Guidebook

Honor principle

Students, faculty and staff at Reed have always described the honor principle as one of the college's most important and distinctive features. What is the honor principle? How do we define it? How does this definition translate into standards for the day-to-day interactions we have with each other?

Although there is no official definition of the honor principle, community members have sought for years to communicate what the honor principle means in every aspect of life. For a review of how the honor principle governs life at Reed, see the publication, "Living with the honor principle," available in student services. Excerpts from that publication are found in this guidebook.

The essence of Reed honor

Despite changing norms of behavior from 1911 to the present, certain ideas seem to have remained essential to the meaning of the honor principle:

  • The honor principle is universal, binding all members of the college community.
  • The honor principle assumes that members of the community will be honest (not only in their academic work, but in all their behavior), will respect others' rights and persons, will take responsibility for the effect of their behavior on the college as a whole, and will engage in conscientious self-reflection about their words and deeds.
  • The honor principle itself is not a law or code of conduct and does not take the place of or eliminate the need for legislation; instead, it presupposes voluntary compliance with established rules, regulations, and policies.
  • The honor principle mandates maximum reliance on individual judgment and conscience and minimal enforcement of rules and regulations.
  • The honor principle implies that when individuals sincerely believe it necessary to violate a policy or break a rule, or to embarrass, discomfit, or in some way injure others or the community as a whole, they must acknowledge and explain their behavior, and be prepared to accept the judgment of the community's judicial process.
  • The honor principle depends on a collective concern for its survival: members of the community have to discuss and analyze the meaning of the honor principle and must internalize an obligation to ensure that potentially dishonorable behavior, their own or others', is scrutinized through acknowledgment and discussion, direct confrontation, or the mechanisms of the judicial process.

In the 1989-90 student handbook, Jiro Feingold casts this spirit in less formal language:

What the honor principle means to me: Don't lie, cheat, or steal. Don't mock or humiliate someone in a public forum. Think about what you do, before you do it. If it will inconvenience someone, try to find a solution compatible to both of you. Try to make the community work.

Honor council

The honor council consists of an equal number of students, staff, and faculty members. Under the constitution, the honor council is responsible for educating incoming members of the community about the meaning and importance of responsible and honorable conduct at Reed College. In addition, the council is expected to provide advice to those seeking resolution of disputes and to informally mediate such disputes prior to more formal action.

There can be many kinds of disputes, and they can involve any permutation of students, staff, and faculty. The honor council should be viewed as an important tool for the individual in our community, regardless of whether he or she is claiming that someone has violated Reed's honor principle or whether he or she is being accused of a violation. For a complainant it offers a first step in developing a resolution to the problem. For a respondent it offers an opportunity to respond. To both parties it offers an opportunity to resolve the dispute before the initiation of often difficult and time-consuming formal proceedings.

Informal procedures for mediation

Procedures for mediation have been enacted by the student senate and the faculty. They are outlined here in their entirety. These procedures apply to staff members except for disputes that arise from their performance of assigned duties.

Most disputes at Reed are and should be settled by direct discussion. In a community that subscribes to ideals of honor, responsibility, and freedom of expression, disagreements and grievances usually can be worked out through sincere and respectful conversation. Sometimes this conversation will take place with third persons present, but more often it just occurs between the parties themselves. When a disagreement or grievance cannot be resolved in this way, the next step should usually be mediation under the auspices of the honor council. To quote the community constitution, "members of the Reed community are bound in good faith to seek informal resolutions of disputes, grievances, and breaches of honor before formal steps are taken."

Mediation occurs whenever persons in conflict agree to have some neutral third party help them understand and resolve their differences. Mediation is entirely voluntary and can be broken off by any disputant at any time. Mediation of some disputes consists of all parties having a chance to state their views and discuss their disagreements in a structured, confidential, and non-judgmental forum. In other cases, successful mediation can result in a written agreement signed by both parties. Sometimes a written agreement will amount to a statement of understanding or a contract between the parties that will not be kept on file by anyone other than the parties themselves. If that agreement involves an explicit acknowledgment that an individual has injured a community member or committed a breach of honor, a copy of the agreement will be transmitted to the chair of the honor council and kept on file in accordance with the procedures of the community constitution, Article IV, Section 9.

