If you or a loved one is a nursing student who's recently experienced an academic issue, your nursing studies and future career may be at risk. Academic misconduct or dismissal during this time can be challenging to overcome. Nursing students are held to the highest medical standards. You've worked hard to get this far in your path to becoming a health care provider. It's essential to take the appeals process seriously. It can be overwhelming to attempt to navigate it on your own, in addition to your academic studies and possibly family or work responsibilities. An experienced attorney-advisor can assist you and ease your burden. Plus, they'll bring expertise in and knowledge of the ways to proceed and protect your rights.
Types of Nursing Student Appeals
There is a range of reasons that a nursing student may need to appeal an academic decision over the course of their studies. Perhaps there was something underneath the academic issue, such as family challenges or personal situations that the nursing student didn't communicate to their professor. Some schools will allow nursing students to appeal in writing. Others will hold another hearing or allow you to appeal directly to the Dean. It's key to have a game plan as you approach your nursing student appeal, whether it's an academic appeal, a dismissal appeal, or something in between.
If you need to file an academic appeal for your nursing school program, it's important that you review your school's code of conduct or student handbook. Each school's process is unique and often includes a time limit wherein a student can make an appeal. If you are going to appeal the decision, you want to make sure to be aware of all the timelines. Some academic offenses can follow you after you complete your program of study, and so you don't want to wait to file the appeal.
A dismissal may be appealed on several grounds. Perhaps there were extenuating circumstances, such as a family crisis or mental health concerns. Occasionally, a dismissal will not align with the regulations as they are laid out in the student handbook or code of conduct. This could possibly be appealed as a factual error. Usually, nursing students are required to provide evidence to support their appeal.
There are several credentialing organizations for nurses; however, one of the more common ones is the American Nurses Credentialing Center. Maybe you were proactive and took the exam before you graduated and completed your studies, so that they could review it just after your graduation. If you've received an adverse result from them, you may be able to appeal their decision. Whether or not you qualify depends on the need for the appeal. According to their policy and procedures, “An adverse certification decision of ANCC's Commission on Certification may be appealed on the grounds that the COC did not properly apply specified certification eligibility criteria or the decision was based on a factual error that affected the outcome. Adverse certification decisions include: denial of eligibility for initial certification, denial of recertification, suspension of certification or revocation of certification.”
Their website also details what does not qualify for an appeal, as well as the procedure to follow and the timeline of an appeal. If you're considering a certification appeal, it's incredibly important that you do not waste time. Take action immediately, especially if your certification is at risk, after all the time and energy you've put into your studies and career.
A Letter Of Appeal
There are several useful things to consider if you are writing a letter of appeal to your school's nursing appeals board. First, you want to make sure that your grammar and spelling are impeccable. Have a friend read your letter and proofread it. You want the letter to represent you as professionally as possible. Make your appeal clearly and in a straightforward manner. Don't make excuses for yourself, but rather clarify the extenuating circumstances, if there were any, and provide examples of what you've done to rectify the situation. Show how your circumstances are not the same anymore. When you write a letter of appeal, consult with an attorney-advisor who can advise you on what will strengthen your appeal.
Your Rights As A Nursing Student
As a nursing student, you have rights, whether you are attending a public school or a private institution. At a public school, you have due process rights. There are certain protections in place to ensure that a dismissal is not “arbitrary, capricious, or discriminatory.” What do those terms mean? An arbitrary decision would be one that lacked a valid or objective reason. A capricious decision would occur when something was erratic or unpredictable. If your nursing program dismissed students without following past decisions, this might fall under ‘capricious.' And finally, a discriminatory decision would be one that came down to being treated differently as a contributing factor to your dismissal. An attorney-advisor who is knowledgeable about how the law works would be able to identify whether or not your rights were violated. If you attend a private institution, your rights are dictated by the school's code of conduct or student handbook. The student handbook outlines your rights. If the dismissal isn't consistent with the handbook and past dismissal choices, then the dismissal might not be upheld if it were challenged.
Nationwide Nursing Student Defense
If you're currently in a situation where you might need to appeal a decision that is negatively affecting your ability to pursue your nursing studies or certification, you want someone by your side to fight for your rights. An experienced student defense attorney-advisor will be able to advise you on how best to proceed so you can obtain the best possible outcome. The Lento Law Firm has helped countless medical students across the United States fight for their future. Attorney-advisor Joseph D. Lento brings heart and expertise. He won't stop fighting on your behalf. Call today at 888.535.3686 or contact the Lento Law Firm online.