Bylaws for Establishing and Disbanding Seminary Schools

Legislation 616: By-laws for establishing and disbanding seminary schools


Introduction: In order to implement sections 3 and 7 of article 3 of legislation 427 of the Supreme Council of the Semianry [Shoray-e ‘Aali-e Howzeh] on the topic of the rights and responsibilities of the Expansion Council [Shoray-e Gostaresh], these by-laws for establishing and disbanding seminary schools were written according to the following.

Chapter 1: Definitions

Article 1. In these by-laws, expressions with the following definitions have been used:

1.      Seminary school: an education institution that offers prevalent seminary courses.

2.      Founder or founding board: person(s) or legal entity/entities who are applicants for establishing a seminary school.

3.      General acceptance: a general agreement with establishing the school.

4.      Temporary permit: agreement with a temporary establishment of the school for a period of one to three years. This period includes enrollment of students as well as conducting general school sessions.

5.      Permanent permit: agreement with the permanent presence and activity of the school.

6.      Suspension of enrollment: suspension of enrollment of new seminary students until deficiencies are resolved.

7.      Suspension of activities: Suspension of educational activities at an institution and arranging for the transfer of seminary students to other seminary schools until conditions for continuing education activities are re-established.

8.      Disbanding: revoking of the “general acceptance” and permanent suspension of the school’s activities.

Chapter 2: Establishing the school
First topic: The applicant

Article 2. The applicant for establishing a seminary school must meet the following conditions:

1.      Belief in and devotion to the Rule of Jurisprudence [Velayat-e Faqih] and the holy system of the Islamic Republic.

2.      Possession of a good public record as well as the trust of the people.

3.      The ability to provide the location, provisions, and financial backing for the school.

4.      The ability to recruit an academic, pedagogical, and administrative staff befitting the capacity and degree programs of the school, in accordance with the relevant conditions and criteria.

5.      Being a seminarian with a level 3 education.

Clause 1. In case the applicant does not possess an official seminary degree, his education degrees must be recognized by the Expansion Council as at least equivalent to a level 3 seminary degree.

Clause 2. In case the founder is a legal entity, in addition to meeting the above criteria (excluding number 5), it must be of an educational, research, or publicity nature and have been registered as such with the proper authorities. Furthermore, in accordance with the charter or by decrees of the board of trustees of this legal entity, it must be authorized to establish seminary schools (1).

Article 3. Establishing seminary schools by management centers of the Seminary must be in accordance with these by-laws and related instructions.

Second Topic: Stages of establishment

Article 4. Considering the conditions stated in these by-laws, establishing seminaries must take place in three stages according to the following:

1.      General acceptance

2.      Temporary permit

3.      Permanent permit

Article 5. Applications received by the secretariat of the Expansion Council will be reviewed by management centers and the expert committee and forwarded to the council for approval based on the conveyed policies and the approved criteria of the council.

Article 6. Conditions for issuing a “general acceptance” include:

1.      Determining the necessity for founding a seminary school according to the policies of the Supreme Council of the Seminary.

2.      The presence of a qualified person(s) or legal entity/entities as founder.

3.      The ability to build a school or to provide a proper endowed location or registered property in the name of the Seminary under the provision of the Supreme Council of the Seminary.

4.      The ability to provide all the resources and costs of the school by the founder, in accordance with the relevant instructions.

5.      The ability to recruit an academic, pedagogical, and administrative staff befitting the capacity and degree programs of the school, in accordance with the relevant conditions and criteria.

Clause 1. The conditions for the endowment of the school [building] must be commensurate with the rules and decrees of the Supreme Council of the Seminary.

Clause 2. In cases of locations with special or unusual circumstances, decisions will be made according to relevant instructions.

Article 7. If the applicant does not attempt to convert the “general acceptance” to a “temporary permit” within two years, the “general acceptance” of the school will be invalidated.

Article 8. If deemed necessary, the committee for seminary affairs may allow an extension of one year for converting a “general acceptance”.

Article 9. After the one-year period elapses, and if still the needed conditions are not met for the conversion of the “acceptance”, the Expansion Council will take action towards revoking the “general acceptance”.

Article 10. Conditions for granting a temporary permit include the following:

1.      Providing an appropriate location for the school.

2.      Introducing the board of trustees, director, deputy directors, and instructors of the school.

3.      Covering provisions for the school and providing the primary educational and administrative resources.

Clause 1. With the approval of the Expansion Council, it would be acceptable to use a rented or owned property as the school location during the period of the temporary permit.

Clause 2. In case it is not possible to introduce a director who meets all of the requirements of the position, a cleric with the ability to manage the school may be introduced as care-taker by the             board of trustees and may serve for a maximum period of one year.

