Terms and Conditions for the provision of services

A) Introduction

1) Mission – Bodhi College is a not-for-profit charitable organisation providing Courses of contemplative education to deepen Participants’ understanding and practice of the early Buddhist teachings in a modern secular culture. Our mission statement can be found here.

2) Terms and conditions – These terms and conditions apply to the provision of Courses by Bodhi College to Applicants and Participants, and form the basis of the contract between the College and the Participant. They are intended to promote the welfare and satisfaction of Participants and the success of the College in the fulfilment of its mission for the benefit of all.

B) Terminology

3) Bodhi College / the College / we / us means Bodhi College, a company limited by guarantee (company number 09561665, registered in England and Wales) and a registered charity (charity number 1163320).

4) The Trustees means the Trustees of Bodhi College, who are appointed from time to time under the terms of its governing instrument and who are responsible for governance of the College.

5) Teacher / the Teachers means any teacher or teachers appointed by Bodhi College to teach Courses for us and the Faculty means those Teachers appointed to the Faculty by the Teachers already appointed to the Faculty.

6) Staff means employees of Bodhi College and volunteers supporting the work of the College.

7) Applicant means any person who wishes to register or has registered or has paid the fees, in part or in full, for a Course but has yet to participate.

8) Participant / you means any person who has paid the required fees and has begun participation in, or completed, a Course.

9) Courses means any course, whether in-person or on-line or hybrid, whether residential or non-residential, whether taught courses or retreats, including any mentoring, study groups, forums or materials associated with courses, provided by Bodhi College, which are subject to these terms and conditions.

C) Registration and admission

10) Registration – Applicants may register for courses by means of the Bodhi College website, or by telephone application on the College telephone number published on the website.

11) Admission

In most cases, Applicants will be admitted to a course automatically on the payment of the required fees for the Course.

In some cases, when the number of Applicants exceeds the number of places available on a Course, Bodhi College will keep a waiting list for Applicants and will notify Applicants if places come available. Places will be allocated to Applicants in a manner that we consider fair.

In some cases, as shall be made clear in the Course information, admission to a Course is subject to the decision of the relevant Teacher or Teachers, at their sole discretion. This is to ensure that Participants and Courses are suitable for each other. The decision shall be made in a manner that the Teacher or Teachers consider fair. Fees should not be paid until the Applicant is admitted to the Course.

D) Participation in Courses

12) Our commitment – We are committed under these terms and conditions to providing you with high quality Courses in a safe and supportive environment. Our Courses will be well described in the Course descriptions published on our website, which will specify the Teachers, content, timing, duration, format, location and fees.

We will appoint Teachers from the Faculty to teach our Courses, or other Teachers thought suitable by the Faculty to teach Courses for Bodhi College. Our Faculty will consist of Teachers of international standing and of the highest reputation in their fields, as well as less well-known Teachers aligned with our mission appointed by the Faculty.

13) Our Courses – Our Courses will typically conform to one of the following formats:

  • On-line Courses conducted only by means of virtual platforms;
  • Hybrid Courses conducted partly in physical gatherings and partly by means of virtual platforms;
  • Non-residential Courses, conducted only in physical gatherings but not including overnight accommodation; or
  • Residential Courses, conducted only in physical gatherings and including overnight accommodation.

Our Courses will typically conform to one of the following types:

  • Short Courses, which will be non-residential;
  • Long Courses, which will typically be residential programmes of a few sequential days, although they may take place in an on-line format; or
  • Extended Courses, which will be residential programmes of multiple modules each of a few sequential days over the course of one to three years, some of whose modules may take place in an on-line format.

14) Changes to Courses – Whilst we are committed to providing Courses as close as possible to the published specifications, in certain circumstances it may be necessary for Bodhi College to change the specifications of Courses, as to Teachers, content, timing, duration, format, location and fees. We will give you as much notice as possible of any such changes. If you can no longer participate as a result of any such changes, we will refund your fees if you wish.

15) Your commitment in participation – You are committed under these terms and conditions to participating in Bodhi College courses in a manner that is respectful and supportive of other Participants, the Teachers and Staff, including staff of the centres we are using. In particular you should have regard to our policies on equality, diversity and inclusion and on ethical conduct.

You are expected to attend the full Course. Continuity and steadiness are essential factors in the deepening of practice, and a support to your fellow Participants. If you need to leave the Course for any unexpected or urgent reason, you are expected to discuss it with the Teacher and inform the Bodhi College Staff, the Course co-ordinator or the staff of the host venue.

This commitment is set out in the guidelines for Course participants which can be found here.

16) Ethical conduct – High standards of ethical conduct are expected from all Participants, Teachers, Staff and other supporters of our Courses. You are asked at all times to observe the following guidelines:

  • Support the practice atmosphere as outlined by teachers and the venues.
  • Be sensitive towards all living beings and commit to a non-harming relationship to all life.
  • Take only that which is clearly given.
  • Refrain from consuming alcohol and all recreational drugs on any Course.
  • Abstain from all sexual contact.

