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CVCC Policies

PART 1| PART 2| PART 3 

3. Student Services Part - 2

Policy 3.18: Student Code of Conduct

Policy 3.18: Student Code of Conduct applies to all student behavior issues other than issues covered by Policy 3.18.2: Title IX Violations: Sexual Violence, Sexual or Gender-based Harassment, and Other Sexual Misconduct.

Catawba Valley Community College (CVCC) students are expected to conduct themselves in accordance with the values of the Valley Way:

  • Student Success
  • Accountability
  • Inclusivity
  • Lifelong Learning
  • Respect
  • Integrity
  • Teamwork

At CVCC, these values inform accepted standards of scholarship and conduct. All CVCC students and staff, regardless of the location or delivery method of their services and classes, have the right to a safe, peaceful, and honest educational environment. Therefore, when in the judgment of CVCC college personnel, a student’s conduct disrupts or threatens to disrupt the College community, appropriate disciplinary action will be taken to restore and protect the safety, peace, and integrity of the community.

The purpose of the Student Code of Conduct is not to restrict student freedom, but to protect the rights of all students in their academic pursuits. All College employees have the authority to take immediate actions and begin disciplinary proceedings for violations of the Student Code of Conduct.

As stated in Policy 1.1: Compliance with CVCC Policies, CVCC students are expected to comply with all CVCC policies. Failure to comply may result in disciplinary action. Students are prohibited from engaging in any conduct which materially and adversely affects the educational process, including, but not limited to, the following:

 

  1. Interruption or in any manner interfering with normal CVCC operations. Examples of violations to normal CVCC operations include, but are not limited to, the following:
    1. Disruption or obstruction of teaching, research, administration, disciplinary proceedings, or other on- or off-campus college-authorized activities;
    2. Mental or physical abuse of any person on College premises or at College-sponsored or College-supervised functions, including verbal or physical actions which threaten or endanger the health or safety of any such persons or which promote hatred or racial prejudice;
    3. Participating in conduct that disturbs peace and order of the College. This includes, but is not limited to, yelling, screaming, or talking in an unnecessary or unreasonably loud voice, or using any device which produces loud and/or disruptive noises.
    4. The use of defamatory speech or like expressive behavior; or the use of any speech or behavior implying a physical threat or likely to provoke violence or retaliation in person or via electronic means;
    5. Violation of state or College regulations regarding the operation and parking of motor vehicles. See Policy 4.9: Parking Policy;
    6. Fiscal irresponsibility, such as failure to pay College charges, fees, defaulted payments, levied fines, failure to repay college-funded loans, or fraudulent financial transactions with the College;
    7. Forgery, altering, or misusing College documents, records, or instruments of identification with intent to deceive;
    8. Tampering with a fire alarm or other safety equipment belonging to the College, except with reasonable belief in the need for such alarm or equipment;
    9. Gambling on the College campus or at College-sponsored functions off-campus;
    10. Participation in gatherings or demonstrations that interfere with another’s ability to freely access College facilities or property. Students shall not disrupt or interfere with the College’s educational processes or College functions. Students shall comply with any instruction of a College employee to leave the scene of a disruptive gathering or demonstration;
    11. Violating the terms of any disciplinary sanction or any College regulation during the period of disciplinary sanction;
    12. Trespassing, including unauthorized entry or presence on the property of the College or in a College facility or any portion thereof to which entry or presence has been restricted; unauthorized presence in a College facility during closed hours;
    13. Violation of any College policy, prohibited behavior, local, state, or federal criminal law on College premises adversely affecting the College community’s pursuit of its proper educational purposes.
    14. Failure to comply with instructions of College officials acting in performance of their duties.
  2. Destruction, damage, or misuse of CVCC equipment, facilities, or property. This includes, but is not limited to, the acceptable use of technology. See Policy 4.18: Technology Resources (Acceptable Use).
  3. Physical abuse of another person in the CVCC community;
  4. Attempted or actual theft of, misuse of, or intentional damage to College property; or theft of or damage to property of a member of the College community or a campus visitor on college premises or at college functions;
  5. Participation in hazing-defined as an act which endangers the mental or physical health or safety of a student, or which destroys or removes public or private property, for the purpose of initiation, admission into, affiliation with or as a condition for continued membership in a group or organization. The express implied consent of the victim in not a defense. Apathy or acquiescence in the presence of hazing are not neutral acts; they are a violation of this rule.
  6. Plagiarism and other forms of academic cheating. See Policy 2.16: Academic Honesty.
  7. Discriminatory harassment in the educational context refers to verbal or physical conduct of a similar nature directed at a student, which has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with one’s freedom by creating an intimidating, hostile, humiliating, or sexually (see Policy 3.18.2) offensive academic environment.

