Student Rights and Responsibilities

Smoking/Tobacco Use Policy

It is the policy of the Board of Trustees of Illinois Valley Community College to prohibit all use of tobacco in all IVCC buildings and vehicles.

Smoking is prohibited in all College-owned and leased vehicles.  This includes College cars, vans, shuttles, Facilities vehicles, and Shipping & Receiving vehicles.Smoking/use of tobacco is allowed only in designated areas outside the buildings in accordance with the Smoke Free Illinois Act.  Students in violation of smoking ordinances or other conduct violations may be ticketed and subject to the Student Code of Conduct for multiple offenses.  Penalties for violations of the student code of conduct may be found at catalog.ivcc.edu/studentservices/studenthandbook and may include oral or written reprimands, disciplinary probation, suspension, or expulsion.Violations by employees will be noted on the annual Employee Development Plan (EDP) or in the case of faculty on the appropriate pre- or post-tenure evaluation and review documentation.

Student Rights

Students of Illinois Valley Community College have the same rights accorded all citizens under the Constitution of the United States. Included among these are the right to free, open and responsible discussion and inquiry.

At  IVCC, we believe that students are entitled to expect a program of quality education provided by competent instructors. It is therefore the right of each IVCC student to:

  1. study any controversial issue with a political, economic or social significance
  2. have open access to all relevant information
  3. study under competent instructors in an atmosphere free of bias and prejudice
  4. form and express personal opinions on controversial issues without jeopardizing their relationship with their instructors or the College
  5. be treated fairly and with respect
  6. be accorded the best efforts of instructors, including access through regular office hour'

Student Academic Complaints

As members of the College community, students have the right to express their opinions as to the fair treatment of their academic achievement. Students who wish to dispute a grading matter, or another academic matter (e.g. violation of the plagiarism policy) related to their courses, shall express these concerns to the appropriate faculty member as follows:

  1. The student should discuss the matter with the faculty member in an informal manner.
  2. When feasible, the initial informal meeting between the student and faculty member should occur within five (5) class days (normally Monday through Friday when classes are in session) after notification of the grading matter or other academic matter by the instructor.
  3. If the complaint is not resolved after the informal discussion, the student may appeal informally (usually a conference), to the Dean of the faculty member involved. Where feasible, this appeal to the Dean should be made within five (5) class days of the informal discussion with the faculty member.
  4. If the nature of the complaint is personal, involving a faculty member directly and his/her behavior or demeanor, the student may appeal informally directly to the faculty member's Dean as outlined in item C above, bypassing the informal discussion directly with the faculty member. The student should understand that anonymity cannot and usually will not be protected.
  5. If the complaint is not resolved after the normal informal discussion, the student may appeal in writing to the Dean of the faculty member involved within five (5) class days after the informal discussion. In filing the written complaint, the student may request a meeting with the Dean.
  6. The Dean shall review the complaint and respond in writing to the student within five (5) class days after receiving the student's written statement.
  7. If the results of the Dean's review are unsatisfactory to the student, the student may appeal to the Vice President for Learning and Student Development within five (5) class days of receiving the written response of the dean. The student may request a meeting with the Vice President.
  8. The Vice President for Learning and Student Development shall issue a written response to the student within five (5) class days of receipt of the student's appeal.
  9. The decision of the Vice President for Learning and Student Development shall be considered final with regard to student academic complaints.

Student Non-Academic Complaints

The Vice President for Learning and Student Development shall be responsible for responding to complaints from students on non-academic (non classroom and grading) issues which would fall outside of the Student Code of Conduct (section VI following). The student is expected to initiate her/his complaint with the staff member immediately responsible for the area in which the problem occurred, in an effort to resolve the issue in an informal manner. If the issue is not resolved in an informal manner, the student may appeal the matter to the Vice President for Learning and Student Development. The decision of the Vice President for Learning and Student Development with regard to student non-academic complaints shall be considered final.