This commitment is set out in the guidelines for Course participants which can be found here.

17) Equality, diversity and inclusion – Bodhi College is committed to making its Courses as widely accessible as possible, without exception. It is important to us to welcome all people of every age, ethnicity, cultural heritage and religious background, socio-economic group, ability, sexual orientation and gender identity. We seek to promote the inclusion and participation in all Bodhi College’s activities of people of diverse identities, and we are committed to identifying, understanding, and taking down whatever barriers might prevent this happening. Meanwhile we acknowledge the learning and open-mindedness that this pursuit requires, and are committed to challenging ourselves as we continue on this journey. Our equality and diversity policy can be found here.

18) Ending participation – The Teacher or Teachers of a Course or the staff of the College may at any time at their sole discretion with sufficient reason require any Participant to leave any Course. Reasons why the Teachers or the College may decide to do so would include (without limitation) any serious breaches of these terms and conditions in general or conduct not consistent with respectful and supportive participation (section 15), policies on equality, ethical requirements (section 16) or diversity and inclusion (section 17). Refunds will not be given in these circumstances.

E) Money matters – Dana, deposits, fees, bursaries and cancellation

19) Dana – Over the centuries since its arising, the doctrine (the dharma) has been taught without charge. The generosity of Teachers of the dharma is recompensed by the generosity of Participants benefiting from their teaching, in the form of donations called dana. Bodhi College upholds this dana tradition in offering its Courses. You may be invited consider offering dana of three varieties:

  • Teacher dana – As set out in section 21 below, in some cases the fees for the Course may include recompense for Teachers, while in other cases recompense for Teachers will take the form of voluntary dana and not included in the Course fees. We will make this clear in our Course information. Where recompense for Teachers is not included in the Course fees, Participants are asked to consider that their dana is the only remuneration for Teachers for the Course.
  • Bursary fund dana – As set out in section 25 below, donations to the bursary fund are only used to help Participants who are unable to afford the full fees for our Courses.
  • Bodhi College dana – Donations to the College will be used to sustain and develop the College. If the trustees consider it would be in the best interests of the College in the fulfilment of its mission to do so, they may decide to allocate some or all of a set of donations to the Bursary Fund. If this happens, the policy will be made clear in the Course information on the website.

In considering whether to join a Course for the required fee, Applicants are advised to take into account dana for Teachers when Teacher costs are not included in fees. Our policy on dana can be found here.

20) Deposits – In some cases, typically pertaining to long courses, Applicants are asked to make a deposit to secure a place on a Course. In such cases, the required fees are to be paid 4 weeks before the beginning of the Course, otherwise Bodhi College may deny the Applicant access to the Course. If we cannot offer the Applicant a place on the Course for any reason, the Applicant’s deposit will be returned in full.

21) Fees for Courses – Bodhi College seeks to make its Courses as accessible as possible by keeping its Course fees as low as possible, subject to earning enough income to cover its costs and to sustain and to develop the College. In the light of this, we operate the following policies as to our fees.

  • In some cases, on-line courses are offered without charge and participants are invited to offer dana as the only means of contributing to the Teachers and the College.
  • In some cases, on-line Courses are subject only to a nominal registration fee, to be paid by the Applicant on registration. In such cases, Participants will be invited to give dana to recompense for Teachers.
  • In some cases, fees include all charges for the Course, including recompense for Teachers, materials and any accommodation and catering.
  • In other cases, Course fees include charges only for materials, accommodation and catering and exclude recompense for Teachers. In such cases, Participants will be invited to give dana to recompense the generosity of Teachers.
  • In some cases, accommodation and catering charges are made separately by the centre the College is using for the Course and separate payment will be made to the Centre directly. The Course information will make this clear.

The Course information will make clear whether Teachers will be recompensed from with the Course fees or by dana. Where appropriate, Bodhi College offers three alternative fees for the Course, as follows:

  • Standard rate – This is the fee necessary to cover the costs of the Course for the College.
  • Supported rate – This is a subsidised fee, less than necessary to cover the costs of the Course, designed for those with more limited means, offered in order to make the teachings as widely accessible as possible.
  • Supporter rate – This is a fee higher than necessary to cover the costs of the Course, designed for those who are able to offer more to the College and to cover shortfalls for those needing to access the Course at the supported rate.

Applicants are invited to select the fee level appropriate for their circumstances.

22) Payment for courses – Course fees may be paid by debit card or credit card or by bank transfer in Sterling or Euros, as set out on the Bodhi College website.

23) Changes to bookings – Once your booking is confirmed, please make changes only if absolutely necessary. Applications to change must be made in writing to the staff of Bodhi College. We may charge a £25 / €30 administration fee to process changes. We cannot transfer bookings between Courses. To transfer between Courses, it is necessary for you to cancel the first and make a new second booking. Cancellation charges will apply.

