Information about the system:
- There must be clear information about the people the students can contact if needed to discuss their case or to be advised about an incident if they are considering reporting it.
- The students can “say something” through a digital form on three different levels:
- Serious and blameworthy conditions (red case)
- Errors and omissions (yellow case)
- Positive feedback (green case)
- For serious and blameworthy conditions, it is also possible to report anonymously.
- Examples of what kind of cases fall under which category must be clear.
- Both the procedure and the website are reviewed every year in June, to uncover any errors or omissions, or other things that must be improved or changed prior to the semester start in August. This review is done by the contact people, both the incoming and outgoing StOr leader, and sometimes the students ombudsperson. In this way, the new leader of StOr is well informed of how the “Let us know” system works. The focus must be for the system to be as visible and easily accessible as possible.
- The system itself will make statistics of the incoming messages. These reports are sent to the receiving parties of these messages each month, and gives a good overview of the extent of and types of cases coming in.
- There is a yearly case to the educational committee (UU) and the learning environment committee (LU) with a report of all the cases in “Let us know”.
Responsibility for handling of incoming notification cases at UiS:
- At department level, the department head has the formal responsibility for handling of these cases.
- At faculty level, the dean has the formal responsibility for handling these cases
- For cases regarding errors and omissions in the physical learning environment (yellow cases), it is the operations manager who is responsible for the follow up.
Receiving a notice/message from a student:
- The recipient of the message is a legal advisor in the division of academic affairs. The legal advisor is responsible for forwarding the message to the right department/unit, and that the case is handled in accordance with these guidelines. The legal advisor(s) in the HR-department and the director of academic affairs will be CC-recipients of all incoming messages – this is to make sure the institution won’t be volatile when receiving these messages. For longer absences, such as vacation time, the recipients themselves must make sure someone else is following any potential messages. The students will be notified in the digital form of a somewhat longer processing time during times like that.
- The student will automatically receive a reply that the message is received. For serious conditions, the sender will receive feedback from the legal advisor about who is on the case and how it will proceed, within three working days. For messages regarding errors and omissions, the student will get feedback within one week.
Follow-up of notification/messages from students (red cases)
- The responsible case handler in the case contacts the student ASAP to arrange a meeting/conversation. The student will be informed that they can bring a bystander to the meeting, such as a friend, student ombudsperson, or other people of support. During the meeting they will look closer into the case together and prepare questions and answers that could arise. Further, there will be informed about written minutes from the meeting that has to be approved by the student. The minutes must describe the incident as well as possible, including the involved parties and connection to specific department/unit.
- After the meeting, the information/allegations put forward must be assessed for further follow-up.
- The responsible case handler must contact the person being notified about, to arrange a meeting/conversation. Here the accused individual will be informed about the case/information put forward and can tell their side of the story. (the principle of contradiction). There will be written minutes from this meeting as well, approved by the individual.
- Based on the parties’ statements and other information, the responsible case handler will assess further follow-up and conclusion in the case.
- There must be written case handling, including all documentation in the case, such as the initial notification, the minutes from the meetings/conversations with the involved parties and conclusion of the case. All must be in writing.
- The parties of the case have a right of access to the documents, from the Public Administration Act, section 18 and 19.
Ending of notifications/messages from student (red cases)
- The responsible case handler must give the parties feedback about the case being completed and what the conclusion was. If by mistake the student did not receive any feedback, they can contact the legal advisors in the division of academic affairs/HR department. The contact information for these is found on the website.
- The case is sent over to the legal advisor in the division of academic affairs for journaling in Public360.
- Storing of personal data in the “let us know” system must be handled in line with current privacy laws and regulations. Storing of personal data will be continuously assessed.