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Sex Discrimination and Title IX Procedures

Sex Discrimination and Title IX Procedures

The following administrative procedures pertain to the Clark State Community College policy on sexual discrimination and Title IX approved by the board of trustees.

These procedures apply to sex discrimination complaints filed by Clark State Community College students or employees against other College employees, students, or third parties, regardless of the age of the complainant or respondent. They are meant to assist employees and students in understanding their rights and responsibilities under the current policy.

Romantic/Dating Relationships
The College’s educational mission is promoted by professionalism in faculty-student relationships. Professionalism is fostered by an atmosphere of mutual trust and respect. Actions of faculty members and students that harm this atmosphere undermine professionalism and hinder fulfillment of the College’s educational mission. Trust and respect are diminished when those in positions of authority abuse, or appear to abuse, their power.

Faculty members exercise professional responsibility and power over students. This faculty-over-student power is manifested primarily in the instructional context, which includes course work, advisorships, student evaluation, recommendations and similar processes.

Romantic/dating relationships between faculty members and students are wrong and unacceptable when the faculty member has professional responsibility for the student. Such situations greatly increase the chances that the faculty member will abuse his or her power and sexually exploit the student. Voluntary consent by the student in such a relationship is suspect given the fundamentally asymmetric nature of the relationship. Moreover, other students and faculty may be affected by such unprofessional behavior because it places the faculty member in a position to favor or advance one student’s interest at the expense of others and implicitly makes obtaining benefits contingent on amorous or sexual favors.

Therefore, the College will view it as unethical and unacceptable if faculty members engage in romantic/dating relationships (consensual or otherwise) with students enrolled in their classes or subject to their supervision even when both parties appear to have consented to the relationship. Romantic/dating relationships outside the instructional context, while not specifically prohibited, are discouraged, and are very unwise.

Complaint Process
All incidents of sex harassment should be reported to enable the College to take immediate action to eliminate the harassment, prevent its recurrence, and address its effects. In order to enable the College to respond effectively and to stop instances of sex discrimination, including but not limited to: sexual harassment, sexual assault and sexual misconduct, all College employees must, within twenty-four (24) hours of receiving the information, report information they have about alleged or possible sex discrimination to the Title IX Coordinator or Deputy Coordinator (hereafter collectively referred to as “Title IX Coordinator”).
Individuals who are victims of sex discrimination are encouraged to promptly report the incident to the local law enforcement. If the individual is incapacitated for any reason, a report should be made on behalf of the victim.

Complaints of sex harassment should be made to the Title IX Coordinator. There are several avenues available for submitting a complaint: the complainant can (1) leave a private voice message for the Title IX Coordinator; (2) send a private email to the Title IX Coordinator; (3) submit a letter to the Title IX Coordinator; or (4) make the complaint in person to the Title IX Coordinator; or (5) submit the online Sex Discrimination form.

The Title IX Coordinator will provide for the prompt, thorough, reliable, and impartial investigation of all complaints and will afford a prompt and appropriate resolution. Once a complaint of sex discrimination is made, an investigation of the report shall be pursued within seven (7) calendar days. The Clark State Title IX Coordinators are:

  • Title IX Coordinator: Laura Whetstone, Director, Human Resources
    Rhodes Hall 210C | 937.328.7958
  • Title IX Deputy Coordinator: Yolanda Hall, Senior Human Resources Generalist
    Rhodes Hall 210D | 937.328.6125
  • Title IX Deputy Coordinator: Nina Wiley, Dean, Student Engagement & Support Services
    Sara T. Landess Technology and Learning Center 115 | 937.328.7936
  • Title IX Deputy Coordinator: Ron Gordon, Dean, Enrollment Services
    Rhodes Hall 129 | 937.328.6095
  • Title IX Deputy Coordinator: Natalie Johnson, Associate Dean, Greene County Locations
    Greene Center 109| 937.429.8926

To ensure a prompt and thorough investigation, the complainant should provide as much of the following information as possible:

  • The name, department, and position of the person or persons allegedly causing the sex discrimination, including but not limited to sexual harassment, sexual assault and sexual violence or retaliation.
  • A description of the incident(s), including the date(s), location(s), and the presence of any witnesses, or potential witnesses.
  • Any other information the complainant believes to be relevant to the sex discrimination, harassment, or retaliation.