24) Bookings for young people – We encourage appropriate participation by people under the age of 18, but we cannot take on-line bookings for this age group. Please contact the staff of the College by telephone to make bookings for young people.

25) Bursaries – Bodhi College operates a bursary fund to support Applicants who are unable to pay the full fees for Courses at any of the rates offered. It is financed by donations and course cancellation fees, and the fund enables discounts of up to 90% off the standard cost of a single module course, or up to 50% off a long course programme or module. The Bursary fund is limited, and all Bursary awards are granted entirely at the discretion of the Board of Trustees. There is no guarantee that your requested level of support can be met, and smaller awards may be offered instead.

Applicants are invited to submit a bursary application form to the College Staff specifying by means of the application form available from the College website, here, stating how much of the fee they can pay and giving some reasons for their application.

  • Single module Courses – Bursary applications need to be made before booking onto the Course. We encourage applicants to apply promptly, since course places can only be held for bursary applications received 2 months before the course start date.
  • Long Courses – Bursary applications for the whole course are to be made only after your Course application has been successful, and within 1 week of being the admission decision. Applications cannot be made after you are booked onto the course.

26) Cancellation – It can happen that Applicants are unable to participate in Courses they have booked and paid for and consequently wish to cancel. However, cancellations have the consequence for Bodhi College that places may not be filled and income may be lost. In these cases, we will apply the following cancellation policies:

Cancellation more than 2 months before the Course start date:

  • For a Course with a single module: a cancellation fee of £75/85€ applies.
  • For an extended Course with multiple modules, cancellation will incur a fee of 25% of the deposit amount.
  • For online courses and retreats, cancellations will be subject to a £25/30€ admin fee.

Cancellation between 1 and 2 months before the Course start date:

  • For all Course bookings with a deposit, the deposit will be lost.
  • For all other Courses, cancellations will incur a fee of 50% of the total cost, with a minimum fee of £100/110€.
  • For online courses and retreats, cancellations will be subject to a £25/30€ admin fee.

Cancellation less than 1 month before the Course start date:

  • For all Course bookings, the deposit will be lost and any unpaid balance will be billed, unless the place can be filled.
  • For online courses and retreats, cancellations will incur a fee of £50/50€ depending on which currency the course is priced in.

Withdrawal from an extended Course:

  • Withdrawal from an extended Course with multiple modules after it has begun will require the first year’s fees and 25% of the second-year fees to be paid, or the real costs to Bodhi College of any remaining modules, whichever is greater.

All cancellation fees will be donated to Bodhi College’s bursary fund and applied to help Participants of more limited means to attend our Courses, and will not be retained in the College’s own funds.

27) Exceptional circumstances – At our sole discretion, Bodhi College may waive cancellation or withdrawal fees in exceptional circumstances. Requests for the consideration of exceptional circumstances should to be made in writing, addressed to the Chair of the board of Trustees, sent for the care of the Staff at the email address published on the website, setting out why you needed to cancel your booking.

F) Other conditions

28) Privacy – We respect your privacy and understand how important it is that your personal information remains secure. We will not reveal information about you without your permission and will never disclose your attendance on a Bodhi College Course unless we are required to do so for legal reasons or by the emergency services. Further information is available here.

29) Complaints – If you are not satisfied with any aspect of a Course provided by Bodhi College, you may submit a complaint by way of the complaints procedure. We identify three possible types of complaint under this procedure:

  • Administrative matters
  • Content matters
  • Ethical matters

You may raise a complaint under any of these headings by means of the complaint form available under the complaints procedure on the website, which can be found here.

30) Intellectual property – All materials provided by Teachers on Courses remain the intellectual property of the Teachers.

31) Travel arrangements – As it is possible that Bodhi College may need to make changes to the specification of Courses, including timing, format and location, Participants are advised not to make firm travel arrangements until the Course specifications are confirmed. Bodhi College does not accept liability for your travel costs.

32) Variations – These terms and conditions will vary from time to time as required by law and as decided by the Trustees of Bodhi College.

33) Disclaimer – Bodhi College is a registered charity. The Courses Bodhi College offers are devised and given by experienced teachers of Buddhist philosophy. These teachers are wholly independent of Bodhi College.

Bodhi College accepts no responsibility, legal or otherwise, for the contents of the offerings nor the manner of their presentation given by teachers, nor for any travel arrangements participants may have made in order to participate in our courses.

Bodhi College accepts no responsibility, legal or otherwise, for any injury, illness or mishap which may be incurred by a participant whilst attending one of these courses, including any harm suffered due to the negligence of any person.

Bodhi College accepts no responsibility, legal or otherwise, for any accommodation or catering paid for separately by participants to the centres in which Bodhi College courses are offered.

34) Jurisdiction – This contract between Bodhi College and the Participant is governed by the law of England and Wales.