Denis Rancourt is a former professor of physics at the University of Ottawa. Rancourt is a recognized scientist but is more widely known for his confrontations with his former employer, the University of Ottawa, over issues involving his dissidence and his approach to pedagogy. His conflicts with the university started in 2005 when, in what was termed "academic squatting," he changed a course to focus "not just [on] how science impacts everyday life, but how it relates to greater power structures". In June 2008 a labor law arbitrator sided with Rancourt and ruled that "teaching science through social activism is protected by academic freedom." Rancourt was removed from all teaching duties in the fall of 2008 because the dean of the faculty of science did not agree with his granting A+ grades to 23 students in one course of the winter 2008 semester. In December, the Allan Rock administration of the University of Ottawa began dismissal proceedings against him and he was banned from campus. This generated a province-wide (Ontario) and national (Canada) public debate on grading in university courses. The university's Executive Committee of the Board of Governors voted unanimously to fire Rancourt on March 31, 2009. Rancourt has expressed the opinion that the grading issue was a pretext for his dismissal. Canadian media reports have echoed that Rancourt's dismissal was political. Rancourt has grieved the dismissal and the Canadian Association of University Teachers is running an Independent Committee of Inquiry into the matter. The dismissal case went to binding arbitration where Rancourt's union took the position that the grading issue was a pretext to remove Rancourt and that the termination was done in bad faith. Arbitrator Claude Foisy ruled in a decision dated January 27, 2014, to uphold the university's dismissal of Rancourt. On March 10, 2014, Rancourt's union announced that it would appeal the Arbitrator's award.