What happens at the pre-hearing meeting or judicial hearing?
Students have the right to a pre-hearing conference with the Judicial Affairs professional staff member and/or the SGA Judicial Representative for the purpose of reviewing hearing procedures and related aspects of the judicial system. In addition, students may use this opportunity to waive their right to a hearing and accept disciplinary action from the professional staff member.
Failure to contact the appropriate student life staff member to schedule a pre-hearing conference will automatically result in a finding of "responsible" of all alleged violations. A student retains the right to appeal such a decision by following the established appeal procedures.
Can a student bring an advisor/ someone to support him or her?
Students have the right to an advisor of their choice, who may be present at any hearing to counsel the student charged. The advisor may not address the board on behalf of the student.
Who are the judicial procedural advisors?
The assistant dean of students is one of the judicial procedural advisors. He works in partnership with the Student Government Association, in particular with the student who holds the role of judicial affairs committee chair.
Who are the judicial board members?
These bodies shall be composed of a minimum of three (3) undergraduate student members who shall serve on a rotating basis. The names of those individuals selected to serve as board members shall be submitted as a point of information prior to serving by the Judicial Board Procedural Advisor to the Student Government Association. These board members shall complete a training program coordinated by the Judicial Board Procedural Advisor. A chairperson shall be selected by a majority of the Board. The chairperson's duty shall be to preside at the hearing. The chairperson shall be able to vote in the determination of the student charged. The Board shall have original jurisdiction over cases involving alleged violation of university regulations by undergraduate students. A professional staff member from the Student Life Division shall serve as the Procedural Advisor to the Judicial Board.
How should a student plead?
Students have the right to enter a plea of: not responsible, responsible, or no response at any hearing.
Are witnesses allowed?
Students will be permitted to call and cross-examine witnesses and to speak or present evidence on their own behalf.
What kind of sanctions does a student receive if he or she is found responsible?
Warning - An action taken as a result of a finding or admission of responsibility meaning that although a violation has occurred, the discussion and admonition by the hearing body are sufficient under the circumstances. The warning includes written notification from the hearing body to the student containing an official reprimand and indicating that repetition of infractions of college regulations will result in more severe disciplinary action.
Probationary Statuses - Probations and Residential Review are in effect only during the period of a student's active enrollment or resident status as applicable. If a student officially leaves the college or residence halls, the sanction is automatically continued if and when he or she is readmitted.
- General Probation - A probationary status imposed for a specific time period, not to exceed one year, during which a student is expected to show a positive change in behavior. In addition, conditions (e.g., restrictions from attending any college sponsored activities, including athletic events, Program Council activities and theater productions) and restrictions appropriate to the offense may be imposed. Any further violation of the probation will be the basis for more severe disciplinary action.
- Residential Review - An action taken against a residence hall student, placing his/her resident status in serious jeopardy. As a result of the action, the student's "Residence Hall Occupancy Agreement" will be reviewed at the end of each semester, in order to determine whether or not the individual should remain in residence. The college may decide not to offer continued housing to students on Residential Review after the expiration of their current contract. Such a decision will be made in accordance with Residence Life policies and does not require further review by the judicial process. The agreement will also be reviewed if the student is found guilty of any infraction during the time period of this sanction.
- Disciplinary Probation - A restrictive probationary status imposed for a specific time period, not to exceed three (3) semesters. During this time, a student may be prohibited from participating as a member or in a leadership capacity in extracurricular activities, including intercollegiate athletic teams. This restriction does not pertain to attendance at extracurricular events. Students found guilty of any further infraction of college regulations during the probation or who violate the conditions or restrictions of the probation will be subject to further action which may be in the form of suspension, dismissal, or expulsion from the college.
Residence Hall Relocation - An action taken against a residence hall student, by which he or she is relocated to another residence facility on campus. Additionally, the student's visitation privileges may be restricted.
- Suspension from the Residence Halls - Probation of the student from living in or visiting the residence halls for a specified period of time not to exceed one year. The student may not be readmitted, reapply, or be placed on a waiting list for a residence hall room until the suspension is concluded. This sanction may also include suspension from the residence hall for specified time periods, such as weekends.
