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CSO miscalculates accreditation grades of student orgs

The 39 organizations of the Council of Student Organizations (CSO) had their hopes high as they waited for the results of the mid-year re-accreditation. After the results were relayed, they discovered that almost all of the organizations’ grades were miscalculated –a mishap that was nonetheless, an honest mistake.

Paul Vincent Abanador, president of the Physics Society (Physoc) says that he immediately approached the CSO Executive Board (EB) when he noticed a miscalculation in his organization’s final grade. He approached the council a week after receiving the results.

“When they [CSO EB] gave us the results, I noticed that there was a number [grade] missing in the computation. Sharm [CSO chair] said that she might have missed something,” he narrates. The missing component the accreditation committee oversaw was the grade for quality of activities. The grade determines whether the members find the activities provided by the organization worthy of their membership fees.

Thirty eight of the 39 organizations’ grades were miscalculated. Abanador shares that the other presidents also noticed the mistake in their final grades and immediately raised their concerns to the EB.

“One org lang yung tama yung computation [They only got one organization’s grade right],” continues Abanador. The grades of the 39 organizations were computed alphabetically. It was the Association of Computer Engineering Students’ (ACCESS) grade that was computed first; the accreditation committee correctly graded the organization because the organization’s “quality of activities grade” was not missed out. The grades of the other 38 organizations had to be corrected.

Abanador furthers that the CSO EB was slow to respond to the concern of his organization regarding the miscalculation. He also affirms that he made sure that there was indeed a mistake on the part of the accreditation committee before raising his concern.

In a council meeting after Abanador raised his concern, Evelyn Lopez- Esparrago, S-Life Coordinator, and CSO Chair Sharmina Ganchua announced that due to the complaints received from the presidents, a rechecking of re-accreditation results were accomplished and a miscalculation was incurred.

Esparrago apologized to organizations. “She explained how the mistake happened. Sinabi nya na may part na na-miss out sila [She told us that they missed out on a certain part],” he recalls.

The accreditation committee computed the grades in Microsoft file; they overlooked one column of cells that was left blank. “What happened was, it [blank column cells] was counted as zero,” Abanador furthers. The CSO EB gave the correction to the organization presidents.

A rearrangement of the initial Top 10 Organizations was the result of the correction of grades. The computation of ACCESS’ grade remained the same, but its ranking was changed from sixth place to the tenth. The rest of the organizations in the Top 7-9 moved one rank higher.

He reiterates that Esparaggo and the accreditation committee were fully objective in the grading of the 39 organizations.

“My point [in raising the miscalculation concern] was to make it fair for the other organizations because I know their grades were also miscalculated,” explains Abanador. He adds that he has never encountered such a mistake in the three years he was with PhySoc.

Organization presidents like Abanador did not hold anything against the CSO EB or the accreditation committee for the miscalculations done. It was good that the corrections were made and the council was accountable for it. In the future though, such instances should be avoided and the CSO EB should be quicker to respond to such concerns.

The Lasallian tried to reach Gan-chua through different modes of communication  but she did not respond.

*Editor’s note: In the November issue of The Lasallian , the top 10 CSO accreditation ranking published was the original list.