Either party to a dispute may ask any member of the honor council to initiate the process of mediation. Before mediation can begin, both parties must agree to engage in mediation, must agree-in writing-to the ground rules of mediation for the case, and must agree on a particular mediator, who typically will be a member of the honor council. Certain ground rules must be agreed to for all mediation sponsored by the honor council: mediation is confidential, unless all parties agree otherwise; mediation is not a "hearing" and does not result in a judgment or finding, though it may result in a written agreement; when disputants belong to different constituencies of the college (student, faculty, staff), each party has a right to have a mediator present from his or her own constituency, in which case the mediators will function as a team; no one may be present at mediation except the disputants and the mediator(s); a confidential report of the progress and outcome of mediation will be transmitted to the chair of the honor council; and if mediation fails, either party retains the right to institute formal proceedings according to the processes described in the "grievance" section below.

Disputes about grades or other formal evaluations of student work and disagreements arising from formal personnel evaluations are not subject to mediation.

In summary, if a member of the community feels wronged in some way, the honor council offers assistance in addressing the problem. All members of the honor council are available to discuss and advise on a strictly confidential basis how to proceed informally or formally with a grievance. The honor council can be an important enfranchising tool for all members of the Reed community, and community members are urged to avail themselves of its services. Comments and suggestions are welcome.

Grievance

Every member of the community has a right to file a formal complaint against another community member and to have that complaint heard by an appropriate hearing board. Complaints against students must be filed with the chair of the student judicial board; complaints against faculty members must be filed with the dean of the faculty; complaints against staff members must be filed with the director of human resources or the vice president/treasurer. The judicial board code, the rules and procedures of the faculty, and the staff handbook describe the exact procedures for handling and hearing complaints; copies of these documents may be obtained from the dean of student services. Hearing boards at Reed have the responsibility to investigate complaints, determine facts, and recommend action appropriate to the circumstances of the case and the ethos of an educational institution. Hearings are not trials; they do not take the place of legal action, and complainants always have the right to pursue legal action or seek redress from state and federal agencies such as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

Judicial board

The judicial board (J-board) hears cases concerning alleged violations by members of the student body of the honor principle, community rules or college policies, rules, regulations or contracts. Generally, the J-board hears cases brought by current or former members of the Reed community against any individual who has allegedly committed a violation while a member of the student body. The final authority in judicial matters is vested in the president of the college.

Students, faculty and staff are asked to participate in the judicial system. For the purposes of the judicial board code, the Reed College community shall be defined as consisting of all currently employed faculty members, staff members, and student body members who are either currently enrolled, registered, on leave, or have made arrangements with the business office to pay tuition and fees.

The J-board consists of nine full-time students. Five J-board members hear each case, with a sixth member acting as a procedural aide. The student senate appoints J-board members once a year and during semesters if needed.

During periods in which the college is not officially in session or the J-board is unable to convene, the president of the college shall appoint a temporary hearing board composed of four members of the appeals board including the chair, who shall serve as chair of the temporary hearing board.

Complaints against a student must be submitted in writing to the chair of the J-board, who shall file a copy of the complaint with the dean of student services before the case is heard. The written complaint must state:

  1. the grounds on which the complainant(s) believes that a violation of the honor principle or college rules has occurred;
  2. a brief description of the actions that the complainant(s) believes do constitute a violation;
  3. a list of the names of the persons believed to have committed a violation, if the names of such violators are known to the complainant(s);
  4. a list of witnesses with information pertinent to the case; and
  5. a statement of why informal mediation was unsuccessful or did not occur.

The J-board reserves the right to recommend mediation to parties to a case as specified in Article IV sec. 1 of the community constitution. J-board hearings, and all information regarding honor cases, are strictly confidential. Neither the complainant nor the respondent may contact their own witnesses, nor may they discuss matters pertinent to the case outside of the hearing.

Members of the honor council are available for informal mediation or consultation before an honor case is brought to the J-board.

