As fall arrives and students return to campuses, schools and universities are beginning to implement their COVID-19 plans. With more than 200,000 dead and a case count that's approaching 7 million (in the United States alone), COVID-19's effects still must be taken seriously. If the virus spreads on campuses, schools will have to shut down, either stopping classes completely or shifting to remote learning alone. To help curtail the spread of the virus, many schools are taking disciplinary action when students violate the health directives in place.
Ohio State University Takes Action
Ohio State University began accepting students on campus on August 12; Students' arrival and move-in was staggered, as is common on college campuses. Although their COVID-19 policies are clearly outlined on their website, many students attended parties and gatherings that violated the health directives outlined in the policy. Not only are the policies clearly outlined on their website, but the consequences are also detailed on a separate page.
As reported by NPR, OSU officials subsequently suspended nearly 230 students before classes even began. Coursework started on a Tuesday, and suspensions were given out between the prior Wednesday and Saturday. This was not the first instance of students learning about the requirements. In fact, the week before issuing the suspensions, officials at the school reminded students that gatherings could only have ten in-person participants, masks needed to be worn, and that potential outcomes included suspension, expulsion, removal from on-campus housing, and more. Student Organizations that violated the health directives risk losing programming funding, access to inventory and space, and other similar consequences. While there is an appeal process to a suspension, there are important timeliness factors (You must submit your appeal within five business days from the date on the outcome letter.)
What Is The Long Term Effect Of A Suspension?
Suspension and expulsion can significantly impact a college student's future. To begin, it can affect their personal finances. If the amount of time they are not in classes changes their eligibility for financial awards, an expelled or suspended student may lose part of their financial aid. That money could be the difference between staying in school and needing to take out extra private loans. Another collateral consequence impacts the student's potential academic future if they plan on attending graduate school. Applications for law school, medical school, and other graduate programs are very competitive, and a suspension or expulsion lives on their permanent academic record. This would possibly weaken their application.
An Experienced Student Defense Attorney-Advisor
To assist with the student disciplinary hearing process, you want an attorney-advisor with expertise and passion. Someone who's dedicated to fighting for your rights and your future—an attorney-advisor with many years of experience with student disciplinary hearings and litigation. The Lento Law Firm can assist you with your case and protect your future. Joseph D. Lento has worked with thousands of students across the nation to handle student disciplinary proceedings. Call us today at 888.535.3686 or reach out to us online.