The Community College of Baltimore County (CCBC) is a multi-ethnic community comprised of students, faculty, staff and administrators. This community recognizes the need to establish a code of conduct that contains rules and regulations that promote growth and development, guide student actions, and define sanctions that will be imposed when rules and regulations are violated. For the benefit of the community at large, these regulations limit certain behaviors and activities. They also protect the academic integrity, health, welfare, safety, rights and property of the college. Any student whose conduct violates this Student Code of Conduct will be subject to disciplinary action up to and including suspension or expulsion from the college.
Students may be asked to assume positions of responsibility in the enforcement of the Student Code of Conduct so that they might contribute their skills and insights to the resolution of disciplinary cases.
The primary purpose for the imposition of discipline in the college setting is to protect the campus community. Consistent with that purpose, reasonable efforts will be made to foster the personal, educational and social development of those students who are held accountable for violations of college regulations.
PURPOSE OF THE DISCIPLINARY SYSTEM
People grow and mature in communities. Living in a community requires depending upon the knowledge, integrity and decency of others. In turn, the best communities help individuals mold habits and values that will enable them to achieve the highest personal satisfaction, including the satisfaction associated with helping to make a better world. This Code protects the multi-ethnic community at each primary and satellite campus of the Community College of Baltimore County (CCBC). It fosters the CCBC commitment to excellence and equity, and affirms the shared values that make respect for diversity possible.
STUDENT RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES
Right: No student shall be subject to unlawful discrimination on the grounds of religion, age, ethnicity, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, or disability in any activity sponsored by the College on or off the college grounds.
Responsibility: Students shall not engage in unlawful discrimination against other students or faculty members. Every student shall treat all members of the college community with respect and courtesy.
Freedom of Expression and Inquiry
Right: Students have First Amendment rights to freedom of expression and inquiry. Such freedom is protected in order to build a community dedicated to the pursuit of truth, grounded in respect for diversity and civil discourse.
Responsibility: Students must express themselves in a civil and lawful manner that does not materially or substantially disrupt the operation of the college, or interfere with the rights of others.
Right: Students have the right to expect a learning environment where academic integrity is valued and respected.
Responsibility: Students are responsible for demonstrating academic integrity and shall not engage in or condone acts of academic dishonesty.
Freedom of Association
Right: Students have the right to freedom of association.
Responsibility: Students are responsible for respecting the rights of others to freedom of association. When assembling and expressing their views, students must do so in a manner which does not materially or substantially disrupt the educational process or the operations of the college.
Freedom from Arbitrary and Capricious Grading
Right: Students have the right to be free from arbitrary or capricious grading, and to seek appropriate review of legitimate grievances, as specified in college regulations.
Responsibility: Students are responsible for achieving reasonable standards of performance and behavior established for each course.
Right to Privacy
Right: Students have rights to privacy, inspection and challenge of their educational records, as provided by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974.
Responsibility: Students have responsibility to respect the established privacy rights of others, including the privacy of educational records belonging to other students.
Freedom of the Press
Right: Students may publish news and commentary in accordance with established First Amendment standards.
Responsibility: Students may not misuse College property (including computer resources) or the college name for unauthorized purposes. Students are responsible for adhering to pertinent state and federal law, including laws regarding defamation, obscenity, copyright infringement, invasion of privacy, prohibited harassment, ethnic intimidation, and threats of violence. Students shall adhere to established standards of journalistic ethics, including a commitment to honest reporting, and a responsibility to allow diverse views to be heard.
Freedom of Speech
Right: Students have the right to express their views on matters affecting college life, in accordance with established procedures for campus governance.
Responsibility: Students have the responsibility to encourage a diversity of views, and to follow democratic procedures designed to create a climate of reasoned discourse and action.
Freedom from Harassment
Right: Students have the right to be free from unlawful intimidation or coercion, including sexual harassment.
Responsibility: Students are responsible for respecting the rights of others to be free from unlawful intimidation or coercion, including sexual harassment.
Demonstrations (Authorized) Policy
CCBC recognizes the constitutional rights of freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of expression, and the right to peaceful assembly. Accordingly, the time, place, and manner of exercising speech and advocacy on the campuses are subject to regulations that shall provide for non-interference with College operations and functions. The expressions of advocacy must be respectful, civil, inclusive, and provide reasonable protections for persons against practices that would make them involuntary audiences. Any persons engaging in expression or advocacy in accordance with this policy shall not do so in the name of the College or any of its organizations unless there has been specific authorization to do so.
The following guidelines and procedures apply to all persons on College-owned or leased property, including students, employees, student or employee groups, community groups, commercial organizations, and private individuals, unless expressly noted otherwise:
- CCBC students, employees, or groups of students or employees may exercise their right to peaceful assembly and expression at the college. Students organizing demonstrations must be currently enrolled credit or continuing education students. Demonstrations by non-college groups are not permitted.
- In the case of a planned demonstration or public speaker, two business days’ advance written notice is required. Notice shall be provided to the Campus Director of the campus or extension center where the event will occur. A representative must reserve space in advance of the event.
- In the case of an unplanned demonstration, demonstrators shall provide advance written notice of their intent to demonstrate on any of the campuses or elsewhere on College-owned or leased property. Notice shall be made to the Campus Director of the campus or extension center where the demonstration will occur.
- Unless otherwise authorized, demonstrations shall not take place inside buildings.
- Demonstrations shall not restrict free movement on any college property.
- Any posted or distributed materials must clearly identify the group, organizaiton, or person(s) responsible for the demonstration. Use of the CCBC logo or likeness is prohibited on any posted or distributed materials. Demonstrators must follow the college procedures and policies regarding posting and distribution of materials, and such materials may be posted or distributed without the CCBC logo provided they otherwise adhere to college policy.
- All students who demonstrate will remain subject to the student Code of Conduct. All employees who demonstrate will remain subject to the Employee Handbook and Board of Trustees Policy Manual.
- If a demonstration involves disruptive activities, is otherwise interfering with the rights of others, or is in violation of this policy, the Director of Public Safety or his or her designee shall speak directly to those demonstrators who are engaging in the activities and request that such activities cease.
- If a demonstration becomes violent and/or otherwise endangers people or property, local authorities will be immediately notified.
PROCEDURAL PROTECTIONS FOR STUDENTS
Students accused of disciplinary violations are entitled to the following procedural protections:
- To be informed by the Office of Student Conduct of the charges against them, and the identity of the reporting party.
- To be allowed at least three business days to prepare for a disciplinary conference and five business days to prepare for a hearing.
- To hear and respond to the evidence upon which a charge is based.
- To call and engage relevant witnesses.
- To be assured of confidentiality, in accordance with the terms of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974.
- To be allowed to request that any person conducting a disciplinary conference, or serving as a hearing board member or hearing officer, be disqualified on the ground of personal bias as determined by the Director of Student Conduct.
- To be considered not responsible for the charges until proven responsible by a preponderance of the evidence.
CODE OF CONDUCT DEFINITIONS
When used in this Code:
- The term “aggravated violation” means a violation which resulted or possibly could have resulted in significant damage to persons or property or which otherwise posed a substantial threat to the stability and continuance of normal college or college-sponsored activities.
- The term “business day” means a weekday (Monday - Friday) not including holidays or when school is closed.
- The term “cheating” means using or attempting to use unauthorized or unapproved resources or information to complete an assignment. Examples include, but are not limited to:
- Obtaining an unauthorized copy of an exam ahead of time.
- Unauthorized use of equipment, such as text messaging, instant messaging, Internet access, etc.
- Looking at another student’s exam or at unauthorized notes or “cheat sheets” during an exam.
- Altering a graded assignment and then resubmitting it for re-grading as if it were the original work.
- The terms “college” and “institution” mean the Community College of Baltimore County, including primary and satellite campuses.
- The term “college premises” means buildings or grounds owned, leased, operated, controlled or supervised by the college.
- The term “college-sponsored activity” means any activity on or off college premises that is specifically initiated or supervised by the college.
- The term “disciplinary conference” means a forum in which the Director of Student Conduct or designee meets with a student to adjudicate an alleged violation of the Student Code of Conduct.
- The term “facilitation” means the act of helping or attempting to help another student cheat, fabricate or plagiarize. Examples include, but are not limited to:
- Giving another student one’s homework or assignments so it can be copied.
- Letting another student copy answers during the exam.
- Completing an exam or placement test in the name of another student.
- Giving exam information/answers to students in other sections of the same course, or to students who have not yet taken the exam.
- Allowing another student to look at your work during an exam, or reporting on exam information to a student taking it in another section.
- The term “egregious” means an act of blatant academic dishonesty that interferes with the work, grading or performance of other students or in other ways inhibits CCBC’s educational mission.
- The term “fabrication” means the act of falsifying, inventing, or changing any information, data or citation and then recording or reporting it. Examples include, but are not limited to:
- Falsifying laboratory or other exercise results.
- Creating or fabricating a citation.
- Changing or omitting data or result.
- The term “group” means a number of persons who are associated with each other, but who have not complied with college requirements for registration as an organization.
- The term “Hearing Panel” means a forum in which a Hearing Panel meets with a student to adjudicate an alleged violation of the Student Code of Conduct that is subject to suspension or expulsion.
- The term “organization” means a number of persons who have complied with college requirements for registration.
- The term “plagiarism” means the use of words or ideas of another source without giving credit to that source. Examples include, but are not limited to:
- Using another’s opinion.
- Facts or data including graphs and tables.
- Using quotations and paraphrasing without due credit. The term source refers to all published and unpublished works. This is separate from copyright infringement, which is unauthorized use of copyrighted material in a manner that violates one of the copyright owner’s exclusive rights.
- The term “reckless” means conduct which one should reasonably be expected to know would create a substantial risk of harm to persons or property or which would otherwise be likely to result in interference with normal college or college-sponsored activities.
- The term “student” means any person for whom the college maintains educational records, as defined by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974, and related regulations.
- The term “weapon” includes, but is not limited to, firearms, explosives, metal knuckles, TASERS, knives with blades more than 3 inches long, or any other instrument or substance identified as a weapon by the Maryland Annotated Code, Criminal Law Article, Section 4-101 or any item used to cause harm or threaten to cause harm.
- The terms “will” or “shall” are used in the imperative sense.
- The term “affirmative consent” means willingly and knowingly agreeing to engage in mutually understood sexual conduct. Consent must be mutual and ongoing, offered freely and knowingly, and cannot be given by a person who is incapacitated, as described below. Relying solely on non-verbal communication often leads to misunderstandings about consent. For this reason and for the purposes of this policy, consent to sexual activity must be expressed in explicit words. For a sexual encounter to be consensual, each participant is expected to obtain or give verbal consent to each act of sexual activity. Consent to engage in one form of sexual activity does not constitute consent to engage in other forms of sexual activity, and either party may withdraw consent at any time. Consent may not be inferred from silence, passivity, lack of resistance, or lack of an active response. Non-communication or silence constitutes lack of consent. A verbal “no” constitutes lack of consent, even if it sounds insincere or indecisive. Incapacitation also constitutes lack of consent. If at any time during a sexual interaction any confusion or ambiguity should arise about consent, it is the responsibility of the person initiating the activity to stop and clarify the other’s willingness to continue. If at any time consent is withdrawn, the activity must stop immediately. Consumption of drugs or alcohol, in and of itself, does not relieve a party of responsibility to obtain ongoing consent. In order for consent to be valid, all parties must be capable of making a rational, reasonable decision about the sexual act and must have a shared understanding of the nature of the act to which they are consenting. Under this policy, a person is considered incapable of giving consent, or “incapacitated,” if her or his judgment is substantially impaired by drugs, alcohol, or some other physical or mental condition; or if incapacitated by being threatened, intimidated, or coerced into giving consent. Indications of consent are irrelevant if the person is incapacitated. Engaging in sexual activity with someone who is incapacitated constitutes sexual misconduct and violates this policy. Examples of incapacitation include, but are not limited to, being passed out, asleep, unable to communicate, subjected to violence or threat of violence, or intoxicated at a level that substantially impairs judgment.
INTERPRETATION OF REGULATIONS
The purpose of publishing disciplinary regulations is to give students general notice of prohibited behavior. This Code is not written with the specificity of a criminal statute.
The college reserves the right to take necessary and appropriate action to protect the safety and well-being of the campus community. Such action may include taking disciplinary action against those students whose behavior off college premises indicates that they pose a substantial danger to others.
VIOLATIONS OF FEDERAL, STATE OR LOCAL LAW AND COLLEGE REGULATIONS
Students may be accountable both to civil authorities and to the college for acts that constitute violations of law and of this Code. Disciplinary action at the college will normally proceed during the pendency of criminal proceedings, and will not be subject to challenge on the ground that criminal charges involving the same incident have been dismissed or reduced.
The Director of Student Conduct or designee at any CCBC campus may suspend a student from the college for an interim period pending disciplinary or criminal proceedings, or medical evaluation. The interim suspension shall become immediately effective without prior notice whenever there is evidence that the continued presence of the student at the college poses a substantial and immediate threat to him/herself or to others or to the stability and continuance of normal college functions.
A student suspended on an interim basis shall be given a prompt opportunity to speak with the Dean of College Life or designee in order to discuss the following issues only:
- the reliability of the information concerning the student’s conduct, including the matter of his or her identity;
- whether the conduct and surrounding circumstances reasonably indicate that the continued presence of the student on college premises poses a substantial and immediate threat to himself or herself or to others or the stability and continuance of normal college functions.
STANDARDS OF CLASSROOM BEHAVIOR / ACADEMIC INTEGRITY
Primary responsibility for managing the classroom environment rests with the faculty member. Students who engage in any prohibited or unlawful acts that result in disruption of a class may be directed by the faculty member to leave the class for the remainder of the class period. Longer suspensions from a class, or dismissal on disciplinary grounds, must be preceded by a hearing or disciplinary conference.
Academic integrity is a core institutional value at CCBC. Students, faculty, administrators and staff have the right to expect a learning environment where academic integrity is valued and respected. To protect that right, it is essential that faculty address academic integrity issues when an incident is first identified.
- If academic dishonesty is established, the standard penalty for a first offense is an “F” in the course. Lesser penalties may be imposed if significant mitigating factors are present. A student remains subject to suspension or expulsion, even for a first offense, if the alleged misconduct is deemed egregious or harmful to CCBC’s educational mission.
- The Student Conduct Administrator will serve as the resource to faculty and students regarding the Code of Conduct in order to ensure due process.
