3.21 Student Discipline
(Revised 5-1-1989; Reaffirmed 12-2-1991; Revised 8-28-2003; Reaffirmed 6-16-2014)
All students are expected to meet the expectations of College administrators and faculty and the norms of a civil society and to avoid prohibited conduct (see Policy 3.20 Student Conduct). If the need for student discipline arises, students can expect due process as defined by the following procedures.
Procedures: (Revised 12-6-2021)
3.21.1 Definitions (Revised 6-16-2014)
The following definitions apply to this Policy:
- Chief Student Affairs Officer (CSAO) – The administrator responsible for student services such as counseling and advising.
- Chief Academic Officer (CAO) -The administrator responsible for the oversight and direction of academic programs and faculty.
- Hearing Committee – A five-member committee called upon for hearings whose membership includes two (2) faculty, two (2) administrative/professional staff, and one (1) support staff member. The CSAO and the CAO are not voting members of the hearing committee, but they are nevertheless involved in the hearing. The CSAO will preside over and the CAO will present the charges at all hearings where the misconduct does not involve an academic issue. If the misconduct involves an academic issue, their roles will be reversed.
- Sanctions – Any action taken during the institutional discipline process, not including those actions an instructor may take within the classroom in cases of academic dishonesty such as assigning a lowered or failing grade for the assignment or class.
3.21.2 In most cases, disciplinary actions are meant to be remedial rather than punitive. Ideally, disciplinary proceedings will be conducted informally between the student(s) and the CSAO. However, when this means of resolution is not possible, a student has the right to formal processes of discipline and appeal.
3.21.3 Possible Sanctions (Revised 8-2012, 6-16-2014, 12-6-2021)
- Warning: A verbal admonition by a College official regarding a violation of the Student Conduct Code.
- Fines, community service, rehabilitation, or other restitution: A monetary fee, assigned task, or other means of reparation.
- Disciplinary Probation: A status resulting from a finding of misconduct. The student remains enrolled but under stated conditions.
- Summary Suspension: An involuntary and immediate separation of the student from the institution when, in the judgment of the CAO, CSAO, and/or President, the student presents the potential for behavior dangerous or destructive to themself, others, or College property. Such suspension will be for a limited time until further disciplinary determination is made.
- Disciplinary Suspension: An involuntary separation of the student from the institution for a specified period of time due to misconduct. The student may be re-admitted following a specified period of time.
- Expulsion: Permanent loss of student status due to misconduct. Other stated conditions may be applied.
3.21.4 Formal Student Disciplinary Process (Revised 12-23-2014)
Students subject to sanctions will be accorded the opportunity for a hearing before a hearing committee. For a hearing to be held, the student is required to submit a written request for a hearing (electronic submission is acceptable) to the CSAO or designee within five (5) working days. The following guidelines will be applicable:
- Students will be informed in writing of the time, date, and location of the hearing by personal delivery, certified mail, or via electronic communication at least seven (7) working days in advance of the hearing.
- The entire case file will be available for inspection by the student in the office of the CSAO during normal business hours. The file, which should be available at least two (2) working days before the hearing, need not include the personal and confidential notes of any College official or participant in the hearing process.
- The hearing will be conversational and non-adversarial. Formal rules of evidence will not apply. The CSAO or designee shall exercise active control over the proceedings to avoid needless consumption of time and to achieve the orderly completion of the hearing. Any person who disrupts the hearing may be excluded.
- The student may choose to be assisted by a member of the faculty or staff of the institution. Furthermore, the student may be accompanied by legal counsel, although the role of legal counsel will be limited to providing legal advice to the student, and such legal counsel may not participate in any other way.
- Those assisting the student, except for legal counsel, will be given reasonable time to ask relevant questions of any individual appearing at the hearing, as well as to present relevant evidence. In some circumstances, including those involving sexual assault or other sensitive allegations, the CSAO or designee may determine that direct questioning of a witness by the student or the individual assisting the student is not appropriate. In those cases, the student or their representative will submit the questions to the CSAO or designee, who will then ask the questions.
- Whenever possible, the student will be expected to respond to questions asked by the CSAO or designee.
- If the student requests a hearing and fails to appear after proper notice, the hearing committee may either proceed with the hearing in the student’s absence or may make a decision without holding a hearing.
- The hearing will be recorded. The recording(s) shall be kept with the pertinent case file for a minimum of six (6) months.
- A written decision will be rendered by the hearing committee within five (5) working days after the completion of the hearing. The written decision, which should be mailed or personally delivered to the student, should contain a brief statement of reasons for any determination leading to sanctions. The student should also be advised as to when a petition for reinstatement would be considered, along with any conditions for reinstatement. The decision of the hearing committee will be final unless a timely appeal is made to the College President.
3.21.5 A student who wishes to appeal a disciplinary decision must do so within 30 calendar days of the notice of the written decision of the hearing committee by filing a written appeal with the College President. The written notice to the President should state the basis for the appeal.
- An appeal is limited to the following issues:
- Prejudice or other irregularities that improperly influence the outcome of the disciplinary hearing.
- Discovery of new or significant evidence that was not available at the time of the original hearing.
- A sanction that is extraordinarily disproportionate to the violation.
- The College President will meet with the student and render a decision within seven (7) days. The decision of the President will be final.
- In all non-grade appeals, the student may choose to withdraw from College or the class at any time during the disciplinary process.