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Faculty Policies



  1. This Code of Ethics is established to assist Catholic Institute of Sydney staff to identify and manage ethical issues that may arise in the course of their work.
  2. Section 1 of the Code deals with matters of particular relevance to academic staff. Section 2 deals with matters of relevance to all staff including academic staff.
  3. It is expected that both the Institute and its staff will uphold and advance the principles embodies in this Code.

Section 1: Matters of Particular Relevance to Academic Staff

1.1 Academic Freedom and Responsibility

  1. Academic freedom for Catholic Institute of Sydney staff is exercised within and takes account of the Roman Catholic tradition in which the Institute is established.
  2. Taking this tradition into account, Institute staff have the responsibility to undertake research, and to base their research, scholarship and teaching on an honest search for and dissemination of knowledge.
  3. Academic staff should never act or omit to act so as to limit unreasonably the academic freedom of any other person.
  4. In the context of legitimate academic freedom it is accepted that academic staff may sometimes act in their research, scholarship and teaching as critics of prevailing modes of thought, understanding, policies and practices and may offer alternative modes of thought, understanding, policies and practices.

1.2 Academic Staff as Teachers and Supervisors of Students

Academic staff should:

  1. treat students with respect at all times, according to the principles of access and equity.
  2. not allow personal relationships with students to affect or appear to affect the professional relationship between them
  3. recognise that all forms of harassment are completely unacceptable
  4. encourage students to think independently and to exchange ideas freely
  5. develop and maintain expertise in areas in which they teach
  6. communicate effectively in both formal and informal teaching contexts, and allow students reasonable access for this purpose
  7. develop assessment procedures that are fair and effective and that contribute to student learning, and administer them in a fair and efficient manner, and provide timely and constructive feedback to students
  8. ensure that they are familiar with current Catholic Institute of Sydney degree regulations and other regulations relating to their teaching and assessment procedures
  9. continually seek to improve their teaching effectiveness on the basis of all available information about their performance and its impact on students
  10. undertake professional development or activities intended to improve teaching
  11. where appropriate, provide suitable advice and assistance to former students in their academic and professional development
  12. refrain from seeking or revealing confidential information about students without the permission of the st udent concerned except in a recognised official capacity and in appropriate circumstances such as a clear risk to the student or other person, in an emergency, or where required by law.


1.3 Academic Staff as Researchers and Scholars

Academic staff should:

  1. treat other researchers and research subjects with respect at all times
  2. seek to develop new understanding of their areas of expertise, both for the increase of knowledge for its own sake and for the wider public interest
  3. truthfully acknowledge the contributions that others have made towards their research and scholarship, especially colleagues and students
  4. accept an obligation to disseminate the results of their research through publication, conference presentation, and in other appropriate ways
  5. comply with the standards and ethics of their own professional societies, and with nationally and internationally accepted standards.


1.4 Academic Staff as Consultants and Practitioners

Academic staff should:

  1. avoid taking work that would in any way interfere with the fulfilment of their duties on behalf of the Institute
  2. refrain from engaging in any work that would compromise their integrity and independence as academic staff
  3. represent their academic competence truthfully
  4. avoid representing themselves as acting for, or on behalf of, Catholic Institute of Sydney when undertaking private consulting work
  5. avoid improper use of the resources of Catholic Institute of Sydney for private gain.


Section 2: Matters of Relevance to All Staff Including Academic Staff

2.1 Academic Staff in Their Relations with Other Staff

Academic Staff should:

  1. treat all other staff with respect at all times
  2. give due credit to the contributions of other staff
  3. assist colleagues where appropriate and in particular act as mentors towards junior colleagues
  4. refrain from acting in any way that would unfairly harm the reputation, or career prospects of other staff
  5. not allow personal relationships with other staff to affect or appear to affect the professional relationship between them
  6. recognise that all forms of harassment are completely unacceptable
  7. be prepared to act appropriately and constructively where a colleague’s behaviour is clearly in breach of this Code
  8. refrain from seeking or revealing confidential information about other staff members without the permission of the person concerned, except in a recognised official capacity and in appropriate circumstances such as a clear risk to the staff member or another person, in an emergency, or where required by law.