- A faculty member who observes an act of apparent academic dishonesty or receives an allegation of academic dishonesty, e.g., cheating, fabrication, facilitation and/or plagiarism, will investigate the incident or allegation. The faculty member will, with the department chairperson, determine what further action the evidence warrants.
- If the evidence is not sufficient to indicate that an act of academic dishonesty occurred, the faculty member will request a meeting with the student to discuss the incident within ten (10) business days. If the student does not respond, the faculty member will inform the student in writing of the allegation of academic dishonesty and that evidence does not support further action.
- If the evidence of an act of academic dishonesty is convincing, the faculty member will complete the Student Incident Report (SIR) form and request a meeting with the student to be held within ten (10) business days of the discovery of the alleged violation.
- The faculty member may assign a grade sanction and will inform the student in person or in writing via the students CCBC e-mail account. If the sanction is a reduced grade in the course, the student may not receive a “W” or “AU.”
- The faculty member will submit the SIR form electronically and attach documentation.
- During the period of investigation and/or adjudication, the student cannot drop the class in question.
- All students who have been found responsible for an academic integrity violation will be sent a letter from the Office of Student Conduct notifying them of the violation and warning them that additional violations could lead to suspension or expulsion from the college.
- The student may appeal the findings to the Director of Student Conduct in writing within three (3) business days of notification of the sanction. If the student appeals, the imposition of the sanction will be delayed until the appeal process is complete. The student will not be permitted to change the grade in the course wherein the alleged academic dishonesty occurred to a “W” or an “AU” during the appeal process. If the appeal process extends beyond the end of the semester, an “I” grade may be assigned for that course until the appeal is resolved.
- Within ten (10) business days of the appeal, the campus Student Conduct Administrator will review the documentation for compliance with the Code of Conduct, search the repository for evidence of prior violations, and make recommendations to the Director of Student Conduct. The Director of Student Conduct will inform the faculty member of the status of the appeal in writing.
- The Director of Student Conduct will review the campus Student Conduct Administrators’ recommendations and:
- If the evidence suggests that the academic dishonesty was egregious or repeated and suspension or expulsion is appropriate, the Director of Student Conduct will refer the case to a Hearing Panel. Within fifteen (15) business days of the notification of the case, a Hearing Panel will convene and make recommendations to the Director of Student Conduct, who will review the recommendations for compliance with the Code of Conduct and forward them to the Academic Dean. The Academic Dean will inform the faculty member of the status of the appeal in writing.
- If the evidence suggests that a sanction other than suspension or expulsion is appropriate, within ten (10) business days of notification of the case, the Director of Student Conduct will make a decision and inform the student, faculty member involved and appropriate Academic Dean.
- The Academic Dean may accept or modify the recommendations within ten (10) business days of receipt of the Director of Student Conducts’ decision and will inform the student, the faculty member and the Director of Student Conduct in writing of the decision. At this point the faculty member will make any necessary grade adjustment.
- The Academic Dean’s decision is final except when the sanction is suspension or expulsion. In these cases, within ten (10) business days of notification of the decision, the student will have the right to appeal to the Vice President of Enrollment and Student Services. Within ten (10) business days of the notification of the appeal, the Vice President of Enrollment and Student Services will inform the student, the faculty member, the Academic Dean and the Director of Student Conduct of the final decision.
CCBC expects that its students will adhere to high standards of good citizenship. The following misconduct is subject to disciplinary action as determined by the Director of Student Conduct or designee:
- Physical Harassment - Intentionally or recklessly causing physical harm to any person on college premises or at college-sponsored activities, or intentionally causing reasonable apprehension of such harm.
- Sexual Misconduct or Sexual Harassment. Sexual misconduct includes any sexual act or sexual contact, without consent, including intercourse, oral sex, unwanted touching of an intimate part of another person, such as sexual organs, buttocks or breasts; or an attempt of any of the above (this description is not intended to be inclusive of all conduct that could fall within this category). For purposes of this Policy, consent is defined as an affirmative indication of a voluntary agreement to engage in the particular sexual act or conduct in question. Consent cannot be obtained through the use of force, threat or intimidation. Consent cannot be given by someone who is so intoxicated and/or incapacitated by drugs or alcohol or for any other reason as not to be able effectively to communicate an unwillingness to consent or so as not to be able to understand the nature of the conduct being engaged in. Silence does not constitute consent. Each case will be judged on its particular facts. Drug or alcohol intoxication of the offender is not a defense to a charge of sexual misconduct and will not be considered a mitigating factor in assessing an appropriate sanction as defined in published college regulations. Sexual misconduct or sexual harassment is a form of sex discrimination and subject to the applicable application of Federal law. CCBC expressly prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in all of its educational programs, activities, and policies. CCBC is committed to preventing the occurrence of sexual misconduct and to the application of remedies of its discriminatory effects. This includes:
- Sexual Harassment is any unwelcome sexual advance, unwelcome request for sexual favors, or other unwelcome verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when: (a) Submission to or rejection of such conduct is made, either explicitly or implicitly, a term or condition of an individual’s employment, evaluation of academic work, or participation in any aspect of a college program or activity; (b) Submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as the basis for academic, employment, or activity or program participation related decisions affecting an individual; or (c) Such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work or academic performance, i.e., it is sufficiently severe or pervasive to create an intimidating, hostile, humiliating, demeaning or sexually offensive working, academic, residential or social environment.
- Sexual Assault is any type of sexual contact or behavior that occurs without the explicit consent of the recipient.
- Non-Consensual Sexual Contact and Non-Consensual Sexual Intercourse as defined below may be considered Sexual Assault within the meaning of this Policy.
- Non-Consensual Sexual Contact is any intentional sexual touching, however slight and with any object or body part, or exposure or disrobing of another, that is without consent (as defined below) and/or by force or coercion. This includes intentional contact with breasts, buttocks, groin, mouth, or genitals, as well as any other intentional bodily contact that occurs in a sexual manner.
- Non-Consensual Sexual Intercourse is any sexual penetration or copulation, however slight and with any object or body part that is without consent and/or by force or coercion. Intercourse includes anal or vaginal penetration by a penis, object, tongue, or finger, and oral copulation (mouth and genital/anal contact), no matter how slight the penetration or contact.
- Sexual Exploitation means taking non-consensual or abusive sexual advantage of an individual to benefit anyone other than the person being exploited. Examples include: invading privacy, video or audio recording of sexual acts without consent, knowingly transmitting a Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI), sexually-based stalking or bullying, or exposing one’s genitals.
- Sexual Intimidation means (a) threatening to sexually assault another person; (b) gender or sex-based stalking, including cyber-stalking; or (c) engaging in indecent exposure.
- Dating Violence means violence or threat of violence between individuals in a personal and private social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature. The existence of such a relationship shall be determined based on a consideration of the length of the relationship, the type of the relationship, and the frequency of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship.
- Domestic Violence means violence committed by a current or former spouse or intimate partner, by a person with whom a child is shared in common, by a person cohabitating with or has cohabitated with the individual as a spouse or intimate partner, by a person similarly situated to a spouse, or by any other person similarly situated to a spouse or any other person against an adult or youth protected from those acts by domestic or family violence laws of Maryland. Domestic violence includes threats or a pattern of abusive behavior of a physical or sexual nature by one partner intended to control, intimidate, manipulate, humiliate, frighten, coerce or injure the other.
- Stalking means the repetitive and/or menacing pursuit, following, harassment, or other interference with the peace and/or safety of another person or that of his or her immediate family members; including cyber-stalking.
- Unauthorized use, possession or storage of any weapon on college premises or at college-sponsored activities.
- Intentionally initiating or causing to be initiated any false report, warning or threat of fire, explosion or other emergency on college premises or at college-sponsored activities.
- Any act or omission committed on or off campus that constitutes a serious criminal offense. A serious criminal offense is defined as an action that Maryland state law identifies as a felony and which indicates that the student constitutes a substantial and continuing danger to the safety or property of the college or members of the campus community. Any student who is arrested on or off campus must inform the Dean of College Life within 48 hours of the arrest. A student may be placed on “Interim Suspension” pending the resolution of an arrest (see section INTERIM SUSPENSION).
- Illegal drug possession or use (including drug paraphernalia possession). Unauthorized distribution or possession for purposes of distribution of any controlled substance or illegal drug on college premises or at college-sponsored activities.
- Unauthorized use, possession, or distribution of alcoholic beverages (regardless of age).
- Intentionally furnishing false information to the college including soliciting, making, possessing, or using any forged, altered, or falsified identification on college premises, or at college-sponsored activities; soliciting, making, possessing, or using any forged, altered, or falsified college document, on or off-campus. This includes lying to any college official during an investigation or inquiry.
- Abuse of or interference with the student conduct system: applies to any college hearing or other proceeding under this or any other policy related to student conduct. Includes, but is not limited to, failure to obey a notice or official request to appear for a meeting or hearing; failure to provide information at a hearing or to provide truthful information; falsification, distortion, or misrepresentation of information; disruption or interference with the orderly conduct of a proceeding; institution of a proceeding in bad faith; attempting to discourage or retaliate for an individual’s proper use of a policy or participation in a proceeding; harassment (verbal or physical) and/or intimidation or attempted intimidation of a participant, administrator, or decision-maker prior to, during, and/or after a proceeding; failure to comply with the sanction(s) imposed under a policy; influencing or attempting to influence another person to commit conduct described in this provision.
- Intentionally interfering with the freedom of expression of others on college premises or at college-sponsored activities.
- Academic dishonesty, including but not limited to cheating, plagiarism, facilitation, and fabrication.
- Theft or attempted theft of property or of services on college premises or at college-sponsored activities; knowing possession of stolen property on college premises or at college-sponsored activities. This includes theft of money or goods and services by electronic means, fraud, and/or false pretense.
- Intentionally or recklessly destroying or damaging the property of others on college premises or at college-sponsored activities.
- Engaging in disorderly or disruptive conduct on college premises or at college-sponsored activities which interferes with the activities of others, including studying, teaching, research and college administration.
- Failure to comply with the directions of college officials, including campus public safety officers, faculty, and professional staff acting in the performance of their duties. This includes failure to produce identification when requested as well as providing false, distorted, or misrepresented information to a college official.
- Unauthorized use or possession of fireworks on college premises.
- Harassment or Intimidation: physical or psychological harassment or abuse of any member of the college community or of any guest. Harassment is behavior that either is intended to, or actually does, inflict harm or emotional distress or provoke a violent reaction. It may include use of racial, ethnic, sexual, religious, or personal slurs or epithets, or other threatening, intimidating, hostile, or abusive treatment of any person or group of persons in the college community.
- Hazing: an act that endangers the mental or physical health or safety of a student, or that 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 or implied consent of the victim will not be a defense. Apathy or acquiescence in the presence of hazing is not a neutral act and is considered a violation of this rule.
- Misappropriation or misuse of funds or property: includes improper handling or use of college or student organization funds or property.
- Misuse of electronic devices: includes cellular telephones and other electronic devices. Includes, but is not limited to, use in a manner that causes disruption or the use for the purposes of photographing test materials or for engaging in other forms of academic misconduct or prohibited activity. Also includes any unauthorized use of electronic or other devices to make an audio or video record of any person while on college premises without his or her prior knowledge or without his or her effective consent. This includes, but is not limited to, taking pictures or videos of another person in an area in which the individual has a reasonable expectation of privacy, such as a locker room, or restroom.
- Misuse of telephone or other technology: includes, but is not limited to, making or assisting in making unauthorized telephone calls, misuse or tampering with telephone or communications equipment, unauthorized use or possession of telephone or other communications equipment or services, and inappropriate use of voicemail. Students should comply with the technology acceptable use policy of the college which includes proper use of college issued e-mail, college owned social media sites, and access to the world wide web via CCBC owned devices and networks.
- Unauthorized entry: entry or attempted entry to any college facility without authority or against the will of the occupant or the individual in charge of the facility. Includes, but is not limited to, unauthorized use or occupation of any part of college property (e.g., gaining access to roofs or balconies or using a window as a means of entrance or exit) and unauthorized possession, duplication, or use of ID or keys to any college premises.
- Violation of college policy: violation of any college policy, rule, or regulation, whether published in hard copy or available electronically on the college website. Includes, but is not limited to, regulations pertaining to parking, traffic, library, dining hall, campus solicitations, and sales.
- Aiding or abetting another in the commission of any offense(s); soliciting another person to commit any offense(s), and/or attempting to commit any offense(s) mentioned in this code.
Sanctions that may be imposed for any violations of this Code may include:
- Warning: notice, orally or in writing, that continuation or repetition of prohibited conduct may be cause for additional disciplinary action.
- No-Trespass Order: A written directive barring a student from all CCBC property for a specified period of time. Violating this order will result in the student’s arrest for trespassing.
- No Contact Directive: A written directive that sets specific limitations on the type of contact one student can have with another for a specific period of time. Failure to comply with the directive will lead to an interim suspension from the college.
- Mandated physical/psychological evaluation: A requirement that a student must have a physician or licensed therapist complete a “return to campus” form stating that the student is capable of being successful within the learning environment.
- Censure: A written reprimand for violation of specified regulations, including a warning that continuation or repetition of prohibited conduct may be cause for additional disciplinary action. Notice of this action may appear on the student’s academic transcript for up to one year.
- Restitution: repayment to the college or to an affected party for damages resulting from a violation of this Code. Probation/Provisional Enrollment specifies that continued enrollment is conditional on successfully satisfying identified actions or conditions for a specified period of time, during which other sanctions may also be imposed. If an additional act of misconduct occurs or violation of any condition of probation or provisional enrollment occurs, additional sanctions may be imposed.
- Disciplinary Probation: is for a designated period of time and includes the possibility of more severe sanctions if the student is found to violate any institutional policies during the probationary period.
- Fractional Suspension: The restriction of the student from entering specified areas of college property for a specified period of time or participating in specified classes, programs or activities for a specified period of time to be contained in a written notice of fractional suspension.
- Term Suspension: exclusion from college premises, and other privileges or activities, as set forth in the suspension notice. During a period of suspension, a student is considered trespassed from all CCBC property. Before a student can re-enroll, the student must contact the Director of Student Conduct to have their Dean’s hold removed. A student suspended for disciplinary reasons is not entitled to a refund on tuition or fees and will earn a grade of “F” for all courses they are currently enrolled in on the date that the sanction takes effect.
