Article VII: Conduct Policies

This page contains the following information pertaining to Article VII: Judicial Policies:

  1. Definitions
  2. Charges
  3. Process
  4. Sanctions
  5. Medical Exception
  6. Appeals

Definitions

Student conduct coordinator/ Investigator:  Person who will be adjudicating a case (ex. Area Coordinator, Associate Dean of Students)
Complainant:  Person bringing a complaint to the attention of the College resulting in the opening of a conduct case
Respondent:  Person named by the complainant as allegedly violating the code of conduct
Adjudication Meeting:  Meeting with the student conduct coordinator assigned to adjudicate a conduct case

Charges

  1. Student misconduct charges may be filed by any member of the college community.. Normally, this may be accomplished by filing a report with public safety, completing and filing a residence hall incident report, meeting with a class dean, or submitting a photocopy of an official police report. Any charge should be submitted as soon as possible after the event takes place.
  2. The student conduct coordinator will determine the disposition of the charges and may decide among the following options:
    1. The charges have no merit.
    2. The charges have merit and may be administratively settled by mutual consent of the involved parties on a basis acceptable to the student conduct coordinator. Such disposition shall be final, and there shall be no subsequent proceedings. (With the exception of sexual misconduct cases).
    3. The charges have merit and are appropriate for adjudication by the appropriate student conduct officer. These include:
      1. Most cases arising from policy violations in the residence halls and honor houses. Generally adjudicated by area coordinators or other professional members of the residence life staff.
      2. Most cases arising from policy violations in areas other than the residence halls and honor houses.  Generally adjudicated by one of the associate deans.
    4. The charges have merit but are not appropriate for the conduct process and will be handled administratively by other means.
  3. In cases involving a charge of sexual misconduct the Title IX Case Manager will meet with the reporting party and discuss the possible campus options available.

Process

The following process generally applies to a student in any college conduct proceeding.

  1. Written notice of the charges is provided to the affected student whenever formal action is initiated. If possible, notice is to be given within 60 class days of the alleged violation and at least five class days in advance of the deadline set for the adjudication meeting, with sufficient particularity as to the facts that the student may reasonably understand the charge and prepare for their meeting. Generally, adjudication meeting shall be held not more than 15 class days after the affected student has been notified. Deadlines and time limits may be extended at the discretion of the student conduct coordinator.
  2. The complainant and the respondent are permitted to appear in person and provide witnesses, statements or other information. The complainant and the respondent are permitted to suggest to the student conduct coordinator who they believe should be questioned and questions which they believe should be asked of those persons.  The conduct coordinator shall have authority to determine which witnesses they call, which questions are asked, and which documents or other tangible evidence will be considered. Generally, all questioning of witnesses shall be done by the conduct coordinator. The conduct coordinator, in making  determinations as to which evidence to admit and consider, gives consideration to factors such as justice, fairness, efficiency, avoidance of unnecessary duplication of evidence, and other goals deemed appropriate.
  3. Written notification of the results of any adjudication meeting shall be sent within five class days of that meeting, unless that period is extended by the Dean of Students.
  4. Appeal requests shall be based on the criteria outlined in the Appeals section.
  5. In cases involving more than one student, the student conduct coordinator, may permit the adjudication meetings concerning each student to be conducted separately.
  6. The complainant and the respondent have the right to be assisted by an advisor of their choice as long as the advisor is not a potential witness in the case. Guidelines for advisors are:
    1. The advisor is to support a student in the conduct process. Advisors should be chosen for their ability to understand the circumstances, assist a student with the process of preparing for an adjudication meeting, and guide the student through the process.
    2. Advisors may confer with the student involved, but they do not actively participate in the meeting. The complainant and/or the respondent is responsible for presenting their own case and, therefore, advisors are not permitted to speak or participate in the adjudication meeting.
    3. Advisors do not represent the student. That is, information will be directly communicated to, released to, or accepted from involved students, not advisors. All information concerning any case may be made available to advisors with the written permission of the involved student.
  7. All procedural questions are subject to the final decision of the Dean of Students.
  8. After the hearing, the student conduct coordinator will determine whether the student has violated the Code of Student Conduct. In determining the outcome, each alleged violation shall be considered separately.
    1. The determination shall be made on the basis of whether it is more likely than not that the student violated the Code of Conduct (a preponderance of the evidence). Rules of evidence as in a court of law shall not apply.
    2. Any expense incurred in the conduct process is the responsibility of the individual student who incurred the expense.
  9. The college may choose to keep a verbatim transcript of adjudication meetings. This record shall be the property of the college and generally will be maintained in the possession of the dean of students office for a period of four years following the adjudication.
  10. A respondent may voluntarily waive their right to appear. However, if properly notified of the date, time and location of the meeting (per Article VII, B, 1) failure of the respondent to appear shall not result in the cancellation or postponement of that adjudication meeting. The meeting will be held in the absence of the respondent, unless such absence is excused by the Dean of Students.
  11. The respondent may also waive their rights concerning the timing of adjudication meeting in agreement with the student conduct coordinator.
  12. Except in the case of a student charged with failing to obey the summons of a student conduct officer or college official, no student may be found to have violated the Code of Student Conduct solely because the student failed to appear for an adjudication meeting. In all cases, the information in support of the charges shall be presented and considered, even if the charged student fails to appear.