Student judicial board code

Approved at the March 10, 1997 faculty meeting.
Amended by the senate and CAC and approved by the faculty on September 23, 1997.
Amended by the senate, approved by the CAC, and approved by the faculty on March 4, 1998.
Amendments proposed by the 2002 Judicial Documents Review Committee, approved by the CAC and the Senate in spring 2005, and approved by the faculty on September 26, 2005.
Amendments proposed by the Judicial Board, approved by the CAC and Senate in spring 2011 and approved by the faculty on May 27, 2011.
Amendments proposed by the CAC, approved by the Senate October 31, 2011, and approved by the faculty on November 7, 2011.
Amendment proposed by the CAC, approved by the Senate in May 2012, and approved by the faculty on May 18, 2012.
Amendments proposed by the CAC, approved by the faculty on November 3, 2014, and approved by the Senate November 7, 2014.

Effective Monday, January 26, 2015

Preamble

The Judicial Board shall hear cases concerning alleged violations by members of the student body of the Honor Principle, community rules or college policies, rules, regulations, or contracts, except for allegations involving sexual misconduct, which shall be heard by the Sexual Misconduct Board. These Boards shall hear cases brought by current or former members of the Reed Community against any individual who has allegedly committed a violation while a member of the student body. The final authority in judicial matters is vested in the President of Reed College.

Students, faculty and staff are asked to participate in the judicial system.

For the purposes of the Judicial Board Code, the Reed College Community shall be defined as consisting of all currently employed faculty, administration and staff members, and student body members who are either currently enrolled, registered, on leave, or have made arrangements with the Business Office to pay tuition and fees. Except where specified, all rules and procedures for the Judicial Board also apply to the Sexual Misconduct Board.

Section 1. Composition and Selection Procedure for the Judicial Board

A. The Judicial Board should consist of twelve members of the student body.

B. The Student Senate shall choose members of the Judicial Board after it has interviewed those applying.  Current members of the Judicial Board who are not themselves applicants under consideration shall assist the Senate in making these appointments. To be eligible for service on the Judicial Board, students must have been enrolled at Reed College for one or more years and must never have been found responsible for a violation under this Judicial Board process.

C. Appointments to the Judicial Board should normally be made at the end of each academic year; terms begin the semester following the appointment, and run the length of two contiguous semesters.

D. “Hearing” is the Judicial Board process for individuals to give testimony to the Board; “Hearing Board” is the set of individuals chosen to hear a given case; “deliberation” is the process by which the Hearing Board discusses among itself its fact finding, recommendations, and proposed sanctions. “Parties” to a case include the complainant and respondent, whereas “participants” include the parties and any witnesses, seconds, and Board members.

E. The Chair(s) of the Judicial Board shall be chosen by the outgoing Judicial Board from among the appointed members at the end of each academic year, for a term beginning at the close of that academic year. 

F.   Should any member of the Judicial Board resign, be found responsible for a violation of the Honor Principle, community rules or college policies, rules, regulations, or contracts, or be removed under 1.G, the Student Senate shall schedule an appointments process and fill the vacated seat as quickly as possible. If the need to fill a vacancy arises, the Judicial Board Chair(s) may appoint a temporary member until such time as the Student Senate appoints a regular member. If a Chair of the Judicial Board resigns from the Judicial Board or resigns as Chair but remains on the Board, the Judicial Board shall choose another Chair from its ranks.

G.  After consultation with its Advisors, the Judicial Board may remove any member for negligence of duty by a simple majority vote. The vacated position shall be filled in accordance with 1.F.

H.  Should any current member of the Judicial Board be a participant in a Hearing Board proceeding as a witness, complainant, or respondent, or be successfully challenged for bias by a complainant or respondent according to 4.F.i, that member shall step down from the Judicial Board for that case, and a replacement shall be chosen (if none is available, see 1.F).

I.  The Judicial Board shall interview applicants from the student body and forward to the Student Senate nominations to form a pool of Secretaries. A Secretary shall keep minutes of the Judicial Board hearings. The Secretaries shall not be present at Judicial Board deliberations (see 4.M).

J.  The Chair of the Hearing Board shall be responsible for the maintenance of complete files, including all minutes, correspondence to and from the Hearing Board, and all recommendations of the Hearing Board. The Chair of the Hearing Board shall forward the case file to the Dean of Students immediately upon the resolution of each case.

