‘Move on’ from fail
Monash student’s case dismissed
A SUPREME Court judge has urged a Masters student to “move on” after she dismissed his legal action against Monash University for failing an assignment.
Chinmay Naik, 23, had called on the court to strike out his fail grade of 12 out of 100 and award him an overall pass for a video journalism project exploring negative stereotypes of different breeds of dog.
The assignment was double-marked, but still awarded a fail grade of 21 of 100. Mr Naik argued Monash University had acted unlawfully in its double-marking of his project.
Supreme Court Judge Melinda Richards said she found no arguable case against the university, which failed Mr Naik’s assignment after granting him a 19-day extension.
Justice Richards encouraged Mr Naik to “move on” from his fail grade or to seek legal advice if he continued in his bid against the university.
“I understand you will be disappointed by this outcome and I expect, as you have done before, you will consider what other options remain open to you,” Justice Richards said.
“It’s not the end of the world, plenty of people fail a subject and go on to have successful and rewarding careers.”
Justice Richards also encouraged Mr Naik to consider taking up another unit of study to pass his Masters of Journalism degree, and to discuss that with his doctor. According to the judgment, Justice Richards agreed with the university that the court didn’t have jurisdic- tion relating to markings of assignments or “otherwise determining questions of academic merit”.
“These matters are solely for the university — areas for academic judgment where the court will not intrude.”
However, Justice Richards did agree with Mr Naik that there was an “arguable case that the university did not follow its relevant policies in double-marking” given the lack of documentation and mystery as to the identity of the second marker.
But Justice Richards found that did not amount to a jurisdictional error that invalidated the decision.
A hearing relating to the matter is still pending before the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal. Mr Naik had earlier appealed to the office of former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull, the Ombudsman, Information Commissioner and Australian Human Rights Commission.
All rejected his bid.