Ethos of the School

The “Theological school of the Church of Cyprus” promotes the cultivation of conscious self-discipline and a positive attitude as a fundamental long-term approach to life, aiming to place these qualities centrally within the framework that underpins the particular character of the School. Self-discipline and a positive attitude are the virtues that will form the vital pillars in supporting the uninterrupted functioning and conduct of the School in general, being virtues which are intimately connected to the intended character of the School. The School’s ethical approach, therefore, is based on the reinforcement of a positive attitude that is anchored in the teaching of the Christian faith and the experience of the Church itself. As stated in the “Proverbs” (Old Testament, 9, 9-10)

“Rebuke a wise man, and he will love you.
Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be still wiser;
Teach a just man, and he will increase in learning.

 “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom,
And the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.”

The School Regulations define the rights and obligations of students regarding the issue of discipline. It stresses, however, that a control model for negative behaviour that records disciplinary offences and their consequences is not the method by which the School will maintain discipline. As we read in the “Proverbs” (Old Testament, 9, 7-9):

“The one who corrects a mocker
will bring abuse on himself;
the one who rebukes the wicked will get hurt.
Don’t rebuke a mocker, or he will hate you;”
 

The “Golden Rule” for acceptable behaviour, just as it was expressed by Christ himself, is simple yet positive (New Testament, Matthew, 7:12):

“Therefore, whatever you want others to do unto you, do you also the same unto them.”

This “Golden Rule” has been incorporated into the School’s Regulations as a safeguard for the development of the ethos of the School. The School itself, as a non-profit educational establishment, adopts all the aspects and characteristics of a charitable organisation that is instituted to serve society, and invites everyone involved in the educational proceedings of the School -students, teachers and executive personnel- to adopt, in turn, the same principles, not only in their everyday dealings with the School, but also amongst themselves.

The School, in order to strengthen its positive approach towards cultivating self-discipline, has adopted a scheme of awarding scholarships in 5 categories to students, not only for academic performance but also for exemplary individual behaviour. Special among these scholarships are those awarded for “Ethical conduct and Social contribution”, which aim on the one hand to confirm the Schools commitment to its ethical principles and on the other to instil these ethics in its students, who are called upon to embody and promote them in their turn.

Self-discipline, then, becomes the target of each student, staff member and ordinary citizen, conferring meaning and value to their actions. The Theological School of the Church of Cyprus invites all its members to selflessly engage in the struggle to promote goodness at every opportunity.

Discipline, Rights and Obligations of Students

Ways of maintaining Discipline in the School

Respect for prevailing Legislation.

Each student is expected to respect and comply with the relevant School’s Legislation and, therefore, with any Regulations and decisions and written or oral instructions deriving thereof. They are also expected to act responsibly, honourably, and to respect ethical values and academic codes. Any student found in violation of the Legislation and Regulations will be subject to disciplinary proceedings. Control of discipline is exercised by the Disciplinary Committee.

Types of Misconduct

Any disorderly or inappropriate behaviour which exposes and degrades the reputation of the institution, such as:

  1. Improper behaviour towards any member of the academic community or member of the collegiate body of the School, or towards any of its students.
  2. Plagiarism, impersonation, copying or facilitating copying in an exam, infringement of copyright, cheating, stealing.
  3. Any unjustified act or malpractice that leads to the loss, damage or destruction of school property.
  4. Threats of violence.
  5. Use of force.
  6. Conviction by a court for committing a criminal offense.
  7. Obstruction of activities and the proper functioning of the school in general, such as the obstruction of teaching or research work, disruption of classes and suchlike acts.
  8. Obstruction of or resistance to the authorities or other School body in the performance of their duties.
  9. The forgery or falsification of diplomas, documents or records, or any complicity in committing such misconduct.
  10. The violation of the laws, regulations, relevant decisions or instructions of the School’s collegiate bodies.

Judgement of Misconduct

For the judgement of cases of students who are accused of misconduct, a Disciplinary Committee is formed in accordance with the provisions of the Laws and Rules of the School.

To initiate proceedings by the Disciplinary Committee a written complaint has to be submitted to the President of the Commission. The President then invites the Disciplinary Committee to a meeting to discuss the complaint, make the case and to inform and invite the complainant to a hearing on a given date. If, without reasonable cause, the complainant fails to appear at the fixed date and time decided for the examining of the complaint, the hearing will proceed in their absence,

  • Provided that the Disciplinary Committee is entitled to summon witnesses or accept written testimony.
  • It is also understood that the accused is entitled to summon witnesses, having previously given the names of those to be summoned prior to the start of the hearing.

At the hearing the complainant is entitled to be accompanied by their academic advisor.

