Galway Mayo Institute of Technology (GMIT) looks set to be mired in legal controversy over its investigation into unproven allegations of cheating levelled against students.
A half-dozen final year Business Studies students were accused of having accessed an examination paper in advance of their end-of-year exams in May.
Nearly four months on from when the allegations were made, the college has cleared the accused. In a letter to the students, seen by the Galway City Tribune, Mr Hannon confirms GMIT had “insufficient evidence”.
The letter said: “I wish to inform you that the decision of the Disciplinary Committee is that the allegations against you are not upheld as there was insufficient evidence. Therefore, the complaint against you has been dismissed and there shall be no penalties or other sanctions imposed.”
The students are said to be relieved they have been cleared to graduate next month, but that is far from the end of the matter.
One family member of an accused student told the Galway City Tribune that they are contemplating legal action over the manner in which the investigation was handled by the registrar, and the distress caused.
“They did nothing wrong, and yet were treated like criminals,” he said.
Meanwhile, a college source said it was “highly likely” some or all of the students accused of wrongdoing will go down the legal route to clear their names.
For more on this story, see this week’s Galway City Tribune