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Student Non-Academic Discipline Procedures/Due Process

The Vice President for Student Development or designee shall have primary authority and responsibility for administering student discipline for non-academic violations.  When a student is alleged to have violated the TSTC Code of Student Conduct or any policy that might result in disciplinary action by the college, the Vice President for Student Development or designee shall investigate the allegation(s).  The student may be subject to interim discipline.  Should the investigation by the Vice President for Student Development or designee find cause, the following actions will take place.

Initial Disciplinary Hearing

A. The student will be personally contacted with the date, time, and location of a hearing before the Vice President for Student Development or designee to respond to the alleged violation.

      NOTE:  If personal contact cannot be made, the Vice President will notify the student in writing by receipted hand delivery or certified United States Postal Service (USPS) mail at the address appearing on the student’s permanent record in the Admissions and Records Office of the alleged violation and the disciplinary action to be imposed.  The letter will explain the timeline and procedure to request an appeal hearing to refute the alleged violation and/or the disciplinary action imposed. A letter to this address will constitute full and adequate notification.  Failure of a student to provide an address change will not constitute good cause for failure to appeal the notification and the disciplinary action imposed.

B. At the hearing, the Vice President for Student Development or designee shall receive all testimony and evidence relative to the allegations or charges. If, after hearing the testimony and examining the evidence, the Vice President for Student Development or designee determines the allegations or charges to be true, the student will be provided written notification of the violation(s) of the Code of Student Conduct and the disciplinary action imposed. Possible disciplinary action that could be imposed by the Vice President of Student Development includes, but is not limited to, the following sanctions:

  • oral or written warning
  • requirement that the student complete a special project that could be, but is not limited to, writing an essay, attending a special class or lecture or attending counseling sessions. The special project might be imposed only for a definite term.
  • cancellation of the college housing contract
  • disciplinary action for a definite time period with the stipulation that future violations could result in disciplinary suspension
  • ineligibility for election to student office for a specified time
  • removal from a student or organizational office for a specified period of time
  • prohibition from representing the college in any special honorary role
  • withholding of an official transcript, degree or certificate of completion
  • bar re-admission for a specific period of time
  • restitution or reimbursement, whether monetary or by specific duties for damage to or misappropriation of College, student or employee property
  • denial or non-recognition of a degree
  • suspension of rights and privileges including participation in athletic, extra-curricular or other student activities for a specified period of time
  • withdrawal from a course
  • failing or reduction of a grade on a test, in a course, or in other academic work and/or performing additional academic work not required of other students in a course
  • suspension from the college for a specified period of time. During such suspension a student shall not attend classes or participate in any college activities.
  • loss of or ineligibility for a student grant or loan
  • expulsion from TSTC
  • blocking a student from enrolling until the student performs a specified act

C.  After imposition of the penalty, the Vice President for Student Development or designee shall advise the student of his/her right to appeal the decision and/or disciplinary action before an Appeal Hearing Committee. Notice of appellate right shall include information on how to initiate the appeal, procedures used to form the committee, and procedures governing the Appeal Hearing Committee. The student shall be advised in writing that the appeal must be filed no later than three (3) working days following written notice of the administrative decision by the Vice President for Student Development or designee and imposition of the disciplinary action.

D.  Failure of the student, without justifiable cause following proper notification, to attend the hearing before the Vice President for Student Development or designee will be noted in the student’s disciplinary file and disciplinary action imposed. Failure to appear at the hearing before the Vice President for Student Development or designee or to respond to the certified USPS letter of notification shall not alter the student’s right to appeal within three working days.

Interim Disciplinary Action

The Vice President for Student Development may take immediate interim disciplinary action, including suspension, pending a hearing for student violation of the Code of Student Conduct. Such interim disciplinary action, including suspension, occurs in drug-related cases and when the continuing presence of the accused student poses a danger to person or property or is an ongoing threat of disruption to the scholastic process. When such interim disciplinary action occurs, the official who issues the suspension shall, if possible, meet with the student to discuss reasons for the interim suspension and to allow the student a rebuttal pending a full hearing.

Immediate interim disciplinary action, including blocking a student from enrollment and/or withholding official transcripts, may be taken against a student who has outstanding financial obligations to TSTC. The student has the right to immediately discuss the penalty with the Registrar, who would immediately refer the student to the appropriate department for discussion of the block. The student could then request that the case be reviewed pursuant to the normal disciplinary procedures.

