Student Conduct in the Instructional Environment
Faculty teaching courses for Sandhills Community College and students taking courses at Sandhills Community College have the right to an instructional environment that is conducive to study, thought, and full concentration on study topics selected by the instructor. It is expected that students conduct themselves in a manner that does not disrupt the learning and teaching environment. The faculty and administration reserve the right to remove a student from a course or a program or to deny his or her admission to a course or a program if the student’s behavior is determined to be detrimental to the teaching environment.
The Sandhills Community College faculty, staff, and administration expect student behavior that assures an instructional environment:
- where students arrive and depart on time,
- where there is no disruptive behavior,
- where the rights of others are respected and where students treat each other with politeness and respect,
- that is free from menacing or threatening language or disrespectful behavior directed at either the professor or other students,
- where a student’s attire is within the generally accepted bounds of good taste and does not disrupt the learning process, and
- where students are allowed to bring guests (including children) only with the expressed permission of the professor.
Part of Sandhills Community College’s responsibility is to prepare students for the world of work, where they will be expected to dress appropriately. Students at Sandhills are therefore expected to dress in a manner that reflects generally accepted standards of modesty and good taste. Faculty members have the right to establish dress standards for their classrooms, and — after appropriate counseling — to ban or remove students who do not meet those standards.
In certain educational settings, such as work-based learning, practicum courses and clinical, student grades are determined, at least in part, based on student behavior. Therefore, violation of the student code of conduct may result in a failing grade as outlined in individual program handbooks.
Student Code of Conduct
Students are adults and are, of course, expected to know what constitutes “acceptable” behavior. The College prefers to emphasize counseling and guidance in promoting good student conduct. However, when this approach fails, our only option is disciplinary action. If a student has any questions concerning appropriate conduct, he/she should see a college counselor, the Vice President of Instruction or the Safety and Student Conduct Officer (curriculum students), Associate Vice President for Continuing Education and Workforce Development (continuing education students), or the Associate Vice President of the Hoke Center (Hoke Center/SandHoke students).
Sandhills Community College reserves the right to deny admission or readmission to students whose presence on campus is construed by the administration as harmful or potentially harmful to Sandhills Community College students, faculty, and/or staff. Moreover, Sandhills Community College may refuse to admit any applicant during any period of time that the student is suspended or expelled from any other education entity. Students admitted to the College must adhere to the Student Code of Conduct, which prohibits conduct that impairs significantly the welfare or the educational opportunities of others in the college community. The college may disclose educational information (which includes disciplinary information/records) with postsecondary institutions where the student seeks to enroll, intends to enroll, or is already enrolled so long as the disclosure is for purposes related to the student’s enrollment or transfer. Students may request a copy of their records by contacting the Vice President of Enrollment Management.
The Student Code of Conduct has one purpose: to ensure the existence at Sandhills Community College of opportunities and conditions that are conducive to effective learning, teaching and living together. This document is the product of the cooperative thought and dialogue of students, instructors and administrators of the College.
The following Code of Conduct applies to all students enrolled in courses with Sandhills Community College. The code should not be considered an exclusive list of acceptable and unacceptable behavior.
- Each student is held responsible for information in the college Catalog and Student Handbook published online at www.sandhills.edu.
- Students who lose, damage, deface, destroy, sell, vandalize, or otherwise dispose of college property placed in their possession or entrusted to them will be charged for the full extent of the damage or loss and are subject to disciplinary action.
- Under no conditions will students be in possession of alcoholic beverages, narcotics, or illicit drugs on college property or at college sponsored events on or off campus. This includes athletic events, field trips, and conferences. Students under the influence of or possessing alcohol or drugs will be in violation of this policy and subject to disciplinary action. The College will comply fully with local and state laws concerning the possession of and/or sale of alcohol and drugs. In addition, students might not be able to receive federal student aid if they are or have been convicted of selling or possessing illegal drugs, if the drug offense for which they are/were convicted occurred while they were receiving federal student aid. To regain eligibility, students must provide to the Safety and Student Conduct Officer documentation of a minimum of six months rehabilitation and an ongoing plan to remain drug or alcohol-free.
- Acts such as stealing, fraud, forgery, falsifying documents, gambling, fighting, and destruction of property will not be permitted. Any violation of this regulation may result in expulsion from the College on the FIRST offense.
- Under no condition will the possession of a dangerous weapon, including but not limited to handguns, be permitted on college property. Such acts of possession may result in expulsion from the college on the first offense.
- The College will comply fully with existing North Carolina laws that make possession of firearms or explosives on campus a Class I Felony and ALL weapons on campus unlawful. Sandhills Community College will immediately report ANY and ALL violations to local authorities.