K.  During periods in which the College is not officially in session or the Judicial Board is unable to convene, the President of the College shall appoint a Temporary Hearing Board in order to hear a case if it does not involve academic misconduct. This board shall be composed of five members of the Sexual Misconduct Board (or at least three members of the Sexual Misconduct Board if more trained members are not available), one of whom shall serve as Chair of the Temporary Hearing Board.

i. If a Temporary Hearing Board with such membership cannot be appointed due to unavailability or ineligibility, as outlined in 1.H, then the President of the College shall appoint another person(s) to serve as Chair and/or member(s) of the Temporary Hearing Board.

ii.  At least one student shall be appointed to the Temporary Hearing Board.

iii. The Temporary Hearing Board shall follow the procedures of the Judicial Board as set forth in Section 4; however, an Advisor to the Judicial Board shall perform the duties of the Procedural Aide. If an Advisor is not available, the Chair of the Temporary Hearing Board will appoint a Procedural Aide.

iv. If a case of sexual misconduct must be heard out-of-session, the Temporary Hearing Board shall be at least one-third staff and one-third students.

L. If a case of academic misconduct must be heard while the College is not officially in session or due to unavailability or ineligibility of a Hearing Board as outlined in 1.H, the case shall be heard by the faculty members of the Administration Committee. The Administration Committee shall follow the procedures of the Hearing Board as set forth in Section 4, with the following exception: an administrative member of the Administration Committee shall also perform the duties of the Procedural Aide.

M. The Judicial Board shall have two Staff Advisors and two Faculty Advisors. These Advisors will not be participants in any part of the judicial process, but will be informal educational representatives of the College. The Advisors will be responsible for working with the Judicial Board Chair(s) to arrange training during the first weeks of each semester, consulting with the college legal counsel on behalf of the Judicial Board, and advising the Judicial Board on procedural and substantive questions that arise during the year.

i. In choosing the Staff Advisor, the Dean of Student Services, in consultation with the Judicial Board Chair(s), shall propose their selection to the Student Body President, who shall, after consulting with the Judicial Board Chair(s), present the selection to the Student Senate for approval by vote.

ii. In choosing the Faculty Advisor, the Dean of the Faculty, in consultation with the Judicial Board Chair, shall propose their selection to the Student Body President, who shall, after consulting with the Judicial Board Chair(s), present the selection to the Student Senate for approval by vote.

Section 2. Duties and Responsibilities of the Judicial Board

A. Unless it concludes that a case is not within its proper purview as stated in Section 3, the Judicial Board shall have the responsibility to hear, investigate and determine the facts about every complaint brought before it and to recommend action appropriate to the circumstances of the case.

B. All members of the Judicial Board should meet for training at least once during the first two weeks of each semester with both the Staff Advisor(s) and the Faculty Advisor(s).

i. The Judicial Board Chair(s) may consult with the Advisors both before proceeding with any case and before making its recommendation.

ii. In addition to the annual training meetings, the entire Judicial Board should meet with the Advisors at least once a semester.

C. The Judicial Board may hold regular, weekly closed meetings.

D. The Judicial Board should publish an article in the Quest at the beginning of each semester stating the purpose of the Judicial Board and the processes involved in bringing a case. The article shall include the names of and contact information for the Judicial Board and the Sexual Misconduct Board. Any member of the Reed Community may discuss the judicial system and procedures with a member of the Judicial Board at a mutually convenient time.

E. After consultation with its Advisors, the Judicial Board Chair(s) may update or revise procedural documents and those documents that convey to the parties involved their rights and obligations.


Section 3. Reporting Violations to the Judicial Board

A. Any current or former student(s), faculty member(s), or staff member(s) of Reed College may bring a complaint on behalf of themselves or of the community to the Judicial Board or the Sexual Misconduct Board for an apparent student violation of the Honor Principle, community rules or College policies, rules, regulations or contracts.  Both the complainant and the respondent must have been members of the Reed Community at the time when the alleged violation occurred. The Sexual Misconduct Board shall concern itself with all complaints that essentially involve an accusation of sexual misconduct, as construed in 10.A, while the Judicial Board shall concern itself with all other complaints.

