Decanally Retentive

Deanings at St Hugh’s in Oxford have got out of hand: furious freshers are footing bills for over £1000.

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Oxford students have been victims of over-zealous punishments handed down by deans.

Repeatedly penalized for petty infractions, students at St Hugh’s have had enough.

They claim they have been the victims of “active deaning,” where junior deans go out of their way to catch anyone who steps slightly out of line.

Sounding like a group of super-hero porn stars, Hugh’s ‘decanal team’ have been merciless in laying down the law.

Oxford student paper, Cherwell reported one student being charged £100 for being too noisy, while another had racked up nearly a grand’s worth of fines in his time as an undergrad.

The Tab spoke to a student at St Hugh’s, who asked to remain anonymous, fearing severe repercussions from his college.

‘They fined us when we were freshers like nothing else,’ he remembers. ‘I think it went up to around £1500 between us by the end of freshers’ week. Disgraceful.’

Another student who had previously been at Oxford confirmed the lunacy of the system. He recalled one unlucky Oxonian being forced to move out of his college for the heinous crime of using an apple press without the dean’s permission.

 Absolute mare: Out of control college deanings

Clare student and Oxford graduate Tess Somerville remembers not all colleges being so harsh.

“At Christ Church most of the college’s disciplinary officers were held in fond contempt.”

She added that “if college discipline is left to the fairly arbitrary decisions of individuals then they should definitely err on the side of leniency.”

Deaning controversies are by no means confined to the other place, however. In 2010, The Tab launched an investigation into college discipline, with some shocking and bizarre results.

Highlights included one student flooding the Sidney library by blocking his sink with vomit, and a repeat-offender from Churchill being mauled by a police dog after he had been caught on the college roof.

You can read The Tab‘s investigation into college deanings here in Part One and here in Part Two.