- Expulsion: permanent termination of student status, and exclusion from college premises, privileges and activities. This action will be recorded on the student’s academic transcript. Any student expelled from CCBC is also trespassed from the institution permanently. A student expelled for disciplinary reasons is not entitled to a refund on tuition or fees and will earn a grade of “F” for all courses they are currently enrolled in on the date that the sanction takes effect.
- Deferred Suspension: probationary period where if a student is found responsible for violating college policy during the term of the sanction, the student will be retro-actively suspended and will earn a grade of “F” for all courses they are currently enrolled in on the date that the sanction takes effect.
- Location Restriction Notices: A notice of restriction from a particular area or building for a specified period of time.
- Academic Dishonesty: The standard penalty for an act of academic dishonesty is an F in the course. Lesser sanctions that may be imposed by a faculty member include the following: a reduction in the grade in the course; a reduction in grade for an assignment, exam, or project; repetition of an assignment and/or a written warning. Other Sanctions: other sanctions may be imposed instead of, or in addition to, those specified in this section. Service or research projects may also be assigned. Repeated or aggravated violations of any section of this Code may also result in expulsion or suspension or in the imposition of such lesser penalties as may be appropriate.
Attempts to commit acts prohibited by this Code may be punished to the same extent as completed violations.
STANDARDS OF DUE PROCESS
Students subject to expulsion or suspension from the college will be entitled to a hearing before a Hearing Panel, appointed in accordance with policies set forth in this Code. Students subject to lesser sanctions will be entitled to a disciplinary conference set forth in this Code.
The purpose of campus disciplinary proceedings is to provide a fair evaluation of a respondent’s responsibility for violating college regulations. Formal rules of evidence shall not be applied, nor shall deviations from prescribed procedures necessarily invalidate a decision, unless significant prejudice to a respondent or the college may result.
Any person may refer a student or a student group or organization suspected of violating this Code to the Office of Student Conduct. Those referring cases are normally expected to serve as the reporting party, and to present relevant evidence in hearings or conferences.
CONFERENCE AND HEARING PANEL REFERRALS
The Director of Student Conduct or designee will conduct a preliminary review to determine whether the alleged misconduct might result in expulsion or suspension from the college. Students not subject to suspension or expulsion will be entitled to a disciplinary conference with the Director of Student Conduct or designee, as set forth in this Code. Students who are subject to suspension or expulsion will be entitled to a hearing before a campus Hearing Panel.
Students referred for a hearing by the Director of Student Conduct or designee may elect to have their cases resolved in accordance with this Code. Such an election must be made affirming that the student is aware a hearing is being waived. The full range of sanctions may be imposed, including suspension or expulsion from the college.
The Director of Student Conduct or designee may defer proceedings for alleged violations of this Code for a period not to exceed 90 days. Pending charges may be withdrawn thereafter, at the discretion of the Director of Student Conduct or designee. In the case of exigent circumstances, the college reserves the right to conduct a modified Hearing Panel when the availability of a student is not possible.
Students accused of offenses that may result in penalties less than expulsion or suspension are subject to a disciplinary conference with the Director of Student Conduct or designee. The following procedural protections are provided to respondents in disciplinary conferences:
- written notice of the specific charges at least three (3) business days prior to the scheduled conference. Students can, at their request, waive their right to three (3) business days advance notice in order to schedule an expedited conference.
- reasonable access to the case file prior to and during the conference. The case file consists of materials which would be considered “educational records,” pursuant to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974; personal notes of college; staff members or reporting parties are not included.
- an opportunity to respond to the evidence and to call relevant and necessary witnesses.
CCBC HEARING PANEL
The Director of Student Conduct or designee will establish a Hearing Panel for each case, as specified in this Code. The Hearing Panel shall be comprised of three members and one student to include at least one faculty/administrator, one student, and a Panel Chair. The Director of Student Conduct or designee shall be responsible for training and providing administrative support to the Panel. A student may waive their right to a full hearing and have their case adjudicated before a singular administrator at the student’s request (see DISCIPLINARY CONFERENCES).
Both the findings and the sanctions determined by the Hearing Panel shall be regarded as recommendations to the Director of Student Conduct or designee.
Members of any CCBC Hearing Panel who are charged with a violation of this Code or with a criminal offense may be suspended from their positions by the Director of Student Conduct or designee during the pending of the charges against them. Members found responsible for any such violation or offense may be disqualified from any further participation in the college judicial system.
HEARING PANEL PROCEDURES
The following procedural guidelines shall be applicable in hearings conducted by the CCBC Hearing Panel:
- The Director of Student Conduct or designee will appoint a Hearing Chair. The Hearing Chair shall conduct the hearing. He or she may participate in Panel deliberations and discussions, and have an equal vote.
- The Director of Student Conduct or designee shall give respondents notice of the hearing date and the specific charges against them at least five (5) business days in advance. Respondents shall be given reasonable access to the case file, which will be retained in the Office of Student Conduct (Essex Campus- Student Services Center - 105). Students can, at their request, waive their right to five (5) business days advance notice in order to schedule an expedited hearing.
- The Hearing Chair may call relevant witnesses, after consultation with the Director of Student Conduct or designee. “Notices to Appear” will be e-mailed using the official CCBC e-mail accounts. College students and employees are expected to comply with “Notices to Appear” issued pursuant to this procedure, unless compliance would result in significant and unavoidable personal hardship, or substantial interference with normal college activities, as determined by the Director of Student Conduct or designee. Respondents who fail to appear after proper notice will be deemed to have pled “No Contest” to the charges pending against them. Nonetheless, the reporting party will be required to present a case.
- Hearings will be closed to the public.
- Students are not permitted to bring anyone (other than relevant witnesses) to the hearing.
- The Hearing Chair shall exercise control over the proceedings to avoid needless consumption of time and to achieve orderly completion of the hearing. Any person, including the respondent student, who disrupts a hearing may be excluded by the Hearing Chair.
- Hearings shall be tape recorded for the purpose of appeal only. The college does not provide copies or transcriptions of hearings to students.
- Any party may challenge a board member or the Hearing Chair on the ground of personal bias. Board members may be disqualified by the Hearing Chair. The Hearing Chair may be disqualified by the Director of Student Conduct or designee.
- Witnesses shall be asked to affirm that their testimony is truthful, and may be subject to charges of violating this Code by intentionally providing false information to the college.
- Prospective witnesses, other than the reporting party and the respondent, may be excluded from the hearing during the testimony of other witnesses. All parties, including witnesses, shall be excluded during Panel deliberations, which shall not be recorded.
- The charges against the respondent must be established under the standard of evidence of more likely than not (preponderance of the evidence).
- Formal rules of evidence shall not be applicable in disciplinary proceedings conducted pursuant to this Code. The Hearing Chair shall give effect to the rules of confidentiality and privilege, but shall otherwise admit all matters into evidence which a reasonable person would accept as having probative value in the conduct of their affairs. Unduly repetitious or irrelevant evidence may be excluded.
- Reporting parties and respondents shall be afforded an opportunity to ask relevant questions of those witnesses who testify at the hearing.
- Panel members may take notice of matters which would be within the general experience of college students and faculty members.
- Prior judicial record. The Chair or Hearing Officer shall inform the respondent student that his or her prior judicial record shall not be taken into account in determining whether he or she violated the Code. However, if the respondent student makes false statements about his or her prior judicial record during the hearing, the Panel or Hearing Officer may take into account relevant information from a witness or college official concerning that record for the sole purpose of assessing the credibility of the respondent student. The Panel or Hearing Officer may take into account any prior judicial record, including sanctions imposed, when determining sanctions for a violation.
- Any determination of responsibility will be supported by brief written findings that will be placed in the case file and made available to the student respondent by the Director of Student Conduct or designee upon request.
Mediation is encouraged as an alternative means to resolve some disciplinary cases. The Director of Student Conduct or designee shall inform reporting parties and respondent students in writing about the availability of mediation resources, including resources offered by county agencies when deemed appropriate by the Director of Student Conduct.
The Director of Student Conduct or designee, in the exercise of his or her discretion, may decline to process a complaint until the parties make a reasonable attempt to achieve a mediated settlement. To be binding in a disciplinary case, any mediated settlement must be approved by the Director of Student Conduct or designee. Mediation will not be used in the case of sexual misconduct or violations involving violence.
STUDENT GROUPS AND ORGANIZATIONS
Student groups and organizations may be charged with violations of this Code.
A student group or organization and its officers may be held collectively and individually responsible when violations of this Code by those associated with the group or organization have received the consent or encouragement of the group or organization or of the group’s or organization’s leaders or officers.
The officers or leaders or any identifiable spokesman for a student group or organization may be directed by the Vice President of Enrollment and Student Services’ designee to take appropriate action designed to prevent or end violations of this Code by the group or organization. Failure to make reasonable efforts to comply with the Vice President of Enrollment and Student Services’ designee order shall be considered a violation of this Code, both by the officers, leaders or spokesmen for the group or organization and by the group or organization itself.
Sanctions for group or organization misconduct may include revocation or denial of registration or recognition, as well as other appropriate sanctions.
A decision by a CCBC Hearing Panel is a recommendation to the Director of Student Conduct or designee. The Director of Student Conduct or designee will make a final decision and notify the respondent within three (3) business days.
The imposition of sanctions will be deferred during the pendency of the Director of Student Conduct or designee’s review, unless, in the discretion of the Director of Student Conduct or designee, the continued presence of the student on the campus poses a substantial threat to him/herself or to others, or to the stability and continuance of normal college functions. During the investigation, adjudication, and appeal, a student is not permitted to withdraw from the college except under rare circumstances and only at the discretion of the Dean of College Life. Students who withdraw from the College in violation of this policy will be retroactively reinstated.
A final appeal may be made to the Vice President of Enrollment and Student Services. Only two sanctions may be appealed – suspension or expulsion. A student may appeal a finding of suspension or expulsion on one or more of the following grounds only:
- New evidence exists that was not available at the original hearing.
- A student can prove that their due process rights were violated in such a way as to impact the fairness of the hearing process.
- The student feels the sanctions imposed are disproportionate to the offense.
The appeal should be made to the Vice President of Enrollment and Student Services through the Director of Student Conduct or designee, in writing within ten (10) business days from the date of delivery by e-mail of the decision from the Director of Student Conduct or designee. The Vice President of Enrollment and Student Services, after reviewing all evidence and the summary of the hearing will communicate his/her decision to the student in writing within ten (10) business days.
DISCIPLINARY FILES AND RECORDS
Case referrals will result in the establishment of a disciplinary file in the name of the respondent student. The files of students found responsible of any charges against them are maintained indefinitely. Disciplinary records may be reported to third parties, in accordance with college regulation and Federal privacy law (see college policy on FERPA). Only responsible findings will be released as part of a student disciplinary record request.
SEXUAL MISCONDUCT AWARENESS
It is the policy of Community College of Baltimore County to establish and maintain an environment in which all members of the Community College of Baltimore County community can work or participate in College education programs and activities free from all forms of sexual misconduct. Sexual misconduct is a form of sex discrimination prohibited by Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972. In addition, some forms of sexual misconduct violate the criminal laws of the State of Maryland. Sexual misconduct in any form will not be tolerated by the Community College of Baltimore County. The College will take immediate action to preserve and restore equal educational access when the College has actual knowledge of sexual misconduct.
For purposes of this Policy, “sexual misconduct” is an umbrella term that encompasses various types of prohibited conduct, including sexual harassment, sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking. The President is authorized and directed to establish procedures to define other terms relevant to this Policy, including but not limited to: “sexual harassment,” “sexual assault,” “domestic violence,” “dating violence,” and “stalking.”
All students and employees of the College must comply with this Policy. Sexual misconduct is prohibited between students, between employees, between students and employees, and by students or employees against contractors, vendors, or other individuals whose relationship to the student or employee is through the College’s facilities, programs, or activities. Similarly, the College will not tolerate sexual misconduct by College contractors, vendors, or other third parties, including visitors and guests to the College whose relationship to the victim, is through the College’s facilities, programs, or activities. This Policy applies regardless of the sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity of either the perpetrator or the victim of sexual misconduct. This Policy applies to sexual misconduct (i) that occurs on College premises, including any property owned or leased by the College (including College buses) or that the College has permission to occupy for purposes of conducting a College-sponsored program or event; (ii) that occurs in connection with any College-sponsored, College-recognized, or College-approved activities within the United States (e.g., off-campus education programs and activities such as College-sponsored field trips, athletic team travel, and events for officially recognized College clubs that occur off-campus, and social activities for employees sponsored by the College or relating to the business of the College); (iii) that occurs during business travel in the United States or otherwise in connection with College-related business; or (iv) sexual harassment on- or off-campus during any College-sponsored activity that impacts equal educational opportunity or access. All incidents of sexual misconduct should be reported so that the College may determine whether the conduct falls within the scope of this Policy.
Reporting and Confidentiality
An Official with Authority (OWA) means an employee of the College is explicitly vested with the responsibility to implement corrective measures for sexual harassment on behalf of the College. Notice to any Official with Authority conveys actual knowledge to the institution.
The College has designated the following employees as Officials with Authority to implement corrective measures for sexual harassment/discrimination.
- College President
- College Administrators including Title IX Coordinator, College Vice Presidents, Human Resources Officers, Academic and ESS Deans, Director of Athletics and Assistant Director of Athletics and others
- College Police Officers
The triggering event under Title IX regulations centers on when the College receives actual knowledge of allegations of sexual harassment/discrimination. Actual knowledge means that the Title IX Coordinator or a designated Official with Authority of the College has received notice of sexual harassment/discrimination or notice of allegations of sexual harassment/discrimination.
Notice results whenever an Official with Authority:
- witnesses sexual harassment;
- hears about sexual harassment or sexual harassment allegations from a complainant (i.e., a person alleged to be the victim) or a third party (e.g., the complainant’s parent, friend, or peer);
- receives a written or verbal complaint about sexual harassment or sexual harassment allegations;
- or by any other means.
All members of the Community College of Baltimore County community may report allegations of sexual misconduct at any time but are encouraged to make such reports promptly to maximize the College’s ability to respond and take appropriate action, including to obtain evidence and to conduct a prompt and equitable investigation.
Students may report alleged sexual misconduct to the Title IX Coordinator or to any “Mandated Reporter,” which includes all College employees. As a Mandated Reporter, all employees who receive a report of sexual misconduct must promptly relay such a report to the Title IX Coordinator. No employee is authorized to investigate or resolve reports of sexual misconduct without the involvement of the Title IX Coordinator.
