Mar 03, 2024  
2023-2024 Catalog and Student Handbook Spring 2024 
    
2023-2024 Catalog and Student Handbook Spring 2024

Student Rights and Responsibilities


South Piedmont Community College has established a Student Code of Conduct to promote a positive and safe learning environment for all students. Students and/or student clubs and organizations are responsible for knowing and complying with the information, policies, and procedures outlined in the Student Code of Academic Conduct and the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct in Student Rights and Responsibilities. The student conduct process is not intended to punish students; rather, it exists to protect the interests of the college community and to guide and educate students whose actions are not consistent with South Piedmont Community College policies. Any student is entitled to due process, including the right of appeal and a fair hearing, as outlined in the Student Code of Conduct.

To report a conduct behavior violation, use the Conduct Violation Reporting Form, located at www.spcc.edu, under Student Panel, Reporting Forms, Student Behavioral Conduct Violation Reporting Form.

To appeal a conduct violation, use the Formal Appeal Form, which can be accessed at www.spcc.edu, under Student Panel, Appeal Forms, Formal Appeal for Student Code of Behavioral Conduct Violation. Additional student appeal forms are also located on this page of the website. Those include Formal Appeal for Academic Integrity Violation, Formal Appeal of Final Course Grade, Formal Appeal for Program Dismissal, Formal Appeal for Denial of Admissions into Selective Programs, and Formal Complaint-Appeal of Grievance Finding.

Student Codes of Conduct (Academic and Behavioral)

South Piedmont Community College (SPCC) is an institution of higher education whose mission is to foster lifelong learning, student success, and workforce and community development. The College celebrates learning as the process that changes and improves lives and promotes the value-driven culture of quality, service, stewardship, and respect. These values serve to guide decisions and to foster lifelong learning. Standards of acceptable behavior for students and student clubs and organizations are reflected in the Student Code of Academic Conduct, the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct, and other college policies. Standards of conduct are set forth to assist the college in furthering its mission and values.

Upon enrollment and through the actual awarding of a certificate, diploma, and/or degree, or the completion of a workforce development program, a non-credit program/class, or a College and Career Readiness Program, and as long as the student continues to be enrolled at the College, students have the responsibility to uphold the rules and values of the college, and the right to a fair and equitable conduct process. Students and/or student clubs and organizations are responsible for knowing and complying with the information, policies, and procedures outlined in the Student Code of Academic Conduct and the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct. The student conduct process is not intended to punish students; rather, it exists to protect the interests of the college community and to guide and educate students whose actions are not consistent with South Piedmont Community College policies.

Student Rights

  • Students shall enjoy all the rights and privileges guaranteed to individuals by the Constitution of the United States and by the State of North Carolina.
  • Students are free to pursue their educational goals through appropriate opportunities for learning. Student performance will be evaluated on an academic basis not on opinions or conduct in manners unrelated to academic standards.
  • Students have the right to freedom of expression, inquiry, and assembly without restraint or censorship subject to reasonable and non-discriminatory rules and regulations regarding time, place, manner, and subject.
  • Students have the right to inquire about and to propose improvements in policies, regulations and procedures affecting the welfare of students through established student government procedures.
  • The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) of 1974 provides safeguards regarding the confidentiality of and access to student records. Students and former students have the right to review their official records and to request a hearing if they challenge the contents of these records. Other than directory information, no records shall be made available to unauthorized personnel or groups inside or outside of SPCC without written consent of the student involved, except under legal compulsion. SPCC adopts general guidelines for release of student records to officials of another school where the student seeks or intends to enroll, or where the student is already enrolled if the disclosure is for purposes related to the student’s enrollment or transfer, subject to the requirements of §99.34 (§99.31(a)(2)).
  • No disciplinary sanction other than removal from class or activity (only for duration of said activity) may be imposed upon any student without due process-including notice, an appeal, and a fair hearing.

