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Procedure: Student Disciplinary Procedure

I. Policy:

The administration reserves the right to maintain a safe and orderly educational environment for Students and staff. Therefore, when, in the judgment of Technical College officials, a Student’s conduct disrupts or threatens to disrupt the Technical College Community, appropriate disciplinary action will be taken to restore and protect the atmosphere of collegiality and mutual respect on campus. This procedure is intended to provide an orderly protocol for handling Student disciplinary cases in accordance with the principles of due process and justice.

II. Applicability:

This procedure is applicable to all Technical Colleges associated with the Technical College System of Georgia.

III. Definitions:

  1. Academic Misconduct: includes, but is not limited to, the definition found in the Student Code of Conduct, Article II, Paragraphs 1-4.
  2. Appellate Board: any person or persons designated by the President to consider an appeal from a Judicial Body’s determination that a Student has violated the Student Code of Conduct, other regulations, or from the sanctions imposed. The President may serve as the Appellate Board.
  3. Business Days: weekdays that the Technical College administrative offices are open.
  4. Continuing Relationship: any person who has been enrolled as a student and may enroll in the future as a Student at the Technical College.
  5. Faculty Member: any person hired by the Technical College to conduct teaching, service, or research activities.
  6. Judicial Advisor: a Technical College Official authorized on a case-by-case basis by the President to impose sanctions upon students found to have violated the Student Code of Conduct. The President may authorize a Judicial Advisor to serve simultaneously as a Judicial Advisor and the sole member or one of the members of a Judicial Body. Nothing shall prevent the President from authorizing the same Judicial Advisor to impose sanctions in all cases. Unless otherwise noted, the "Judicial Advisor" of the Technical College may be the Student Disciplinary Officer.
  7. Judicial Body: any person or persons authorized by the President of a Technical College to consider a Student’s appeal of a decision by the Student Disciplinary Officer.
  8. Member of the Technical College Community: any person who is a Student, Faculty Member, Technical College Official or any other person/s involved with the Technical College community or employed by the Technical College.
  9. Policy: the written regulations of the Technical College as found in, but not limited to, the Student Code of Conduct, Students Handbook(s), Residence Hall Handbook(s), Technical College Catalog(s), the Technical College Policy Manual, and the Policy Manual approved by the State Board for the Technical College System of Georgia.
  10. Student: all persons taking courses at the Technical College full-time, part-time, dual enrollment, joint enrollment, non-credit and credit. Persons who are not officially enrolled for a particular term but who have a continuing relationship with the Technical College are considered "Students."
  11. Student Disciplinary Officer: the person designated by the President to administer this procedure. This person may be the same as the Judicial Advisor.
  12. Student Organization: any number of persons who have complied with the formal requirements for Technical College recognition.
  13. System: the Technical College System of Georgia.
  14. Technical College: any college within the Technical College System of Georgia.
  15. Technical College Official: any person employed by the Technical College, performing assigned administrative responsibilities on a part-time, full-time, or adjunct basis.
  16. Technical College Premises: all land, buildings, facilities, and other property in the possession of or owned, used, or controlled by the Technical College (including adjacent streets and sidewalks).

IV. Attachments: ( Forms may be obtained from the college website or from the Office of Counseling and Special Services, Hartline Building room 162.)