B. The Dean of Student Services, or in case of the Dean’s absence, the President of the College may, in case of emergency, take immediate action against a student for an alleged violation as specified in 3.A, but must forward a complaint to the Judicial Board or the Sexual Misconduct Board within six working days, counting only days while the college is in session, or be required to withdraw such action. In such cases, the action of the Dean or President shall remain in force until the conclusion of the judicial process.

C. Any complaint alleging sexual misconduct should be submitted to the Chair of the Sexual Misconduct Board. If the Sexual Misconduct Board Chair concludes that the complaint does not allege sexual misconduct, the Sexual Misconduct Board Chair will inform the complainant that the complaint should instead be filed with the Judicial Board. If a complaint is initially filed with the Judicial Board and the Chair(s) of the Judicial Board determines that it is a complaint that alleges sexual misconduct, the Chair(s) will inform the complainant that the complaint should properly be filed with the Sexual Misconduct Board. If there is a disagreement between the Chair(s) of the Judicial Board and the Chair of the Sexual Misconduct Board whether a complaint alleges sexual misconduct, the position of the Sexual Misconduct Board Chair shall prevail. Once a complaint has been submitted and accepted, the Chair(s) of the Board accepting the complaint shall file a copy of the complaint with the Dean of Student Services before the case is heard.

D. The written complaint must include: (1) a statement of the grounds on which the complainant(s) believes that a violation has occurred under 3.A; (2) a list of the names of the persons believed to have committed a violation as specified in 3.A, if such violators are known to the complainant(s); (3) a brief description of the actions that the complainant(s) believes do constitute a violation as specified in 3.A; (4) a list of witnesses with a statement indicating the expected relevance of their testimony; (5) in cases that can be mediated, a statement of why non-judicial resolution or mediation was unsuccessful or did not occur; (6) a statement that consents to the disclosure of the complaint to the respondent(s).

E. For cases that can be mediated, the Judicial Board and the Sexual Misconduct Board reserve the right to recommend mediation to the parties of a case as specified in Article IV sec. 1 of the Community Constitution. Cases referred to the Judicial Board by the Academic Misconduct Review Panel or the Alcohol and Other Drugs Review Panel are not subject to referral to formal mediation. If formal mediation is refused or fails, the Judicial Board shall take up the case.

F. The Judicial Board and the Sexual Misconduct Board reserve the right to proceed with cases also being adjudicated outside the College. However, if a Board determines a case is best, or has been, resolved through other means, e.g. administrative, faculty, previous Board cases, or the Judicial Court System of the State of Oregon, the Board may defer the case pending the results of outside resolution (except in cases where the College is legally required to proceed, which typically occurs for cases heard by the Sexual Misconduct Board). The Board shall then determine whether it is necessary to proceed with the case.

G. The Chair(s) of the Judicial Board shall report each written complaint to all members of the Board within seven calendar days. The complaint, any response, all submitted testimony, and all deliberations and recommendations of the Student Judicial Board shall be held confidential by all participants, except as provided for in 8 below. Participants may divulge their role in a case, but not the subject matter of the case or any other participant involved in the case.

H. If parties accuse each other of unrelated violations, generally the charges shall be addressed in separate hearings. If the violations are related, the Judicial Board may join two or more cases it is considering.

Section 4. Hearing Board Procedure

A. Upon receipt of the complaint the Judicial Board shall meet to discuss the specific procedures for handling the case. The Judicial Board Chair should announce the meetings of the Judicial Board to the Judicial Board members at least 24 hours in advance. The Chair(s) shall assign one member of the Judicial Board to each case on a rotating basis as a “Procedural Aide” to provide information about procedure to respondents, complainants, and witnesses, and to keep respondents and complainants informed of the status of the case. Their function shall be to inform complainants, respondents, and witnesses about the hearing process and the Judicial Board Code. The Procedural Aide shall attend but not participate in the hearing, shall not attend the deliberations, and shall not vote.  If the Procedural Aide is removed or removes themself from the case, the Chair(s) of the Judicial Board shall replace them.