These issues include, but are not limited to:

  1. parking violations and towing
  2. refunds of tuition and fees
  3. admission, registration and records matters
  4. financial aid matters
  5. counseling matters
  6. job placement matters
  7. activities and athletics matters
  8. bookstore refunds

 

Sexual and Other Harassment

  1. Prohibition of Sexual and Other Harassment

    It is the policy of the Board of Trustees of Illinois Valley Community College to provide an educational and employment environment free from all forms of sexual and other harassment of employees, students and other individuals at any College facilities or in connection with any College activities. Retaliation for making a good faith complaint of harassment or for participating in a harassment investigation is also prohibited. Through this policy, it is the intent of the Board to comply with the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII), the Elementary and Secondary Schools Act of 1972 (Title IX), and the Illinois Human Rights Act. The IVCC Student Code of Conduct also prohibits harassment by students.

  2. Sexual harassment means:

    • Unwelcome sexual advances, or

    • Request for sexual favors, or

    • Any conduct of a sexual nature when

      1. submission to such conduct is made, either explicitly or implicitly, as a term or condition of employment or education, or

      2. submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as the basis for employment or education decisions affecting such individual, or

      3. such conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an individual's work or educational performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working or educational environment.

  3. Other harassment means:

    Conduct that has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with a reasonable individual's work or educational performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive working or educational environment when such conduct is directed at an individual because of race, national origin, disability, age, religion, sexual orientation or any legally protected classification.

  4. Harassment includes both physical and verbal conduct.

    Any conduct that actually creates a hostile environment for a reasonable person is included, as well as conduct that contributes to the creation of a hostile environment. The College will not tolerate any conduct that causes or contributes to the humiliation, embarrassment or discomfort of employees or students because of a protected status. Any sexual advance by a faculty member toward a student currently enrolled in one of his or her courses or by a student toward a faculty member, or any acceptance of an advance by a faculty member, may be considered sexual harassment under this policy and is prohibited. This prohibition also applies to College employees who coach, counsel, advise or otherwise supervise or instruct students and to the students with whom they work.
  5. Examples of harassment include:

  • A supervisor offers to give a favorable evaluation to an employee in exchange for sexual favors.

  • A faculty member threatens to give an unfavorable grade to a student if the student refuses to grant sexual favors.

  • A supervisor persistently criticizes and disparages a subordinate because of that person's gender.

  • An employee repeatedly directs unwelcome flirting, pressure for dates, sexual propositions or comments, or sexual touching toward a co-worker.

  • One or more students criticize, laugh at and disparage another student because of that student's disability.

Internal Complaint Procedure 

  1. Reporting Harassment

    If a student or faculty member has a complaint about sexual or other harassment, he or she should report the matter to an appropriate Dean, Associate Vice President, or Vice President.  Student complaints may also be reported to the Associate Vice President for Student Services.  If an employee has a complaint about harassment, he or she should report the matter to his or her supervisor or to the Director of Human Resources.

    1. Investigation

      The Associate Vice President, Vice President, or Director of Human Resources or a designee will promptly investigate all complaints of harassment. The investigation will include making every reasonable effort to determine the facts pertinent to the complaint by interviewing all parties involved including the alleged harasser. If the accused is a College employee who is a member of a bargaining unit, the employee shall be entitled to union representation during the investigation. A hearing by the Associate Vice President, Vice President, or Director of Human Resources or a designee will be held before the investigation of an employee accused of harassment is concluded. At the conclusion of the investigation, a written report of findings will be prepared and forwarded to the President.

    2. Confidentiality

      To the extent possible given the need to conduct a thorough investigation, the confidentiality of all participants in an investigation will be protected. Information obtained during an investigation will be communicated only on a need-to-know basis. Requests not to investigate complaints cannot be honored.

    3. Corrective Action

      A finding of harassment will be followed by appropriate corrective action, which may include discipline up to and including discharge for employees and dismissal for students. Disciplinary action for employees will be imposed in accordance with applicable collective bargaining agreements and legal requirements. Disciplinary sanctions for students will be imposed by the Associate Vice President for Student Services in accordance with the IVCC Student Code of Conduct. Students may appeal suspension or dismissal to the Vice President for Learning and Student Development.

    4. External Complaints

      Individuals who believe they have been subjected to harassment are encouraged to take advantage of the College's complaint procedure. External complaints may be filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the Illinois Department of Human Rights and the Office of Civil Rights of the United States Department of Education. 