The College recognizes that allegations of sexual misconduct are a sensitive subject for all parties involved and is committed to maintaining the privacy of the parties involved to the fullest extent possible, consistent with applicable law and the need for investigation and resolution. The College, through the Title IX Coordinator, may sign a formal complaint to initiate the investigation and formal resolution process even when the individual making a report of sexual misconduct requests anonymity or requests that no action be taken. Thus, absolute confidentiality cannot be guaranteed. In all cases, the College will take care to protect the identity of the parties through processes that provide for discussion of the allegations only among those who have a legitimate administrative, investigative, or legal need to know.
College Aid to Victims of Sexual Misconduct
The President is authorized and directed to establish procedures to provide victims of sexual misconduct with reasonable accommodations (e.g., changes in academic, transportation and/or working situations) and/or supportive measures that will be made available upon a report of sexual misconduct to a victim of sexual misconduct, regardless of whether the victim chooses to report the sexual misconduct to campus security or local law enforcement. The Title IX Coordinator is authorized by the President and directed to establish procedures to implement this Policy.
All reports of sexual misconduct will be reviewed and investigated in a prompt, thorough, and impartial manner.The Title IX Coordinator is authorized and directed to establish procedures for the investigation of such reports, which shall provide for a prompt, thorough, and impartial process.
The College strives to complete all investigations within ninety (90) days of receiving a formal complaint. Actual resolution time may vary depending on many factors, including but not limited to, the complexity of the investigation and the severity and extent of the alleged misconduct.
Grievance, Resolution, and Sanctions
It is presumed that the Respondent is not responsible for the alleged conduct until a determination regarding responsibility is made at the conclusion of the grievance process. Individuals found to have committed sexual misconduct in violation of this Policy will be subject to disciplinary action in accordance with applicable College policies and procedures and/or collective bargaining agreements.
Employees found in violation of this Policy are subject to disciplinary action in accordance with the applicable College policies and procedures for disciplinary action and discharge.Sanctions will be based on the circumstances and nature of the violation, ranging from a reprimand up to and including termination of employment.
Students found in violation of this Policy are subject to disciplinary action in accordance with procedures set forth in the Student Code of Conduct. Sanctions will be based on the circumstances and nature of the violation and include, but are not limited to, a warning, disciplinary probation, community service, participation in sexual misconduct education programming, suspension, and dismissal from the College.
In the event of sexual misconduct by a third party against a College student or employee, the College will take appropriate action within its control to address the misconduct and prevent its recurrence, including but not limited to, referring to local law enforcement to issue a “No Trespass” notice denying access to the College’s buildings and grounds.
As required or appropriate, parties will be informed of the outcome of any resolution process based on a violation of this Policy.
Persons who commit sexual misconduct in violation of federal, state, or local law may also be subject to criminal charges and penalties as a result of related legal proceedings.
In any investigation and/or disciplinary proceeding concerning an alleged violation of this Policy, the finding will be determined by a preponderance of the evidence. The burden of collecting evidence and proving a violation of policy is the responsibility of the College and not the individuals.
Good Faith Reporting
Allegations of sexual misconduct are extremely serious, with potential for great harm to the accused if ill-conceived or made with malice. An individual found to have knowingly filed a false allegation may be subject to separate appropriate disciplinary action. A complaint made in good faith is not considered false merely because the evidence does not ultimately support the allegation of sexual misconduct.
This Policy prohibits retaliation by anyone in the College community against an individual because of the individual reports or complains about sexual misconduct or participates in the College’s investigation or proceedings related to an allegation of sexual misconduct. When the College is aware of possible retaliation, it will take immediate and appropriate steps to investigate. Students or employees who commit retaliation in violation of this Policy are subject to appropriate disciplinary action. The Complainant or participants in any report or investigation of sexual misconduct who believe they have experienced retaliation in violation of this Policy should immediately report such conduct to the Title IX Coordinator.
Education is a key element of this Policy. Notice of this Policy will be provided to all students during admissions and all employees during onboarding. The College will provide education and information, as appropriate, for students and employees to enhance understanding and increase awareness of the College’s Sexual Misconduct Policy and Procedures. Sufficient periodic training will be conducted for Mandated Reporters and for those involved in the investigation and resolution of complaints and appeals, as determined by the Title IX Coordinator. Records and verification of all training will be maintained by the Title IX Coordinator and published on the College’s Title IX website. Any mandatory education requirements will be announced and posted on the College’s website. The President is authorized to provide institutional leadership and guidance for developing education programs to increase knowledge and share information and resources to prevent sexual misconduct, promote safety, and reduce perpetration. Some goals to be achieved through education are: (a) ensuring that all individuals are aware of their rights; (b) notifying individuals of conduct that is proscribed; (c) informing employees, students, and other members of the College community, including contractors, about the proper way to recognize and address complaints involving a violation of this Policy; (d) preventing issues that this Policy addresses, and; (e) identifying the necessary steps for preventing sexual misconduct and addressing its effects.
Training of College Staff (Investigators/Decision Makers, Appeal Officer)
- The Title IX team members receive annual training. This training includes, but is not limited to:
- The scope of the Recipient’s Sexual Harassment Policy and Procedures
- How to conduct investigations and hearings that protect the safety of Complainants and Respondents, and promote accountability
- Implicit bias
- Disparate treatment and impact
- Reporting, confidentiality, and privacy requirements
- Applicable laws, regulations, and federal regulatory guidance
- How to implement appropriate and situation-specific remedies
- How to investigate in a thorough, reliable, and impartial manner
- How to uphold fairness, equity, and due process
- How to weigh evidence
- How to conduct questioning
- How to assess credibility
- Impartiality and objectivity
- How to render findings and generate clear, concise, evidence-based rationales
- The definitions of all offenses
- How to apply definitions used by the recipient with respect to consent (or the absence or negation of consent) consistently, impartially, and in accordance with policy
- How to conduct an investigation and grievance process including hearings, appeals, and informal resolution processes
- How to serve impartially by avoiding prejudgment of the facts at issue, conflicts of interest, and bias
- Any technology to be used at a live hearing
- Issues of relevance of questions and evidence
- Issues of relevance to create an investigation report that fairly summarizes relevant evidence
- How to determine appropriate sanctions in reference to all forms of harassment and/or retaliation allegations
Specific training is also provided for Appeal Decision-makers, intake personnel, Advisors (who are CCBC employees). All team members are required to attend these trainings annually. The materials used to train all members of the Pool are publicly posted here: [Title IX].
Complainant and Respondent Rights
- Treatment with dignity, respect, and sensitivity by the official of the College during all phases of the disciplinary process.
- A fair and impartial investigation
- Disciplinary proceedings and resolutions that are prompt and
- equitable and provide an opportunity for the complainant and
- respondent to be heard, including the provision of an in person, virtual or hybrid hearing.
- Timely written notice of:
- The reported violation, including date, time, and location of the alleged violation;
- The availability of informal resolution options;
- The range of potential sanctions associated with the alleged violation;
- The parties’ rights and responsibilities under the sexual misconduct policy and information regarding other civil and criminal options;
- The date, time, and location of each hearing, meeting, or interview that the parties are required or permitted to attend;
- A final determination made by the College regarding whether or not a violation occurred and the basis for the determination;
- Any sanction imposed; and
- The right to appeal and a description of the appeal process.
- Participation in the disciplinary proceedings, including:
- Access to the case file and evidence regarding the incident obtained by the College during the investigation or considered by the College, with personally identifiable or other information redacted as required by applicable law;
- Testifying during the proceedings;
- Submitting evidence, witness lists, and suggested specific questions to be posed to the other party(ies) involved in the disciplinary proceedings;
- Providing and reviewing testimony electronically or in a way in which the parties are not required to be in the physical presence of the other;
- Reviewing and providing written responses to reports and proposed findings; and
- Appealing a determination or sanction.
Nothing in this Procedure shall supersede the legal obligations of a College employee or the College to comply with mandatory reporting laws, such as those applicable to sexual or other abuse of minors.
Sexual misconduct is prohibited between students, between employees, between students and employees, and by students or employees against contractors, vendors, or other individuals whose relationship to the student or employee is through the College’s facilities, programs, or activities. Similarly, the College will not tolerate sexual misconduct by College contractors, vendors, or other third parties, including visitors and guests to the College, whose relationship to the victim is through the College’s facilities, programs, or activities.
These procedures apply regardless of the sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity and expression of either the perpetrator or the victim of sexual misconduct.
These procedures apply to sexual misconduct that:
- occurs on College premises, including any property owned or leased by the College (including College vehicles) or that the College has permission to occupy for purposes of conducting a College-sponsored program or event;
- occurs in connection with any College-sponsored, College-recognized, or College-approved activities within the United States(e.g., off-campus education programs and activities such as College-sponsored field trips, athletic team travel, and events for officially-recognized College clubs that occur off campus, and social activities for employees sponsored by the College or relating to the business of the College);
- occurs during business travel within the United States or otherwise in connection with College-related business; and,
- sexual harassment on or off campus in any College program or activity that impacts equal educational access.
All incidents of sexual misconduct should be reported so that the College may determine whether the conduct falls within the scope of the Policy and may respond appropriately under these procedures.
Online Sexual Harassment and/or Retaliation
The policies of the College are written and interpreted broadly to include online manifestations of any of the behaviors prohibited below, when those behaviors occur in or have an effect on the Recipient’s education program and activities or use College networks, technology, or equipment.
Although CCBC may not control websites, social media, and other venues in which harassing communications are made, when such communications are reported to CCBC, it will engage in a variety of means to address and mitigate the effects.
Any online posting or other electronic communication by students, including cyber-bullying, cyber-stalking, cyber-harassment, etc., occurring completely outside of the College’s control (e.g., not on CCBC networks, websites, or between CCBC email accounts) will only be subject to this policy when such online conduct can be shown to cause a substantial in-program disruption or infringement on the rights of others.
Otherwise, such communications are considered speech protected by the First Amendment. Supportive measures for Complainants will be provided, but protected speech cannot legally be subjected to discipline.
Off-campus harassing speech by employees, whether online or in person, may be regulated by the Recipient only when such speech is made in an employee’s official or work-related capacity.
The following capitalized defined terms are used throughout the Procedure:
- Advisor: an individual selected by a Complainant and/or Respondent to be present at any part of the College processes related to a report under this Procedure. The role of the Advisor is limited to providing advice and consultation directly to the Complainant or Respondent (i.e., the Advisor is not to take an active representation role under this procedure on behalf of the Complainant or Respondent except for conducting cross-examination for the party at the hearing, if any). The Advisor may be a licensed Attorney.
- Complainant: refers to as an individual who is alleged to be the victim of conduct that could constitute sexual harassment.
- Consent: a knowing, voluntary, and affirmatively communicated willingness to participate in a particular sexual activity or behavior. Only a person who has the ability and capacity to exercise free will and make rational, reasonable judgment can give Consent. Consent may be expressed either by words and/or by actions as long as those words and/or actions create a mutually understandable agreement to engage in specific sexual activity. It is the responsibility of the person who wants to engage in sexual activity to ensure that they have consent from the other party, and that the other party is capable of providing consent.
- Lack of protest or resistance is not consent, nor may silence, in and of itself, be interpreted as consent. For that reason, relying solely on non-verbal communication can lead to misunderstanding.
- Consent to any one form of sexual activity cannot automatically imply consent to any other forms of sexual activity.
- Previous relationships, including past sexual relationships or prior consent cannot imply consent to future sexual acts.
- Consent must be present throughout sexual activity and may be withdrawn at any time. If there is confusion as to whether there is consent or whether prior consent has been withdrawn, it is essential that the participants stop the activity until the confusion is resolved.
- In order to give effective consent, one must be of legal age, as defined by applicable Maryland law.
- Sexual activity that is forced or coerced is by definition non-consensual. Force is the use of physical violence and/or imposing on someone physically to gain sexual access. Force also includes threats, intimidation (implied threats) and coercion that overcome resistance or produce consent. There is no requirement that a party resist the sexual advance or request, but resistance is a clear demonstration of non-consent. Coercion is unreasonable pressure for sexual activity. Coercive behavior differs from seductive behavior based on the type of pressure used to obtain consent. Frequency, intensity, isolation, and duration of the behavior will be considered in making a determination of whether coercion occurred. When a party makes clear that they do not want to engage in sex, that they want to stop, or that they do not want to go past a certain point of sexual interaction, continued pressure beyond that point can be coercive. Coercing someone into sexual activity violates this Policy in the same way as physically forcing someone into sex.
- It is a violation of College policy to engage in sexual activity with someone whom one should know to be, or based on the circumstances should reasonably have known to be, mentally or physically incapacitated. To be incapacitated means that a person’s decision-making ability is impaired such that they lack capacity to understand the “who, what, where, why, or how” of their sexual interaction. Incapacitation may result from sleep or unconsciousness, temporary or permanent mental or physical disability, involuntary physical restraint, or the influence of drugs or alcohol.
- Dating violence: Violence committed by a person who is or has been in a social relationship of a romantic or intimate nature with the victim. The existence of such a relationship shall be determined based on the complainant’s statement and with consideration of the length of the relationship, the type of relationship, and the frequency of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship. For the purposes of this definition, dating violence includes, but is not limited to, sexual or physical abuse or the threat of such abuse. Dating violence does not include acts covered under the definition of domestic violence.
- making decisions about the potential consequences of sexual contact;
- appraising the nature of one’s own conduct;
- communicating Consent to sexual contact; or
- communicating unwillingness to engage in sexual contact.
- Domestic violence: encompasses a broad range of behaviors, including Sexual Assault, physical abuse and other forms of violence committed by a current or former spouse or intimate partner of the Complainant , by a person with whom the Complainant shares a child in common, by a person who is cohabitating with or has cohabitated with the Complainant as a spouse or intimate partner, by a person similarly situated to a spouse of the Complainant , or by any other person against an adult or youth Complainant protected from those acts by domestic or family violence laws of Maryland.
- Formal Complaint: a document filed by a complainant or signed by the Title IX Coordinator alleging sexual misconduct against a respondent, requesting that the College investigate the allegation of sexual misconduct. A formal complaint may be filed with the Title IX Coordinator in person, by mail, or by electronic mail, by using the contact information listed for the Title IX Coordinator, or through the formal Title IX Complaint form.
- Formal Resolution: one of several available routes for resolution of allegations of sexual misconduct under this Procedure. Formal Resolution involves a prompt, fair, and impartial fact-finding Investigation and live hearing.