B. The Procedural Aide shall be responsible for reserving rooms for the hearing. The Procedural Aide should reserve sufficient rooms for the time of the hearing, in an attempt to provide separate rooms for the complainant(s), respondent(s), and witnesses, as well as a hearing room. Furthermore, the Procedural Aide should attempt to limit contact between parties and witnesses outside of the hearing room while the hearing is taking place.

C. The Procedural Aide should provide each person requested to appear before the board notice of that request at least two calendar days (witnesses) and seven calendar days (parties) before they are scheduled to appear.

D. The Procedural Aide should inform the respondent(s) of the grounds on which they have allegedly committed a violation as specified in 3.A by providing the respondent(s) with a copy of the written complaint submitted to the Judicial Board at least seven calendar days before the hearing.

E. For each case:

i. The Chair(s) of the Judicial Board shall assign five members as a Hearing Board, including one member who will serve as the Hearing Board Chair. Should a member of the Hearing Board wish to be disqualified, that member shall inform the Chair(s) and a replacement will be chosen.  Should a Chair of the Judicial Board wish to be disqualified for a particular case, the Chair shall inform the Judicial Board, which shall appoint a Chair from its ranks for that case.

ii. The Hearing Board reserves the right to set reasonable limits on the length of hearings, testimony, and opening and closing statements.

iii. The Hearing Board, not individual parties, is responsible for calling witnesses to a hearing.

iv. The Hearing Board reserves the right to decline to accept the testimony of any witness who lacks direct knowledge of the alleged violation or who is redundant with another witness.

v. The Hearing Board shall inform all parties of their rights and responsibilities as listed in 4.F.

vi. The Hearing Board may, upon receiving a written request from alleged persons harmed in the same incident, accept participants as co-complainants to a case prior to a hearing. Respondents must have at least two calendar days’ notice of additional co-complainants.

F. The Procedural Aide shall make an effort to inform the complainant(s) and the respondent(s) of the following at least four calendar days before the hearing:

i. That they may request the removal of a member of the Hearing Board for a particular case on the grounds of personal bias by submitting a written statement to the Chair of the Hearing Board setting forth the basis for the challenge of bias no later than three calendar days prior to the hearing. The Hearing Board shall determine whether to sustain or deny the challenge. This determination cannot be appealed prior to the Hearing Board hearing the case.

ii. That they have the right to appear before the Hearing Board and to be present for all testimony. Reasonable accommodations will be made if they wish not to be in the same room as the opposed party (complainant opposed to respondent), consistent with the abilities of both parties to have the same access to all testimony that the Hearing Board has.

iii. All hearings shall be closed to the community.

iv. That they may choose one other member of the community to be present as a “second” during the entire hearing.  Although the parties may communicate privately with their second(s), the second(s) may not address any other participant in the case during any part of the hearing. Legal counsel shall not be allowed to participate or be present in any fashion in the hearing.

v. That they may have copies of the Judicial Board Code made available to them prior to the hearing.

vi. That, except as precluded by applicable law, they have the right to inspect, two calendar days prior to the hearing, all submitted evidence, as well as a list of witnesses, except in cases where a witness’ identity will not be revealed to one of the parties for compelling safety reasons (as determined by the Hearing Board). Any evidence submitted or witnesses added within two calendar days of the hearing should be available for inspection as soon as is practicable.  Parties also have the right to inspect all records and documentary material of the proceeding, including the Hearing Board’s determinations of fact and recommendations.

vii. That they have the right to present testimony and to request the Hearing Board’s consideration of testimony by witnesses; and, that the Hearing Board may request the written testimony or responses to questions from complainants, respondents, or witnesses prior to or during the hearing. Additionally, that they have the right to present written and signed testimony in lieu of oral testimony before the Hearing Board if it is submitted to the Hearing Board Chair before the inception of the hearing.  However, any party failing to appear at a Judicial Board hearing waives their right to submit questions to the Hearing Board for the cross-examination of other witnesses and to a closing statement.

viii. That they have the right to be informed of the status of the case, to receive four-calendar-day notice of all hearings from the Procedural Aide, and to receive written notice of the status of the Hearing Board’s determinations of fact and recommendations within ten working days of the hearing.

ix. That they must consent to the disclosure of oral and written testimony, other documents, the Hearing Board’s findings and recommendations, and the decision of the President (or of the President’s designee) to the parties, and that without that consent, that party’s rights are waived.

x. That they should otherwise keep confidential any oral and written testimony or other documents presented to the Hearing Board, or any statements made during the hearing.

xi. That they should not discuss the complaint with community members other than their “second” except as is necessary to the development of the party’s testimony or the identification of appropriate witnesses.

xii. That there is no requirement in the Honor Principle or any Community Rule to answer any question put by a Hearing Board member during a hearing.

xiii. That they have the right to appeal in accordance with Section 7.

xiv. That the Hearing Board may defer a case pending a response from a party to the case prior to the hearing.

