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Student handbook

Code of Practice: Loughborough Students' Union

1.) Preamble

This Code of Practice is approved by the University Council in fulfilment of the requirements of Clause 22(3) of the Education Act 1994 which Act requires that Council shall take such steps as are reasonably practicable to secure that Loughborough Students' Union operates in a fair and democratic manner and is accountable for its finances. The Code of Practice should be read in conjunction with Statute XVII and Ordinance XVI.

2.) Requirements of Charity Law

Loughborough Students' Union is governed by the law relating to educational charities. In particular, whilst it may engage in political debate, it may not support political or other causes which have nothing to do with its members' education or welfare as students.

3.) Constitution

There shall be a written constitution for Loughborough Students' Union, approved by the University Council and reviewed by the University Council at intervals of not more than five years. Any amendments to the constitution shall be approved by the University Council on the recommendation of Senate.

4.) Elections

Appointment to major Union offices shall be by election in a secret ballot in which all members of Loughborough Students' Union are entitled to vote. The University Council shall satisfy itself that the elections to major Union offices are fairly and properly conducted by appointing a member of the University staff to observe election arrangements.

5.) Sabbatical Offices

No person shall hold sabbatical Union office, or paid elected Union office, for more than two years in total.

6.) Membership

All registered students of the University shall be members of the Union unless they choose not to be so. This right to opt-out shall be permitted once only during an academic year at the Autumn registration. Students shall be informed annually by the University of the opting-out procedure and of the consequences of so doing. A student opting-out of Loughborough Students' Union shall not be unfairly disadvantaged with regard to the provision of services or otherwise.

The consequences of opting out of membership shall be: 

  • a student may not participate in any of the democratic processes of the Union
  • a student will have the status of guest at Union events
  • a student may join Union clubs and societies as an associate member
  • a student will not be represented by the Union

7.) Finances

The financial affairs of Loughborough Students' Union shall be properly conducted and shall be the subject of a financial memorandum between the University and the Union which shall specify the financial relationship between the Union and the University. The annual accounts of Loughborough Students' Union shall be made available to the University Council and to all students.

8.) Allocation of Resources to Clubs, Societies and Groups

The procedure for allocating resources to clubs, societies and groups shall be fair and shall be set down in writing by Loughborough Students' Union and freely accessible to all students on application to the Union President.

9.) Affiliation to External Organisations

If Loughborough Students' Union decides to affiliate to an external organisation, it shall promptly publish a notice in The Newspaper of its decision stating the name of the organisation and details of any subscription or similar fee paid or proposed to be paid, and of any donation made or proposed to be made to the organisation and any such notice shall be made available to the Chief Operating Officer who shall inform the University Council.

The Annual Report of Loughborough Students' Union shall contain a list of the external organisations to which the Union is currently affiliated and details of subscriptions or similar fees paid or donations made to such organisations in the past year, and the report shall be made available to the University Council and to all students.

The Council of Loughborough Students' Union shall keep under review the list of affiliations. The list shall be approved annually as part of the elections ballot. Five percent of the members of the Union may at intervals of not less than one year, by a signed requisition delivered to the Permanent Secretary, call for a secret ballot of all members on the continuation of affiliation to a particular organisation.

10.) Freedom of Speech

Loughborough Students' Union and its members are bound to observe the University's Code of Practice in relation to Freedom of Speech drawn up pursuant to Section 43 of the Education (No. 2) Act of 1986.

11.) Complaints

There shall be a complaints procedure available to all students or groups of students who are dissatisfied in their dealings with Loughborough Students' Union or claim to be unfairly disadvantaged by reason of their having exercised the right referred to in paragraph 5 above. Complaints will be dealt with promptly and fairly and where a complaint is upheld there will be an effective remedy. The complaints procedure shall have three stages: 

Every attempt will be made to deal with the complaint informally in accordance with Loughborough Students' Union's internal complaints procedures, copies of which are available from the Union President.

If the student or group of students is or are still dissatisfied, the matter will be considered by the Chief Operating Officer.

If on receipt of the Registrar's decision the student or group of students is or are still dissatisfied, they shall inform the Registrar of this within fourteen days of receipt of his/her decision. An independent person shall be appointed by the Chair of the University Council. The independent person shall carry out such enquiries as he/she considers necessary and shall normally report within twenty-one days of appointment. The decision of the independent person shall be final and shall be delivered in writing to the complainant and to the Chair of Council.

October 1998