- Incapacitated: an individual who is incapacitated is unable to give consent to sexual contact. States of Incapacitation include sleep, unconsciousness, intermittent consciousness, or any other state where the individual is unaware that sexual contact is occurring. Incapacitation may also exist because of a mental or developmental disability that impairs the ability to Consent to sexual contact. Alcohol or drug use is one of the prime causes of Incapacitation. However, a person is not incapacitated merely because they have been drinking or using drugs. Where alcohol or other substances are involved, incapacitation is determined by how the substance impacts a person’s decision-making capacity, awareness of consequences, and ability to make informed judgments. Because the impact of alcohol or other drugs varies from person to person, evaluating whether an individual is Incapacitated, and therefore unable to give Consent, requires an assessment of whether the consumption of alcohol or other drugs has rendered the individual physically helpless or substantially incapable of:
- making decisions about the potential consequences of sexual contact;
- appraising the nature of one’s own conduct;
- communicating Consent to sexual contact; or
- communicating unwillingness to engage in sexual contact.
- Initial Title IX Assessment: an assessment, conducted by the Title IX Coordinator upon receipt of a report of an alleged violation of the Sexual Misconduct policy, to provide an integrated and coordinated response to a report of sexual misconduct.
- Interim Supportive Measures: means individualized services reasonably available that are non-punitive, non-disciplinary, and not unreasonably burdensome to the other party while designed to ensure equal educational access, protect safety, or deter sexual harassment.
- Investigation: a prompt and thorough process for providing a fair and reliable means of gathering relevant and factual information.
- Investigator(s): the College official(s), or designee, responsible for conducting investigations of reports of sexual misconduct. The College may engage internal or external individuals who are trained to conduct the resolution processes described in these procedures.
- Hearing Officer(s): is a presiding officer in a full hearing for the purpose of conducting a full adjudicative proceeding under this policy.
- Mandated Reporter: College employees who have the responsibility to notify the Title IX Coordinator when they are made aware of a student or employee experiencing sexual misconduct. At CCBC, all employees are considered mandated reporters.
- Respondent: refers to an individual who has been reported to be the perpetrator of conduct that could constitute sexual harassment.
- Retaliation: means any adverse action taken or threatened against an individual because that individual has made a report, filed a complaint, testified, assisted, or participated in any manner in an investigation or proceeded related to Sexual Misconduct. Such adverse action can adversely affect or threaten to affect the employment rights or other interests of an individual and can take either work or social form.
- Sexual Assault: An offense that meets the definition of rape, fondling, incest or statutory rape as used in the FBl’s Uniform Crime Reporting system. A sex offense is any sexual act directed against another person, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent.
- Rape: The penetration, no matter how slight, of the vagina or anus with any body part or object, or oral penetration by a sex organ of another person, without the consent of the victim.
- Fondling: The touching of the private body parts of another person for the purpose of sexual gratification, without the consent of the victim, including instances where the victim is incapable of giving consent because of his/her age or because of his/her temporary or permanent mental incapacity.
- Incest: Sexual intercourse between persons who are related to each other within the degrees wherein marriage is prohibited by law.
- Statutory Rape: Sexual intercourse with a person who is under the statutory age of consent.
- Sexual Harassment: Conduct on the basis of sex or that is sexual that satisfies one or more of the following:
- Quid Pro Quo: an employee of the recipient, conditions the provision of an aid, benefit, or service of the recipient, on an individual’s participation in unwelcome sexual conduct.
- Sexual Harassment: unwelcome conduct, determined by a reasonable person, to be so severe, and pervasive, and objectively offensive, that it effectively denies a person equal access to the College’s education program or activity to include any instance of sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence, or stalking.
- Sexual Misconduct: is an umbrella term that encompasses Dating Violence, Domestic Violence, Sexual Violence, Sexual Harassment, Sexual Assault, and Stalking. Sexual Misconduct can occur between strangers or acquaintances, including people involved in an intimate or sexual relationship. Sexual Misconduct can be committed by any person, regardless of gender identity, and can occur between people of the same or different sex, sexual orientation, or gender expression.
- Stalking: Engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to fear for his or her safety or the safety of others or suffer substantial emotional distress. Course of conduct means two or more acts, including, but not limited to, acts in which the stalker directly, indirectly, or through third parties, by any action, method, device, or means, follows, monitors, observes, surveils, threatens, or communicates to or about, a person, or interferes with a person’s property. Substantial emotional distress means significant mental suffering or anguish that may, but does not necessarily require medical or other professional treatment or counseling. Reasonable person means a reasonable person under similar circumstances and with similar identities to the victim.
- Witness: an individual who may have relevant direct or circumstantial knowledge or information about the alleged misconduct.
- Title IX Coordinator: the College administrator who oversees the College’s centralized review, investigation, and resolution of reports of sexual misconduct. The Coordinator also oversees the College’s overall compliance with Title IX. The Title IX Coordinator is responsible for:
- providing oversight of the investigation and resolution of all reports of sexual misconduct;
- completing initial Title IX assessment;
- recommending updates to the College’s policies and procedures related to sexual misconduct;
- advising any individual upon request, including a Complainant, a Respondent, or a third party, about the courses of action available at the College, both informally and formally, and in the community;
- implementation of interim supportive measures
- providing assistance to any College employee or student regarding how to respond appropriately to a report of sexual misconduct;
- monitoring full compliance with all procedural requirements and time frames outlined in this Procedure; and,
- training, prevention, and education efforts and periodic reviews of climate and culture.
The College’s current Title IX Coordinator is:
Dr. Scott C. Eckhardt, Director of Student Conduct, Title IX Coordinator
7201 Rossville Blvd.
Essex-Student Services Center (SSRV) Suite- 105
Baltimore, MD 21237
The Title IX Coordinator manages the Title IX Team and acts with independence and authority free from bias and conflicts of interest. The Title IX Coordinator oversees all resolutions under this policy and these procedures.
The members of the Title IX Team are vetted and trained to ensure they are not biased for or against any party in a specific case, or for or against Complainants and/or Respondents, generally.
To raise any concern involving bias or conflict of interest by the Title IX Coordinator, contact the Vice President of Enrollment and Student Services; Dr. Richard Lilley at email@example.com. Concerns of bias or a potential conflict of interest by any other Title IX Team member should be raised with the Title IX Coordinator.
Reports of misconduct committed by the Title IX Coordinator should be reported to the Vice President of Enrollment and Student Services; Dr. Richard Lilley at firstname.lastname@example.org. Reports of misconduct committed by any other Title IX Team member should be reported to the Title IX Coordinator.
Inquiries may be made externally to:
Office for Civil Rights (OCR)
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, D.C. 20202-1100
Customer Service Hotline #: (800) 421-3481
Facsimile: (202) 453-6012
TDD#: (877) 521-2172
Anonymous Notice to Mandated Reporters
At the request of a Complainant, notice may be given by a Mandated Reporter to the Title IX Coordinator anonymously, without identification of the Complainant. The Mandated Reporter cannot remain anonymous themselves.
If a Complainant has requested that a Mandated Reporter maintain the Complainant’s anonymity, the Mandated Reporter may do so unless it is reasonable to believe that a compelling threat to health or safety could exist. The Mandated Reporter can consult with the Title IX Coordinator on that assessment without revealing personally identifiable information.
Anonymous notice will be investigated by the College to the extent possible, both to assess the underlying allegation(s) and to determine if supportive measures or remedies can be provided.
However, anonymous notice typically limits the College’s ability to investigate, respond, and provide remedies, depending on what information is shared.
When a Complainant has made a request for anonymity, the Complainant’s personally identifiable information may be withheld by a Mandated Reporter, but all other details must be shared with the Title IX Coordinator. [Mandated reporters may not be able to maintain requests for anonymity for Complainants who are minors, elderly, and/or disabled due to state reporting of abuse requirements.
Confidential Reporting Resources
Generally, it is not confidential when a person reports Sexual Misconduct. If a person desires to keep an incident of Sexual Misconduct confidential, they should speak with individuals who have professional or legal obligations to keep communications confidential. When seeking advice and support, persons should always consider whether they want to discuss their concerns with a confidential resource. Unless there is an imminent threat to health or safety or other basis for disclosure, such as child abuse, confidentiality applies when persons seek services from the following resources:
Baltimore County Crisis Response System (CRS)
Mental health crisis hotline 410-931-2214
Franklin Square Hospital Center
9000 Franklin Square Drive
Baltimore, Maryland 21237-3998
443-777-7000, TTY: 443-777-7950; Emergency Department: 443-777-7046, TTY: 443-777-7994
Good Samaritan Hospital
5601 Loch Raven Boulevard
Baltimore, Maryland 21239
443-444-4000 or 443-444-8000, Emergency Department: 443-444-3830
Greater Baltimore Medical Center (GBMC)
6701 North Charles Street
Towson, Maryland 21204
443-849-2000; Emergency Room: 443-849-2225
Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center
4940 Eastern Avenue
Baltimore, Maryland 21224
410-550-0100, TTY:410-550-0316; Emergency Department: 410-550-0350
Sheppard Pratt Health System
6501 North Charles Street
Towson, Maryland 21285-6815
410-938-3800 or 410-938-3000;
211 Maryland at First Call for Help - United Way of Central Maryland
Dial 211 (available to Verizon landline and wireless customers) or 410-685-0525 (Greater Baltimore area); 1-800-492-0618 toll free throughout Maryland
TTY: 410-685-2159 (Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. All other hours dial Maryland Relay 711.)
Baltimore County/Carroll County Sexual Assault/ Domestic Violence Hotline
Baltimore County Department of Social Services
Women’s Law Center of Maryland
Family StressLine - The Family Tree
1-800-243-7337; Main Office 410-889-2300
Grassroots Crisis Intervention Center Inc.
410-531-6677, 1-800-422-0009 (Maryland Crisis Hotline)
Maryland Crisis Hotline
National Domestic Violence Hotline
1-800-799-SAFE (7233), TTY 1-800-787-3224
When a Complainant Does Not Wish to Proceed
If a Complainant does not wish for their name to be shared, does not wish for an investigation to take place, or does not want a formal complaint to be pursued, they may make such a request to the Title IX Coordinator, who will evaluate that request in light of the duty to ensure the safety of the campus and to comply with state or federal law.
The Title IX Coordinator has ultimate discretion over whether the College proceeds when the Complainant does not wish to do so, and the Title IX Coordinator may sign a formal complaint to initiate a grievance process upon completion of an appropriate violence risk assessment.
The Title IX Coordinator’s decision should be based on results of the violence risk assessment that show a compelling risk to health and/or safety that requires the College to pursue formal action to protect the community.
A compelling risk to health and/or safety may result from evidence of patterns of misconduct, predatory conduct, threats, abuse of minors, use of weapons, and/or violence. The College may be compelled to act on alleged employee misconduct irrespective of a Complainant’s wishes.
The Title IX Coordinator must also consider the effect that non-participation by the Complainant may have on the availability of evidence and the College’s ability to pursue a Formal Complaint Process fairly and effectively.
When the Title IX Coordinator executes the written complaint, they do not become the Complainant. The Complainant is the individual who is alleged to be the victim of conduct that could constitute a violation of this policy.
When the College proceeds, the Complainant (or their Advisor) may have as much or as little involvement in the process as they wish. The Complainant retains all rights of a Complainant under this Policy irrespective of their level of participation. Typically, when the Complainant chooses not to participate, the Advisor may be appointed as proxy for the Complainant throughout the process, acting to ensure and protect the rights of the Complainant, though this does not extend to the provision of evidence or testimony.
Note that the College’s ability to remedy and respond to notice may be limited if the Complainant does not want the College to proceed with an investigation and/or grievance process. The goal is to provide the Complainant with as much control over the process as possible, while balancing the College’s obligation to protect its community.
In cases in which the Complainant requests confidentiality/no formal action and the circumstances allow the College to honor that request, the College will offer informal resolution options, supportive measures, and remedies to the Complainant and the community, but will not otherwise pursue formal action.
If the Complainant elects to take no action, they can change that decision if they decide to pursue a formal complaint at a later date. Upon making a formal complaint, a Complainant has the right, and can expect, to have allegations taken seriously by College, and to have the incidents investigated and properly resolved through these procedures. Please consider that delays may cause limitations on access to evidence, or present issues with respect to the status of the parties.
What to Do After an Assault
Victims of sexual assault are strongly encouraged to take the following steps soon after the assault:
- Seek support. Call a friend, family member, or someone else nearby contact a campus consultant or outside source of support.
- Report the assault to Public Safety, at 410-840-1111. Public Safety officers are trained responders. Reporting the assault is important for your protection, and to pursue any legal remedy related to the assault, such as prosecution, should you decide to do so. Reporting the assault can also help you regain a sense of personal power and control and can help ensure the safety of other potential victims.
- If the alleged perpetrator was unknown to you, try to remember any helpful details that may lead to his or her identification, such as scars or other marks, jewelry, dress, language, approximate height and weight in comparison to your own, vehicle description, tag number. Write these down as soon as you can, and include the date and time of writing.
- At this moment, or later, you will need to decide whether to pursue a legal remedy. To support legal remedies, do the following:
- Do not disturb the area, room, or vehicle where the assault was committed.
- Do not bathe, shower, douche, brush your teeth, or eat or drink.
Preservation of Evidence and Forensic Examinations
- If you believe that you may at any time choose to pursue legal remedy related to the assault, please request that the hospital perform a free Sexual Assault Forensic Examination (SAFE). Agencies vary as to the exact length of time, but physical evidence is most effectively obtained within 48 to 72 hours of a sexual assault.
- Maryland law allows a hospital to provide the SAFE exam free of charge, and there is no requirement for you to report an attack to the police; you can remain anonymous and the evidence will be held for a time with no identification. Public Safety will provide for your transportation at your request.
- Greater Baltimore Medical Center (GBMC, at 6701 North Charles Street in Towson; ER 443-849-2225) is the closest hospital designated for sexual assault evidence collection and performs SAFE exams.
- Mercy Hospital (at 301 St. Paul Place in Baltimore; ER 410-332-9477) is the designated hospital in Baltimore City and performs SAFE exams. Both hospitals will perform the exams regardless of where the assault occurred, although GBMC works most closely with Baltimore County prosecutors.
