Leeds grad who said essay was failed because it didn’t criticise Israel given payout by uni
‘It is necessary that large institutions know that they will be held accountable’, she said
A Jewish graduate from the University of Leeds who claimed her essay was failed because she didn’t criticise Israel enough has been awarded a payout.
The university has now settled the legal claim, the Jewish Chronicle reports, and Danielle Greyman will receive an undisclosed sum under a “commercial settlement” of her claim for damages.
Leeds said it “does not consider or accept that there has been any wrongdoing” or that Danielle “has suffered any loss”, and stressed the offer was made with no admissions.
Before the payout, the coursework mark had already been revised to a passing grade following her successful internal appeal. Danielle was awarded a 2:1, finally allowing her to take her place on a Master’s course – a year after she was supposed to, thanks to the long process.
The Leeds grad sued the university on the grounds of negligence, discrimination and victimisation.
Danielle Greyman told the JC: “I am grateful for the support that UKLFI [UK Lawyers For Israel Charitable Trust] and the wider Jewish community has provided, and I hope this encourages other students to take action against institutions that do not uphold their responsibility of ensuring academic freedom and fair marking. That said, I am disappointed by the waste of resources that went into dealing with the issue.
“If the university had simply apologised at the outset, corrected the marking and offered antisemitism training to staff, I would have felt greatly satisfied.
“Instead, they failed to confirm that I was entitled to the degree until it was too late, and made me wait six months before hearing my appeal, and then a further six months for the re-marking. This has been a long and draining process, but it is necessary that large institutions know that they will be held accountable.”
A spokesperson for the University of Leeds said: “No finding of any wrongdoing on the part of the University has been made by the Court. Furthermore, the University does not consider or accept that there has been any wrongdoing. An internal review exonerated our staff of any alleged discrimination and the University remains fully supportive of the academic judgement of its academic staff.
“We strenuously deny the accusation of antisemitism, the definition of which we interpret to be in line with the working definition of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA).
“The University of Leeds has a zero tolerance approach to antisemitism, and any form of unlawful discrimination or hate crime, and on which we follow Government guidance.
“The listing of this claim in the small claims court was surprising and unexpected. As a consequence, and on the commercial direction of our insurers, an offer without any admission of liability was made by the University which was accepted by the claimant.
“This offer was made expressly on the basis that the University does not accept any liability nor accept that the claimant has suffered any loss.”
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