2.2. Staff as Appointees of the Chancellor or President

All staff should:

  1. acknowledge and contribute to the achievement of Catholic Institute of Sydney’s objectives
  2. participate appropriately in the institutional life of Catholic Institute of Sydney
  3. refrain from representing themselves as spokespersons for Catholic Institute of Sydney unless authorised to do so
  4. take all due care and responsibility to uphold the reputation of Catholic Institute of Sydney and not engage in activities which would bring Catholic Institute of Sydney into disrepute
  5. accept a responsibility as stewards of Catholic Institute of Sydney property.


Issued by the President on: 24 July 2003


1. Rationale

Catholic Institute of Sydney operates by a Staff Code of Conduct which ensures that:

  1. the Institute is faithful to the gospel of Our Lord Jesus Christ and to the teaching of the Catholic Church
  2. the Institute operates in a manner worthy of its name
  3. the Institute’s position regarding acceptable and non-acceptable conduct is clearly stated
  4. staff and students are respected and are treated fairly and justly according to the principles of access and equity.


2. Purposes

The purposes of this Staff Code of Conduct are:

  1. to give guidance to all Catholic Institute staff on the standards of conduct required of them by the Institute
  2. to explain the rights of staff
  3. to define breaches of conduct
  4. to describe the consequences of breaches of conduct.


3. Staff Code of Conduct

  1. Staff are expected to act honestly, conscientiously, reasonably and in good faith at all times having regard to the Catholic tradition within which Catholic Institute of Sydney is established, the interests of the Institute and the welfare of colleagues and students.
  2. Staff have an obligation to Catholic Institute of Sydney to:
    1. behave in a manner that reflects the truths and values of the gospel of Our Lord Jesus Christ
    2. work together as a community of faith and learning in true academic freedom and in complete respect for the Magisterium of the Church
    3. carry out their duties in an efficient and competent manner, and maintain specified standards of performance
    4. comply with lawful and reasonable requests, instructions and policies
    5. respect the privacy of individuals and use confidential information only for the purposes for which it was intended
    6. neither use, nor allow the use of, Catholic Institute of Sydney property, resources, or funds for other than authorised purposes
    7. incur no liability on the part of the Catholic Institute of Sydney without proper authorisation
    8. maintain all qualifications necessary for the performance of their duties legally and efficiently
    9. not demand, claim or accept any fee, gratuity, commission or benefit from any person or persons other than Catholic Institute of Sydney in payment for any matter or thing concerned with their Catholic Institute of Sydney duties and responsibilities, nor to accept any gift or favour from any source which could be seen as influencing the carrying out of their Institute duties and responsibilities
    10. avoid conflicts of interest.

Issued by the President: 24 July 2003


with reference to the

1.  Breaches of the Staff Code of Conduct

Misconduct involves contravention of the above obligations.


  • If established, misconduct may lead to a reprimand and warning.
  • Serious misconduct involves serious and/or repeated contravention of the above obligations.
  • Serious misconduct, if established through the formal disciplinary procedures of the Institute, will usually lead to exclusion.
  • Serious misconduct is behaviour which undermines the working agreement between a staff member and the Institute and/or threatens the well being of the Institute, or its staff and students.
  • Serious misconduct includes, but is not confined to, the examples below:
    1. refusing to perform properly specified duties or to carry out lawful and reasonable requests or instructions from the president or deputy president
    2. assaulting or threatening to assault any other staff member, student, or visitor on Catholic Institute of Sydney premises
    3. behaving in a manner causing safety risks to students or staff
    4. being affected by alcohol or illicit drugs while on the Institute premises or in the Institute environs
    5. having unauthorised possession of, or removing property belonging to Catholic Institute of Sydney, another staff member, student or visitor
    6. wilfully submitting a false claim for expenses, or any other deliberate falsification of a Catholic Institute of Sydney record
    7. deliberately or recklessly acting, or failing to act, in a manner resulting in serious damage to Catholic Institute of Sydney property.


