Statement on School of Law Incident

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CityUniversity of Hong Kong announced the results of the appeals lodged by seven teaching staff in the School of Law. The Appeal Committee’s conclusions are summarized as follows:


1.              The Appeal Committee upheld the decisions made by the Approving Committee on four staff members who were not offered further contracts of appointment. In respect of three other staff members who were given a one-year contract, a two-year contract was offered to each of them;

2.              The Appeal Committee found that there was no substance in the allegation of racial discrimination;

3.              The Appeal Committee found that it was not improper for Professor Michael McConville, the Dean of School of Law, to sit as a member in both the School Staffing Committee and the Approving Committee, and there was no conflict of interest due to a specific staff member sitting in the School Staffing Committee; and

4.              The Appeal Committee concluded that there existed procedural and other flaws in the evaluation process undertaken by the School Staffing Committee and hence the evaluation of the eligibility of renewal of contract of the staff members concerned could not be regarded as comprehensive.

President of City University of Hong Kong Professor H K Chang accepted the decisions, and thanked the five members of the Appeal Committee for their hard work. Professor Chang said that the University will enact the decisions made by the Appeal Committee. Professor Chang said: “The Appeal Committee handled the appeals in a serious and professional manner. They ensured that the appellants' viewpoints were fully considered. I believe that the appellants' cases have been treated in a fair and just manner.”


“The decisions of the Appeal Committee confirm that City University of Hong Kong is a tertiary institution that upholds the principles of equality and justice for all, and substantiate the effectiveness of the University's existing staff appraisal system. Indeed, in order to achieve our education mission, the quality of our staff is invariably accorded priority attention. That is why, to deal with staffing matters, we have established a strict appraisal system, including an independent appeal mechanism to ensure that appeals can be justly addressed.”


Professor Chang added: “City University of Hong Kong has always strived for excellence. We readily accept the views of the Appeal Committee.”


CityUniversity of Hong Kong always value greatly the opinions of its staff and students. We believe that the joint involvement and combined efforts of all members of our University community contribute to the successful delivery of our education mission. However, during the course of the appeal process, the University is obliged to respect the independence of the Appeal Committee and should not influence its work. That is why the University considered it inappropriate to respond or express its comments on the matter as requested by some staff and students. Now that the Appeal Committee has discharged its task, we have immediately communicated with the Management Board, concerned parties in the School of Law, staff and students in the School of Law, and student representatives etc. We have also reported the Appeal Committee's decisions and our response to University Council, and informed the University Grants Committee, and the Education Panel of the Legislative Council. I sincerely call on all members of the University community to unite and work jointly to achieve the mission of City University of Hong Kong.”


For media enquiries, please contact Mrs Betty Chan of City University of Hong Kong’s Public Affairs Office at 2788 9322.



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