OHIO — Ohio University student Nathan Ray will return to campusthis fall after settling a lawsuit in which he accused the school of violatinghis rights to due process during a campus disciplinary procedure.
The Department of Education is currently suing two other public universitiesin Ohio to prevent them from releasing campus disciplinary records to TheChronicle of Higher Education. Some critics of campus courts say thesecrecy in disciplinary proceedings can lead to charges that the systemis unfair.
Ray was suspended in April after a campus court found him guilty ofviolating the student code of conduct. He was denied the opportunity toseek legal counsel during the process of appealing his suspension throughthe campus court.
Ray’s attorney, Derek Farmer, said the language of the university’scode of conduct, which prohibits students from obtaining legal advice,is unconstitutional.
Ray filed suit in April requesting a preliminary injunction to stopthe school from enforcing the suspension until the court could determinethe constitutionality of the system.
Instead, the day after a hearing in a Columbus district court, Ray reacheda settlement with the school. Although Farmer would not release the termsof the settlement, he did say that the suspension was revoked and Ray willbe enrolled in classes this fall.
“The Constitution of the United States does not stop at the door ofOhio University or any other university,” Farmer said. “Students have constitutionalrights that must be protected as all other American citizens’ rights areprotected.”