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In the wake of the Jerry Sandusky scandal, some people have floated the idea the NCAA should burn the Penn State football program to the ground.But what should happen to the university itself?
The Freeh Report — which called out Penn State’s former bigwigs like Joe Paterno and Graham Spanier for protecting convicted child predator Jerry Sandusky — has some pretty strongly-worded suggestions.
The Special Investigations Task Force of the Board of Trustees of The Pennsylvania State University retained former federal judge and FBI director Louis Freeh to independently review whether Penn State officials knew about the abuse claims and how much they did, if anything, to stop the crimes.
First off, the report took aim at the school’s lack of oversight.
“In various ways the University’s administrative structure, the absence or poor enforcement of policies relating to the protection of children and employee misconduct, the lack of emphasis on values and ethics-based action created an environment in which Spanier, Schultz, Paterno and [ex-director Tim] Curley were able to make decisions to avoid the consequences of bad publicity,” according to the report.
Freeh suggested shaking up the school’s power structure, in part by limiting the influence of the president and other top players.
He also advised the university to hire an ethics officer to oversee the school’s culture.
Freeh went on to attack both the so-called “Penn State Way” — saying the school needs to tone down its “excessive focus on athletics, that can, if not recognised, negatively impact the University’s reputation as a progressive institution ” — as well as the board of trustees.
According to Freeh, the board needs to temper its over-confidence in school officials, rotate committee chairs every five years, and require university personnel to give the board thorough and timely updates about major issues facing the university.
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