    The following is a partial list of unwelcome, unwanted behavior, which when based upon one’s race, color, religion, national origin or ethnicity, sex/gender identity (see Policy 3.18.2), religion, creed, age, disability (see Policy 3.7), veteran or active military status, genetic characteristics, or any other category protected by law under Title VII and/or Title IX may be considered discriminatory harassment:
    • Verbal or physical conduct that denigrates or shows hostility or aversion toward an individual or group;
    • Epithets, slurs, negative stereotyping, or threatening, intimidating, or hostile acts;
    • Written or graphic material that denigrates or shows hostility or aversion toward an individual or group, including the display of objects, pictures, posters, cartoons, websites, and any form of electronic communication.
  8. Violation of CVCC policies including those regarding the use and/or possession of
    1. firearms or other weapons as described in Policy 4.10: Firearms/Weapons Possession;
    2. alcoholic beverages as described in Policy 4.11: Alcoholic Beverages;
    3. illegal drugs or controlled substances as described in Policy 4.12: Illegal Drugs/Controlled Substances;
    4. and/or tobacco products as described in Policy 4.13: Tobacco Products;
  9. Making a threat to the safety of the CVCC community; or
  10. Commission of any other action which, in the opinion of the administration or faculty, may be contrary to the best interest of the CVCC community.
  11.  

    Policy 3.18.1: Student Behavior Sanctions Policy outlines the sanctions that may be imposed on a student who violates Policy 3.18: Student Code of Conduct.


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Policy 3.18.1: Student Behavior Sanctions

Policy 3.18.1 applies to student behavior sanctions that may be imposed for violations of Policy 3.18: Student Code of Conduct. Violations of Policy 3.18.2: Title IX Violations: Sexual Violence, Sexual Harassment, and Other Sexual Misconduct are governed by that policy and handled under Procedure 3.18.2: Reporting and Response to Title IX Violations: Sexual Violence, Sexual or Gender-based Harassment, and Other Sexual Misconduct.

Student behavior sanctions are designed to educate students, guide future decision-making and deter further inappropriate behavior. Students found in violation of the Student Code of Conduct will be challenged to evaluate their behavior and reflect on their actions and the effects on the campus community. The following behavior sanctions are examples of those that may be imposed for violation of the Student Code of Conduct.

Any faculty or staff may use his/her discretion to give a sanction of Warning, General Probation, or Interim (Emergency) Suspension to any student in violation of the Student Code of Conduct and who is disrupting the educational process.

  1. Warning: A written communication which gives official notice to the student that a violation of the Student Code of Conduct has occurred and that any subsequent violation of the Student Code of Conduct will carry heavier penalties because of this prior infraction.
  2. General Probation: An individual may be placed on General Probation when involved in a minor disciplinary offense. General Probation has two (2) important implications: the individual is given a chance to show capability and willingness to observe the Student Code of Conduct without further penalty, and if the student errs again, further action will be taken.
  3. Interim (Emergency) Suspension: Exclusion from class and/or other privileges or activities for conduct that poses a threat to the health or well-being of any member of the academic community or activities of the College as set forth in the notice, until a final decision has been made concerning the alleged violation.


    Faculty will submit the “Warning, General Probation, Interim (Emergency) Suspension Form” to their immediate supervisor to document this behavior sanction. This Form is found online or in the Office of the Dean of Access, Development, and Success.

    Faculty have the authority to impose the Loss of Academic Credit or Grade Sanction in accordance with Policy 2.16: Academic Honesty Policy.

  4. Loss of Academic Credit or Grade: Imposed as a result of violating Policy 2.16: Academic Honesty. Sanctions may include the requirement to redo the assignment, loss of credit for the assignment, or loss of credit for the class.
     

    The President, Vice Presidents, and the Dean of the School of Access, Development, and Success (ADS) have the authority to impose the following sanctions.