G. The Hearing Board may, on a case-by-case basis, impose a reasonable time frame in which the respondent must respond to the complaint provided by the Procedural Aide as required in 4.D.

i. Failure to contact the Hearing Board within the prescribed period of time shall be understood as a waiver of the right to be present for the entire hearing. However, the Procedural Aide should make an effort to keep the absent party informed of the case’s proceedings.

ii. An individual who has waived their right to attend, or chosen not to attend a hearing may still submit written testimony in lieu of oral testimony, if it is submitted in accordance with the Hearing Board’s prescribed time frame. However, they waive their right to submit questions to the Hearing Board for the cross-examination of other witnesses and to a closing statement.

H. Should a participant in a case entirely fail to contact the Hearing Board within the prescribed period of time, the Hearing Board will proceed with the case in the absence of their testimony.

I. The Procedural Aide for the case shall inform any person appearing as a witness before the Hearing Board of the following before the hearing:

i. That there is no requirement in the Honor Principle or any community rule to answer any question put by a Hearing Board member during a hearing.

ii. That they have the right to present written and signed testimony in lieu of oral testimony before the Hearing Board.

iii. That all hearings are closed to the community, except that the complainant(s), the respondent(s), and their seconds may be present at all testimony.

iv. That they are to contact the Hearing Board prior to the hearing if they are unwilling to appear as a witness.

v. That they should keep confidential the complaint and any oral and written testimony, other documents presented to the Hearing Board, or statements made during any part of the hearing at which they are present.

vi. That they may choose one other member of the community to be present as a “second” during the entire hearing. Although a witness may communicate privately with their second, the second may not address any other participant in the case during any part of the hearing.

J. Before taking the testimony of a participant in the case, the Hearing Board shall require them to sign a statement that affirms that their testimony shall be truthful to the best of their knowledge. Failure to abide by said statement can result in further measures being taken by the Judicial Board, the Dean of Students, and/or the Office of the President.

K. Before the commencement of the hearing, the Hearing Board shall require every complainant and respondent, and every individual whose testimony is submitted for a case, to sign a statement that consents to disclosure of the testimony and related documents to the parties, and that requires them to refrain from oral or written public statements about said case.

L. The Hearing Board may request testimony from any member of the community with expertise bearing on, or knowledge of, the case. The complainant(s) and/or the respondent(s) may also submit a request to the Hearing Board not later than two calendar days previous to the hearing to have a witness from outside the community testify. The Hearing Board shall evaluate the request for such a witness and decide whether or not the witness shall appear.

M. At the conclusion of the hearing, the Hearing Board shall deliberate in closed meeting to arrive at the Hearing Board’s determinations of fact and recommendations.

N. In deciding if a violation has occurred, voting members of the Hearing Board need only determine that the Hearing Board has evidence that has more convincing force than that opposed to it in order to come to a decision, using a unanimity minus one vote decision rule.

O. If the proposed sanctions of the Hearing Board require the involvement of Reed community members or offices, the Chair of the Hearing Board shall consult with them prior to the finalization of the Hearing Board’s recommendations. Caution shall be taken to avoid unnecessary communication of confidential information.

P.   If additional violations by the respondent(s) not listed in but directly related to the complaint are discovered during testimony, the Hearing Board may issue findings of fact and recommend sanctions.

Q.  Violations by the complainant and witnesses directly related to the complaint, unless reportable offenses such as sexual assault, shall not be subject to disciplinary sanctions.

