The Mount St. Mary's University Board of Trustees is pledging a thorough, two-week review of turmoil triggered by the school president's remarks likening struggling freshmen to bunnies that should be killed.

The board apologized in a statement Tuesday for what it called "a breakdown in compassionate communication."

President Simon Newman previously apologized for his remarks, reported in the student newspaper, about his plan to identify struggling freshmen and offer them help, or tuition refunds if they chose to leave school.

Newman has rejected a demand by most faculty members for his resignation. Most students expressed support for Newman in a student government poll.

The Frederick News-Post reports that two faculty members who were fired after the board investigated the newspaper story say they'll accept reinstatement, at least for this semester.