Student’s death prompts call for access to campus courts

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Georgetown University officials are reviewingthe school’s current policy regarding the disclosure of campus court recordsafter receiving criticism for refusing to release details about the outcomeof a disciplinary hearing related to the death of a student. The Georgetown University community and the family members of DavidSchick, a student who died in February from head injuries inflicted ina fight, demanded information from the administration about the punishmentsthe other students involved in the fight received in campus disciplinaryhearings. School officials refused to release any information related tothe hearing, contending that confidentiality for all students was its mainconcern. The Georgetown University Student Association passed a resolution inMay that called for the release of general information about the hearingsto the public, including the disciplinary action taken by the universitywith any identifiable information erased, and more detailed informationreleased to the Schick family. The resolution also asked the administration to “work with the disciplinaryreview committee to undergo a full and comprehensive review of disclosurepolicy for adjudication proceedings.” Juan Gonzalez, vice president for student affairs, has had severalmeetings with the student association and created a committee to reviewthe current policy regarding the disclosure of disciplinary hearings, accordingto Julie Bataille, university spokeswoman.  She said Gonzalez expectssome preliminary recommendations by December and more concrete recommendationsin May. Under federal law, universities are allowed, but not required, to releasethe names of students found responsible in campus courts for violent crimesas well as the violations they committed and the punishment imposed bythe university.