The goals of the Student Code of Academic Conduct and the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct processes are:

  • To promote a campus environment that supports the overall educational mission of the college
  • To promote a campus environment that supports the health and safety of the SPCC community
  • To minimize disruption and harm in the SPCC community
  • To foster ethical standards and civic virtues
  • To promote the values of the college
  • To provide formal and informal pathways for members of SPCC to hold each other accountable
  • To facilitate the acquisition of the essential skills, knowledge, and values necessary for the success of educated and responsible citizens
  • To encourage appropriate standards of individual and group behavior
  • To sustain a culture in which students and student organizations accept their obligations to the SPCC campus community and in which well-defined governance procedures guide behavior for the common good

Jurisdiction and Authority

  1. Any student, upon acceptance to any SPCC program or class, is expected to abide by college policies and is subject to academic and behavioral conduct action by the college upon violation of either of the student codes of conduct. Students enrolled with partnering agencies are also susceptible to the codes of conduct of those agencies. Partnering agencies may choose to involve members of the SPCC administration to resolve a violation of the SPCC Student Code of Behavioral Conduct and/or a student violation of the partnering agency’s code.
  2. A SPCC student club/organization is expected to abide by college policies and is subject to conduct action by the college upon violation of the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct.
  3. The Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs/CAO, or designee, has the primary responsibility and general authority for the administration of the Student Code of Academic Conduct.
  4. The Associate Vice President of Student Affairs, or designee, has primary responsibility and general authority for the administration of the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct.
  5. Alleged acts that may constitute violations of the college’s Sex Discrimination and Harassment (Title IX) Policy or any other polices referencing discrimination will be the responsibility of the Director of Student Advocacy and Accountability/Title IX Coordinator.
  6. The student conduct process may be initiated in response to a student’s or student club’s/ organization’s behavior which allegedly violates the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct. Determinations made or conduct outcomes imposed under this Student Code of Behavioral Conduct shall not be subject to change because criminal or civil charges arising out of the same fact pattern were dismissed, reduced, or resolved in favor of or against the student.
  7. The student codes of conduct shall be reviewed every year under the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs. Failure to conduct this review shall not invalidate any portion of the student codes of conduct.
  8. If a student club/organization is accused of violating the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct, the processes outlined in this document will be utilized to determine if a club/organization is responsible or not responsible. The club’s/organization’s actions will be assessed to determine the club/organization’s role in:
    1. Negligently allowing behavior. The club/organization did not follow policies and procedures which could have prevented the violation of the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct.
    2. Condoning behavior. The student club/organization did not take steps to prevent the behavior that violates the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct.
    3. Facilitating behavior. The student club/organization coordinated or was an active player in the violation of the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct.
  9. The student codes of conduct shall apply to a student’s or student club’s/organization’s behavior which takes place in the following areas or situations:
    1. College premises
    2. College-sponsored activities away from the college premises
    3. Events/functions whether officially approved or considered by a reasonable person to be hosted by a student club/organization
  10. The Student Code of Behavioral Conduct shall apply to a student’s or club’s/organization’s behavior wherever it occurs in any of the following circumstances:
    1. Threatening and/or committing physical violence against another person (assault, assault and battery, assault with a dangerous weapon, or harassment)
    2. Participating in harassment of any SPCC member to include students, faculty, staff, guests
    3. When there is substantial information that the student’s or student club’s/organization’s continued presence at the college is potentially dangerous to the health, safety, and/or property of the college community, whether public authorities have brought charges or imposed penalties or not
    4. Furnishing false information to the college
    5. Forgery, alteration, or misuse of college documents, records, or identification cards for non-academic purposes
    6. Violation of a previously issued no contact directive
    7. When the student’s or student club’s/organization’s behavior adversely affects the college community and/or the pursuit of the college’s mission and values

Student Code of Academic Conduct

In fulfillment of obligations to the college community, each SPCC student is expected to comply with the Student Code of Academic Conduct. Therefore, students are prohibited from engaging in any conduct that materially or adversely affects the educational process including, but not limited to, the following:

  1. Violation of Academic Integrity Policy
    1. Cheating is an attempt to use or actual use of unauthorized materials in any format to complete an academic exercise. Cheating also includes the communication of unauthorized information during an academic activity or exercise. Cheating includes but is not limited to, copying another student’s homework, class work, or required project (in part or in whole) and presenting it to the instructor as one’s own work; or giving, receiving, offering, and/or soliciting information on a quiz, test, examination, or other academic exercise.
    2. Plagiarism is the copying of any published work such as books, magazines, audiovisual programs, electronic media, and films, or copying the theme or manuscript of another individual.
    3. Self-plagiarism is the unauthorized use of one’s own previous work without the express permission of both the instructor to whom the previous work was submitted and the instructor to whom the work currently is being submitted.
    4. Fabrication/falsification is an attempt to deceive the instructor in their effort to fairly evaluate an academic exercise.
    5. Complicity in academic dishonesty refers to intentionally giving unauthorized assistance to someone else who engages in academic dishonesty.
  2. Violation of program specific guidelines as outlined in program handbooks and distributed materials.

