Title IX of the Education Amendments is a federal law that prohibits sexual misconduct in federally funded colleges and universities. Being accused of sexual assault, sexual harassment, rape, or any other form of sexual misconduct at Alfred State College is a Title IX violation that your school must resolve. If you are found “responsible” for this conduct, you could be exposed to pretty serious repercussions that could jeopardize your plans to graduate.
For the purposes of this article, we'll address Alfred State College's disciplinary process and why you need an attorney-advisor if you find yourself in this predicament.
Alfred State College's Disciplinary Process
According to Title IX, Alfred State College is required to adjudicate any cases of sexual misconduct brought to the institution's attention. The Department of Education urges compliant higher education institutions to respond to these accusations in a manner that is prompt and equitable. If the school fails to do so, its federal funding is at stake. Complainants (the reporter of the complaint) and especially respondents (the person accused of sexual misconduct) should understand that their school will approach their case with the utmost seriousness, and each party should follow suit.
Reporting Sexual Misconduct
All members of the campus community and others can report alleged violations of sexual misconduct. The complaint must be in writing to the Title IX Coordinator.
An investigation entails interviewing complainants, respondents, and witnesses to gather relevant evidence. Other fact-finding methods will be utilized to obtain sufficient evidence to compile an investigative report.
Sexual misconduct complaints are heard by faculty and staff who are appointed to the Student Conduct Committee by the Vice President for Student Affairs and who are selected to serve on sexual misconduct cases. There will be a three-person panel who will hear the case. This panel consists of the chair (the Associate Dean for Judicial Affairs) and two other members of the Student Conduct Committee.
After all sides are heard, the panel will deliberate and render a decision, based on the preponderance of the evidence that declares if a respondent is “responsible” or “not responsible” for the sexual misconduct.
Students may wish to appeal the decision of the Student Conduct Committee/administrative hearing officer. To initiate an appeal, the student must submit a written appeal with four days of notification of the results of the hearing. The College can only accept appeals from the respondent. It cannot accept appeals from third parties (parents, faculty, staff, and friends). All appeals must be submitted in writing to the Office of Judicial Affairs.
An appeal must be in writing and its scope be limited to the following:
- Questions of Fact: Students may appeal on "questions of fact" by introducing new evidence which would significantly affect the outcome of the case. Evidence that comes forward that was not known by the accused shall be considered new evidence. Evidence that was withheld by a student shall not constitute a question of fact, nor is it to be considered upon appeal.
- Question of Procedure: Appeals will be considered on the basis of "questions of procedure" by demonstrating that the procedural guidelines in this document were breached and such departure from established procedure significantly affected the outcome of the case.
- Severity of Sanction: Students may appeal the "severity of sanction" that has been imposed by presenting a statement of explaining why they feel the penalty is too severe.
New York Title IX Attorney
If you've been accused of sexual misconduct at Alfred State College, you can anyone to be your advisor in the Title IX process. It would be in your best interest to choose an attorney who can help you effectively navigate the process and build a solid defense for you. Contact attorney Joseph D. Lento today for help at 888-535-3686.