College Authority and Jurisdiction Over Student Conduct
Student Code of Conduct (Policy 2011: Regulations Governing Students)
Authority to designate
The Vice President and Chief Student Affairs Officer and the Associate Dean for Enrollment Management and Student Relations have authority over and responsibility for the Student Code of Conduct, as detailed in this document. Each of these administrators may designate another administrator to carry out certain functions and make decisions regarding the Student Code of Conduct and the Resolution process.
Who the Code applies to
- It applies to individuals from the time an offer of admission is extended and thereafter as long as the student has a continuing educational interest in the College.
- Examples include but are not limited to applicants, enrolled students, students who stop attending classes, and students who have formally withdrawn from a class.
- The Code applies to guests of members of the College community whose hosts may be held accountable for the misconduct of their guests.
- The Code may also be applied to high school bridge/extension/partner/dual- enrollment and continuing education programs.
- Visitors to and guests of College may seek Resolution of violations of the Code committed against them by members of the College community.
- The College does not have Student Code of Conduct jurisdiction over the visitors or guests. The Schoolcraft College Police Department may issue a ‘no trespass’ order to the individual if it is determined that the individual is a threat to campus safety or presents a risk to campus operations. ‘No trespass’ orders are governed by state law and include a procedure for appeal.
- Student clubs and organizations can be held accountable for Code violations.
Where the Code is in effect
- On property owned, leased or otherwise controlled by the College.
- At off-campus events that are College sponsored, endorsed, supported or related.
- Anywhere off campus when the Vice President and Chief Student Affairs Officer determines that the conduct represents a substantial College interest. A substantial College interest includes:
Any situation where it appears that the student’s conduct may present a danger or threat to the health or safety of him/herself or others; and/or
Any situation that significantly impinges upon the rights, property or achievements of self or others or significantly breaches the peace and/or causes social disorder; and/or
Any situation that is detrimental to the educational mission and/or interests of the College.
Application of the Code to online and in electronic media
- The Code may be applied to behavior conducted online, via email or other electronic medium.
- Online postings such as blogs, web postings, chats and social networking sites are in the public sphere and are not private.
- These postings can subject a student to allegations of conduct violations if evidence of the violation is posted online.
Concerning freedom of expression
Not all forms of speech expressed online, via email or other electronic media are protected by the First Amendment. Two examples are especially relevant to Colleges and their students:
- A true threat, defined as “a threat a reasonable person would interpret as a serious expression of intent to inflict bodily harm upon specific individuals.”
- Speech about a college or its community members that causes a significant on- campus disruption.
No time limit for Code violation reporting
- There is no time limit; however, the longer someone waits to report an offense, the harder it becomes for College officials to obtain information and witness statements and to make determinations regarding alleged violations.
Anonymous reports accepted
- Anonymous are accepted, although they may limit the College’s ability to investigate and respond to a report.
- Those who are aware of misconduct are encouraged to report it as quickly as possible using the online reporting tool SCaware (available at www.schoolcraft.edu) or by contacting the Student Relations Office or the Schoolcraft College Police Department.
Violations of the law may be Code of Conduct violations
- Alleged violations of federal, state and local laws may be investigated and addressed under the Student Code of Conduct.
- When an offense occurs over which the College has jurisdiction, the College Resolution process will usually go forward, notwithstanding any criminal or civil proceedings that may arise from the same incident.
- The College may hold off on its investigation in order to give law enforcement time to initiate its investigation before the College begins contacting witnesses and gathering information on the case.
- Barring extraordinary circumstances, this delay will last no longer than 10 calendar days. After that, the College will move forward with its investigation.
College cooperation with off-campus law enforcement
- When there is overlap between investigations by the College and law enforcement, the College may inform law enforcement of the Code of Conduct and the Resolution Process.
- The 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.
- The College may impose an interim suspension or other interim measures upon notification that a student is facing criminal investigation and/or Code violation allegations (see ‘What can I expect from the College during Resolution,’ Interim action).
- In some cases a student facing criminal charges is not available to participate in the College’s Resolution process. The College may delay the Resolution process until such time that the student is able to participate.
Authority originates with Board of Trustees
- Policies and procedures established by the College’s governing body, the Board of Trustees, empower the College President to implement the Student Code of Conduct.
- The Vice President and Chief Student Affairs Officer is vested with the authority over the Code and the Resolution process by the College President.
- The Vice President and Chief Student Affairs Officer appoints the Associate Dean of Student Relations to oversee and manage the Resolution process and a Title IX Coordinator to oversee cases that fall under the federal law known as Title IX.
- The Associate Dean may serve as the Title IX Coordinator or the Vice President may appoint another individual to serve as Coordinator.
Gatekeeper for cases involving alleged Code of Conduct violations
- Vice President and Chief Student Affairs Office shall designate an office to serve as the gatekeeper for Conduct cases.
Updates to Code of Conduct
- A review and updating of the entire Code will occur every three years. The next scheduled review is 2018.
- The review and update shall be conducted by the designee of the Vice President and Chief Student Affairs Officer.
- The designee may make minor changes to keep the Code current with laws and regulations or to improve or clarify, as long as the changes do not jeopardize fairness to any party involved in Resolution and are brought to the attention of the Vice President and Chief Student Affairs officer, who approves any changes.
- Questions of interpretation are referred to the Vice President and Chief Student Affairs Officer, whose interpretation is final.