  1. Student Code of Conduct Complaint Form
  2. Disciplinary Sanction Appeal Form

V. Procedure:

  1. Filing a Complaint
    1. Any member of the Technical College Community may file a complaint with the Student Disciplinary Officer against any Student for a violation of the Student Code of Conduct. The individual(s) initiating the action must complete a Student Code of Conduct Complaint Form, and forward it directly to the Student Disciplinary Officer or his/her designee.
    2. Academic Misconduct may be handled using this procedure or a separate Academic Misconduct Procedure at the discretion of the President.
    3. Investigation and Decision
      1. Within five business days after the Student Code of Conduct Complaint Form (the "Complaint") is filed, the Student Disciplinary Officer or his/her designee shall complete a preliminary investigation of the incident, and schedule a meeting with the Student against whom the Complaint was filed in order to discuss the incident and the charges. In the event that additional time is necessary, the Student will be notified. After discussing the Complaint with the Student, the Student Disciplinary Officer or his/her designee shall determine whether the student committed the alleged conduct, and whether the alleged conduct constitutes a violation of the Student Code of Conduct.
      2. The Student shall have 5 business days from the date contacted by the Student Disciplinary Officer to schedule the meeting. This initial meeting may only be rescheduled one time. If the Student fails to respond to the Student Disciplinary Officer within 5 business days to schedule the meeting, reschedules the meeting more than once, or fails to appear at the meeting, the Student Disciplinary Officer will consider the available evidence without Student input and make a determination
      3. In the event that a Complaint alleges violations of the Student Code of Conduct by more than one Student, each Student’s disciplinary proceeding, as well as any appeals relating to that proceeding, shall be conducted individually.
      4. If the Student Disciplinary Officer or his/her designee determines that the Student is guilty of a violation of the Student Code of Conduct, he/she shall impose one or more disciplinary sanctions consistent with those described below. If the Student Disciplinary Officer or his/her designee determines that the alleged conduct did not occur, or that the conduct was not a violation of the Student Code of Conduct, he/she shall not impose any disciplinary sanctions on the student and the investigation shall be closed.
  2. Disciplinary Sanctions
    1. After a determination that a Student has violated the Student Code of Conduct, the Student Disciplinary Officer or his/her designee may impose one or more of the following sanctions:
      1. Restitution – A Student who has committed an offense against property may be required to reimburse the Technical College or other owner for damage to or misappropriation of such property. Any such payment in restitution shall be limited to the actual cost of repair or replacement.
      2. Reprimand – A written reprimand may be given to any Student. Such a reprimand does not restrict the Student in any way, but it signifies to the Student that he/she is in effect being given another chance to conduct himself/herself as a proper Member of the Technical College Community, and that any further violation may result in more serious sanctions.
      3. Restriction – A restriction upon a Student’s privileges for a period of time may be imposed. This restriction may include but is not limited to denial of the right to represent the Technical College in any way, denial of use of facilities, alteration or revocation of parking privileges, or restrictions from participating in extracurricular activities.
      4. Disciplinary Probation – Continued enrollment of a Student on probation may be conditioned upon adherence to specified terms. Any Student placed on probation will be notified of the terms and length of probation in writing. Any conduct determined after due process to be in violation of these terms while on probation may result in the imposition of more serious disciplinary sanctions, as specified by the terms of probation.
      5. Failing or lowered grade – In cases of academic misconduct, the Student Disciplinary Officer or his/her designee will make a recommendation to the Vice President for Academic Affairs or his/her designee who may authorize the instructor to award a failing or lowered grade in the course, a loss of credit on the assignment or examination, and may impose other additional sanctions including suspension or dismissal from the Technical College. Reference policy V.H. Academic standards, evaluations and appeals.
      6. Disciplinary Suspension – If a Student is suspended, he/she is separated from the Technical College for a stated period of time. Conditions of reinstatement, if any, must be stated in the notice of suspension.
      7. Disciplinary Expulsion –Removal and exclusion from the Technical College, Technical College controlled facilities, programs, events, and activities. A record of the reason for the Student’s dismissal is maintained by the Student Disciplinary Officer or his/her designee. Students who have been dismissed from the Technical College for any reason may apply in writing for reinstatement twelve (12) months following the expulsion. If approval for reinstatement is granted, the Student will be placed on disciplinary probation for a specified term. The probationary status may be removed at the end of the specified term at the discretion of the Student Disciplinary Officer or his/her designee.
      8. Interim Disciplinary Suspension – As a general rule, the status of a Student accused of violations of the Student Code of Conduct should not be altered until a final determination is made regarding the charges against him/her. However, interim suspension may be imposed upon a finding by the Student Disciplinary Officer or his/her designee that the continued presence of the accused student on campus constitutes a potential or immediate threat to the safety and well-being of the accused student or any other member of the Technical College Community or its guests, or that the continued presence of the Student on campus creates a risk of substantial disruption of classroom or other Technical College-related activities.