Domestic Violence and Stalking

Domestic Violence and Stalking Position Statement

Illinois Valley Community College is committed to providing a safe and secure learning and working environment for all students and staff members. IVCC Campus Security will assist local police with enforcing Restraining Orders, Orders of Protection, Civil No Contact Orders, and Stalking No Contact Orders. Any student found to be in violation of one of these orders will be subject to the Code of Conduct and may face suspension or expulsion from the college. Additional information can be found on the Student Right to Know website.

Student Responsibilities

Students are expected to conduct themselves as responsible members of the College community. Disruption of the educational process and violation of the rights of others constitutes irresponsible behavior. Specific responsibilities of IVCC students include, but are not limited to: Students are responsible for knowing and abiding by all College regulations along with federal, state and local statutes. Students in doubt about any particular matter should consult the Vice President for Learning and Student Development.

  1. attending class regularly as specified per class requirements and/or syllabus, and explaining reasons for absences to instructors
  2. exercising care of College equipment and facilities
  3. actions characterized by honesty
  4. treating all college personnel and fellow students fairly and with respect.

Academic Integrity

Academic Integrity is directly linked to the Core Values of Illinois Valley Community College, three of which are RESPONSIBILITY, RESPECT, and HONESTY. It is the RESPONSIBILITY of each student to RESPECT the academic integrity of each class/course by doing their own work and by refusing to assist others in deception. Academic dishonesty violates the academic integrity expected of all students. The Office of the Vice President for Learning and Student Development will keep a file of these submissions. When a student has been identified as committing an act of academic dishonesty twice, the Vice President for Learning and Student Development will conduct an investigation, which may include a formal hearing, and will recommend or impose appropriate discipline.

The purpose of this provision is to identify students who commit multiple acts of academic dishonesty in different courses, which the student might otherwise avoid. The assumption is that multiple acts constitute a more grievous offense than a single incident, which would constitute a learning experience for the student.

  1. Academic dishonesty is defined as, but is not limited to:
    1. CHEATING—using or attempting to use unauthorized materials, study aids, or information in any academic exercise, including copying from another person's work or preparing work for another person that is to be presented as the other person's own work.
    2. FABRICATION—furnishing false information to a College official relative to academic matters, including but not limited to, misrepresentation of written information provided in admission documents.
    3. PLAGIARISM—comes from the Latin word plagiare, which means "to steal." Therefore, plagiarism is a form of cheating. Plagiarism is defined as using the words or ideas of another as one's own either on purpose or unintentionally. This includes, but is not limited to, copying whole, portions or the paraphrasing (rewording) of passages or information from any source in any academic exercise (written or oral) without giving credit to the author or source using an appropriate citation style. Students must be able to prove that their work is their own.
    4. FACILITATING ACADEMIC DISHONESTY—helping or attempting to help another to violate any provision of this code.
  2. Academic dishonesty violates the Student Code of Conduct. The faculty member has full authority to identify academic dishonesty in his/her classroom and to impose any of the following sanctions:
    1. Failure of any assignment, quiz, test, examination or paper, project or oral presentation for the work in which the violation occurred.
    2. Lower grade.
    3. Involuntary withdrawal from the course.
    4. Failure of the course.
    5. The faculty member may report extreme cases of academic dishonesty (such as, but not limited to, collusion among a number of students, selling or providing papers or repeated violations of academic dishonesty, etc.) directly to the Vice President for Learning and Student Development for disciplinary action as outlined in Section VII, Disciplinary Process.
    6. Other sanctions as determined by the faculty member. The sanction will be put in writing and signed by the student, faculty member and the Dean.
  3. The instructor shall normally attempt to notify (if possible) the student within five (5) class days of identifying the act of dishonesty to discuss the applied sanction.
  4. Students have the right to appeal through the Vice President for Learning and Student Development's office as outlined in Section II, Student Academic Complaints.
  5. A student identified as responsible for academic dishonesty, as defined in section V-A above, may not withdraw from the course in an effort to avoid penalty.
  6. Each time a faculty member documents an incident of academic dishonesty, he/she will submit to the Vice President for Learning and Student Development's office the following information (in hard copy to protect student confidentiality): student name, class, date, description of incident and action by faculty and/or student, faculty signature. The faculty member will retain the documentation.