Student Code of Behavioral Conduct

In fulfillment of obligations to the college community, each SPCC student and student club/organization is expected to comply with the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct. Therefore, students are prohibited from engaging in any conduct that materially or adversely affects the educational process including, but not limited to, the following:

  1. Physical abuse, verbal abuse, threats, intimidation, harassment, stalking, coercion, and/or other behavior, which threatens or endangers the health and/or safety of any person.
  2. Disrespectful behavior toward faculty, staff, students, external partners.
  3. Hate speech, libel, or slander or any other communication or expression designed to incite violence.
  4. Social media posts (private and public) which negatively impact the college, students, faculty, staff, and external partners.
  5. Trespass, which includes unauthorized entry into any office or building or other college property on college premises.
  6. Vandalism, malicious or negligent destruction, damage, or misuse of college or public property on college premises.
  7. Theft, larceny, or embezzlement of the property of another person, the college, or another entity.
  8. Occupation or seizure in any manner of college property, a college facility, or any portion thereof for use inconsistent with prescribed, customary, or authorized use.
  9. Unauthorized use of college computer facilities and/or resources including but not limited to copyright infringement and misuse of accounts.
  10. Disruption of and/or interference with college academic or administrative activities and/or unauthorized occupation of facilities on college premises.
  11. Engaging in conduct, activity, or behavior that is disruptive to physical or virtual classroom instruction to include, but not limited to, social media, cell phone use, etc.
  12. Intentional setting off a fire alarm, using or tampering with any safety equipment on college premises or at college-sponsored events.
  13. Conduct that is disorderly, lewd, or indecent, on physical or virtual college premises or at college-sponsored functions; breach of peace or aiding, abetting, or procuring another person to breach the breach peace. (This regulation does not prohibit peaceful assembly.)
  14. Misconduct of a sexual nature that does not meet Title IX definitions.
  15. Mental or physical abuse of any person on physical or virtual college premises or at college-sponsored events including verbal or physical actions, which threaten or endanger an individual’s health or safety.
  16. Intentional obstruction or disruption of teaching, administration, or other college activities, including public service functions and other duly authorized activities on college premises or at college-sponsored events.
  17. Violation of the Drug and Alcohol Policy
    1. Manufacture, sale, use, distribution, or possession of and/or driving under the influence of narcotics, barbiturates, amphetamines, marijuana, sedatives, tranquilizers, hallucinogens, and/or other similar known drugs and/or drug paraphernalia and/or other chemicals.
    2. Public intoxication, and/or manufacture, sale, misuse, distribution, possession of alcoholic beverages or liquors.
  18. Illegal or unauthorized possession of firearms, explosives, other weapons, or dangerous chemicals in a manner that harms, threatens, or causes fear to others.
  19. Smoking, vaping, e-cigarettes and/or other forms of tobacco products on college premises or at college-sponsored events.
  20. Violation of college regulations regarding the operation and parking of motor vehicles.
  21. Forgery, alteration, or misuse of college documents, records, or instruments of identification with intent to deceive.
  22. Fiscal irresponsibility such as failure to pay college-levied fines, or the passing of worthless check to college officials.
  23. Violation of a local, state, or federal criminal law on college premises adversely affecting student’s pursuit of their proper educational purposes.
  24. Abuse of the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct including:
    1. Intentionally initiating or causing to be initiated any false report or complaint.
    2. Attempting to coerce or discourage an individual’s participation in or use of student conduct procedures.
    3. Intentional obstruction or disruption of disciplinary proceedings.
    4. Attempting to influence the impartiality of a student conduct procedure.
    5. Verbal and/or physical intimidation and/or retaliation of any party to student conduct proceedings prior to, during, and/or afterwards.
    6. Committing a violation of college policy while on conduct probation and/or failing to meet deadlines imposed in accordance with college policy.
    7. Influencing or attempting to influence another person to abuse the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct procedures.
    8. Failing to abide by any conduct outcome as assigned through the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct procedures.

These Student Codes of Conduct are not all inclusive. Other conduct that is disruptive or does not follow proper procedure may be subject to appropriate sanctions.

