04-21-2006, 02:29 PM
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Lexington, KY
Originally Posted by themattperry
In addition to what has been pointed out, his claim that he will recieve accredation from the Parmiceutical accreditors is dubious at best. The assocation aparently has criteria forbidding discrimination based on sexual orientation ... how is Cumberlands going to get around this, and how is Jackson able to make a statement like the one in his press release?
Unfortunately, the Accreditation Council appears to be backing down.
From the April 20th issue of the Lexington Herald-Leader
While Gov. Ernie Fletcher continued to weigh whether he will approve $11 million in state money for a pharmacy school at the University of the Cumberlands, national accreditation officials yesterday offered assurances that the school's controversial policy on homosexual conduct would not prevent it from winning approval for the program.
Peter Vlasses, executive director of the Acceditation Council for Pharmacy Education, said it requires members to obey state and federal anti-discrimination laws. He said the organization does not impose a blanket policy prohibiting discrimination against gays and lesbians.
"Kentucky law, federal law, if it doesn't specifically say anything about sexual orientation discrimination, it's not our purpose to impose that on the program," he said.
University officials said they are pleased with the organization's policy, which they said had been misinterpreted in the wake of the school's decision to expel honors sophomore Jason Johnson. Johnson, who is gay, wrote about his relationship with his boyfriend on MySpace.com. School policy prohibits promoting or engaging in "sexual behavior not consistent with Christian principles."
State lawmakers earmarked $10 million in the 2006-2008 budget to help pay for a pharmacy building and another $1 million to fund pharmacy scholarships. Several legislators had called for Fletcher to veto the funding in part because of questions about whether the pharmacy school would be accredited.
At issue was interpretation of the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education guideline, which states:
"The college or school must establish and implement a policy on student services, including admissions and progression, that ensures non-discrimination as defined by state and federal laws and regulations, such as on the basis of race, religion, gender, lifestyle, sexual orientation, national origin or disability."
The phrase "as defined by state and federal laws" and the term "sexual orientation" were added to the policy in a recent revision to be effective July 1, 2007.
Vlasses said an April 12 page-one story in the Herald-Leader, which said that the school's stance on sexuality was apparently "on a collision course with national accreditation standards," had misstated his organization's policies.
Vlasses said he has spoken to school officials to clear up the matter. In his seven years with the organization, Vlasses said, it has never rejected a school's application because of its sexual orientation policies.
If Cumberlands applies for accreditation, Vlasses said his agency could examine Johnson's case to see if the school followed its own policies and procedures and applicable state and federal laws.
For now, such questions are premature.
"We don't know the school. We don't know their policies. We have no application. We have no history. We have no complaint because we have no jurisdiction," Vlasses said.
Cumberlands officials said yesterday they will apply for accreditation "at the appropriate time" and predicted they will meet the accrediting agency's standards.
You can read the full article at www.kentucky.com/mld/kentucky/14383798.htm