- Expulsion from the Residence Halls - Permanent prohibition of the student from living in or visiting the residence halls.
- Suspension from the College - Exclusion from classes and from all privileges and activities of the college for a definite period of time, not to exceed one year. During a period of suspension, a student is not permitted on the college property without the express permission of the Student Life Office. If a suspended student violates any college regulations during the suspension period or the conditions of the suspension, he/she will be subject to further action in the form of dismissal or expulsion. This action may be deferred to become effective after a certain date. The student will be placed on a status equivalent to "Disciplinary Probation" in that case. A sanction of suspension must be reviewed and approved by the President before it becomes effective.
- Dismissal from the College - Termination of student status for an indefinite time. The student is excluded from classes and from all privileges and activities of the college. During a period of dismissal, a student is not permitted on college property without the express permission of the Student Life Office. If a dismissed student violates any college regulation during the dismissal period or the conditions of dismissal, he/she will be subject to further action in the form of expulsion. This action may be deferred to become effective after a certain date. The student will be placed on a status equivalent to "Disciplinary Probation" in that case. A sanction of dismissal must be reviewed and approved by the President before it becomes effective. Any recommended dates or conditions of re-admission must be similarly approved. Readmission to the college must be approved by the President.
- Expulsion from the college - Permanent termination of the student status without possibility of readmission to the college. An expelled student is not permitted on college property. A sanction of expulsion must be reviewed and approved by the President before it becomes effective.
- Restitution - Reimbursement by the student to the college or a member of the college community through payment of money or performance of an appropriate work requirement because of damage or loss to college or personal property, or misappropriation of same.
- Special Assignment - A work project or special assignment imposed by a hearing body either as an alternate to another sanction or as a condition of a particular sanction. An effort will be made to select an assignment which is appropriate to the offense and does not degrade the individual or inhibit his/her academic progress or health. Special assignments may include, but are not limited to: community service, written reports, participation in extracurricular programs or counseling groups, and work in a specific campus office, building or area. Failure to complete a special assignment by the date set by the hearing body will result in the imposition of more severe sanctions.
- Restriction or Revocation of Privileges - Temporary or permanent loss of privileges as an alternative to another sanction or as a condition of a particular sanction. Such action includes, but is not limited to: use of a specific college facility, residence hall visitation privileges, campus motor vehicle parking and operating privileges, and social privileges. The hearing body must specify the date after which the student may regain these privileges.
- Referral to Counseling Services for Evaluation and Recommendations - The Judicial Board Procedural Advisor or designee may refer a student to the Counseling Services for psychological evaluation and recommendations in lieu of another sanction, or as a condition of a particular sanction. All evaluations made by Counseling Services shall be kept confidential. However, Counseling Services shall notify the Judicial Board Procedural Advisor or designee that the student had made contact and that the professional staff is evaluating the individual. Any recommendations, including those for temporary or permanent separation of the student from the college environment shall be made by the Vice President for Student Life after consultation with Director of Counseling Services.
- Held in Abeyance - any of the above sanctions can be held in abeyance for a specific period of time. A sanction "held in abeyance" is a temporary suspension of the sanction contingent on future behavior as defined by the Judicial Board Procedural Advisor.
- The Board of Higher Education in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts has mandated a zero tolerance policy regarding alcohol violations at all public universities, colleges, and community colleges. The mandate requires colleges to suspend any student who violates the alcohol policy three times.
When and to whom can a student appeal a decision?
Any decision of a hearing body which affirms the charges against a student may be appealed to the Dean of Students or designee by the student found responsible by the board. In those cases when it has been recommended that a student be suspended, dismissed, or expelled from the college, the student shall have the right of appeal directly to the Executive Vice President or designee. In all cases, the request for appeal must be submitted in writing to the Judicial Affairs Office within three (3) calendar days of the date of receipt of the original written decision by the student. If the third day falls on a weekend or holiday, the time is extended to the next regular work day. The original decision of the hearing body shall be final and conclusive, if no appeal is made within the prescribed time period.
Are some minor violations handled differently?
No, ultimately a student has the right to appear before a student judicial board for any violation.
Who has access to student judicial records?
No one outside the institution shall have access to a student’s disciplinary record nor will the Judicial Affairs Office disclose any information in these records without the express written consent of the student involved except as provided in the "Family Rights and Privacy Act of 1974".