  5. Restrictive Probation: Restrictive Probation results in loss of good standing and becomes a matter of record. Restrictive conditions may limit activity in the College community. Generally the student will not be eligible for initiation into any local or national organization, and may not receive any College award or other honorary recognition. The student may not occupy a position of leadership or responsibility with any College or student organization, publications, or activity.
  6. Suspension: Exclusion from class(es), and/or all privileges or activities of the College for a specific period of time. This sanction is reserved for those offenses warranting discipline more severe than probation, or for repeated misconduct. Students who receive this sanction must get specific written permission from the Dean of ADS before returning to campus. This sanction shall be recorded on the student transcript in accordance with the State Board of Community Colleges Code 1D SBCCC 400.2 (d).
  7. Restitution: Paying for damaging, misusing, destroying, or losing property belonging to the College, College personnel, or students.
  8. Withholding transcript, diploma, or right to register or participate in commencement ceremonies: Imposed when financial obligations are not met. (Student will not be allowed to register until all financial obligations are met.)
  9. Campus Service: Assigning a specific campus service project and number of contact work hours to be completed for a designated department on the College campus.
  10. Group Probation: This is given to a College club or other organized group for a specific period of time. If group violations are repeated during the term of the sanction, the charter may be revoked or activities restricted.
  11. Group Restriction: Removing College recognition during the semester in which the violation occurred or for a longer period (usually not more than one additional semester). While under restriction, the group may not seek or add members, hold or sponsor events in the College community, or engage in other activities as specified.
  12. Group Charter Revocation: Removal of College recognition for a group, club, society, or other organizations for a minimum of two years. Re-charter after that time must be approved by the College President. Permanent expulsion of a student from CVCC must be authorized by the President.
  13. Expulsion: Permanently dismissing a student from campus. Expulsion is the most severe disciplinary sanction and must be authorized by the College President. The student loses his/her student status and may not return to campus unless authorized by the College President. Expelled students are liable for all tuition and fees. This sanction shall be recorded on the student transcript in accordance with the State Board of Community Colleges Code 1D SBCCC 400.2 (d).

    Suspensions and expulsions for disciplinary reasons shall be recorded in the student ’s permanent record and on the transcript in accordance with the State Board of Community Colleges Code 1D SBCCC 400.2 (d).

    Students are entitled to appeal any disciplinary action in accordance with CVCC’s Policy 3.19: Student Due Process.

    »  3.18.1 Student Behavior Sanctions Procedure

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Policy 3.18.2: Title IX Violations: Sexual Violence, Sexual or Gender-based Harassment, and Other Sexual Misconduct

“Title IX Violations” is the term that will be used to include “sexual violence, sexual or gender-based harassment, and other sexual misconduct” throughout Policy 3.18.2.

Policy 3.18.2 applies exclusively to Title IX Violations allegations. All other forms of harassment and/or discrimination are handled under Policy 3.18: Student Code of Conduct.

Catawba Valley Community College (CVCC) is committed to the maintenance of an environment that is supportive of its primary educational mission and free from Title IX Violations. CVCC intends to comply with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, 20 U.S.C. § 1681 et seq., and its implementing regulations, 34 C.F.R. Part 106. CVCC will not tolerate acts of Title IX Harassment in any of its forms, including, but not limited to, sexual or gender-based harassment, rape, sexual assault, other forcible and non-forcible sex offenses, domestic or dating violence, or stalking, and supports this policy for students, faculty, and staff. All actions taken to investigate and resolve complaints through this process will be conducted in a matter that preserves confidentiality to the greatest extent possible under the circumstances, without compromising the thoroughness of the investigation. Further, CVCC sponsors prevention, intervention and education programs specifically addressing Title IX Violations offenses in compliance with Title IX legislation. CVCC does not intend for this policy to infringe upon any First Amendment or academic freedom protections available to members of the CVCC community.

Information and awareness programs are offered at various times through a variety of events throughout the year. CVCC recognizes the importance of assisting individuals who are victims of Title IX Violations and helping them to regain a sense of personal control over their lives and decisions.

Procedure 3.18.2 Reporting and Response to Title IX Violations: Sexual Violence, Sexual or Gender-based Harassment, and Other Sexual Misconduct is the procedure to be used for reporting of and responding to Title IX Violations and is available on the CVCC website, in Student Services, and in the Human Resources Office.

Inquiries concerning Title IX compliance should be referred to the Title IX Coordinator, who is charged with the oversight of all Title IX claims. The CVCC President has the authority to designate the Title IX Coordinator and Deputy Title IX Coordinators, and to change them as needed. Their specific identities and contact information are posted prominently on the CVCC website.

Definition of Sexual or Gender-based Harassment

Sexual harassment is a form of sex discrimination and refers to direct or implied requests for sexual favors by one who has the power or authority to influence a student’s academic record or to compromise one’s full and unfettered participation in the CVCC community, academically, and otherwise. Gender-based harassment may involve acts of verbal, nonverbal, or physical aggression, intimidation, or hostility based on sex or sex-stereotyping, even if those acts do not involve conduct of a sexual nature and includes any other conduct that has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with one’s freedom by creating an intimidating, hostile, humiliating, or sexually offensive academic environment.

