COLUMBIA — The University of Missouri's Graduate Professional Council has passed a resolution affirming graduate students' status as university employees.

The Columbia Daily Tribune reports the council passed the resolution Tuesday night. The question of employee status for graduate students has come up in the ongoing discussion about the possibility of graduate students voting to unionize this spring.

Demonstrations by graduate students seeking better benefits and pay were sparked after university officials told graduate assistants in August that health insurance subsidies would no longer be offered. The school later rescinded its decision.

The UM System Board of Curators is scheduled to start a two-day meeting Thursday, and the agenda includes an executive session of the Compensation and Human Resources Committee, which could include discussions about graduate students' employee status.

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