How long are records kept?
Disciplinary records shall be retained until two (2) years after the date of the student graduation or, in the case of withdrawals, the date the student would have normally graduated and then destroyed at the end of the next semester in which the date falls. Records of suspension, dismissal, and expulsion shall be retained indefinitely.
When will my parents be notified?
The college will notify the parents of students who are less than 21 years of age if they violate the College's drug or alcohol policy. This is mandated by a federal statute under FERPA.
What is the Code of Conduct?
College students are recognized as being both citizens in the larger community and members of an academic community. In their roles as citizens, students are free to exercise their fundamental constitutional rights.
Rights and responsibilities under local, state and national laws are neither abridged nor extended by status as a student at Salem State College. However, as members of the academic community, students are expected to fulfill those behavioral responsibilities which accompany their membership and which are necessitated by the college's pursuit of its stated goals. These behavioral responsibilities are stated in college publications such as The Student Conduct Code
What happens at a hearing?
The hearing bodies may find it necessary to remind parties and advisors that the proceedings are not criminal or civil trials, that criminal or civil standards of due process and rules of evidence are not controlling, and that the hearing bodies enjoy considerable discretion within the procedural requirements of the system to the end that a just and fair decision may be obtained. Although the specific hearing procedures may differ slightly from one hearing body to the next, the following general rules of procedures shall govern all disciplinary proceedings:
- The students charged will be called before the body, and the chairperson will state the specific charges against the student.
- Statement of Response: The student charged is asked to enter a response of "responsible", "not responsible", or "no response" to the charges as read.
- Parameters for discussion shall be established by the hearing body.
- Opening Statements: the student charged and the person(s) bringing the charges are asked to briefly outline the facts they intend to present during the hearing.
- Presentation of Witnesses and Evidence by Person(s) Bringing Charges: The persons bringing the charges present their statement of facts and call witnesses to support their charges. The student charged and the hearing body may question the person bringing charges and the witnesses as each finishes his/her testimony.
- Presentation of Witnesses and Evidence by the Student Charged: The student charged presents his/her statement of facts and call witnesses to respond to the evidence against him/her. The person bringing the charges and the hearing body may question the student charged and the witnesses as each finishes his/her testimony. Witnesses may be asked to remain or leave the hearing room as required by the hearing body.
- Recall of Witnesses - The hearing body will permit both the student charged and persons bringing charges to recall any witnesses for the purpose of clarification or corroboration of previous testimony.
- Closing Statements - Both parties may summarize their testimony and highlight any specific information they wish the hearing body to consider in its deliberation. The parties may provide justification regarding their position in respect to the charges and may recommend possible sanctions.
- Deliberation by Hearing Body - All persons other than the hearing body and its advisor and Student Government Association Judicial Committee representative will leave the hearing room, and the deliberations will begin. If the hearing body needs more information, it may reconvene the hearing and seek necessary clarification.
- The hearing body shall send its rationale for finding the student(s) responsible for a violation to the Judicial Board Procedural Advisor or designee. The Judicial Board Procedural Advisor or designee shall consider all pertinent information prior to deciding on an appropriate sanction for the offense.
- Written notification of the sanction imposed will be sent to both parties.
Can I postpone a hearing if I have to work or have a class or exam?
The Judicial Affairs Office will consider a substantiated request for postponement of a hearing if the request is presented in writing to the hearing body at least forty-eight (48) hours in advance of the hearing date. Such requests may be made by the student charged or the person bringing charges. If the request is granted, the hearing will be held at the earliest possible date and time determined by the hearing body. If the request is denied, the hearing will be held at the originally scheduled date and time.
Does my discipline record go on my transcript?
If a student is suspended, dismissed or expelled from the college this information is included on the academic transcript.
Is my involvement in a disciplinary hearing confidential?
All hearings will be closed to the public and all proceedings will be considered confidential. Attendance at hearings will consist only of the members of the hearing body, the student(s) charged and an advisor(s), the Judicial Board Procedural Advisor, person(s) bringing charges and an advisor(s), and witnesses for both sides. A Student Government Association Judicial Committee representative may also be present.