While in some cases individuals may make sexual comments or jokes or personal advances without intending harm, such actions can be unwanted, threatening, and perceived as harassment. Stopping sexual or gender-based harassment in its many forms requires an increased awareness by everyone at the College of the impact that such actions may have on others. The following is a partial list of unwelcome, unwanted behavior, which may be considered sexual or gender-based harassment:

  • Unwelcome sexual advances or propositions – whether they involve physical touching or not;
  • Written or verbal sexual epithets, jokes, or references to sexual conduct, gossip regarding one’s sex life;
  • Written or verbal abuse of a sexual nature, use of sexually degrading, or vulgar words to describe an individual;
  • Leering, whistling, brushing against another’s body, sexual gestures;
  • The display of sexually suggestive objects, pictures, posters, cartoons, websites, and any form of electronic communication;
  • Comments about an individual's body or appearance, or regarding one's sex life, experience, sexual prowess, or sexual deficiencies;
  • Asking questions about sexual conduct or probing into one’s sex life or relationships; and
  • Harassment consistently targeted at only one sex, even if the content of the verbal abuse is not of a sexual nature.

 

Definitions of Sexual Violence and Other Sexual Misconduct

  • Intimate Partner Violence (IPV): the overarching term used to address any form of domestic or dating violence.
  • Stalking: engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to: (a) fear for his or her safety or the safety of others; or (b) suffer substantial emotional distress.
  • Sexual Violence: any non-consensual sexual contact including penetration.
  • Victim/Survivor: the person who has experienced IPV, stalking, and/or sexual violence
  • Alleged Perpetrator: an individual who the victim/survivor identifies as having perpetrated IPV, stalking, or sexual violence.
  • Reporting Party: a victim/survivor who has notified CVCC that sexual misconduct/violence has occurred.
  • Responding Party: the individual who the reporting party identifies as having perpetrated sexual misconduct/violence
  • Consent: explicit approval to engage in sexual activity demonstrated by clear actions or words. This decision must be made freely and actively by all participants. Non-verbal communication, silence, passivity, or lack of active resistance does not imply consent. In addition, previous participation in sexual activity does not indicate current consent to participate and consent to one form of sexual activity does not imply consent to other forms of sexual activity.
  • Dating Violence: violence committed by a person (a) who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with the victim; and (b) where the existence of such a relationship shall be determined based on: (i) the length of the relationship; (ii) the type of relationship; and (iii) the frequency of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship.
  • Domestic Violence: felony or misdemeanor crimes of violence committed by a current or former spouse of the victim, by a person with whom the victim shares a child in common, by a person who is cohabitating with or has cohabitated with the victim as a spouse, by a person similarly situated to a spouse of the victim under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction or by any other person against an adult or youth who is protected from the person’s acts under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction.
  • Forcible Sex Offenses: any sexual act directed against another person, forcibly and/or against that person’s will; or not forcibly or against the person’s will where the victim is incapable of giving consent.
    • Forcible Rape: the carnal knowledge of a person, forcibly and/or against that person’s will; or not forcibly or against the person’s will where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of temporary or permanent mental or physical incapacity (or because of youth).
    • Forcible Sodomy: oral or anal sexual intercourse with another person, forcibly and/or against that person’s will; or not forcibly against the person’s will where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of youth or because of temporary or permanent mental or physical incapacity.
    • Sexual Assault With An Object: the use of an object or instrument to unlawfully penetrate, however slightly, the genital or anal opening of the body of another person, forcibly and/or against that person’s will; or not forcibly or against the person’s will where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of youth or because of temporary or permanent mental or physical incapacity.
    • Forcible Fondling: the touching of the private body parts of another person for the purpose of sexual gratification, forcibly and/or against that person’s will; or not forcibly or against the person’s will where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of youth or because of temporary or permanent mental incapacity.
  • Non-Forcible Sex Offenses: unlawful, non-forcible sexual intercourse.
    • Incest: non-forcible sexual intercourse between persons who are related to each other within the degrees wherein marriage is prohibited by law.
    • Statutory Rape: non-forcible sexual intercourse with a person who is under the statutory age of consent.

 

Unprofessional Relationships; Consensual Relationships

It is a serious breach of professional ethics for faculty or other employees to initiate or acquiesce in a sexual relationship with a student who is under the personal supervision of the faculty or other employee. Therefore, CVCC prohibits consensual sexual relationships between faculty or other employees and a student enrolled in a course taught by the faculty or whose work, academic or otherwise, is supervised by the faculty or employee. This applies even when both parties appear to have consented to the relationship.

