York College of Pennsylvania maintains order over its student body through the use of its Student Code of Conduct. Students who are suspected of violating this Code will be tried under the College's Code of Conduct Proceedings. The Proceedings are a small scale judicial process used to determine whether a student has committed a violation.
Any member of the College community can file a complaint against a student alleging a violation. The Office of Student Conduct determines whether or not a complaint merits going through the process.
Code of Conduct Proceedings
Once a complaint is filed against a student, the accused student receives a notification in writing of the allegations. Students will be given an opportunity review the conduct file in preparation for a hearing. Charges will result in a hearing that comes in one of three forms.
Student Conduct Administrative Review
A Student Conduct Administrative Review is conducted and determined without a hearing. Outcomes are communicated in writing to a student after the complaint has been reviewed. This is used for less serious violations, and outcomes can still be appealed even though no hearing took place.
Hearings can take place in front of either a Student Conduct Administrator or the Student Conduct Hearing Board.
Student Conduct Administrator Hearing
A hearing in front of a Student Conduct Administrator will be used for somewhat serious violations. Students can present witnesses and evidence to support their case. Procedural questions and the general flow of the hearing are at the discretion of the Student Conduct Administrator. Once all information has been heard, the Student Conduct Administrator will make a decision using the standard of "a preponderance of the information." Following a determination of culpability, the Student Conduct Administrator will determine sanctions.
Student Conduct Hearing Board
Hearings in front of the Student Conduct Hearing Board will be used for more serious cases. All procedural questions and the general flow of the hearing are at the discretion of the Chairperson of the Hearing Board. At hearings, students can present supporting witnesses and evidence although permissible witnesses and evidence is at the discretion of the Office of Student Conduct. Once all information has been heard, the Student Conduct Hearing Board will dismiss the participants of the hearing, and go into a deliberation phase. The case will be decided by a majority vote. Deliberations will use the standard of "a preponderance of the information." The board will recommend sanctions after a finding of responsibility. Final sanction determinations are done by the Office of Student Conduct.
For hearings, students are entitled to an advisor. Unfortunately, this advisor must be a member of the College community. A member of the College community may not necessarily hold the students best interests in mind, and are unlikely to have the experience necessary to really assist a student with putting up a proper defense. An attorney working from behind the scenes will have both of these qualities. Attorneys can offer students insight into making use of courtroom tactics such as methods of witness and evidence presentation, as well as argument construction. These methods can be incredibly effective when facing a hearing.
York College of Pennsylvania Appeals
In the event of an unfavorable outcome, students have a chance to make an appeal. Appeals must be submitted to [email protected] within 3 business days of the time of a sanction being issued. The grounds for appeal are a departure from the procedures in the handbook, new evidence, unheard testimony, or sanctions that deviate from the handbook guidelines.
If you or your student is facing disciplinary action from York College of Pennsylvania, contact attorney Joseph D. Lento today.