An investigation into the report shall be conducted by the Title IX Coordinator. The investigation shall be concluded as quickly as possible, typically within sixty (60) calendar days of receipt of the complaint or within a reasonable amount of time required to complete the investigation. The investigation will be conducted in a manner so that it is adequate, reliable, impartial, and confidential to the extent possible.

The College will provide the respondent with notice of the allegations as well as an opportunity to be heard concerning the allegations.

The investigation may include interviews of the parties involved, including witnesses, potential witnesses, and the gathering of other relevant information.
Both parties to the complaint will be afforded an equal opportunity to present relevant witnesses and other evidence.

The College will take interim measures as necessary to prevent the complainant and/or respondent from being subjected to discrimination or harassment during the investigative process. The College will take steps to ensure that any interim measures taken do not adversely affect the complainant and/or respondent. These protections or remedies may include separating the parties, placing limitations on contact between the parties, or suspension. Failure to comply with the terms of interim protections may be considered a separate violation of the student code of conduct or applicable College policy.

The Title IX Coordinator will use a “preponderance of the evidence” standard (i.e., it is more likely than not that sexual harassment or violence occurred) to determine whether unlawful sex discrimination has occurred. This means that individuals are presumed not to have engaged in alleged conduct unless a “preponderance of the evidence” supports a finding that the conduct has occurred. This “preponderance of the evidence” standard requires that the evidence supporting each finding be more convincing than the evidence in opposition to it.

A resolution shall be determined at the conclusion of the investigation. The title IX coordinator will create a written report describing the findings. The title IX coordinator will make every effort to complete the investigation within sixty (60) calendar days of receipt of the complaint. Both parties will concurrently receive written notification of the outcome within seven (7) calendar days of the completion of the report. This period may be extended in the event a longer period of time is necessary in order to thoroughly investigate a complaint.

The dean of student engagement and support services is charged with imposing sanctions/corrective actions on students who are found to have violated the policy. Sanctions may include suspension, expulsion, probation, a warning, or any other sanction set forth in the student code of conduct. The director of human resources is charged with imposing sanctions/corrective actions on employees who are found to have violated the policy.

Parties to the complaint may appeal the findings of the investigation. Appeals must be made in writing and submitted to the title IX coordinator within seven (7) calendar days of receipt of the written notification of the resolution of the investigation. All grounds for appeal shall be based on the emergence of new evidence that was previously unavailable, or based on the grounds that some aspect of this policy or procedure was not adequately followed. All appeals will be conducted in an impartial manner.

Appeals involving students will be conducted by the senior vice president for of student success. Appeals involving employees and/or third parties will be conducted by the vice president of business affairs. The senior vice president for of student success and/or vice president of business affairs shall provide written notification of the outcome of the appeal within fourteen (14) calendar days of receipt of the notice of appeal.
Objections concerning the outcome of the appeal, if any, must be submitted in writing to the President within five (5) calendar days of receipt of the written notification of the outcome of the appeal. If written objections are timely submitted, the President shall, within fourteen (14) calendar days of receipt of the written objections, review the findings as well as the objections to the investigation and provide a written notification of the President’s decision.

The decision of the President is final.

The College shall take reasonable steps to prevent the recurrence of sex discrimination or retaliation in any form. If the reoccurrence takes place, those responsible for such behavior may be subject to disciplinary action under the student code of conduct, if the person is a student, or the sex discrimination and title IX policy if the person is an employee or third party.

The College will take all necessary steps to remedy the discriminatory effects on the victim(s) and others.
Requests for Confidentiality

As a public institution, Clark State Community College cannot promise complete confidentiality. Each situation is resolved as discreetly as possible, maintaining confidentiality to the extent allowed under state and federal laws. There may be situations that mandate reporting.

Protection Against Retaliation
Clark State Community College shall not retaliate against an individual who makes a report of sex discrimination, nor permit any employee or student to do so. Retaliation is a very serious violation of this policy and should be reported immediately. Any individual found to have retaliated against an individual for reporting sex discrimination or against anyone participating in the investigation of a complaint shall be subject to appropriate disciplinary procedures.

Clark State Community College has developed this policy to insure that all of its employees and students can work and learn in an environment free from sex discrimination. This policy is available to all employees and students.