A faculty member or employee who currently has, or has previously had, a consensual sexual relationship with a student should not enter into, or should immediately disengage from, a supervisory relationship with that person. The burden to disengage from the supervisory relationship falls equally on both parties; however CVCC will take all reasonable available measures, based on the circumstances, to arrange for alternate methods of instruction or supervision for the student. In most cases, this will be accomplished by having the faculty or employee disclose to the immediate supervisor the nature of the relationship.

In accordance with NC General Statues § 14-27.7(b), criminal charges can result when faculty or other employees engage in sexual relationships with minors.

Victim/Survivor/Reporting Party Rights

  • To have all incidents and medical records kept confidential;
  • To be treated without prejudice based upon race, color, religion, national origin or ethnicity, sex/gender identity, religion, creed, age, disability, veteran or active military status, genetic characteristics, or any other category protected by law under Title VII and/or Title IX;
  • To receive private and confidential examination/treatment for personal injuries, sexually transmittable disease, and pregnancy;
  • To be considered as credible as a person reporting any other crime;
  • To be made aware of the options available through the College and the judicial system;
  • To receive emotional and psychological support and advocacy;
  • To, or not to, notify and seek assistance from law enforcement and campus authorities;
  • To prosecute or not to prosecute;
  • To receive current information on community and campus resources;
  • To answer only those questions relevant to the crime;
  • To freedom from harassment;
  • To have judicial no-contact, restraining, and protective orders complied with in accordance with court directives.

Accommodations may include but are not limited to the following: 

  1. Feasible class schedule adjustment (without academic or financial penalty) as necessary to minimize the potential for contact with the alleged perpetrator or those associated with the alleged perpetrator;
  2. Arranging for the Reporting Party to have extra time to complete or re-take a class or withdraw from a class without an academic or financial penalty;
  3. Academic Support Services.
Standards for Investigation

In addition to the due process procedures outlined in Procedure 3.18.2: Reporting and Response to Title IX Violations: Sexual Violence, Sexual or Gender-based Harassment, and Other Sexual Misconduct, the following “Standards for Investigation” shall be followed in regards to Title IX Violations.

  1. The complaint will be decided using a preponderance of evidence standard, i.e., it’s more likely than not that Title IX Violations occurred.
  2. The reporting party and responding party will be entitled to the same opportunities to have others present during an institutional disciplinary proceeding, including the opportunity to be accompanied to any related meeting or proceeding by an advisor of their choice.
  3. The reporting party and responding party will be notified in writing of the outcome of the complaint simultaneously.
Confidentiality

Adhering to confidentiality is extremely important at CVCC. CVCC will take all necessary steps to protect the identity of the reporting party.  There may be some incidents or information that cannot be kept confidential. The staff of CVCC will notify the reporting party when information cannot be kept confidential.

If the reporting party requests confidentiality and decides not to file charges in a Title IX Violations case, an anonymous report of the incident must be made in order to comply with the Clery Act (campus crime reporting).

Counselors are available via third party community agencies to talk to the Reporting Party in confidence.


Protection against Retaliation

Retaliation is a very serious violation of Policy 3.18.2: Title IX Violations: Sexual Violence, Sexual or Gender-based Harassment, and Other Sexual Misconduct and should be reported immediately to the Title IX Coordinator. Retaliation, whether by the alleged wrongdoer or other individuals, can take any of many forms. Retaliation is defined as any materially adverse action that might well have dissuaded a reasonable person from making or supporting a complaint of Title IX Violations. A complaint’s actual or perceived lack of merit does not excuse retaliatory conduct.
 
Retaliation against any individual for reporting Title IX Violations or against one who participates in an investigation will not be tolerated. In responding to reports of retaliation, the College will conduct a prompt, thorough and impartial investigation and will take appropriate remedial measures.

False Accusation

CVCC recognizes that the question of whether a particular course of conduct constitutes Title IX Violations requires a factual determination. The College also recognizes that false accusations can have serious effects on innocent persons. If, after investigation, it is clear that a person who has accused another of Title IX Violations maliciously or recklessly made a false accusation, the accuser will be subject to appropriate disciplinary action, up to and including expulsion. In such an event, the College will also take appropriate action to restore the reputation of the accused.

» See Procedure 3.18.2: Reporting and Response to Title IX Violations: Sexual Violence, Sexual or Gender-based Harassment, and Other Sexual Misconduct to report an act of Title IX Violations.

 

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