No. 10: Students may be paid for their academic boycott against the Rhodes statue.
According to Downing Street, Oxford students may be entitled to compensation if their classes are disrupted by an academic boycott over a Cecil Rhodes statue.
Following Oriel College’s decision not to remove a contentious British imperialist monument, more than 100 academics at the University of Oxford are refusing to conduct tutorials to its undergraduates.
They’ve also promised not to help Oriel College with outreach or admissions interviews, and they’ve said they won’t attend or present at any of the college’s presentations, seminars, or conferences.
It comes after Oriel College was accused of “institutional racism” last month when its governing council stated that the monument of Rhodes will not be moved from its current location outside the building.
This awakening must not be allowed to occur.
In response to the boycott, a spokesman for No. 10 said on Thursday, “Students rightly expect to get a good deal for their investment in higher education, and we would expect universities to take appropriate action, which could include compensation, should any student be seriously affected by these actions.”
“We strongly support academic freedom, but colleges must prioritize maintaining access to high-quality tuition, especially considering the disruption the pandemic has already caused students.”
Commons Leader Jacob Rees-Mogg slammed the academics, calling them a “useless bunch” and urging, “We must not allow this wokeness to happen.”
“As to the academics refusing to teach, I’m half tempted to say you should be lucky not to be taught by such a stupid bunch, but if they are that feeble, what are you missing and what are they doing there?” Mr Rees-Mogg, an Oxford history graduate, told MPs in the Commons.
“Why aren’t they proud of their country, our illustrious past, and our achievements?”
His remarks came after a prominent scholar recommended that a sign stating “Sorry” be placed around the neck of a statue of Rhodes at Oriel College.
If the college put a ‘Sorry’ banner around his neck today at lunchtime. (This is a brief piece.)