If you are sexually assaulted, you have the right to notify the appropriate law enforcement officials, including local police, and you have the right to file criminal charges. At your request, Public Safety, as well as your advisor, if requested, will promptly assist you in notifying law enforcement officials. If you wish to notify law enforcement officials but are unable to do so yourself, Public Safety will promptly do so for you with your consent. You also have the right not to report the incident to criminal authorities.
Obtaining Protective/Peace Orders
If you are the victim of relationship violence, you may be entitled to obtain a protective order against your abuser in the State of Maryland. A protective order (also known as a “domestic violence protective order,” or “DVPO”) is available for incidents of domestic abuse, which occur when someone you have a specific relationship with (current/former spouse; cohabitant, which is someone with whom you have had a sexual relationship and lived with for at least 90 business days in the past year and includes same-sex partners; relative; someone you have a child in common with) commits one of the following offenses against you:
- An act that places you in fear of immediate serious bodily harm or actually causes you serious bodily harm
- Attempted or actual rape or sexual offense
- False imprisonment, such as holding you somewhere against your will
- You may also be eligible for a protective order if you are a “vulnerable adult” (an adult who lacks the physical or mental capacity to provide for his/her daily needs).
Note: If you are NOT eligible for a protective order, because you do not have the specific relationship with the abuser described above, but you have been the victim of abuse and need protection, you may be eligible to file for a peace order. Information about how to file for a protective order or a peace order can be found on the Maryland Judiciary system website.
Protective orders can require the abuser to stay away from you, leave your home, provide emergency family maintenance to you, and attend counseling. They can be valid for up to one year and can be renewed. Peace Orders can provide only a stay away order and require counseling, and are effective for up to 6 months but can be renewed.
Coordination of Criminal Procedures and Internal Campus Procedures
You, or when appropriate the College, may institute disciplinary procedures against a respondent student, faculty member, or staff member regardless of whether any criminal charges are filed. The complaint procedures are described in the Student Code of Conduct. If you believe that you have witnessed sexual assault against another person, please consider reporting the matter to Public Safety or to other College authorities.
Persons accused of sexual assault may be removed from campus pending disciplinary action or criminal procedures, to avoid additional conflict within the community and to protect the safety of all those involved and of the campus community. If a criminal charge is filed, the Title IX coordinator, in consultation with the College’s general counsel, shall determine whether action under this policy should be delayed pending the outcome of the criminal case. The College is not required to await the outcome of any criminal proceedings before taking action under this policy.
The Office of Student Conduct is designated to formally investigate reports of discrimination, harassment, or misconduct by students to address inquiries and to coordinate the College’s compliance efforts regarding reports of misconduct by students, regardless of the role of the reporting party, who may be another student, faculty, staff, guest, or visitor.
Notice of a formal report can be made in person, by phone, via email, or in writing to the Office of Student Conduct, Title IX Coordinator, and the Office of Public Safety. Upon receipt of a report, the Office of Student Conduct will confer with the Title IX Coordinator on interim action, accommodations for the reporting party (at no cost to the reporting party where possible), or other necessary remedial short-term actions.
If the reporting party wishes to pursue a formal resolution or if the College, based on the alleged policy violation, wishes to pursue a formal resolution, then the Title IX Coordinator appoints trained investigator(s) to conduct the investigation. Investigations are completed expeditiously.
The following are the required elements of a report:
- a clear and concise description of the alleged incident(s) (e.g., when and where it occurred);
- any supporting documentation and evidence;
- clear demonstration of all informal efforts, if any, to resolve the issue(s) with the person involved – this includes names, dates, and times of attempted or actual contact along with a description of the discussion and the manner of communication made in the course of each effort; if contacting the person involved is impracticable, the reporting party should state the reasons why;
- the desired remedy sought;
- name and all contact information for the reporting party;
- signed by the reporting party or Title IX Coordinator.
All investigations will be thorough, reliable, and impartial and will entail interviews with all relevant parties and witnesses, obtaining available evidence and identifying sources of expert information, if necessary.
Threats, intimidation, and retaliation against a reporting party for bringing a sexual misconduct complaint are violations of this policy and thus may be grounds for disciplinary action.
The College will take steps to protect students and employees from reprisal by the respondent. Such protection will need to be appropriate to the individual’s circumstances. For students, this may include the opportunity to change an academic schedule of the reporting party or respondent, drop a course, transfer to another section, complete the course independently, have a pass/fail option, have a third party grade the work, have another person assigned to write recommendations or references on behalf of the student, or have another person assigned as an advisor to the student.
Amnesty for Complainants and Witnesses
The CCBC community encourages the reporting of misconduct and crimes by Complainants and witnesses. Sometimes, Complainants or witnesses are hesitant to report to CCBC officials or participate in grievance processes because they fear that they themselves may be in violation of certain policies, such as underage drinking or use of illicit drugs at the time of the incident. Respondents may hesitate to be forthcoming during the process for the same reasons.
It is in the best interests of the CCBC community that Complainants choose to report misconduct to College officials, that witnesses come forward to share what they know, and that all parties be forthcoming during the process.
To encourage reporting and participation in the process, CCBC maintains a policy of offering parties and witnesses amnesty from minor policy violations – such as underage consumption of alcohol or the use of illicit drugs – related to the incident.
Amnesty does not apply to more serious allegations, such as physical abuse of another or illicit drug distribution. The decision not to offer amnesty is based on neither sex nor gender but on the fact that collateral misconduct is typically addressed for all students within a progressive discipline system, and the rationale for amnesty – the incentive to report serious misconduct – is rarely applicable to Respondent with respect to a Complainant.
Students: Sometimes, students are hesitant to assist others for fear that they may get in trouble themselves. For example, an underage student who has been drinking or using marijuana might hesitate to cooperate.
Employees: Sometimes, employees are hesitant to report sexual harassment or retaliation they have experienced for fear that they may get in trouble themselves. For example, an employee who has violated the consensual relationship policy and is then assaulted in the course of that relationship might hesitate to report the incident to Recipient officials: The College may, at its discretion, offer employee Complainants amnesty from such policy violations (typically more minor policy violations) related to the incident. Amnesty may also be granted to Respondents and witnesses on a case-by-case basis.
- Initial Title IX Assessment
- The College will meet with the Complainant to conduct an Initial Title IX Assessment when made aware of an allegation of Sexual Misconduct. The Initial Title IX Assessment will:
- Assess any immediate threats to the safety of the Complainant and the College community;
- Inform the Complainant of their right to seek medical treatment and report to law enforcement;
- Provide interim supportive measures to ensure equal educational access;
- Determine whether the allegation could be a possible violation of the Sexual Misconduct policy;
- Provide the Complainant a copy of the Sexual Misconduct Policy and information on any College and community resources;
- Discuss adjudication options and procedures for resolution;
- Inquire about the Complainant’s expressed preference regarding confidentiality and resolution, including any request that no further action be taken; and
- Determine next steps, initiation of a formal investigation, no cause, referral to appropriate disciplinary process, or referral for timely warning under the Clery Act.
- If the allegations in a formal complaint do not meet the definition of sexual harassment or did not occur in the College’s education program or activity against a person in the United States, the College may dismiss such allegations for purposes of this policy. The College may still address the allegations in any manner it deems appropriate under other applicable policies.
- Interim Supportive Measures
- As part of the Initial Title IX Assessment, the College will make an immediate assessment of whether interim measures are appropriate based on the particular circumstances. The College will treat complainants and respondents equitably, meaning that for a complainant, the College will offer supportive measures, and for a respondent, the College will follow the adjudication process before imposing disciplinary sanctions. These steps ensure the restoration or preservation of equal educational access of the parties, protect safety, and deter sexual harassment without unreasonably burdening the other party. Interim supportive measures are available to both parties and to the Complainant, regardless if a formal complaint is filed. When deemed in the best interests to protect the parties and the College community, the following interim remedies can be implemented with proper notice to both parties where appropriate:
- Providing information on available medical services;
- Access to counseling services and assistance in setting up initial counseling appointment off-campus;
- Imposition of campus “No Contact Letter” (i.e., an official College directive that serves as a notice to an individual that they must not have verbal, electronic, written, or third-party communications with another individual);
- Change in work schedule or job assignment or reassignment to other work group/team, or an alternative supervisor/management relationship;
- Limit an individual or organization’s access to certain College facilities or activities pending resolution of the matter;
- Voluntary leave of absence;
- Interim suspension or College-imposed leave, pursuant to the appropriate College Policy and/or Procedure;
- Providing an escort to ensure safe movement between classes and activities;
- Rescheduling of assignment(s) and/or examination(s) (in consultation with appropriate faculty);
- Providing alternative course completion options (with the agreement of the appropriate faculty);
- Change in class schedule, including the ability to take an “incomplete,” drop a course without penalty, or transfer sections;
- Providing academic support services, such as tutoring; and
- Any other remedy that can be tailored to protect the parties and achieve the goals of this policy.
- All individuals are encouraged to report to the Title IX Coordinator concerns about failure of another individual to abide by any restrictions imposed by an interim measure. The College will take immediate and responsive action to enforce measure.
- Emergency Removal
The College can act to remove a student Respondent entirely or partially from its education program or activities on an emergency basis when an individualized safety and risk analysis has determined that an immediate threat to the physical health or safety of any student or other individual justifies removal.
This risk analysis is performed by the Title IX Coordinator in conjunction with the Campus Assessment Response and Education Team [also known as CARE] using its standard objective violence risk assessment procedures.
In all cases in which an emergency removal is imposed, the student will be given notice of the action and the option to request to meet with the Title IX Coordinator prior to such action/removal being imposed, or as soon thereafter as reasonably possible, to show cause why the action/removal should not be implemented or should be modified.
This meeting is not a hearing on the merits of the allegation(s), but rather is an administrative process intended to determine solely whether the emergency removal is appropriate.
When this meeting is not requested [within 2 business days], objections to the emergency removal will be deemed waived.
A Complainant and their Advisor may be permitted to participate in this meeting if the Title IX Coordinator determines it is equitable to do so.
This section also applies to any restrictions that a coach or athletic administrator may place on a student-athlete arising from allegations related to Title IX. There is no appeal process for emergency removal decisions.
A Respondent may be accompanied by an Advisor of their choice when meeting with the Title IX Coordinator for the show cause meeting. The Respondent will be given access to a written summary of the basis for the emergency removal prior to the meeting to allow for adequate preparation.
The Title IX Coordinator has sole discretion under this policy to implement or stay an emergency removal and to determine the conditions and duration. Violation of an emergency removal under this policy will be grounds for discipline, which may include expulsion.
The Recipient will implement the least restrictive emergency actions possible in light of the circumstances and safety concerns. As determined by the Title IX Coordinator, these actions could include, but are not limited to: removing a student from a class, temporarily re-assigning an employee, restricting a student’s or employee’s access to or use of facilities or equipment, allowing a student to withdraw or take grades of incomplete without financial penalty, authorizing an administrative leave, and suspending a student’s participation in extracurricular activities, student employment, student organizational leadership, or intercollegiate/intramural athletics.
At the discretion of the Title IX Coordinator, alternative coursework options may be pursued to ensure as minimal an academic impact as possible on the parties.
Where the Respondent is an employee, existing provisions for interim action are applicable.
The College resolves sexual misconduct complaints in one of two ways:
Informal Resolution – includes a variety of informal options for resolving reports. This option must be mutually agreed to by both parties. This option will not be used for cases that involve sexual assault or violence.
Investigation and Formal Resolution – includes an investigation, review, live hearing, outcome determination, and sanctions, if applicable.
- Informal Resolution
The process may be used at any point prior to reaching a determination of responsibility as long as a formal complaint has been filed. The College may use mediation or other informal mechanisms for resolving complaints related to a complaint alleging violation of this policy if:
- All parties provide voluntary, written consent to use informal process;
- The College participates in the informal resolution by providing trained staff;
- The alleged misconduct does not involve sexual assault, sexual violence, or sexual coercion; and
- All parties are provided with a written notice that includes:
- The allegations.
- The requirements of the informal resolution process including the circumstances under which it precludes the parties from resuming a formal complaint arising from the same allegations.
- At any time prior to agreeing to a resolution, the right of any party to withdraw from the informal resolution process and resume the grievance process with respect to the formal complaint.
- Any consequences resulting from participating in the informal resolution process, including the records that will be maintained or could be shared.
- Investigation of a Formal Complaint
An investigation/formal resolution begins with the filing of a formal complaint signed by the Complainant or Title IX Coordinator.
The College shall initiate a prompt, thorough, and impartial Investigation to gather relevant information. Any subsequent disciplinary proceedings and resolutions shall be prompt and equitable and provide an opportunity for the Complainant and Respondent to be heard.
Investigations involve interviews with all relevant parties and witnesses; obtaining available, relevant evidence; and identifying sources of information, as necessary. All parties have a full and fair opportunity, through the investigation process, to suggest witnesses and questions, to provide evidence, and to fully review and respond to all evidence, on the record.
A Notice of Investigation will be issued to both parties within ten (10) business days upon determination by the Title IX Coordinator that the alleged offense is within scope of the Policy and will include the following:
- Summary of the allegation, including time, date, and location of the alleged violation;
- Potential violation(s) of the Sexual Misconduct policy;
- List of possible sanctions that may be imposed upon a finding that a violation has occurred;
- The identity of the Investigator(s);
- Available College and community resources and services;
- Invitation for both parties to submit a written statement and identify any third-party witnesses with information relevant to the complaint;
- The rights and responsibilities of each party:
- statement that the respondent is presumed not responsible for the alleged conduct until a determination regarding responsibility is made at the conclusion of the formal resolution process;
- a statement that the parties may request to see and review evidence collected in an investigation.
- The right to a Support Person/Advisor, and the roles of such persons;
- Availability and possibility of criminal and civil court options;
- An outline of the process, including the contact information for the investigator and any required meetings that may be required; and
- The College’s prohibition against retaliation.
The Investigation will be conducted by an investigator(s) (internal or external) who is trained on issues of sexual misconduct, the definition of sexual harassment, and conducting a neutral investigation free of bias or any conflict of interest.
An investigation typically contains the following elements:
- Commence a thorough, reliable, and impartial investigation by identifying issues and developing a strategic investigation plan, including a witness list, evidence list, intended investigation timeframe, and order of interviews for all witnesses and the respondent.
- Complete the investigation promptly and without unreasonable deviation from the intended timeline.
- Conduct interviews with the Complainant and Respondent to gather facts about the allegation.
- Allow each party the opportunity to suggest witnesses and offer potential questions to consider asking to help uncover relevant facts related to the allegation.
