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Student Given ‘Zero’ For Using ‘Biological Women’ on Assignment

Olivia Krolczyk, a University of Cincinnati student whose teacher was reprimanded after giving her a zero on a written project after she used the term “biological women” in it, said Thursday on Newsmax that the teacher’s reprimand has been rescinded after she appealed the punishment.

“As of a couple of days ago, the school decided to reprimand this professor, and a copy of this reprimand was placed in her professional records, along with the requirement to complete free speech training and submit her syllabus for the upcoming school year,” Krolczyk, who had taken her story to TikTok about the failed grade, said on Newsmax’s “National Report.”

“However I just found out as of yesterday morning they have rescinded this reprimand on the professor, and it’s no longer being placed in her permanent records, which is an absolute injustice to all current and future students,” Krolczyk said.

The Cincinnati Enquirer reported Thursday that the teacher, Melanie Nipper, a department of Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies (WGSS) adjunct faculty member, argued that her decision to fail Krolczyk on her paper was well within the boundaries of acceptable censorship outlined in UC’s free speech policy, that which is “reasonably related to a legitimate pedagogical purpose, such as classroom rules enacted by teachers.”

The university agreed that the reprimand had been “issued in error” and that it would be removed from Nipper’s personnel file, according to an email sent to the professor from Margaret Hanson, the College of Arts and Sciences interim dean, on June 29.

However, Nipper still must go through training on the university’s free speech requirements before the fall 2023 term starts. She must also submit her syllabus to the school for approval.

“She actually sent an appeal to the reprimand and claimed that it was placed in error and an article was just released this morning about the person who issued the reprimand has also said yes, this was issued in error,” Krolczyk told Newsmax. “I’m not sure how you accidentally reprimand someone. Something else is going on.”

She added that she wasn’t surprised that the reprimand was rescinded.

“I thought UC was taking stuff in the right direction,” Krolczyk said. “But of course, they’re going to side with the woke ideology of the professor. It’s really as I said, an injustice to students but also women to say ‘biological’ to describe women, which is what we are, is outdated and transphobic. That’s a horrible precedent to set.”

In a statement, Nipper said the restriction on “harmful speech” was necessary to “ensure a safe learning environment in the course discussions. And for the pedagogical purpose of teaching introductory WGSS theory. It was necessary to educate Krolczyk regarding inclusive language to ensure a safe learning environment for our students in the course discussion.”

But Krolczyk argued that her assignment had not been shared on discussion boards.

“This product shouldn’t be shared with other students to begin with unless she was sharing it without my permission,” she said. “In that case, it shouldn’t be harmful to anyone else. To call out the difference between a man dressing as a woman and a real woman is not transphobic, and it is not harmful.”

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