Clause 3. For sisters’ seminaries, in cases where it is not possible to introduce a sister director, the use of a male director for a maximum of one year by authorization of the center is permitted upon the condition that a mahram [a female who by blood relation or marriage may have contact and be seen without veil by a man] is present to act as go-between.

Article 11. If the applicant does not apply to convert the “temporary permit” to a permanent one after the allowed period, the seminary school cannot continue to enroll students.

Article 12. In case the necessary documents are not presented within one year after the order to cease enrollment, the Expansion Council will act towards cancelling the “general acceptance”. In this case, the management centers must provide for the transfer of students to other seminary schools.

Clause 1. After cancellation of the “general acceptance”, the accounts of the school will be settled according to these by-laws and other relevant criteria.

Clause 2. After the decision to disband has been reached, in case the necessary documents are provided, the applicant must re-apply for the “general acceptance” and “temporary permit”.

Article 13. Upon request by the applicant, the permanent permit for the school will be granted by the Expansion Council. This permit will be granted based on results from an evaluation of the school’s performance to be conducted by the management centers in accordance with the established by-laws and instructions.

Article 14. After receiving a permanent permit, the seminary school may offer courses of study at other levels if it receives a permit from the Expansion Council based on decreed criteria. This is conditional upon success in offering its current level of education programs.

Clause 1. In cases where the ability of the school has been established by the Expansion Council, concurrent offering of different level education programs is acceptable.

CHAPTER THREE: Suspension and disbanding of seminary schools

Article 15. Management centers, in accordance with decreed criteria, have a supervisory role over seminary schools. If they observe conditions for disbanding of a school, after issuing a warning to school officials and suspension of enrollment, they may request the Expansion Council to make a final decision regarding suspension of activities, or if necessary, the disbanding of the school.

Article 16. In consideration of the stated conditions in these by-laws, the stages for suspension and disbanding of seminary schools are the following:

1.      Suspension of enrollment

2.      Suspension of activities

3.      Disbanding

Article 17. Any of the following conditions will lead to a suspension of activities and disbanding of a school:

1.      Failure to observe the policies of the Supreme Council of the Seminary

2.      Failure to provide the proper quality of education and pedagogy

3.      Failure to provide a proper academic and administrative staff for the school

4.      Failure to provide proper financial support

5.      Request by the board of trustees

Article 18. In case some of the conditions for disbanding of a school are observed, the management centers will initiate a one-year suspension of enrollment.

Clause. In case the conditions for disbanding continue, management centers may extend the suspension of enrollment for another year.

Article 19. In case requested by the board of trustees, and agreed upon by the Expansion Council, the seminary school may be directly disbanded without the need to go through the stages of suspension of enrollment and activities.

Clause. The Expansion Council may provide for the continuation of the school’s activities by changing the founder or the name of the  school.

Article 20. During the suspension of enrollment period, the board of trustees is obliged to ensure that all conditions set for resuming of normal activities are met. Otherwise, the Expansion Council will act towards suspension of activities.

Article 21. If the board of trustees does not resolve the observed infractions within one year, the school will be disbanded according to the established instructions.

Article 22. Management centers must provide for the transfer of seminary students to other schools in case a school has been ordered to disband or to suspend its activities.

Article 23. In case a school is disbanded, the founder or founding board is obliged to do the following:

1.      Meet all obligations to the seminary students of the school throughout their education period including their graduation in a satisfactory manner and in accordance with the relevant legislation and criteria.

2.      After settling the school’s accounts, place all grants and movable and stationary material received from government and non-government sources under the control of the management center.

3.      Meet all its obligations towards governmental and non-governmental organizations and legal entities and persons (including its faculty and staff).

Article 24. After meeting the obligations mentioned in article 23 and resolving the academic and legal affairs of the school, a committee for settling other outstanding issues of the school will be formed from the following individuals:

1.      Two representatives from management centers.

2.      The founder or his representative, or a representative from the founding board.

Clause. This committee is obliged to present copies of the minutes of its meetings, signed by all members, to the founder or founding board, as well as to the management centers of the Seminary.

Article 25. Any changes or corrections to these by-laws must take place by recommendation from the Expansion Council and approval of the Supreme Council of the Seminary. Related decrees will be issued by the committee for seminary school affairs of the Expansion Council.

Article 26. These by-laws-in three chapters, two topics, 26 articles, and 13 clauses- were approved by the Supreme Council of the Seminary on 6/2/1388 [4/26/2009] and 25/2/1388 [5/15/2009].

Post-script. 1. This clause (clause 2, article 2) was corrected according to legislation 627 of 6/6/1388 [8/28/2009]. To see the new phrase, please refer to legislation 627 (

Director of the Supreme Council of the Seminary

Mohammad Yazdi