South Carolina legislative auditors criticized the governing board for The Citadel military college on Wednesday, saying the board is not diverse, improperly met in secret and has undue influence in cadets’ punishment proceedings.
The new Legislative Audit Council report also states the school’s Board of Visitors frequently changes how discipline rules are handled, possibly giving the impression that the rules depend on who is being disciplined and may be due to legislators’ influence.
Auditors noted Citadel’s 377 pages of written rules for cadets are three times as long as the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. A 2012 study committee recommended shortening the rulebook, but it has only grown since then. Any serious violation is either considered by a hearing officer or commandant’s board. However, appeals can then be made to the Board of Visitors if a cadet faces explulsion. But they became more involved after a 2011 letter from two state legislators urged them to do so. An opponent of the change called the letter “micromanaging” and implied a “threat of reprisal” if the board did not act. [Read more…]