Student Code of Conduct

Discipline may be imposed whenever a student commits or attempts to commit any act of misconduct on the College campus, or at a sporting event, activity, function or other event sponsored or supervised by the College.

  1. Prohibited conduct includes, but is not limited to:
    1. Possession, use or distribution of an illegal or controlled substance or look-alike drug.
    2. Unauthorized and/or illegal possession, use or distribution of any alcoholic beverage.
    3. Theft of property or services.
    4. Intentional or willful and wanton destruction of property.
    5. Assault and/or battery.
    6. Conduct which constitutes harassment, sexual or otherwise, or abuse that threatens the mental well-being, health or safety of any individual, to include peer harassment of fellow students.
    7. Possession of a firearm or other weapon, dangerous chemical or explosive substance or device.
    8. Trespassing on College property or other unauthorized use of College property or services.
    9. Academic dishonesty (see also Section V, titled Academic Integrity). Such matters will be addressed by the Office of Academic Affairs.
    10. Disruption of the educational process or related activity.
    11. Failure to comply with the direction of an authorized College employee or representative who is performing her/his duties.
    12. Verbal abuse to any individual.
    13. Stalking any individual.
    14. Gambling.
    15. Unauthorized use of College phones or facsimile (fax) machines.
    16. Intentional willful or wanton tampering with computer equipment or networks, to include but are not limited to destruction of files, illegal or unauthorized file transfers or copying, introduction of a computer virus, unauthorized use of copying of copyrighted software, altering or attempting to alter official College computer records, accessing offensive Web sites, and malicious tampering, or any other violation of the computer use policies.
    17. Gang recruitment and/or activities.
    18. Any conduct which constitutes a violation of the terms of any discipline imposed in accordance with this procedure.
    19. Any conduct which constitutes a violation of a Federal or State law, local ordinance or College rule or regulation, including failure of a registered sex offender to register with campus security.
    20. Gross misconduct by any standard.

Disciplinary Process

Any person may initiate a complaint against a student for violation of the Code of Conduct by filing a written complaint with the Vice President for Learning and Student Development. The complaint shall describe the conduct which allegedly violates the Student Code of Conduct. It should be noted that the complaining person may also pursue civil action in the courts.

  1. The Vice President for Learning and Student Development will investigate the complaint and conduct a hearing. The Vice President may request the assistance of another College official in conducting or witnessing the hearing. The Vice President will call such witnesses, including the accused student, as deemed necessary to adjudicate the matter. The accused student may present witnesses.
  2. If in the opinion of the Vice President for Learning and Student Development a violation has occurred, he/she may administer sanctions. Sanctions applied will depend upon the severity of the offense and the student's previous conduct record. Disciplinary procedures and sanctions may be implemented with the assistance of other professional staff members as deemed necessary or appropriate by the Vice President for Learning and Student Development. Sanctions include one or a combination of the following:
    1. ADMONITION--An oral reprimand.
    2. WARNING--A written reprimand.
    3. CENSURE--A notice, written or spoken, stating that further misconduct will bring more serious action.
    4. DISCIPLINARY PROBATION--A written statement disqualifying the student for a specific time period from extracurricular or co-curricular activities.
    5. RESTITUTION--A written requirement that the student provide reimbursement for misappropriation or damage to College property, or that of an individual.
    6. SUSPENSION--Suspension of tuition waiver or scholarship.
  3. In applying the above sanctions, the decision of the Vice President for Learning and Student Development shall be considered final.
  4. College Suspension or Expulsion, when recommended by the Vice President for Learning and Student Development, shall require a due process hearing prior to being applied.
    1. COLLEGE SUSPENSION--A written notice of exclusion from the Campus, classes, privileges and College activities for a specified period of time.
    2. EXPULSION--A written termination of a student's status, as indicated for College suspension, for an indefinite period of time.

Athletics, Co-Curricular and Extra-Curricular Activities

Athletics, extra-curricular and co-curricular activities exist as an outlet in which students can develop leadership skills, human relationship skills, time management, team work, and provide service to others and to the College. Students who participate in College clubs, organizations, athletics, plays and concerts, the student newspaper, and organized academic competitions represent the College. As representatives of the College, those participating in College activities must recognize and accept the responsibility to uphold the very highest standards of behavior.