Student Code of Academic Conduct Procedure and Appeals

Academic Integrity Procedure

It is the student’s responsibility to learn more about how to avoid academic dishonesty. If upon investigation the instructor determines there is an academic integrity violation, the student will be held accountable as stated below:

  1. The instructor, after consulting with their supervisor, will notify the student in writing of the details of the academic integrity violation, which may include a formal warning, a reduced grade on an assignment, or a reduced grade in the course.
  2. The instructor will send the student’s name along with detailed evidence and documentation of the violation to their supervisor, Dean, and the Academic and Student Affairs Administravit Assistant to be added to the student’s permanent academic record.
  3. The Academic and Student Affairs Administrative Assistant will notify the appropriate Dean if there are previous documented offenses in the student’s file. The Dean will determine the disciplinary action for the violation. Sanctions range from the minimum of a reprimand to a maximum of suspension depending on the severity and number of violations.
  4. The Dean will notify the student in writing electronically of the disciplinary action for the violation. Notification will be sent to the student’s college email address. A copy of the disciplinary action letter will be sent to the Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs/CAO, and the Academic and Student Affairs Administrative Assistant to be added to the student’s permanent academic record.

Academic Integrity Appeal Procedure

Students may appeal the academic integrity violation and/or the disciplinary action resulting from the violation, if the reason for the appeal meets one of the following: policy and/or procedure were not followed or procedural irregularity that affected the outcome; sanction too sever for the charge; evidence of a conflict of interest or bias that affected the outcome; or, new evidence that was not reasonably available at the time of the determination that could affect the outcome. Student should appeal using the procedure below. Failure to follow the procedure will result in forfeiture of the appeal. Students needing assistance in navigating the appeal procedure should contact the Director of Student Wellness and Advocacy for guidance. Once the appeal is received, the appeal is reviewed by the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs to ensure the reason for the appeal meets the criteria for an appeal. Requests that do not meet the criteria for an appeal may be denied without input from the Student Appeals Team. Requests that meet the criteria for an appeal are forwarded to the Student Appeals Team for a hearing.

  1. A formal appeal of the academic integrity violation and/or the disciplinary action must be received within five (5) business days after the notification to the student of the violation. This appeal may be submitted through the Formal Academic Integrity Appeal form found here and also located on the www.spcc.edu website under Student Panel/Appeal Forms. This form must be completed in its entirety. All documentation supporting the reason for the appeal, including emails, any corrective action being requested, etc., must be attached to the appeal form. Incomplete or insufficient documentation will forfeit the appeals process. (Students needing assistance with completing the form may contact the Director of Student Wellness and Advocacy.) The student will receive notification of receipt of the appeal.
  2. Within ten (10) business days of receipt of the appeal, the Student Appeals Team will review the appeal through a hearing. The student and the instructor will be notified of the date, time, and location of the hearing, whether to be held in person (on campus), by conference call (on the phone), or virtually (video conferencing with a call-in option). Both parties may present pertinent information. At the discretion of the Student Appeals Team, other pertinent individuals may be contacted for additional information, either in person, by conference call, or virtually.
    1. The appeal meeting is a conflict resolution and not a judicial proceeding. The student may not record this meeting but may take notes.
  3. The Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs/CAO will notify the student (by student SPCC email) and the instructor (by SPCC email) of the decision on the appeal within five (5) business days after the review. The decision of the Student Appeals Team will be final.

The Student Appeals Team is a standing team appointed by the Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs/CAO and will consist of five (5) voting members to include representatives from faculty, staff, and the student body. (The student representative will be selected from a pool of student leaders within the college.).

Violation of Program Specific Guidelines: Program Dismissal Appeal Procedure

Students who have been dismissed from an academic program due to reasons other than charges of a violation of academic integrity and a final grade may appeal, if the appeal meets one of the following: policy and/or procedure were not followed or procedural irregularity that affected the outcome; sanction too severe for the charge; evidence of a conflict of interest or bias that affected the outcome; or, new evidence that was not reasonably available at the time of the determination that could affect the outcome. Students should appeal using the procedure below. Failure to follow the procedure will result in forfeiture of the appeal. Students needing assistance in navigating the appeal procedure should contact the Director of Student Wellness and Advocacy for guidance. Once the appeal is received, the appeal is reviewed by the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs to ensure the reason for the appeal meets the criteria for an appeal. Requests that do not meet the criteria for an appeal may be denied without input from the Student Appeals Team. Requests that meet the criteria for an appeal are forwarded to the Student Appeals Team for a hearing.

