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2021-2022 Lee College Catalog

Student Complaints

Student Complaints/Grievances

 

Lee College is here to assist students with any issue or concern that impedes the learning environment within our campus community.

 

To assist students, the college has designated employees and resources to help maintain professional standards across campus and provide appropriate responses to students' complaints and concerns.

 

Students are encouraged to report through an online form (https://www.lee.edu/online-reporting/) The three types of complaints are:

  • General Complaints — These include both instructional and non-instructional issues (see below for more information).
  • Title IX / Sexual Misconduct complaints — If you have been impacted by any type of sexual harassment or sexual violence, you are encouraged to report this to the Title IX Coordinator. More information on this reporting process can be found at lee.edu/titleix.
  • Bias/Discrimination Complaints - If you have been the target of a bias incident (or have witnessed a bias incident), you should complete the online report form so the college will be aware and can investigate. You have the option to remain anonymous. For more information, contact the Chief Equity Officer, Dr. Victoria Marron at vmarron@lee.edu.

 

INSTRUCTIONAL, NON-INSTRUCTIONAL AND BIAS DISCRIMINATION COMPLAINTS

 

This section covers both instructional and non-instructional complaints as outlined in Board Policy (FLD Local)and complaints based on discrimination or bias (FFDB Local). For complaints about course grades, students must first seek resolution with the instructor who issued the grade for the course.

https://www.lee.edu/online-reporting/

 

Informal Complaint Resolution

The informal resolution attempts to resolve issues regarding college policies, procedures, or personnel as they occur. Within 10 working days of an incident, students should meet with instructors or staff with whom they have a concern or complaint to seek resolution. If the concern is with another student, the student should meet with the Associate Dean, Testing & Student Life. Throughout the informal process, students should record dates and times of meetings with individuals, keep a brief account of the meetings, and collect any written documents that they may receive.

For issues not resolved with an informal resolution, the student may submit a written statement to initiate the formal complaint by completing the online report form for general complaints (instructional or non-instructional) or the online bias report form for issues related to bias or discrimination. 

 

All members of the public have a right to bring concerns to the Board of Regents. Students desiring to address the Board at a regular Board meeting during the public comment section should complete the form located on the public comment registration table at the meeting and provide it to the recording secretary prior to the start of the meeting. The Board will listen to concerns and hear petitions during public comments but will not negotiate or respond to complaints. 

 

Written Statement

The written statement is defined as one submitted directly to the appropriate administrator or through the online report portal. The report contains the student's name, ID number, contact information and a description of the complaint. Students should also include dates of meetings with college personnel that were held during the informal resolution process. Evidence and copies of supporting documentation should be submitted with the written statement which may include e-mails, letters, or the course syllabus. In cases where absences are part of the consideration, documentation from medical personnel or others in authority may be included. Students are encouraged to suggest a resolution or remedy. Students should keep copies of all materials submitted for consideration.

 

For complaints related to discrimination, the Chief Equity Officer will review the allegations and determine if the behavior (if substantiated) constitutes a violation of our bias policy.  If there is a possible violation, the issue will be investigated by either the Chief Equity Officer or a designee. If the allegations do not constitute a violation of the Bias Policy, the issue will be addressed through the appropriate policy (such as a general complaint or student conduct) or the issue may be resolved informally

 

Formal Complaint Process

Level 1

With the submission of a formal complaint through the online portal, the appropriate college administrator will review the concern and will provide a resolution to the issue within 10 working days. For instructional issues, a review will be conducted by the Division Chair. For non-instructional issues, the issue will be forwarded to the supervisor of the department for which the complaint is made.

 

For complaints regarding bias or discrimination, an investigation will be conducted. The College will provide interim action to protect the student while the investigation is being conducted if necessary. If the results of the investigation indicate that the policy was violated, the College will respond promptly with corrective or disciplinary action.

 

Level 2

If the outcome of the review at Level 1 is not to the student's satisfaction, the student may, within 10 working days request a review of the complaint with the appropriate college administrator. With the use of the online portal, information from Level 1 will be documented. If the student did not use the online system, he or she should present information including the written complaints and any evidence in its support, the solution sought, the date of the meeting with the administrator at Level 1 and any response to the administrator's resolution. A resolution to the issue will be provided to the student within 10 working days.

 

Level 3

If the student is not satisfied with the resolution of Level Two, the student may, within 10 working days, appeal that decision.

  • For instructional complaints, the complaint will be heard by an academic appeals committee. The committee shall consist of two full-time faculty members, one from the applied science faculty and one from the academic faculty; and two students appointed by the Coordinator of Student Activities. Prior to the committee meeting and if needed, the student shall submit the written statement and the date of the conference with the AVP. The Associate Dean of Testing and Student Life (or designee) will preside over all committee hearings but has no vote except in the case of a tie. The decision of the academic appeals committee will be made within 10 working days. 
  • For non-instructional or bias/discrimination complaints, the student may, within 10 working days appeal the decision made at Level 2 to the college president or designee, Prior to the conference and if needed, the student will submit the written statement and other information gathered at previous levels. The college president or designee will provide a resolution within 10 working days. The decision made of the college president or designee is final.

 

Level 4

For instructional complaints, if the student is not satisfied with the resolution at Level 3 , the student may, within 10 working days, appeal that decision.

  • For instructional complaints, the student may, within 10 working days appeal the decision made at Level 3 to the college president or designee, Prior to the conference and if needed, the student will submit the written statement and other information gathered at previous levels. The college president or designee will provide a resolution within 10 working days. The decision made of the college president or designee is final.

 

Academic Appeals Committee

With the Academic Appeals Committee, students will have the opportunity to explain their position that was submitted in the written appeals statement that included supporting evidence and to respond to or ask questions. Formal rules of evidence will not apply, and the committee may request additional information or evidence.

 

Advisor: Students and Lee College employees may choose to have one advisor present who is not a witness. Although advisors may not participate in the proceeding, students and employees may confer with their advisors during the proceedings. If the student chooses an attorney for an advisor, both the employee and the college may elect to have an attorney present. Five working days prior to the appeals meeting, students must notify the Appeals Committee chairperson in writing by the end of the business day if an attorney will serve as an advisor to the student.

 

If students or employees want to have the meeting recorded and transcribed, it is their responsibility to make arrangements for such documentation, notifying the chair no later than five working days prior to the appeals meeting.

 

Students may waive their right to be present at the appeals meeting by notifying the Appeals Committee chairperson in writing. Without written notice, if students or relevant employees do not attend the appeals meeting, the appeal process will end and the last decision regarding the appeal will be in effect.

Meeting protocol

  • The appeal meeting is not an open public meeting.
  • The appeal committee chairperson is responsible for establishing the purpose of the meeting and maintaining order.
  • The committee chairperson may set time limits for presentations.
  • Students will present their appeal and corresponding evidence (oral, written, tape) to support the written appeal statement.
  • Members of the committee may ask questions or seek clarification from students and/or Lee College employees.
  • Students may ask questions or seek clarification from Lee College employees.
  • Students may present an oral summary to the committee.
  • Members of the committee may request additional information, documents, or witnesses during the meeting. They may request additional meetings with students and/or Lee College employees.

Response to the Appeal

Within 10 working days of the appeals committee's decision, the chairperson of the Appeals Committee will respond in writing to the student and copy those named in the appeal.