SDM comments on newly introduced ‘Legal Studies’ subject
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Update: Studenti Demokristjani Maltin (SDM) said today that is has been alerted with regards the newly introduced ‘Legal Studies’ subject at an Intermediate level from a number of complaints it received from potential first year students.
This subject was also discussed in a press conference yesterday by the student based organisation Pulse.
Through consultation, SDM said that it has ascertained that the issue has been discussed at length in the University Senate in order to determine whether the subject should be regarded as a pre-requisite to join the law course, something which the Senate decided against since the topics covered would be repeated at University level.
“The Senate decided that the course was intended for students not entering the law course in order to grant them a perspective of a different area of studies than their own, in the same way that psychology and philosophy amongst other courses are offered,” SDM said.
SDM said that it believes that it is “irresponsible to resort to a public outcry rather than verifying facts with elected student representatives within the relevant bodies as well as the KSU Education Office, something which could easily have been done to ascertain the facts correctly.”
It also believes that “such actions will only serve to instill negative relations between students and the university administration, something which can have negative implications for all and which could have been avoided had proper checks been carried out. Incidents such as these contionue to highlight the importance of student representatives to sort any misunderstandings for the benefit of all students.”
Update: Response by Pulse
In response to the statement by SDM, Pulse said that, “we cannot but express our surprise at how it seems that SDM decided to put the need to maintain a close friendship with the University authorities before the best interests of the students it represents. This can be seen not only in its position, but also through the orchestrated attempts by its officials to misguide students into believing that preparation from a post-secondary level for Law courses would not be beneficial.”
Pulse pointed out that “yesterday’s Press Conference and the subsequent media coverage prove the need for common sense to prevail in these issues. Indeed, Pulse did verify the facts, and consulted with student organisations and elected representatives, rather than University officials.
“SDM seems to have forgotten that on this issue, Pulse immediately sought the collaboration of the Law Students’ Organisation (Gh.S.L.) and Mr. Paul Caruana Turner, Student Representative on the Faculty of Laws’ Board of Studies. The allegations that Pulse did otherwise show the utter disrespect SDM has for anyone whose position it disagrees with.”
“We are committed to continue focusing on the need for students to be at the centre of this issue, and of similar policy decisions which most of the time are dictated upon by the administration which SDM seems so keen on protecting,” Pulse stated.
“If SDM believes that students deserve more, it should join Pulse, Gh.S.L. and numerous individuals who understand that the common-sense approach is to push for discussions in order to reach the logical position of offering prospective Law students the possibility of choosing a subject which came about as the result of pressure in the past years – including from present University Law students, to have an extended preparation period for the course at post-secondary level.”
Pulse continued by saying that, “in this regard, we are pleased to announce that the Minister for Education Evarist Bartolo has personally contacted Pulse and will be meeting its’ representatives to discuss this issue in the coming week.
“This is further proof that SDM are alone in discrediting the need for discussions to take place. Therefore, we call on the organisation to join Pulse and Gh.S.L. in favour of decisions taken in the best interest of all students, irrespective of their representatives.”
“We also call upon KSU to come up with a comprehensive position which is truly based on students’ aspirations and opinions,” Pulse concluded.