- In the interest of protecting students, faculty, staff, or property from harm, the College reserves the right to take disciplinary action in response to behavior off-campus that violates college expectations and policies or could be detrimental to the College.
- Smoking is permitted only in the following locations on the main campus: Picnic Shelter near Causey Hall; and parking lots. The use of tobacco is prohibited by students, staff, faculty, or visitors in all campus buildings at all campus locations and in any college owned vehicles. For purposes of this policy, tobacco is defined as any type of tobacco product including, but not limited to, cigarettes, cigars, cigarillos, e-cigarettes, pipes, smokeless or spit tobacco, or snuff.
- Students are not to bring children, or anyone not enrolled to class except under exceptional circumstances and with prior approval of the faculty member.
- Pets, except for service animals, are not allowed on campus to include classrooms.
- All vehicles must be properly registered, display appropriate stickers, and abide by posted and announced parking and traffic regulations. Violators of traffic and parking regulations are subject to fines, wheel locks, towing, or possible revocation of campus parking privileges. Student records may also be withheld until fines are paid.
- Fiscal irresponsibility such as failure to pay college-levied fines, failure to repay college-funded loans, or the passing of worthless checks to college officials is subject to disciplinary action.
- True threats directed at a student or faculty/staff member are prohibited. Any or all verbal, written, or physical injury from violence to oneself or others will be taken seriously.
- Prospective students visiting campus must report to Student Services or the Continuing Education Division upon arrival. Those failing to do so may be asked to leave.
- The Dempsey Student Center and other campus facilities are for student use and for authorized activities. Thus, unauthorized individuals may be asked to leave.
- All curriculum students are required to have and to carry a student ID. Students may be asked to show their ID at random. Failure to comply may result in disciplinary action.
- Language or behavior that is harassing that rises to the level of severe or pervasive is prohibited by Sandhills Community College.
- Faculty and students at Sandhills Community College – on the main campus or off-campus locations, including online — have the right to an instructional environment that is conducive to study, thought, and full concentration on study topics. Student behavior that substantially disrupts learning and teaching activities--including unauthorized use of technology--will be subject to disciplinary actions.
- Part of Sandhills Community College’s responsibility is to prepare students for the world of work, where they will be expected to dress appropriately. Students at Sandhills are therefore expected to dress in a manner that reflects generally accepted standards of modesty and good taste. Faculty members have the right to establish dress standards for their classrooms, and – after appropriate counseling – to ban or remove students who do not meet those standards.
- If, in the opinion of college officials, clothing and/or behavior (including droops or the presence of gang colors, signs, and/or symbols) is deemed obscene or incites an immediate breach of peace, sanctions may be imposed immediately.
- For the safety of all concerned, the college campus is open during the following hours: Monday through Thursday, 6 a.m. to 12 a.m.; Friday, 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Saturday, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Sunday, 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. The college is closed during holidays and times not listed above, except for special events. Students using classrooms and laboratories after scheduled class hours must obtain prior approval from the appropriate faculty/staff member.
- Failure to abide by the SCC Acceptable Use Policy for Information Technology Resources may lead to disciplinary action, including loss of computer privileges, dismissal from the College, and/or criminal prosecution. The college expects and requires ethical and responsible behavior of individuals using information services.
- Providing false information or fraudulent documents to college officials or procuring any money, goods, or services under false pretense is prohibited.
- Rudeness and lying to school officials as well as failing to comply with instructions of college officials acting in performance of their duties are subject to disciplinary action.
- Coed accommodations on any club, class, or SCC sponsored trip is prohibited in the interest of civility, privacy, and safety.
- For the student’s and public’s safety, wheeled vehicles, to include but not limited to mopeds, bicycles, roller skate/blades, skateboards, hoverboards, etc., are prohibited for use on sidewalks and pedestrian walkways. Failure to comply may result in disciplinary action.
- Any and all other offenses that may need the attention of the Safety and Student Conduct Officer or Vice President of Instruction (all curriculum students), the Associate Vice President for Continuing Education and Workforce Development (all continuing education students), or the Associate Vice President of the Hoke Center (all students taking classes at the Hoke Center) are subject to this code.
Student Code of Conduct - Academic Honesty
Sandhills Community College believes that the pursuit of knowledge requires honesty. Academic dishonesty includes but is not limited to the following:
- Copying the work of another.
- Collaboration: Working with another person on a test, examination, or paper without expressed authorization and without indicating that collaboration has occurred.
- Plagiarism: The representation of the work of another person as one’s own; the failure to cite the source of an idea, information, or words that come from someone other than the author of the paper or the exam.
- Use of books, notes and/or electronic devices in examinations without the explicit permission of the professor.