  1. If a student involved in College activities as specified engages in activity on campus or off which violates campus rules and regulations, state or federal laws, the student will be disciplined in an appropriate manner. In a case where the student is arrested for any offense specified in the Code of Conduct or an equally serious offense, the student may be suspended from participation in the activity until such time as the matter is adjudicated by the courts. If the student is found guilty, she/he may be suspended from participation in the activity for a number of events or for the balance of the year or season.
  2. The coach, faculty sponsor or director will discuss the circumstances surrounding the misconduct with the Vice President for Learning and Student Development. The Vice President will consider factors which might increase or decrease the severity of the actions in which the student was involved. The decision of the Vice President for Learning and Student Development shall be considered final, unless College Suspension or Dismissal is recommended.
  3. Nothing herein is designed or intended to limit any other reasonable rules or restrictions placed in force by a coach, director or sponsor. In addition, the coach, director or sponsor may take disciplinary action immediately, such as expulsion from a practice or performance, where it is necessary and appropriate.

Due Process Procedure for Students Recommended for College Suspension or Expulsion

A student who is recommended for college suspension or expulsion as a disciplinary sanction shall be entitled to a due process hearing according to the following process:

  1. The Vice President for Learning and Student Development shall send a notice to the student specifying the misconduct for which suspension or expulsion is being recommended.

  2. The notice will contain the notification as to the time, date and place of the hearing before the Faculty-Student Review Committee.
  3. The Faculty-Student Review Committee shall be composed of three (3) student representatives chosen by the Student Government Association and three (3) faculty chosen by the faculty. The committee shall be chaired by the Vice President for Learning and Student Development.
  4. If the Vice President for Learning and Student Development has reasonable cause to believe that danger will be present if the student is permitted on campus, the student may be immediately suspended pending the full hearing.
  5. If the student ignores or refuses to acknowledge the hearing, the hearing may proceed with the student in absentia.
  6. At the hearing, the student will be permitted to speak in his/her own behalf, to present any witnesses in his/her behalf, and to question any witnesses against him/her.
  7. The hearing before the Faculty-Student Review Committee is not subject to formal rules of evidence.
  8. Minutes of the proceeding will be taken and prepared, as well as audio tapes. These minutes and audio tapes shall be made available to the student as well as to succeeding levels of review, should an appeal be filed.
  9. Within five (5) class days of the hearing, the Committee will issue findings sustaining, overturning or modifying the sanction recommended by the Vice President for Learning and Student Development, to the President of the College.
  10. The student may appeal the findings of the Faculty-Student Review Committee by filing written notice with the Vice President for Learning and Student Development within five (5) class days of receipt of the Committee's findings.
  11. In the absence of an appeal filed within the time frame specified, the decision of the Faculty-Student Review Committee shall be automatically sustained and considered final.
  12. If appealed, the student will be informed within five (5) class days of receipt of the appeal, of the date, time and location of the hearing with the President of the College.
  13. The hearing with the President shall be scheduled within five (5) class days of the date of notification of appeal hearing to the student.
  14. On appeals to the President, or ultimately to the Board of Trustees, (Expulsion only) only the official record of the Review Committee and summary of evidence will be reviewed. No new evidence or testimony will be considered.
  15. The President shall issue her/his decision within five (5) class days of the hearing. The President may sustain, overturn or modify sanctions imposed by the Faculty-Student Review Committee.
  16. If the President sustains a recommendation of College Suspension, the decision of the President shall be considered final.
  17. A recommendation of Expulsion, if sustained by the President, may be appealed to the Board of Trustees.
  18. The final avenue of appeal, with regard to Expulsion, is the Board of Trustees of the College. The student must file with the President of the College within five (5) class days of the date of the notice of the President's findings, a written notice of intent to appeal to the Board of Trustees.
  19. Absence of an appeal of a decision of Expulsion within the time frame indicated will result in the decision of Expulsion being automatically sustained and considered final.
  20. The hearing before the Board of Trustees shall normally be scheduled for the next regularly scheduled board meeting.
  21. At the hearing before the Board of Trustees, the student may be assisted by counsel.
  22. The decision of the Board of Trustees sustaining, overturning, or modifying the decision of Expulsion shall be issued within five (5) class days of the Board meeting.
  23. The decision of the Board of Trustees is final.