Sanctions

Students who choose to violate college policies should expect consequences to follow. The following are examples and definitions of specific sanctions that may be imposed upon any student found to have violated the Code of Conduct. Other sanctions may be imposed or deemed appropriate in certain circumstances.

Level I (First-time, less serious violations):

  • Warning – a notice in writing to the student that the conduct is violating or has violated the Code of Conduct or community standards.
  • Completion of an on line education class.
  • Participate in an educational program related to the incident.
  • Restitution and/or apology to affected persons. Restitution – compensation for loss, damage or injury. This may take the form of appropriate service and/or monetary or material replacement.
  • Behavioral contract – agreement between the student and conduct coordinator with specific statement of expectations.
  • Discretionary Sanctions – work assignments, service to the college, or other related discretionary assignments (such assignments must have the prior approval of the chief conduct coordinator).
  • Fines – previously established and published fines may be imposed. In some instances, appropriate discretionary fines may also be imposed.
  • Loss of Privileges – denial of specified privileges for a designated period of time.
  • Other sanctions appropriate to the violation.

Level II (Repeated or more serious first-time violations):

  • Referral to appropriate college staff.
  • At the conclusion of the process confidential notification of parents, academic advisor, athletic coach, co- curricular program directors, personnel in the International and Off-Campus Studies Office, and/or others as appropriate.
  • Residence hall probation (further violation may result in reassignment of housing).
  • Probation – Probation is for a designated period of time and includes the probability of more severe conduct sanctions if the student is found to be violating any institutional regulation(s) during the probationary period.
  • Co-curricular suspension.  Suspensions can be of indeterminate length, depending on the severity of the violation. In such instances, students may continue to attend class, labs, and study in the library; they may eat meals in the Cafeteria or Cage, and take care of normal administrative functions related to being a student. However, students fulfilling a co-curricular suspension may not participate in athletics, club or intramural sports, music groups or organizations, clubs or organizations or social events sponsored by the college.
  • Other sanctions appropriate to violation.

Level III (Most serious violations, including but not limited to flagrant violations of policy; abuse of or non-cooperation with college staff; incidents involving threats or violence; or repeated violations of policy):

  • Chemical health screening or assessment.
  • Residence hall reassignment, suspension or expulsion. Residence Hall Suspension – separation of the student from the residence halls for a defined period of time, after which the student is eligible to return. Conditions for readmission may be specified. Residence Hall Expulsion – permanent separation of the student from the residence halls. College refund policies apply.
  • College Suspension – separation of the student from the college for a defined period of time, after which the student is eligible to return. Conditions for readmission may be specified.
  • College Expulsion – permanent separation of the student from the college. College refund policies apply.
  • Other sanctions appropriate to violation.
  1. Depending on the circumstances, Level I, II or III sanctions may be implemented at any time and in any order.
  2. More than one of the sanctions listed above may be imposed for any single violation.
  3. Suspensions can be of indeterminate length, depending on the severity of the violation.
  4. Sanctions are cumulative and may carry over from year to year.
  5. Other than college expulsion, conduct sanctions shall not be made a part of the student’s permanent academic record, but shall become part of the student’s confidential record. Confidential records are maintained permanently. Generally, records older than five years are not reported to outside sources.
  6. The following sanctions may be imposed on groups or organizations:
    1. Those sanctions listed above.
    2. The loss of the privilege to live in a college honor house
    3. Deactivation: loss of all privileges, including college recognition, for a specified period of time
  7. In each case in which it was determined that a student violated the Code of Conduct, the sanction(s) shall be determined and imposed by the student conduct coordinator.

Following the adjudication meeting, the student conduct coordinator shall advise the respondent in writing of the determination and the sanction(s) imposed, if any.

The Dean of Students shall have final authority to determine the appropriateness of sanctions.

Medical Exception

The health and safety of students is of great importance to the entire St. Olaf community.  The college understands that the potential for conduct action may deter students from seeking needed medical assistance, either for themselves or others, as the result  use of alcohol and/or other drugs.

Through the college’s Medical Exception policy, students needing to be transported to the hospital for the first time as the result of use of alcohol and/or other drugs will not face formal conduct action, provided that the student has not committed any other violations of the Code of Conduct that warrant action.  A student is allowed a Medical Exception once.

Previous conduct history, lack of cooperation with college officials, or leaving the hospital without being cleared by medical personnel may limit eligibility for this exception.

Students who are eligible for medical exception will not receive a conduct record for the incident.  The student will be required to do the following:

  • to meet with a professional staff member of the Dean of Students Office to discuss the incident
  • participate in BASICS (Brief Alcohol Screening and Intervention for College Students)
  • inform the college staff of who provided the student the alcohol and/or drugs used during that incident
  • Parents of the student will be notified of the incident – generally they are notified from the hospital at the time of the incident.
  • Depending on individual circumstances the student may be referred for additional services.

Individuals who call to obtain medical assistance for a student will not face formal conduct actions, provided that they have not committed additional violations of the Code of Conduct other than the possession or use of alcohol and/or drugs.

In the event that the student fails to meet with the staff member or chooses not to fulfill the requirements the student may be subject to disciplinary action.

Police involvement in conduct cases

Any information shared with the College may be subpoenaed.

Appeals

Appeals Process

Article VIII: Interpretation and Revision