Penalties for academic dishonesty may include the following:
- Zero grade on the test or assignment on which cheating occurs.
- Failing grade of an F or FW for the course depending on the point in the semester as well as immediate dismissal from the course.
- For repeated breaches of academic honesty, a student may be suspended or expelled from the college.
When a student is accused of academic dishonesty, the resolution of the accusation is between the professor and the student. If the solution is unsatisfactory, there is an inherent right to appeal, however, while the accusation of academic dishonesty may be appealed, the penalty may not. The appeal shall be in accordance with the Student Grievance Procedure.
Student Code of Conduct - Veteran Affairs
Beneficiaries, any individuals entitled to receive VA education benefits, are expected to remain in compliance with Sandhills Community College’s Student Code of Conduct. In addition to faculty and administration reserving the right to remove a student from a course, a program of study, or deny his or her admission to a course or a program of study, the Department of Military & Veterans Affairs has the right to execute appropriate disciplinary actions towards any beneficiaries found out of compliance with the college’s Student Code of Conduct. This may include termination of existing enrollment certifications. Beneficiaries are expected to respect all personnel and conduct themselves in a manner that does not disrupt the working environment.
- Report of offenses: Students, faculty members, staff or administrators should immediately report incidents that violate the Student Code of Conduct to the Safety and Student Conduct Officer or the Vice President of Instruction (all curriculum students), Associate Vice President for Continuing Education and Workforce Development (continuing education students) or Associate Vice President of the Hoke Center (all students taking classes at the Hoke Center). When possible, the report should be documented through the Report a Concern icon on the homepage (via the Tools tab on the top left section of the homepage).
- The Safety and Student Conduct Officer/Vice President/AVPs will confer with all parties involved and decide on one of the following options:
- To declare the case closed immediately for lack of evidence and to notify in writing the accused and the accuser.
- To refer the case to the Behavior Intervention Team (BIT) for review and recommendation.
- To issue warning that repeated violation of the Code of Conduct may necessitate further disciplinary action.
- To reserve the right to deny admission or readmission to any student whose presence on campus is disruptive to other students.
- To invoke penalties. A student may be placed on probation, suspended, or expelled from the College for conduct or personal behavior that is in violation of the Student Code of Conduct. The Safety and Student Conduct Officer/Vice President/AVP will, in writing, identify the claimed misconduct and present a statement of any penalty imposed. There is an inherent right to appeal. The appeal shall be in accordance with the Student Grievance Procedure.
- As a general rule, the status of a student accused of a violation of these regulations should not be altered until a final determination has been made in regard to the charges. Interim suspension may be imposed, however, upon a finding by the appropriate institutional official that the continued presence of the accused on campus constitutes an immediate threat to the physical safety and well-being of the accused or any other member of the institution’s community or its guests, poses a threat of destruction of property, or shows a potential for substantial disruption of classroom or other campus activities.
Grievance is defined as any matter of student concern or dissatisfaction within the control of the College, except for the following:
- grades, which is subject to the decision of the professor unless related to some type of suspected discrimination. Refer to the college’s Equal Opportunity, Harassment, and Nondiscrimination Policy;
- attendance policies and matters of a purely academic nature, which shall be adjudicated through the Vice President of Instruction;
- matters involving Title IX, which are addressed elsewhere in this Catalog and published online at www.sandhills.edu;
- residency classification, which is subject to the residency appeal process outlined by the North Carolina Residency Determination Service (RDS); and
- Financial Aid awards and eligibility, which is subject to review by the Financial Aid Appeals Committee with a final ruling by the Vice President of Student Services.
Student Grievance Procedure
The purpose of the Student Grievance Procedure is to assure students of Sandhills Community College that their grievances will be considered fairly, rapidly, and in a non-threatening atmosphere. This process is designed to be used by students, not their surrogates. In keeping with the college practice of addressing all grievances informally prior to resorting to formal procedures, it is expected that prior to embarking on the formal Student Grievance Procedure, students will initially address problems and matters of concern informally with the faculty and/or staff members involved.
However, the College recognizes that not all student grievances will be satisfactorily settled on an informal basis. Therefore, this Student Grievance Procedure has been adopted and applies to all appeals of disciplinary actions, appeals regarding student records and privacy rights. Appeals based on charges of discrimination will be handled by the Title IX coordinator in Human Resources. Students should follow these procedures first in all applicable situations.
Any student electing initially to pursue a grievance outside of these procedures has thereby waived the ability to pursue his or her grievance hereunder. A complete copy of the Student Grievance Procedure may be obtained from the Safety and Student Conduct Officer, Vice President of Instruction, or the SCC website.