Penalties imposed

At the close of the hearing the Committee decides whether or not the accused is guilty. If guilty the following penalties may apply in accordance with the gravity of the offense:

  1. Verbal reprimand.
  2. Written reprimand.
  3. The payment of financial compensation for repairs to damaged property or loss of property.
  4. Unpaid work on the school premises (Community Service).
  5. Suspension of rights and privileges (Cancellation of scholarships etc).
  6. Repeating a course.
  7. Expulsion for the duration of an academic semester.
  8. Expulsion with suspension for up to one year.
  9. Deregistration/Expulsion from the School.

During the case-hearing and its discussion, as well as for the delivery of a decision, which must be justified, minutes are kept which are signed by all members of the Disciplinary Committee. The accused is informed of the decision by the head of their Department of Study.

Any conviction is recorded in the student’s file.

Submission of Appeals

Any student convicted by the Disciplinary Committee is entitled to submit a written appeal to the Director of the School within seven days from the date of the decision.

The Director of the School refers the appeal to the Academic Committee, which acts as a secondary judicial body for dealing with the disciplinary offenses of students.

The Academic Committee invites the convicted student to a hearing and notifies them of the records of the Disciplinary Committee, as well as of any additional  findings. The Academic Committee discusses the entire issue and is entitled to ratify, amend or cancel the decision of the Disciplinary Committee.

The rights and obligations of the students of the School

Rights

The student must be fully informed of whatever concerns the functioning, structure and aims of the school. All information relevant to this is contained in the School Guide. The student, as a member of the Student Union, is entitled to participate in various School committees which discuss matters relating to the School, and to take part in the decision-making process. Any student, via the Student Union and the Clubs, can engage in social, cultural and artistic activities and participate in other wider-ranging social events. Through the Erasmus and Charter programs students are entitled to apply for mobility to other European universities. Students who comply with the relevant pre-conditions are entitled to full or partial scholarships or financial assistance, (Applications for scholarships are submitted to the Student Admissions Officer.)

Scholarships for undergraduate students

  • Scholarships awarded to first-year students for academic performance.
  • Scholarships awarded to first-year students for academic excellence.
  • Scholarships awarded to existing students for academic performance.
  • Scholarships for ethical conduct and social contribution.
  • Scholarships awarded in the field of Byzantine Music.

Financial assistance for undergraduate and post-graduate students on condition that they have not received any scholarships

(a)  Students attending the Theological school of the Church of Cyprus who belong to families with 4 or more children receive a discount on tuition fees of 10%.

(b)  When two siblings attend the Theological School of the Church of Cyprus  at the same time, they each receive a 10% discount on tuition fees.

(c)  When three siblings attend the Theological School of the Church of Cyprus at the same time, they each receive a discount of 20% on tuition fees.

Financial support for students with serious financial problems.

The “Theological School of the Church of Cyprus” offers partial tuition exemption to students who face very serious financial problems, regardless of their academic performance. The amount of financial support available will be set by the Scholarship Committee. Students facing very serious financial problems complete the form entitled “Application for Financial Aid” and submit it to the Student Welfare Office. The form must also be accompanied by the relevant documentation and evidence required by the Student Welfare Office.

Obligations

Obligations of students in receipt of scholarships or financial assistance

Students who receive scholarships or financial assistance have a minimum obligation to represent the School at official celebrations, religious observances/festivals, parades, etc. when asked to do so.

Obligations of students

Students must observe and abide by the School’s regulations and act in accordance with the codes of conduct laid out by the School. They must respect the institutions, and the freedoms of the individual. More specifically:

  1. Students must demonstrate academic integrity and avoid all forms of deception, such as copying, plagiarism, falsifying documents or conspiring in fraudulent acts etc.
  2. Attendance is obligatory. Students may request a period of absence from class provided there exists a valid reason (illness etc), supported by relevant certified documentation.
  3. Absence from class, whether justified or not, does not exempt the student from academic or other obligations.
  4. Students who have been absent for a long period without justification, are referred to the person in charge of their particular field of study, who then takes appropriate measures (referral to a special committee of the Department, etc.).
  5. Students who are absent due to illness or other serious reason from a pre-arranged final examination must justify their absence in due time to the Secretary of the School and their Academic Counselor by completing a special form accompanied by a medical certificate or other documentary evidence. In cases where the absence is justified, the student may sit a second examination. In cases where absence from an exam is not justified, the student will be allowed to sit the second exam, but will be graded only up to 50, provided their final result exceeds 50%.
  6. Students must respect and abide by the Laws of the Republic of Cyprus. The School will report violations to the relevant Authorities.
  7. Continued absence of foreign students is reported to the Department of Immigration of the Republic of Cyprus.
  8. Students must respect the property of the School.

Refund of tuition fees and other fees to students withdrawing from the School 

  1. In cases where a student withdraws from a class, the registration fees (€50.00) and the deposit (€500.00) are not refunded. Tuition fees corresponding to the attendance rate are also retained if they exceed the amount of the deposit.
  2. Students who withdraw are required to complete a special form, signed by both themselves and their Academic advisor, and to submit it to their Department Secretary.