Statesman: Legislator made complaint about diversity and ethics class

A legislator made the anonymous complaint that caused Boise State University to shut down a diversity and ethics class, the Idaho Statesman reported Friday.

Boise State has declined to name the complainant, who has been identified only as a concerned community leader. The Statesman obtained a March 15 email from interim provost Tony Roark, but it also did not identify the lawmaker.

In the email, Roark said Boise State was suspending its University Foundations 200 class, “pending an investigation of serious allegations of classroom misconduct conveyed to (President Marlene) Tromp by a legislator.”

The university suspended the course on March 16, citing complaints that students had been harassed due to their beliefs and values. Boise State hired Boise law firm Hawley Troxell to investigate the claims, and moved the course online.

The Hawley Troxell report, released May 24, found no proof backing up the initial claim.

And while the report did not identify the complainant, it cast doubt on his claim of having seen video evidence of inappropriate conduct in a Boise State class.

“After several failed attempts, Hawley Troxell was able to interview the Complainant. The Complainant spoke openly about concerns that BSU is indoctrinating students. The Complainant reported being aware of multiple inappropriate interactions between BSU instructors and students. However, the Complainant declined to identify any student and declined to describe in any detail what he has seen or heard from students other than that it was ‘really inappropriate.’ The Complainant stated that he did not have possession of the video he had seen and declined to provide any information on how it could be obtained.”




Kevin Richert

Kevin Richert

Senior reporter and blogger Kevin Richert specializes in education politics and education policy. He has more than 30 years of experience in Idaho journalism. He is a frequent guest on "Idaho Reports" on Idaho Public Television and "Idaho Matters" on Boise State Public Radio. Follow Kevin on Twitter: @KevinRichert. He can be reached at [email protected]

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