  1. A formal appeal of the program dismissal must be received within three (3) business days after the dismissal. This appeal must be submitted through the Formal Appeal for Program Dismissal form found here and also located on the www.spcc.edu website under Student Panel/Appeal Forms. This form must be completed in its entirety. All documentation supporting the reason for the appeal, including emails, any corrective action being requested, etc., must be attached to the appeal form. Incomplete or insufficient documentation will forfeit the appeal process. (Students needing assistance with completing the form may contact the Director of Student Wellness and Advocacy.) The student will receive notification of receipt of the appeal.
    1. Upon the receipt of the appeal, the student will be placed on the status of dismissal pending. While in this status, the student may not attend any program activities (classroom, clinical, lab or club activities).
  2. Within three (3) business days of the receipt of the appeal, the Student Appeals Team will review the appeal. The student and the instructor will be notified of the date, time, and location of the hearing. The location may be in person (on campus), by conference call (on the phone), or virtually (video conferencing with a call-in option). Both parties may present pertinent information. At the discretion of the Student Appeals Team, other pertinent individuals may be contacted for additional information, either in person, by conference call, or virtually.
    1. The appeal meeting is a conflict resolution and not a judicial proceeding. The student may not record this meeting but may take notes.
  3. The Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs/CAO will notify the student (by student SPCC email) and the instructor (by SPCC email) of the decision on the appeal within three (3) business days after the review. The decision of the Student Appeals Team is final.

The Student Appeals Team is a standing team appointed by the Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs/CAO and will consist of five (5) voting members to include representatives from faculty, staff, and the student body. (The student representative will be selected from a pool of student leaders within the college.)

Student Code of Behavioral Conduct Procedures and Appeals

Disciplinary Procedures:

  1. Any administrative official, faculty member, or student may file charges, by submitting a written statement, with the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs, against any student or student club/organization for violations of college regulations. The individual(s) making the charge should include in the written statement:
    1. Name of student(s) involved
    2. Specific conduct in question
    3. Description of the incident(s), including the time, place, and date of the incident(s)
    4. Any action taken that relates to the matter
    5. Desired solution(s)
  2. Within ten (10) working days after the charge is filed, the Director of Student Wellness and Advocacy, in conjunction with the Director of Safety (or designee), shall complete a preliminary investigation of the charge, which shall include a conference with the student(s). Conferences may be held in person, over the phone or virtually. During the conference with the Director of Student Wellness and Advocacy and the Director of Safety (or designee), the student shall be confronted with the evidence against them and shall be given the opportunity to respond.
  3. In instances where the student cannot be reached to schedule an appointment with the Director of Student Wellness and Advocacy or where the student refuses to cooperate, the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs shall send a certified letter to the student’s last known address, which shall inform the student of the charges, the results of the preliminary investigation, the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs’ decision, and the information pertaining to the appeals process.
  4. In instances where the student can be reached to schedule an appointment with the Director of Student Wellness and Advocacy and a preliminary investigation has been held and within ten (10) working days after the charge is filed, the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs shall send the student a decision by SPCC email and/or by U.S. postal mail, return receipt requested. The decision shall include a statement of the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs’ determination of whether the student violated the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct.
    1. If the determination is that the student has violated the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct, the decision shall include:
      1. Statement of the specific provision(s) of the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct that has been violated.
      2. Statement of sanctions imposed.
      3. Statement of the student’s right to appeal the decision.
      4. Instructions governing the appeals process.
    2. If the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs determines that the student did not violate a provision of the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct, then the decision shall state that the charge has been dismissed.
    3. The Associate Vice President of Student Affairs shall send a copy of the statement of the charge and the decision, via SPCC email accounts, to the student, the Director of Student Wellness and Advocacy, the Director of Safety, and the Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs/Chief Academic Officer (CAO).