2. Disciplinary procedures

  1. Formal disciplinary action is not taken lightly
  2. Catholic Institute of Sydney’s experience has been that staff members conduct themselves very well and overcome minor problems without the need for formal discipline. Initially, problems are dealt with in the expectation that staff will give of their best once a deficiency is pointed out and that any difficulties can be overcome at the workplace level.
  3. Where Catholic Institute of Sydney has cause to believe that a satisfactory standard of performance has not been reached and maintained, or that the Staff Code of Conduct has otherwise been breached, formal disciplinary procedures are likely to be invoked.
  4. Where questions of doctrinal orthodoxy are raised against a teacher, the principles of the Australian Catholic Bishops’ Conference policy statement “The Examination of Theological Orthodoxy” (The Australasian Catholic Record 77/1 (January 2000): 85-95) will be invoked.
  5. The President is responsible for invoking the disciplinary procedures and for overseeing the carrying out of these procedures. These procedures will be supervised by the Council. Disciplinary hearings will take place before a Discipline Committee established by the President. Decisions are made by the Discipline Committee.
  6. Catholic Institute of Sydney abides by the following requirements regarding fairness in disciplinary procedures:
    1. a staff member must receive notice of the specific allegation of misconduct and of the likely consequences should the allegation be established
    2. there must be a real opportunity for the staff member to explain or refute the allegation
    3. there must be proper and unbiased consideration of the explanation.
  7. Unless a matter is so serious as to warrant instant suspension, staff are entitled to be warned about alleged disciplinary breaches and told of the manner in which their performance or conduct must improve. Formal warnings may be given by the President orally or in writing but Catholic Institute of Sydney will confirm any oral warning in writing. It is usually appropriate to give at least two formal warnings although some circumstances may call for one formal warning.
  8. Any formal warning will include:
    1. a statement of the specific problem
    2. a statement of the Catholic Institute of Sydney standard or policy that is alleged to have been breached
    3. a statement of the corrective action required
    4. definition of the period within which the corrective action must be taken
    5. reference to the previous meeting(s) with the staff member with regard to the alleged disciplinary breaches and any explanation given by the staff member
    6. reference to the consequences of failure to take the required corrective action or any further breach
    7. reference to the staff member’s right of appeal.


3. Suspension and Dismissal

  1. In cases meriting or likely to merit dismissal of a staff member, all the provisions of the Catholic Institute of Sydney Statutes, Article 24 and Catholic Institute of Sydney Regulations, Article 36 must be adhered to.
  2. For the good of the students and of the faithful, The Chancellor may, in grave or urgent cases, suspend a teacher, without loss of remuneration, for the duration of the said systematic procedure.
  3. Catholic Institute of Sydney may need to insist that a staff member not remain at work while the matter of concern is being investigated, e.g. where safety is involved. Unless the relevant working agreement provides for suspension without pay, any suspension will not affect payment of salary or stipend.


4. Exclusion

  1. In the case of exclusion, Catholic Institute of Sydney’s decision, and the reasons for it, will be confirmed in writing to the staff member before the exclusion is effected, and only after proper procedures have been exhausted.


5. Rights of staff in cases of disciplinary action

  1. Some staff rights are inherent in the foregoing provisions, notably 2.5 and 2.7.
  2. Where Catholic Institute of Sydney institutes formal disciplinary action and conducts interviews with the staff member for that purpose, the staff member is entitled to bring a friend, a legal representative or other person to any such meeting.
  3. In cases of dismissal, the appeal provision of the Catholic Institute of Sydney Regulations Article 36 apply.

6. Personal Grievance

In the circumstances of lay staff, the provisions of relevant Federal & State legislation may be appropriate.


Issued by the President:      24 July 2003