Statement from the Court of the University of St Andrews – Investigator appointed
The Court of the University of St Andrews has appointed Morag Ross KC to undertake an independent external investigation to address questions raised about the role and recent actions of the University Rector, Ms Stella Maris.
Court has asked Ms Ross to examine whether the Rector’s actions and activities were compatible with the responsibilities and standards placed on her as a member of Court, and a Trustee.
University Court is the governing body of University of St Andrews.
Court met on 15 December 2023 in response to questions and concerns raised by students, staff and alumni about a recent statement by the Rector, which she sent to the student body, about her views of the war in Gaza and Israel, and her subsequent remarks and communications.
Court firmly recognised the Rector’s right to freedom of speech as a private individual.
It agreed unanimously, however, that an independent external investigation should be commissioned in relation to her duties and legal responsibilities as a Trustee.
Ms Ross will have the freedom to interview witnesses, including staff and students, and to request such documentation and testimony as she sees fit. It is anticipated she will report her findings to Court in the early part of 2024.
In the interests of fairness to all parties and to allow due process to be followed, the University will not comment further currently on what is necessarily a confidential matter.
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