Student grievances resulting from academic practices or learning environment activities other than disruptive student behavior should be referred to the attention of the Vice President of Instruction (curriculum students), Associate Vice President for Continuing Education and Workforce Development (continuing education students), or Associate Vice President of the Hoke Center (Hoke Center students) after the student has met with the faculty member or department chair and attempted an informal resolution of the problem. Student grievances that affect an individual’s welfare and are not directly related to academic or classroom activities of the College should be brought to the attention of the Safety and Student Conduct Officer (curriculum students), Associate Vice President for Continuing Education and Workforce Development (continuing education students), or Associate Vice President of the Hoke Center (Hoke Center students) after the student has made every effort to resolve the problem in an informal basis through conversation with the individuals involved.
Student Grievance Procedure Steps
- Informal Resolution: In non-academic disciplinary issues initiated by the student of the college, the informal grievance procedure begins with a meeting with the Safety and Student Conduct Officer, Associate Vice President of Continuing Education and Workforce Development, or the Associate Vice President of the Hoke Center (all Hoke Center students). In academic disciplinary issues, the student must meet with the instructor and department chair, and if needed, the Vice President of Instruction to seek an informal resolution. If a satisfactory informal resolution is achieved at any point, the grievance process stops.
- Formal Resolution: If an informal resolution is not achieved, the student may elect to pursue a formal
- The student obtains the Grievance Appeal Form using the eForms icon located on the MySCC Student Portal landing page. Within the eForms portal, the student should select Etrieve Central, select Forms, and then choose the Grievance Appeal Form within the Student Affairs section.
- When completing the Grievance Appeal Form, the student must select whose decision they are appealing (Safety and Student Conduct Officer, Associate Vice President or Continuing Education and Workforce Development, Associate Vice President of the Hoke Center (all Hoke Center students), or Vice President of Instruction). Additionally, they must provide the nature of their appeal.
- Students must submit the Grievance Appeal Form within three (3) business days of the Safety and Student Conduct Officer, Associate Vice President of Continuing Education and Workforce Development, Associate Vice President of the Hoke Center (all Hoke Center students), or Vice President of Instruction’s resolution decision.
- Student Grievance Committee Hearing: Upon submission of the Grievance Appeal Form by the student, the form is routed
to the Student Grievance Committee Chair.
- The Student Grievance Committee reviews the appeal, meets with the student (and others) if applicable, and renders a decision within ten (10) business days. (The Student Grievance Committee may choose to discontinue a hearing if the student fails to attend two or more scheduled meetings.)
- President’s Review: Based on the decision of the Student Grievance Committee, the student may elect
to continue the appeal to the College President
- Students intending to appeal to the College President must submit the Grievance Appeal Form within three (3) business days of being notified of the Student Grievance Committee’s decision.
- The College President reviews the appeal, meets with the student (and others) if applicable, and renders a decision within ten (10) business days.
- The President’s decision is final.
- Final Resolution: The College President will indicate the final decision on the Grievance Appeal Form.
- Upon making the final decision, the Grievance Appeal Form will route back to the student’s college email inbox notifying the student of the final resolution decision and effectively ending the student grievance procedure steps.
Sexual Harassment Policy
Sexual harassment is unacceptable behavior and a violation of the law. Language or behavior that is sexually harassing and rises to the level of severe, persistent, and pervasive is prohibited is prohibited by Sandhills Community College. The College prohibits any form of harassment of employees and/or students based upon age, race, sex, color, creed, handicap/disability, religion, national origin, political affiliation, gender identity, genetic information, and marital status. Students have the responsibility to bring any such incident (via written as well as verbal report) to the attention of an administrator so that the matter can be resolved informally. Curriculum students should contact the Safety and Student Conduct Officer; Continuing Education students should contact the Associate Vice President of Continuing Education and Workforce Development; students at the SCC Hoke Center should contact the Associate Vice President of the Hoke Center. The administrator will then contact the Title IX coordinator in the Human Resources Department. Any student who feels uncomfortable going to the Safety and Student Conduct Officer or AVPs should go directly to Human Resources Office or the Executive Vice President. Grievances regarding sexual harassment will be handled by the Title IX coordinator and Title IX investigators.
There are two categories of sexual harassment:
- Sexual harassment in which a person in authority makes sexual demands upon another individual in exchange for favors, and
- Sexual harassment in which a hostile or uncomfortable college environment is created by unwelcome or offensive sexual conduct.
Thus, it is important to understand that sexual harassment does not require physical contact. A hostile environment may be created by, but certainly is not limited to, the following unwelcome and offensive behaviors: repeated and unwelcome sexual advances, comments, contact, jokes, flirtations or any abuse of a sexual nature.
Students may reference information about sexual violence on the Safe at SCC website, http://www.sandhills.edu/title-ix.