Immediate interim disciplinary action, including suspension, may be taken against any student who issues a check or similar sight order that is returned to the college unpaid. Upon receipt of the unpaid draft, the student will be notified by certified mail and given 10 days to make full restitution, plus any service charge that might be imposed. Failure to make payment in full as stipulated will result in the student being immediately withdrawn from TSTC.

Due Process for Non-Academic Code Violations

If a decision is rendered against the student and disciplinary action imposed, whether at the hearing with the Vice President for Student Development or designee or communicated through certified USPS mail, the student may exercise his or her right to due process defined as the right to appeal the decision and/or disciplinary action to an Appeal Hearing Committee. Due process procedures are as follows.

A. The request for an appeal hearing must be received in writing at the Office of the Vice President for Student Development within three (3) working days of the initial hearing before the Vice President for Student Development or designee or receipt of the certified USPS letter and must explain the premise of the appeal, that is, (1) what is being appealed (the administrative decision and/or the disciplinary action imposed) and (2) the basis of the appeal. The “Request for a Disciplinary Appeal Hearing Form” available at the Office of the Vice President for Student Development may be used to request an appeal hearing. 

B.  Upon receipt of the student’s request for an appeal, the Vice President for Student Development shall form the appeal hearing committee using the following procedures:

1. Two full-time students will be selected by the Vice President for Student Development to serve on the committee. Students who are selected and agree to serve on the committee shall not be on scholastic or disciplinary probation, nor shall they be subject to any pending disciplinary action.  The students must not be in the same academic program nor personally acquainted with the appealing student.

2.  Three faculty/staff members from the standing College Discipline Committee will be selected by the Vice President for Student Development to serve on the committee. In no event shall a faculty member from the appealing student's academic program be selected to serve on the committee.

3. The Chair of the Committee shall be appointed by the Vice President for Student Development and must be a non-student member.

4. At least three committee members must be present at the appointed time of the appeal hearing. Of those present, at least one member must be a selected student and at least one member a selected employee.

C.  Pre-Hearing Procedures

1. The Vice President for Student Development or designee will notify the appealing student of the date, time and place of the review by the Appeal Hearing Committee. The hearing will be scheduled no more than ten (10) working days after the initial hearing, unless otherwise requested by the student.

2. Prior to the hearing, the appealing student may have copies of any documents or evidence to be used in the appeal hearing except for those that were collected as part of a criminal investigation, upon request by the student. To protect the privacy of other students named in the documentation, identifying information will be removed.

3. The appealing student shall have the right to present witnesses and documentary evidence as may be pertinent to the case and to question witnesses offered by other parties.  The student may be accompanied by an advisor, but the advisor is not allowed to make statements or question witnesses.  The college reserves the right to counsel in the event it is deemed necessary. The time frame for scheduling a hearing may be extended if the college has to retain counsel.

4.  The appealing student and the Vice President for Student Development or designee shall provide a list of all witnesses who are expected to attend the hearing according to a mutually agreed upon timetable.

5.  The appeal hearing will be closed to the public and will be digitally recorded.  Hearing proceedings and documentation are confidential and maintained in the student’s disciplinary record on file in the Office of the Vice President for Student Development.

6.  Failure of the student to appear at the appeal hearing without justifiable cause following proper notification will result in the dismissal of the hearing committee and the appeal. The student’s right of appeal will be forfeited.

D.  Appeal Hearing Committee Procedures

1. Prior to the formal opening of the committee hearing, the committee will be provided with a thorough orientation of the appeal process by the Vice President for Student Development or designee and will review the findings of fact and sanctions originally imposed by the Vice President for Student Development or designee. 

2.  The Chairman of the Appeal Hearing Committee will convene the hearing at the appointed date, time and location provided to the appealing student with roll call of all individuals at the hearing. The Vice President for Student Development or designee will be present during the hearing as a non-voting resource person.

3. The appealing student may challenge the impartiality of a committee member at any time prior to the introduction of any evidence. The Chair of the Appeal Hearing Committee shall determine the validity of any challenge.  If upheld, the Chair shall declare the member disqualified.  Any member of the hearing committee must withdraw from the hearing if the member has personal knowledge or evidence relevant to the appeal. In the event any committee member is disqualified and if at least three committee members remain after the disqualification, with at least one member being a selected employee and at least one member being a selected student, the hearing shall continue as outlined. If the required student/employee ratio is not within the allowable guidelines after disqualification(s), the Vice President for Student Development or designee will immediately provide for the required balance by selecting the necessary member as previously specified. Upon achieving a required committee membership balance, the hearing will continue as outlined.