Sanctions:

  • Reprimand: A written communication which gives official notice to the student that they have violated the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct, and any subsequent violation of the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct may carry heavier penalties because of this infraction.
  • General Probation: An individual may be placed on General Probation when involved in a minor disciplinary offense. General Probation has two (2) important implications: (1) the individual is given a chance to show their capability and willingness to observe the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct without further penalty; and (2) if they err again, the additional sanction will be imposed for this violation. This probation will be in effect for no more than two (2) semesters.
  • Restrictive Probation: Restrictive Probation results in loss of good standing, and notation of such is made in the student’s record. Restrictive conditions may limit activity in the physical and virtual South Piedmont Community College community. Generally, the individual will not be eligible for initiation into any local or national organization and may not receive any college award or other honorary recognition. The student may not occupy a position of leadership or responsibility with any college or student club/organization, publication, or activity. This probation will be in effect for not less than two (2) semesters. Any violation of Restrictive Probation may result in immediate suspension.
  • Program Dismissal: Dismissing a student from an academic program (credit or non-credit) in which the student loses status in that program. A student may or may not be dismissed from the college. Students may apply to the program for a future semester, however, application does not guarantee acceptance into the program. The student must meet all admissions criteria and expectation of the program.
  • Restitution: Paying for damaging, misusing, destroying, or losing property belonging to South Piedmont Community College, college personnel, or students.
  • Emergency Suspension: Exclusion from class and/or other privileges or activities as set forth in the notice, until a final decision has been made concerning the alleged allegations.
  • Loss of Academic Credit or Grade: Imposed as a result of academic dishonesty (Determined by the Academic Dean or the Student Appeals Team)
  • Withholding diploma or right to register: Imposed when financial obligations have not been met.
  • Suspension: Exclusion from class(es) and/or all other privileges or activities of South Piedmont Community College for a specific period of time. This sanction is reserved for those offenses warranting discipline more severe than probation, or for repeated misconduct. Students who receive this sanction must get specific written permission from the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs before returning to campus.
  • Expulsion: Dismissing a student from campus for an indefinite period. The student loses their student status. The student may be readmitted to South Piedmont Community College only with the approval of the Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs/CAO.
  • Group Probation: This is given to a college club/organization for a specific period of time. If group violations are repeated during the term of the probation, the charter may be revoked or activities restricted.
  • Group Restriction: Removing college recognition during the term in which the offense occurred or for a longer period (usually not more than one additional semester). While under restriction, the group may not seek or add members, hold or sponsor events in the physical or virtual college community, or engage in other activities as specified.
  • Group Charter Revocation: Removal of college recognition for a club/organization for a minimum of two (2) years. Re-charter after that time must be approved by the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs.

Appeals Procedure:

Students who have been charged with violating the Student Behavioral Code of Conduct and have been issued a sanction may appeal using the procedure below. Failure to follow the procedure will result in forfeiture of the appeal. Students needing assistance in navigating the appeal procedure should contact the Academic and Student Affairs Administrative Assistant for guidance. Once the appeal is received, the appeal will be reviewed by the Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs/CAO to ensure the reason for the appeal meets the criteria for an appeal. Requests that do not meet the criteria for an appeal may be denied without input from the Student Appeals Team. Requests that meet the criteria for an appeal are forwarded to the Student Appeals Team for a hearing.

