A student, if he or she wishes to appeal, has a right to a fair and impartial hearing before the vice president for student services, or designee (hereafter referred to as the hearing officer) on any charge of misconduct.
The failure of a student to cooperate with the hearing procedures, however, shall not preclude the hearing officer from making his or her findings of fact, reaching conclusions and imposing sanctions. Failure of the student to cooperate may be taken into consideration by the hearing officer in recommending penalties.
If a hearing is requested, notice of the hearing shall be given to all parties at least seven (7) days before the hearing. The notice will indicate the names and addresses of all parties, the names and addresses of their representatives, a statement of the time, place, and nature of the proceeding, a short and plain statement of the matters asserted, and the legal authority and jurisdiction under which the hearing is to be held.
The student and/or his or her representative shall be entitled to hear and examine the evidence against him or her and be informed of the identity of its sources; and shall be entitled to present evidence in his or her own behalf and question witnesses as to factual matters. The student shall have all authority which is possessed by the college to obtain information or to request the presence of witnesses or the production of other evidence relevant to the issues at the hearing.
Only those matters presented at the hearing, in the presence of the student involved, will be considered in determining whether the student is guilty of the misconduct charged, but the student’s past record of conduct may be taken into account in formulating the hearing officer’s recommendation for disciplinary action.
The student may be represented by counsel and/or accompanied by an advisor of his/her choice (who shall not be a college employee). Provided, if the student elects, be represented by a duly licensed attorney, the student must notify the vice president for student services a minimum of three days prior to the hearing, excluding weekends and holidays.
Hearings may be held in closed session at the discretion of the hearing officer, the only exception being when the student involved invites particular persons or requests an open hearing. If at any time during the conduct of the hearing, invited persons are disruptive of the proceedings, the hearing officer may exclude such persons from the hearing room.
The hearing officer shall set the time, place and available seating capacity for a hearing.
All proceedings of the hearing officer will be conducted with reasonable dispatch and terminated as soon as fairness to all parties involved permits.
An adequate summary of the proceedings will be kept. As a minimum, such summary would include a tape recording of testimony. Such record will be available for inspection and copying in the office of student services during regular business hours.
The student will be provided with a copy of the findings of fact and the conclusions of the hearing officer as well as a statement of the available procedures and time limits for seeking reconsideration or other administrative relief. The student will be advised of his/her right to present, within fifteen (15) calendar days, a written statement of appeal to the president of the college before action is taken on the decision of the hearing officer. In the case of an unemancipated minor, written notice of any action involving dismissal or disciplinary probation may be sent to the parents or guardian of the student.
The vice president for student services or designee shall establish general rules of procedure for conducting hearings consistent with these guidelines, the college’s rules of practice and procedure set forth in chapter 495C-108 WAC, and the Administrative Procedure Act, chapter 34.05 RCW.
If no timely appeal is filed in writing from the findings and conclusions of the hearing officer, the action taken shall be final.