- Interview all available relevant witnesses and conduct follow-up interviews as necessary.
- If and when additional material alterations to allegations arise, communicate this promptly to the parties. This notice will provide the parties with a summary of the additions to alterations of the allegations, as well as any changes to the policies implicated.
- Provide the parties and witnesses an opportunity to review and verify the investigator’s summary notes from their respective interviews and meetings.
- Write a comprehensive investigation report fully summarizing the investigation, all witness interviews, and addressing all relevant evidence, copies of which are to be included in an appendix to the report.
- At the conclusion of the investigation, provide the parties and their respective advisors (if so desired by the parties) a copy of the draft investigation report.
- Provide the parties with an equal opportunity to inspect and review the evidence obtained as part of the investigation that is directly related to the reported misconduct, including evidence upon which the College does not intend to rely in reaching a responsibility determination, so that each party may meaningfully respond to the evidence
- Provide each party with a full and fair opportunity (no fewer than 10 business days) to respond to the draft investigation report in writing. Extensions may be granted in rare and unusual circumstances.
- Incorporate relevant elements of the parties’ written responses into the final investigation report, make any changes needed, and finalize the report. The final report is then shared with all parties.
- No unauthorized audio or video recording of any kind is permitted during investigation meetings. If investigator(s) elect to audio and/or video record interviews, all involved parties must be made aware of the audio and/or video recording.
The College may dismiss the formal complaint or any allegations therein if at any time during the investigation or hearing: a complainant notifies the Title IX Coordinator in writing that the complainant would like to withdraw the formal complaint or any allegations therein or the respondent is no longer enrolled or employed by the recipient.
Upon a dismissal, the College must promptly send written notice of the dismissal and reason(s) therefor simultaneously to the parties.
- The Complainant and Respondent may have an advisor of their choice present with them for all meetings and interviews within the formal resolution process.
- The advisor may be a friend, mentor, family member, attorney, or any other individual a party chooses to advise and consult with them throughout the resolution process. The parties may choose advisors from inside or outside the Community College of Baltimore County community. The Title IX Coordinator can offer to assign a trained advisor to serve upon the written request of either party. The parties may choose their advisor individually or proceed without an advisor.
- The parties may be accompanied by their advisor in all meetings and interviews at which the party is entitled to be present, including intake and interviews. Advisors should help their advisees prepare for each meeting and are expected to advise ethically, with integrity, and in good faith.
- The Community College of Baltimore County cannot guarantee equal advisory rights, meaning that if one party selects an advisor who is an attorney, but the other party does not, or cannot afford an attorney, the College is not obligated to provide an attorney. The College will, however, provide a party with an advisor (upon written request), selected by the Title IX Coordinator from the pool. A College-appointed advisor is trained on the institutional process and how to conduct appropriate cross-examination during the hearing. The advisor provided by the College is not an advocate or attorney and is not able to provide the same kinds of advice that an advocate or attorney is trained to provide, but will act in the best interests of their advisee.
- Student Right to Paid Counsel for College Disciplinary Proceedings involving Sexual Assault
- Maryland Law (Education Article of the Annotated Code of Maryland, §11-601) requires the Maryland Higher Education Commission (MHEC) to pay reasonable costs and attorney’s fees, subject to state funding and eligibility requirements, for:
- A current or former student who makes a complaint on which a formal Title IX investigation is initiated and who was enrolled as a student at the time of the incident that is the basis of the complaint, unless the student knowingly and voluntarily chooses not to have counsel; and
- A current or former student who responds to a complaint on which a formal Title IX investigation is initiated and who was enrolled as a student at the time of the incident that is the basis of the complaint, unless the student knowingly and voluntarily chooses not to have counsel.
- In consultation with State and local bar associations and legal services providers with expertise about sexual misconduct, MHEC will develop a list of attorneys and legal services programs willing to represent students on a pro bono (no cost to the student) basis or at fees equivalent to those paid to attorneys under civil legal services programs administered by the Maryland Legal Services Corporation.
- A student may select an attorney from the list developed by MHEC to assist them throughout any disciplinary proceedings.
- If a student selects and retains an attorney who is not on the list developed by MHEC, MHEC will pay fees to the attorney selected by the student that are equivalent to those paid to attorneys under civil legal services programs administered by the Maryland Legal Services Corporation.
- MHEC is not required to pay a student’s attorney fees for representation in a criminal or civil matter.
- The College may not discourage a student from retaining an attorney.
- The student right to counsel will not prohibit the College from imposing interim safety measures.
- All advisors are subject to the same College rules. The parties are expected to ask and respond to questions on their own behalf throughout the investigation. While the advisor generally may not speak on behalf of their advisee, the advisor may consult with their advisee, either privately as needed, or quietly by passing notes during any resolution process meeting or interview, as long as they do not disrupt the process. For longer or more involved discussions, the parties and their advisors should ask for breaks to step out of meetings to allow for private consultation.
- Advisors may be given an opportunity to meet with the administrative officials conducting interviews/meetings in advance of these interviews or meetings, upon request. This pre-meeting allows advisors to clarify any questions they may have, and allows the College an opportunity to clarify the role the advisor is expected to take.
- Advisors are expected to refrain from interference with the College’s investigation and resolution. Any advisor who interferes with or obstructs the investigation and resolution process, or otherwise disregards the parameters set forth in this procedure, will be warned once and only once. If the advisor continues to disrupt or otherwise fails to respect the limits of the advisor role, the advisor will be asked to leave the meeting. When an advisor is removed from a meeting, that meeting will typically continue without the advisor present. Subsequently, the Title IX Coordinator will determine whether the advisor may be reinstated or replaced by a different advisor.
- The College expects that the parties may wish to have the College share documentation and evidentiary information related to the allegations with their advisors. Parties may share this information directly with their advisor, or other individuals if they wish. Doing so may help the parties participate more meaningfully in the resolution process. The College also provides a consent form that authorizes the College to share such information directly with the advisor. The parties must either complete this form before the College is able to share records with an advisor. A party may not request that communication be made through their advisor.
- Advisors are expected to maintain the privacy of the records shared with them. These records may not be shared with third parties, disclosed publicly, or used for purposes not explicitly authorized by the College. The College may seek to restrict the role of any advisor who does not respect the sensitive nature of the process or who fails to abide by the Institution’s privacy expectations.
- The College expects an advisor to adjust their schedule to allow them to attend College meetings when planned. The College does not typically change scheduled meetings to accommodate an advisor’s inability to attend. The College will, however, make reasonable provisions to allow an advisor who cannot attend in person to attend a meeting by telephone, video conferencing, or other similar technologies as may be convenient and available.
- A party may elect to change advisors during the process, and is not obligated to use the same advisor throughout. The parties are expected to inform the investigators of the identity of their advisor at least one (1) day before the date of their first meeting with investigators (or as soon as possible if a more expeditious meeting is necessary or desired). The parties are expected to provide timely notice to investigators if they change advisors at any time.
- For parties who are entitled to union representation, the College will allow the unionized employee to have their union representative (if requested by the party) as well as an advisor of their choice present for all resolution-related meetings and interviews. To uphold the principles of equity, when at least one of the parties requests union representation, they are entitled to a non-union representative as well. In such cases, the other party (regardless of union membership) will be permitted to have two advisors. Witnesses are not permitted to have union representation or advisors in resolution process interviews or meetings. Advisor(s) generally may not speak on behalf of their advisee, the advisor may consult with their advisee, either privately as needed, or quietly by passing notes during any resolution process meeting or interview, as long as they do not disrupt the process. For longer or more involved discussions, the parties and their advisors should ask for breaks to step out of meetings to allow for private consultation.
- Role and Participation of Witnesses
- Witnesses (as distinguished from the parties) who are faculty, students, or staff of the College are expected to cooperate with and participate in the College’s investigation and resolution process.
- While in-person interviews for both parties and all potential witnesses are ideal, circumstances (e.g. study abroad, summer break) may require individuals to be interviewed remotely using technology.
- Assurances to Persons Involved, Safeguarding of Privacy
All individuals, including the Complainant, the Respondent, and any Third-Party Witnesses, will be treated with appropriate sensitivity and respect. The Investigator will safeguard the privacy of the individuals involved in a manner consistent with law and College policy and the need to investigate the matter.
- Consolidation of Investigations
At the discretion of the Title IX Coordinator, multiple reports may be consolidated against a Respondent(s) in one Investigation, if the evidence related to each incident would be relevant and probative in reaching a determination on the other incident.
- Adjudication Process
Provided that the contested allegations are not resolved through Informal Resolution, the Title IX Coordinator will refer the matter for a hearing at least ten (10) business days of the conclusion of the investigation, barring unusual circumstances.
- Notice of Hearing
- At least 10-business days prior to the hearing, or as far in advance as is reasonably possible if an accelerated hearing is scheduled with the consent of the parties, the Hearing Officer will send a letter of notice to the parties. Once mailed, emailed, and/or received in-person, notice will be presumptively delivered. The letter will contain:
- A description of the alleged violation(s), a list of all policies allegedly violated, a description of the applicable procedures, and a statement of the potential sanctions/responsive actions that could result.
- The time, date, and location of the hearing and a reminder of the importance of their attendance, superseding all other campus activities. If any party does not appear at the scheduled hearing, the hearing will be held in their absence. For compelling reasons, the Hearing Officer may reschedule the hearing. (Failure of any individual to attend will result in exclusion of that person’s testimony from consideration in the hearing)
- Notification that the parties may have the assistance of an advisor of their choosing at the hearing (See Section on “Advisors” above). If any party does not have an advisor, the Title IX Coordinator will appoint one from the Pool.
- The Hearing Officer, after consultation with the parties as necessary, will provide the names of witnesses who will be participating in the hearing, all pertinent documentary evidence, and the investigation report between the parties at least ten (10) business days prior to the hearing. Any witness scheduled to participate in the hearing must have been interviewed first by investigators [or have proffered a written statement], unless all parties consent to the witness’ participation in the hearing.
- The parties will be provided the names of the Hearing Officer at least ten (10) business days in advance of the hearing. All objections to the Hearing Officer must be raised in writing and submitted to the Title IX Coordinator as soon as possible. The Hearing Officer will only be removed if the Title IX Coordinator concludes that the Hearing Officer’s bias or conflict of interest precludes an impartial hearing of the allegation.
- Requests for a live hearing to occur with the parties located in separate rooms using technology that enables the Decision-maker(s) and parties to see and hear a party or witness answering questions must be made, in writing, to the Title IX Coordinator at least five (5) business days prior to the hearing.
M. Evidentiary Considerations
- Except for the evidentiary prohibitions set forth below any evidence that the Hearing Officer believes is relevant and credible may be considered, including an individual’s prior misconduct history, as well as evidence indicating a pattern of misconduct. When prior misconduct is related to the current allegations, the prior misconduct may be considered at the findings stage of the process; unrelated prior misconduct (e.g. alcohol abuse) will only be considered during sanctioning. The Hearing Officer may exclude irrelevant or immaterial evidence and may choose to disregard evidence lacking in credibility or that is improperly prejudicial.
- While previous conduct violations by the respondent are not generally admissible as information supporting the current allegation, the investigator(s) may supply the Hearing Officer with information about previous good faith allegations and/or findings, when that information suggests potential pattern and/or predatory conduct.
- Previous disciplinary action of any kind involving the respondent may be considered in determining the appropriate sanction, because the Institution uses a progressive discipline system.
- The Hearing Officer renders a determination based on [the preponderance of the evidence, i.e., whether it is more likely than not that the respondent violated policy.
N. Evidentiary Prohibitions
- The Hearing Officer shall not consider certain evidence, including:
- Questions and evidence about the Complainant’s sexual predisposition or prior sexual behavior. Such questions and evidence are not relevant, unless such questions and evidence about the Complainant’s prior sexual behavior are offered to prove that someone other than the respondent committed the conduct alleged by the complainant, or if the questions and evidence concern specific incidents of the complainant’s prior sexual behavior with respect to the respondent and are offered to prove consent.
- The Complainant or Respondent’s history of mental health counseling, treatment, or diagnosis, unless the Complainant or Respondent consents.
O. Hearing Procedures
- Hearings will usually be convened at least 10-business days from the completion of the final investigative report and will be conducted in private. Participants will include the Hearing Officer, investigator(s) who conducted the investigation, the Complainant and Respondent organizational representatives when an organization is the respondent), advisors and support person to the parties (the parties may have up to two people present, one advisor and one support person), and any called relevant incident witnesses.
- At the discretion of the Title IX Coordinator, A live hearing can occur with the parties located in separate rooms/at a distance using technology that enables the Decision-maker(s) and parties to see and hear a party or witness answering questions.
- General Order of the Hearing:
- Introductions facilitated by the Hearing Officer
- Reading of the alleged violations and Plea from the Respondent(s)
- Presentation of the Investigation Report
- Direct Cross Examination of the Investigator
- Presentation of the respondent
- Direct Cross Examination of the Respondent
- Presentation of Witness(es)- Order to be determined by the Hearing Officer
- Direct Cross Examination of the Witness(es)
- Closing statement of the Investigator(s)
- Closing statement of the respondent
- Final comment from the Hearing Officer
- Investigator Presents the Report
- The Investigator(s) will then present a summary of the final investigation report, including items that are contested and those that are not, and will be subject to questioning by the Decision-maker(s) and the parties (through their Advisors). The Investigator(s) will be present during the entire hearing process, but not during deliberations.
- Neither the parties nor the Decision-maker(s) should ask the Investigator(s) their opinions on credibility, recommended findings, or determinations, and the Investigators, Advisors, and parties will refrain from discussion of or questions about these assessments. If such information is introduced, the Hearing Officer will direct that it be disregarded.
- Once the investigator(s) present their report and are questioned, the parties may provide relevant information in turn and the Hearing Officer will permit questioning of and by the parties Advisors (submitted to the Hearing Officer for approval).
- Participation in Hearing
- The Complainant and Respondent have the right to be present at the hearing. If, despite being notified of the date, time, and location of the hearing, any party is not in attendance, the hearing may proceed as described below. Neither party is required to participate in the hearing in order for the hearing to proceed. Investigators will be present, unless the Hearing Officer permits an absence under extenuating circumstances. If a witness does not appear for the hearing, their testimony will be excluded. If requested in advance (5 business days), arrangements can be made to participate via technology remotely.