  1. A student may submit a formal appeal of the Code of Behavioral Conduct violation if the appeal meets one or more of the following: (1) the sanction issued by the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs is too severe for the charge, (2) the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs did not follow published policy and procedures, or (3) there is evidence of a conflict of interest. The appeal must be received within five (5) business days after notification to the student of the violation and/or sanction. This appeal must be submitted through the Formal Student Code of Conduct Violation Appeal form found here and also on the www.spcc.edu website under Student Panel/Appeal Forms. This form must be completed in its entirety. All documentation supporting the reason for the appeal, including emails, any corrective action being requested, etc., must be attached to the appeal form. The request for a hearing must also be attached and include those faculty and/or staff to whom the student objects and the reasons why the student objects to those persons reviewing the charges against them. Incomplete or insufficient documentation will forfeit the appeals process. (Students needing assistance with completing the form may contact the Academic and Student Affairs Administrative Assistant.) The student will receive notification of receipt of the appeal. The hearing will be held in person (on campus), by conference call (on the phone), or virtually (video conferencing with call-in option).
  2. Within ten (10) business days after receiving the request for a hearing, the Student Appeals Team will review the appeal. The student and the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs will be notified of the date, time, and location of the hearing, whether it will be in person, by conference call, or virtually. Both parties may present pertinent information. At the discretion of the Student Appeals Team, other pertinent individuals may be contacted for additional information, either in person, by conference call, or virtually.
    1. The Student Appeals Team meeting is a conflict resolution and not a judicial proceeding. The student may not record this meeting but may take notes.
    2. Minors, under the age of 18, may be accompanied by one parent/legal guardian. The parent/legal guardian may not be active in the meeting discussions.
  3. During the preliminary hearing:
    1. The Associate Vice President of Student Affairs shall provide the team and the student with a written statement of charges against the student.
    2. The team shall set a date and time for the hearing, no later than five (5) business days from the date of the preliminary hearing.
    3. The team shall provide the student with a statement of their basic procedural rights.
    4. The Associate Vice President of Student Affairs and the student shall exchange any documents they expect to present to the Student Appeals Team.
    5. The Associate Vice President of Student Affairs and the student shall provide names and contact information (email, phone number, mailing address) of their witness(es) to the team, and only to the team. Witness(es) contact information should not be shared with the Associate Vice President nor with the student.
    6. The student shall provide the team with a current address and phone number.
    7. Members of the team shall inform the parties of any facts that could reasonably affect their ability to give the parties a fair hearing. If either party objects to the continued service of such member or any member of the team concurs in that objection, then such member shall resign from the team. Within one (1) business day, the Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs/CAO shall appoint a new member to the team. The new team member shall be subject to the same qualifications and obligations as the original team members.
  4. The Student Appeals Team shall guarantee the student the following basic procedural rights (due process):
    1. The right to specific written notice of the charges.
    2. The right to present relevant evidences and witnesses in their defense.
    3. The right to a hearing before an impartial Student Appeals Team.
  5. The hearing before the Student Appeals Team shall be confidential and shall be closed to all persons except the following:
    1. The student, the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs, and witness(es).
      1. All witnesses shall give testimony singularly and in the absence of other witnesses; and
      2. All witnesses shall leave the team meeting room immediately upon completion of their testimony.
    2. The hearing will be recorded. Recordings will become the property of South Piedmont Community College, and the Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs/CAO will determine access to them. All recordings will be filed in the office of the Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs/CAO.
    3. The team shall have the authority to adopt supplementary rules of procedure consistent with this policy.
    4. The team shall have the authority to render written advisory opinions concerning the meaning and application of this policy.
    5. Within two (2) days of completion of a hearing, the team shall meet in executive session to decide whether there has been a violation of a Student Code of Behavioral Conduct; and if so, to recommend sanctions.
    6. Decisions of the team shall be based upon a preponderance of the evidence as determined by a majority of the team.
    7. The decision of the team shall be in writing and contain at least:
      1. A statement of the specific provision of the Student Code of Behavioral Conduct that the student violated and a description of the facts supporting that conclusion; and
      2. A statement of the sanction which may or may not be greater than the sanction imposed by the Associate Vice President of Student Affairs; or
      3. A statement that the charges were not proven by a preponderance of the evidence.
    8. The Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs/CAO will notify the student (by the student’s SPCC email) and the Associate Vice President (by SPCC email) of the decision on the appeal within five (5) business days after the review.
    9. The decision of the Student Appeals Team shall be final, unless (1) there is evidence the team did not follow published policy or procedure or (2) there is evidence the team presented a conflict of interest. Should this evidence be presented, the Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs/CAO will review all documentation presented and render a final decision.

The Student Appeals Team is a standing team appointed by the Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs/CAO and will consist of five (5) voting members to include representatives from faculty, staff, and the student body. (The student representative will be selected from a pool of student leaders within the college.)

Title IX (Sex Discrimination and Harassment)

The U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights (OCR) enforces Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 that protects people from discrimination based on sex in education programs or activities that receive federal financial assistance. Title IX states, “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.”

South Piedmont Community College (South Piedmont) prohibits discrimination and harassment on the basis of sex and strongly encourages the prompt reporting of, and is committed to timely and fair resolution of, complaints of sex discrimination and harassment. Sexual harassment as defined by Title IX includes Sexual Assault, Dating Violence, Domestic Violence, and Stalking. South Piedmont addresses complaints of Title IX using its Title IX Sexual Harassment Grievance Procedures on our website at www.spcc.edu under Students, Title IX.

The college encourages students to immediately report any instances of Title IX. To report a Title IX complaint, use the Title IX Sex Discrimination and Sexual Harassment form, which can also be found at www.spcc.edu under Student Panel, Reporting Forms, Title IX Sex Discrimination and Sexual Harassment.

