of their congregations, they also have discretion to make ecclesiastical determinations in individual cases.

While we’ve certainly seen enough to know that bishops can have students expelled for inconsistent reasons, it is good to have an official at BYU confirm that this is indeed the case.


One thought on “BYU Confirms: Bishops Can Expel Students for Inconsistent Reasons

  • Somebody withdraw Cari Jenkins Ecclesiastical Endorsement for making significant misrepresentations about BYU’s Honor Code. The Board of Trustees explained to the Deseret News in a 23 March 1993 news story announcing the change in the Ecclesiastical Endorsement policy to make former LDS students not eligible for receiving an Ecclesiastical Endorsement. The change had nothing to do with the “unique promises made by LDS students.” The Free BYU position on former LDS is exactly the same as BYU’s pre-1993 policy on former LDS students, before the change there was no “promise breakers” spin, and then BYU was before 1993 still under the ownership of the LDS Church, and the LDS Board of Trustees. Beginning in 1993 the Quorum of 12, with BKP leading the charge demanded ideological purity at BYU. BKP had a wonderful academic speech to the History Department that a historical matter, however accurate but not faith promoting for the LDS is not a truth or fact that should be researched or published. BKP is a product of the LDS CES system and sees BYU as an extension of CES. BPK cannot differentiate a History Professor from an institute or seminary teacher – a moral relativistic where ends justify the means, a traditional LDS approach sin JS discovered polygamy in Nauvo Illinois or BY gave the order to have his adopted son , LEE, organize to kill the Fancher party in So Utah, and then arranged to have his adopted son face a Utah firing squad for the privilege. Unless the NWCCU enforces its rules and policy on BYU, it will become an embarrassment as if Oral Roberts University were accredited were by its regional authority. BYU is much more like an Oral Roberts University and not an academic powerhouse like that Catholic University in Indiana. Perhaps the only right and honest way for BYU is to resign from the NWCCU and announce itself as an advanced part of the CES System and the MTC. It is more honest and those of us who don’t like it will know to go elsewhere. Or BYU could go back to the approved policy as before 1993, one that worked for ELW, JFS and plenty of conservative LDS leaders. I would like to read Cari Jenkins more honest reply and that she be held to the standard for truthfulness of the BYU Honor Code.

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