    2. Violation of Federal, State, or Local Law
      1. If a Student is convicted or pleads Nolo Contendere to an off-campus violation of federal, state, or local law, but not with any other violation of the Student Code of Conduct, disciplinary action may be taken and sanctions imposed for misconduct that is detrimental to the Technical College’s vital interests and stated mission and purpose.
      2. Disciplinary proceedings may be instituted against a Student charged with violation of a law that is also a violation of the Student Code of Conduct if both violations result from the same factual situation, without regard to criminal arrest and/or prosecution. Proceedings under this Student Code of Conduct may be carried out prior to, simultaneously with, or following criminal proceedings.
      3. When a Student is charged by federal, state, or local authorities with a violation of law, the Technical College will not request or agree to special consideration for that individual because of his/her status as a Student. The Technical College will cooperate fully with law enforcement and other agencies in the enforcement of criminal law on campus and in the conditions imposed by criminal courts for the rehabilitation of student violators. Individual Students, acting in their personal capacities, remain free to interact with governmental representatives as they deem appropriate.
    3. Conditions of Disciplinary Suspension and Expulsion
      1. A Student who has been suspended or expelled from the Technical College shall be denied all privileges afforded a Student and shall be required to vacate Technical College Premises at a time determined by the Student Disciplinary Officer or his/her designee.
      2. In addition, after vacating the Technical College Premises, a suspended or expelled Student may not enter upon the Technical College Premises at any time, for any purpose, in the absence of written permission from the Student Disciplinary Officer or his/her designee. A suspended or expelled student must contact the Student Disciplinary Officer or his/her designee for permission to enter the Technical College Premises for a limited, specified purpose.
      3. If the student seeks to submit a signed Disciplinary Sanction Appeal Form, the Student Disciplinary Officer or his/her designee must accept the Form by mail or fax if he/she refuses the Student’s request to enter the Technical College Premises for that specified purpose.
      4. A scheduled appeal hearing before the Judicial Body shall be understood as expressed permission from the Student Disciplinary Officer or his/her designee for a student to enter the Technical College Premises for the duration of that hearing.
  3. Mediation
    1. At the discretion of the President the Technical College may adopt a mediation procedure to be utilized prior to the appeals set forth herein.
  4. Appeals Procedure
    1. A Student who wishes to appeal a disciplinary decision by the Student Disciplinary Officer or his/her designee must file a written notice of appeal through the President’s Office for review by the Judicial Body within five business days of notification of the decision.
    2. The Student will then have the right to appear in a hearing before a Judicial Body assigned by the President or his/her designee within 10 business days to present evidence and/or testimony. The student has the right to be assisted by any single advisor he/she chooses, at his/her own expense. The Student is responsible for presenting his/her own case and, therefore, advisors are not permitted to speak or to participate directly in any hearing before a Judicial Body. The Judicial Body may consist of two faculty members, one staff member and two students. There shall be a single verbatim record, such as a tape recording, of all hearings before the Judicial Body. The record shall be the property of the Technical College. The standard of proof in all hearings shall be a preponderance of the evidence. The Chairperson of the Judicial Body shall notify the President and the Student Disciplinary Officer in writing of the Judicial Body’s decision. The Technical College President or his/her designee will notify the Student in writing of the Judicial Body’s decision and the opportunity to appeal directly to the President.
    3. The Student shall have 5 business days after receiving written notification of the Judicial Body’s decision from the President or his/her designee to request in writing an appeal hearing with the Appellate Board. This appeal hearing may only be rescheduled one time. If the student fails to request an appeal hearing by the Appellate Board within 5 business days, reschedules the hearing more than once, or fails to appear at the meeting, the decision of the Judicial Body will be final and binding.
    4. The Appellate Board shall only consider evidence currently in the record, new facts not brought up in earlier stages of the appeal shall not be considered. The Appellate Board shall deliver its decision to the Student within 10 business days. The decision of the Appellate Board shall be final and binding.
  5. Document Retention

    The Student Disciplinary Officer or his/her designee shall retain a copy of all documents concerning complaints, investigations, administrative actions, and communications in relation to any incident that resulted in a disciplinary investigation of any kind against a Student. The Student Disciplinary Officer or his/her designee will also retain records of any disciplinary appeals filed by the affected Student, as well as the resulting record of appeal and decision submitted by the Judicial Body and Appellate Board. A record of the final decision must also be retained, in the event that the decision is appealed to the President. All records specified in this section shall be retained for a period of five years.

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