South Piedmont will take appropriate measures to investigate all reported incidents, provide supportive measures, protect against retaliatory acts, and follow established procedures for resolution.

Contact Information for the College’s Title IX Coordinators:

South Piedmont Community College Grievance/Complaint Procedure

South Piedmont is dedicated to resolving student grievances and complaints in a timely, fair, and equitable manner. A grievance is a student allegation that a College decision or action is either discriminatory or has a negative effect on the student’s status at the college. The purpose of the student grievance/complaint procedure is to provide a system to resolve student grievance/complaints against faculty and/or staff.

Any student who believes that a College decision or action is discriminatory or has a negative impact may file a written grievance using the procedure below. Students needing assistance in navigating the procedure should contact the Director of Student Wellness and Advocacy for guidance.

Grievances must be submitted electronically through the SPCC Grievance Form found here and on the SPCC website at www.spcc.edu under Student Panel/Reporting Forms/Grievance Form with all supporting documentation within five (5) business days of the incident upon which the grievance is founded, occurred, or was first brought to your attention.

  1. The Associate Vice President of Student Affairs will appoint an Investigator(s) to in-formally investigate the grievance in cooperation with the individuals within South Piedmont Community College. The Investigator(s) will submit a written report to the student (through the student’s SPCC email and certified mail) and to the Associate Vice President (through SPCC email) within fifteen (15) business days.
  2. In the event the decision taken by the Investigator(s) is deemed unsatisfactory to the student, the student may file a Formal Complaint-Appeal of Grievance Finding if the appeal meets one of the criteria: (1) policy and/or procedures were not followed, procedural irregular-ity that affected the outcome, (2) sanction too severe for the charge, (3) evidence of a conflict of interest or bias that affected the outcome, or (4) new evidence that was not reasonably available at the time of the determination that could affect the outcome. This formal appeal must be received within five (5) business days of receipt of the decision. The formal appeal must be submitted through the SPCC Formal Complaint-Appeal of Grievance Finding form located here and on the SPCC website under Student Panel/Appeal Forms. This form must be completed in its entirety. All documentation supporting the reason for the appeal, including documentation of the original grievance, emails, the grounds for the complaint, etc., must be attached to the SPCC Formal Complaint Form. The student will receive written notification of receipt of the appeal. Once the appeal is received, the appeal is reviewed by the Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs/Chief Academic Officer (CAO) to ensure the reason for the appeal meets the criteria for an appeal. Requests that do not meet the criteria for an appeal may be denied without input from the Student Appeals Team. Requests that meet the criteria for an appeal are forwarded to the Student Appeals Team for a hearing.
  3. Within (10) business days of receipt of the Formal Complaint appeal, the Student Appeals Team will review the written appeal. The student and SPCC employee(s) will be notified of a date, time, and location of the hearing. The location will be in person (on campus), by conference call (on the phone), or virtually (video conferencing with a call-in option). All parties may present pertinent information. At the discretion of the Student Appeals Team, other pertinent individuals may be contacted for additional information, either in person, by conference call, or virtually.
  • The appeal meeting is a conflict resolution and not a judicial proceeding.
  • The student may not record this meeting but may take notes.
  1. The Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs/CAO will notify the student (by SPCC email) and college employee(s) (by SPCC email) on the decision of the appeal within five (5) business days after the review. The decision of the Student Appeals Team is final.

PLEASE NOTE: Retaliation by, or against, any participant [student, employee(s), witnesses(es)] is expressly prohibited. Retaliatory action of any kind taken against individuals as a result of seeking redress under the applicable procedures or serving as a witness in a subsequent investigation dealing with discrimination is prohibited and is conduct subject to discipline. Any person who thinks they have been the victim of retaliation should immediately contact the Director of Student Wellness and Advocacy or the Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs/CAO.

The Student Appeals Team is a standing team appointed by the Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs/CAO and will consist of five (5) voting members to include representatives from faculty, staff, and the student body. (The student representative will be selected from a pool of student leaders within the college.)

Other Complaint Options:

A student may always file a complaint with:

U.S. Department of Education Office of Civil Rights
Website: www.ed.gov
Phone: 1.800.421.3481
Email: ocr@ed.gov

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
Website: www.eeoc.gov
Phone: 1.800.669.4000
Email: info@eeoc.gov