- Questioning will be permitted of investigators, parties, and witnesses by the advisors to each party and the Hearing Officer, including cross examination contesting a party’s or witness’s credibility. Direct cross examination by the parties is prohibited; the party’s advisor must conduct the cross-examination on behalf of that party. If a party or witness refuses to answer questions or does not submit to cross-examination at the hearing, the decision-maker must not rely on any statement of that party or witness in reaching a determination regarding responsibility.
- The Hearing Officer has absolute discretion to determine which questions are relevant to the determination and may decline to permit certain questions.
- The Hearing Officer may direct that certain questions, once posed, are not appropriate and should not be answered. In such instances, the Hearing Officer will provide the questioning advisor with a rationale for their exclusion of the specific question(s). The Hearing Officer is responsible for ensuring that neither abusive nor inappropriate questioning occurs. The Hearing Officer will explain, on the record, the reason any question has been determined not appropriate to be answered.
- The Hearing Officer may consult with the College’s General Counsel, when needed, to help to assess the appropriateness of specific questions. If any party or advisor is disrespectful of or disruptive to the proceedings, the Hearing Officer will take actions they deem appropriate to preserve appropriate decorum.
- Evidence Presented at the Hearing
- Formal rules of evidence do not apply. Any evidence that the Hearing Officer believes is relevant and credible may be considered, except for the prohibitions stated in this policy. The Hearing Officer is responsible for addressing any evidentiary concerns prior to and/or during the hearing, may exclude irrelevant or immaterial evidence, and may disregard evidence lacking in credibility or that is improperly prejudicial. The Hearing Officer will determine all questions of procedure and evidence. Anyone appearing at the hearing to provide information will respond to questions on their own behalf. An advisor is not permitted to answer questions on behalf of the party.
- Unless the Hearing Officer determines it is appropriate, no one will present information or raise questions concerning: (1) incidents not directly related to the possible violation, unless they evidence a pattern, (2) the sexual history of the parties (though there may be a limited exception with respect to pattern, the sexual history between the parties, or where evidence regarding the Complainant’s sexual history is offered to prove that someone other than the Respondent engaged in the reported misconduct), if relevant, (3) or the character of the parties. While previous conduct violations by the respondent are not generally admissible as information about the present allegation, the investigators may supply the Hearing Officer with information about previous findings to consider as possible evidence of pattern and/or predatory conduct.
- There will be no observers in the hearing unless an exception is granted by the Hearing Officer. The Hearing Officer will allow witnesses who have relevant information to attend only the portion of the hearing where that witness is responding to specific questions from the Hearing Officer or the parties involved, and then be excused.
- In hearings involving more than one Respondent or in which two (2) or more complainant’s have accused the same individual of substantially similar conduct, the standard procedure will be to hear the allegations jointly; however, the Title IX Coordinator may permit the investigation and/or hearings pertinent to each Complainant to be conducted separately, if there is a compelling reason to do so. In joint hearings, separate determinations of responsibility will be made for each Respondent.
- Hearings (except for deliberations) are recorded for purposes of review in the event of an appeal. The parties may not record the proceedings and no other unauthorized recordings are permitted. The Hearing Officer, the parties, their advisors and appropriate administrative officers of the College will be allowed to listen to the recording in a controlled environment determined by the Title IX Coordinator. No person will be given or be allowed to make a copy of the recording without permission of the Title IX Coordinator.
- Deliberation and Determination of Outcome
- The Hearing Officer will deliberate in closed session to determine whether the respondent is responsible or not responsible for the policy violation(s) in question. The Hearing Officer will base the determination(s) on a [preponderance of the evidence] (i.e. whether it is more likely than not that the respondent committed each alleged violation).
- If the Hearing Officer concludes that there has been a violation of the College’s Sexual Misconduct Policy, the final determination and implementation of sanctions will be formulated in consultation with the Title IX Coordinator.
- Factors considered when determining a sanction/responsive action may include, but are not limited to:
- The nature, severity of, and circumstances surrounding the violation(s)
- The Respondent’s disciplinary history
- Previous allegations or allegations involving similar conduct
- The need for sanctions/responsive actions to bring an end to the sexual Harassment and/or retaliation
- The need for sanctions/responsive actions to prevent the future recurrence of sexual harassment and/or retaliation
- The need to remedy the effects of the sexual harassment and/or retaliation on the Complainant and the community
- The impact on the parties
- Any other information deemed relevant by the Decision-maker(s)
The sanctions will be implemented as soon as is feasible, either upon the outcome of any appeal or the expiration of the window to appeal without an appeal being requested.
The sanctions described in this policy are not exclusive of, and may be in addition to, other actions taken or sanctions imposed by external authorities.
P. Student Sanctions
The following are the usual sanctions that may be imposed upon students or organizations singly or in combination:
- Warning: A formal statement that the conduct was unacceptable and a warning that further violation of any CCBC policy, procedure, or directive will result in more severe sanctions/responsive actions.
- Required Counseling: A mandate to meet with and engage in external counseling to better comprehend the misconduct and its effects.
- Probation: A written reprimand for violation of institutional policy, providing for more severe disciplinary sanctions in the event that the student or organization is found in violation of any institutional policy, procedure, or directive within a specified period of time. Terms of the probation will be articulated and may include denial of specified social privileges, exclusion from co-curricular activities, exclusion from designated areas of campus, no-contact orders, and/or other measures deemed appropriate.
- Suspension: Termination of student status for a definite period of time not to exceed two years and/or until specific criteria are met. Students who return from suspension are automatically placed on probation through the remainder of their tenure as a student at CCBC.
- Expulsion: Permanent termination of student status and revocation of rights to be on campus for any reason or to attend CCBC-sponsored events. This sanction will be noted permanently as a Conduct Expulsion on the student’s official transcript.
- Withholding Diploma: The College may withhold a student’s diploma for a specified period of time and/or deny a student participation in commencement activities if the student has an allegation pending or as a sanction if the student is found responsible for an alleged violation.
- Revocation of Degree: The College reserves the right to revoke a degree previously awarded from the College for fraud, misrepresentation, and/or other violation of CCBC policies, procedures, or directives in obtaining the degree, or for other serious violations committed by a student prior to graduation.
- Other Actions: In addition to or in place of the above sanctions, the College may assign any other sanctions as deemed appropriate.
- Employee Sanctions/Responsive Actions
Responsive actions for an employee who has engaged in harassment and/or retaliation include:
- Warning – Verbal or Written
- Performance Improvement Plan/Management Process
- Enhanced supervision, observation, or review
- Required Counseling
- Required Training or Education
- Denial of Pay Increase/Pay Grade
- Loss of Oversight or Supervisory Responsibility
- Delay of tenure track progress
- Assignment to new supervisor
- Restriction of stipends, research, and/or professional development resources
- Suspension with pay
- Suspension without pay
- Other Actions: In addition to or in place of the above sanctions/responsive actions, the College may assign any other responsive actions as deemed appropriate.
- Withdrawal or Resignation While Charges Pending
- Students: If a student has an allegation pending for violation of the Policy, the College may place a hold on a student’s ability to graduate and/or to receive an official transcript/diploma.
Should a student decide to not participate in the resolution process, the process proceeds absent their participation to a reasonable resolution. Should a student Respondent permanently withdraw from the College, the resolution process ends, as the College no longer has disciplinary jurisdiction over the withdrawn student.
However, the College will continue to address and remedy any systemic issues, variables that may have contributed to the alleged violation(s), and any ongoing effects of the alleged sexual harassment and/or retaliation. The student who withdraws or leaves while the process is pending may not return to the College. Such exclusion applies to all campuses of CCBC. A hold will be placed on their ability to be readmitted. They may also be barred from CCBC property and/or events.
If the student Respondent only withdraws or takes a leave for a specified period of time (e.g., one semester or term), the resolution process may continue remotely and that student is not permitted to return to CCBC unless and until all sanctions have been satisfied.
Employees: Should an employee Respondent resign with unresolved allegations pending, the resolution process ends, as the College no longer has disciplinary jurisdiction over the resigned employee.
However, the College will continue to address and remedy any systemic issues, variables that contributed to the alleged violation(s), and any ongoing effects of the alleged harassment or retaliation.
The employee who resigns with unresolved allegations pending is not eligible for rehire with the College and the records retained by the Title IX Coordinator will reflect that status.
All College responses to future inquiries regarding employment references for that individual will include that the former employee resigned during a pending disciplinary matter.
- Notice of Outcome
- The Hearing Officer, will prepare a letter of outcome (report of findings) and will share the letter with the parties, including the final determination and applicable sanction(s), within five (5) business days of concluding the hearing. The letter of outcome will be shared with the parties without significant time delay between notifications. Notification will be made in writing and delivered by US mail to the local or permanent address of the parties as indicated in BANNER and emailed to the parties’ Institution-issued email account. Once sent, notice will be presumptively delivered. The letter of outcome/Final report of findings will contain the following information:
- Identify the specific policy(ies) reported to have been violated, including the relevant policy section;
- A description of the procedural steps taken by the College from the receipt of the misconduct report to the determination, including any and all notifications to the parties, interviews with parties, and witnesses, site visits, methods used to obtain evidence, and hearings held.
- Specify the finding on each alleged policy violation; the findings of fact that support the determination; conclusions regarding the application of the relevant policy to the facts at issue; a statement of, and rationale for, the result of each allegation to the extent the College is permitted to share such information under state or federal law;
- Any corrective actions issued which the College is permitted to share according to state or federal law; and any remedies provided to the complainant designed to ensure access to the College’s educational program or activity, to the extent the College is permitted to share such information under state or federal law; and
- The notification will also include information on when the results are considered by the College to be final, any changes that occur prior to finalization, and the relevant procedures and bases for any appeals options that are available.
- The Complainant or the Respondent can appeal the findings of the hearing within ten (10) business days after receiving the final report.
- The grounds for appeal are limited to:
- Procedural irregularity that affected the outcome of the matter;
- New evidence that was not reasonably available at the time the determination regarding responsibility or dismissal was made, that could affect the outcome of the matter; and
- The Title IX Coordinator, Investigator(s), or Decision-maker(s) had a conflict of interest or bias for or against Complainants or Respondents generally or the specific Complainant or Respondent that affected the outcome of the matter.
If any of the grounds in the Request for Appeal do not meet the grounds in this Policy, that request will be denied by the Appeal Chair and the parties and their Advisors will be notified in writing of the denial and the rationale.
A written request must be sent to the Title IX Coordinator;
- Appeal Considerations
- Decisions on appeal are to be deferential to the original decision, making changes to the finding only when there is clear error and to the sanction(s)/responsive action(s) only if there is a compelling justification to do so.
- Appeals are not intended to provide for a full re-hearing (de novo) of the allegation(s). In most cases, appeals are confined to a review of the written documentation or record of the original hearing and pertinent documentation regarding the specific grounds for appeal.
- An appeal is not an opportunity for Appeal Decision-makers to substitute their judgment for that of the original Decision-maker(s) merely because they disagree with the finding and/or sanction(s).
- The Appeal Decision-maker(s) may consult with the Title IX Coordinator on questions of procedure or rationale, for clarification, if needed. Documentation of all such consultation will be maintained.
- Appeals granted based on new evidence should normally be remanded to the original Investigator(s) and/or Decision-maker(s) for reconsideration. Other appeals may be remanded at the discretion of the Title IX Coordinator or, in limited circumstances, decided on appeal.
- The Sexual Misconduct Appeal Officer may make one of the following findings:
- Uphold the original decision and findings;
- Modify the sanction(s) (increase or decrease);
- Remand the case back to the Hearing Officer(s) for re-consideration with comments;
- Request a new Hearing or Investigation
Once an appeal is decided, the outcome is final: further appeals are not permitted, even if a decision or sanction is changed on remand (except in the case of a new hearing).
In rare cases where a procedural or substantive error cannot be cured by the original Decision-maker(s) the appeal may order a new hearing with a new Decision-maker(s).
The results of a remand to a Decision-maker(s) cannot be appealed. The results of a new hearing can be appealed, once, on any of the three available appeal grounds.
In cases in which the appeal results in reinstatement to the College or resumption of privileges, all reasonable attempts will be made to restore the Respondent to their prior status, recognizing that some opportunities lost may be irreparable in the short term.
- Notice of Final Outcomes
- Within Ten (10) business days after the Appeal Officer receives the appeal, the Appeal Officer shall issue a final written determination. The written determination of the Appeal Officer shall be final and will be forwarded simultaneously to the Complainant, Respondent, and the Title IX Coordinator.
- Disabilities Accommodations in the Resolution Process
CCBC is committed to providing reasonable accommodations and support to qualified students, employees, or others with disabilities to ensure equal access to the College’s resolution process.
Anyone needing such accommodations or support should contact the Director of Disability Services or Appropriate HR individual if an employee, who will review the request and, in consultation with the person requesting the accommodation and the Title IX Coordinator, determine which accommodations are appropriate and necessary for full participation in the process.
- Revision of this Policy and Procedures
- This Policy and procedures supersede any previous policy(ies) addressing harassment, sexual misconduct and/or retaliation under Title IX and will be reviewed and updated annually by the Title IX Coordinator. The College reserves the right to make changes to this document as necessary, and once those changes are posted online, they are in effect.
- During the resolution process, the Title IX Coordinator may make minor modifications to procedures that do not materially jeopardize the fairness owed to any party, such as to accommodate summer schedules. The Title IX Coordinator may also vary procedures materially with notice (on the institutional website, with the appropriate effective date identified) upon determining that changes to law or regulation require policy or procedural alterations not reflected in this Policy and procedures.
- If government laws or regulations change – or court decisions alter – the requirements in a way that impacts this document, this document will be construed to comply with the most recent government regulations or holdings.
- This document does not create legally enforceable protections beyond the protection of the background state and federal laws which frame such policies and codes, generally.
The above Policy and procedures are effective August 14, 2020.
INFORMATION CONCERNING REGISTERED SEX OFFENDERS
As required by the Campus Sex Crimes Prevention Act, the college community is advised that law enforcement agency information provided by the State of Maryland concerning registered sex offenders may be obtained at the following web site: http://www.dpscs.state.md.us/onlineservs/sor/. In addition, the Baltimore County Police Department provides CCBC’s Office of Public Safety with notice of registered child sex offenders who reside in Baltimore County. This information is available for review upon request by all members of the college community.
In pending cases that could result in suspension or expulsion, a temporary encumbrance will normally be placed on a student’s records by the Director of Student Conduct or designee. Permanent notation of disciplinary action will be made on the transcript whenever a student is expelled.