4.  The Chairman of the Appeal Hearing Committee will read the administrative decision regarding the violation(s) against the Code of Student Conduct and the disciplinary action imposed, as well as the premise and basis of the appeal as stated in the student’s request for an appeal hearing.

5.  The Committee will hear the presentation of the case and evidence by the Vice President for Student Development or designee followed by the appealing student. Each party will have the opportunity to present testimony, evidence and witnesses in support of his or her position.  The Committee will be allowed to question the parties and witnesses, as well as to request additional information.  Both parties will be invited to make summary remarks by the Chairman.

6.  Legal rules of evidence do not apply to these procedures; the Committee may admit and give effect to evidence of a probative value that commonly is accepted by reasonable people in the conduct of serious affairs.  The Chair may exclude irrelevant, immaterial, and unduly repetitious evidence.  The Chair may set reasonable time limitations on the presentation of any statement or evidence. All evidence offered during the appeal hearing is made a part of the hearing record.

7. Following the presentation of the case by both the student and the Vice President for Student Development or designee and cross examination by the Appeal Hearing Committee, the Committee will deliberate in closed session. The Committee will determine by secret ballot and majority vote its decision regarding the basis of the student’s appeal.  Depending on the premise of the student’s appeal, the Appeal Hearing Committee may:

a. Affirm the decision regarding the violation(s) and/or the disciplinary action imposed;
b. Reduce or modify the disciplinary action;
c. Dismiss the charge(s) if determination is made that action was taken on grounds not supported by a preponderance of evidence and/or the student was not afforded proper  due process;
d. Remand the case to the Vice President for Student Development or designee for further consideration.

Each committee member will sign a statement of the committee’s decision and action and prepare a copy for the appealing student.

8. Decision of the Appeal Hearing Committee

a. The accused student will receive the decision of the Appeal Hearing Committee in writing at the close of deliberations.  In the event that a decision cannot be rendered at the appeal hearing due to the fact that additional time is needed by the Committee for further investigation, the student will be notified by the Vice President for Student Development or designee of the Appeal Hearing Committee’s decision by personal contact or in writing by certified USPS mail.

b. If the decision of the Appeal Hearing Committee is to uphold the original administrative decision and/or disciplinary action taken by the Vice President for Student Development or designee, the appealing student will be immediately advised in writing of his/her right to appeal to the College President within five (5) working days of notification of the Appeal Hearing Committee’s decision.

c. If the decision of the Appeal Hearing Committee is to uphold the disciplinary action taken by the Vice President for Student Development or designee, failure of the student to abide by the terms and conditions which have been upheld subjects the student to further disciplinary action up to and including suspension or expulsion from the College.

E.  Appeal to the College President

1. Within five class days after receiving written notice of the decision of the Appeal Hearing Committee, the accused student may appeal the decision to the College President. The student must submit a written request for a Presidential appeal at the Office of the Vice President for Student Development and must explain in detail the premise and basis of the appeal, that is, what is being appealed in the Appeal Hearing Committee’s decision and why. The “Request for an Appeal to the College President Form” available at the Office of the Vice President for Student Development may be used.

2. The parties involved may submit additional written arguments to further support their positions.  For consideration of the appeal, all documentation, including written arguments, must be filed at the Office of the Vice President for Student Development within five (5) working days after the request for an appeal is filed. 

3. The Vice President for Student Development will present to the President a digital recording of the Appeal Hearing Committee proceedings and all written case documentation five days    after receiving the request for an appeal.

4. The President will review the case by listening to the digital recording of the Appeal Hearing Committee proceedings and reviewing all documentation.

5. Following review, the College President may approve, reject or modify the decision in question or may require that the original hearing be reopened for presentation of additional evidence and/or reconsideration of the decision. 

6. The student will receive written notification from the College President of his decision.  A copy of the President’s letter will be placed in the student’s disciplinary record filed in the Office of the Vice President for Student Development. 

7. The decision of the President is final and not appealable.

8. If the decision of the College President is to uphold the disciplinary action taken by the Vice President for Student Development or designee, failure of the student to abide by the terms and conditions which have been upheld subjects the student to further disciplinary action up to and including suspension or expulsion from the College.











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