Section 5. Determinations of Facts and Recommendations by the Judicial Board

A. If the Hearing Board finds a respondent to have committed a violation as specified in 3.A, it may recommend sanctions the nature and severity of which shall be appropriate to the violation, its circumstances, and the history of offenses by the respondent. Recommended sanctions may include community service, exclusion from campus, disciplinary probation, suspension, or expulsion.

i. Recommendations shall take into account any pertinent information in the records held by the Dean of Student Services regarding the disposition of those formal complaints and/or mediated disputes that have resulted in a finding of or acknowledgment of a violation. For the purpose of viewing records, the members of the Hearing Board, the Administration Committee of the Faculty, any temporary board or the Appeals Board shall be considered officers of Reed College.

ii. In cases involving allegations of academic misconduct, the Hearing Board may consult with the faculty member(s) in the case about the faculty member’s academic penalty and the Hearing Board’s recommended sanction.  However, the faculty member(s) directly involved in the case makes the ultimate decision concerning the grade for the assignment and/or course for the student.

iii. If it finds a respondent to have committed a violation, the Hearing Board shall append to its statement of recommended sanctions a recommendation as to whether the violation is serious enough to warrant release of pertinent information to another institution upon request.

B. All findings of fact and recommendations of the Hearing Board must be ratified using a unanimity-minus-one-vote decision rule. The findings and recommendations, together with the case file, shall be forwarded to the President or their designee for a decision. 

i. The Hearing Board shall inform the Dean of Student Services of its determinations of fact and recommended sanctions.

ii. Prior to finalizing the Hearing Board’s recommended sanctions, the Hearing Board shall forward for comment a draft of the recommendations to the President of the College or their designee.

iii. The President or their designee shall communicate the decision about violations and sanctions to the parties and the Hearing Board.

C. Should the implementation of sanctions involve the aid of Reed community members not party to the case, the Hearing Board, Dean of Student Services, and/or the President of the College shall use their best judgment in communicating relevant information about the case.  Caution should be taken to avoid unnecessary communication of confidential information.  Any individual informed of a decision of the Hearing Board is required to maintain strict confidentiality regarding the case. A party to the case may disclose their own role in a case as well as the final outcome of the case as specified in the final letter from the President, but may not disclose others’ roles without written permission from those others filed with the appropriate Board, except where allowed by law.

D. All sanctions remain in effect during the appeal process unless the President of the College waives them.  The respondent may submit a written petition to the President for such a waiver; however they must do so within five working days of filing the appeal.

Section 6. Composition and Selection Procedure for the Appeals Board

A. The Appeals Board shall consist of three students (including the President of the Student Body and a Student Senator who is not a member of the Judicial Board), and three members of the faculty. One of the faculty members shall serve as Chair, and be a non-voting member.

B. If the Chair is a party or witness to the case brought to the Appeals Board, resigns, or is disqualified for any reason, the President of the College shall select a temporary Chair for the case from the ranks of the Appeals Board. For the replacement procedure see 6.D.

C. During periods in which the College is not officially in session, the Appeals Board shall be composed of three members of the Board and the Chair of the Board in order to hear an appeal.  If the regularly appointed Chair or member(s) of the Appeals Board is not available during the period when the College is not officially in session, then the President of the College shall appoint another community member(s) to serve as Chair or member(s) of the Appeals Board for the duration of the appeal.

D. Appointed members of the Appeals Board shall be appointed for a term of one year. The Student Senate shall appoint the student body members, and the President of the College, in consultation with the Committee on Academic Policy and Planning, shall appoint the faculty members to the Appeals Board, as set forth in the Faculty Bylaws.  The same procedures are followed should an appointed Appeals Board member need to be replaced.

E. Should any appointed member of the Appeals Board resign or recuse themselves in a particular case, they shall be replaced in accordance with 6.D.

F. Should any member of the Appeals Board be a party to the case brought to the Appeals Board, they shall be disqualified, and a temporary replacement shall be appointed as in 6.D to serve for the duration of the appeal.

G. Should any member of the Appeals Board wish to be disqualified for a particular case, that member shall inform the Chair of the Appeals Board, and a temporary replacement shall be appointed as in 6.D to serve for the duration of the appeal. The complainant or respondent may also request the removal of a member of the Appeals Board on the grounds of personal bias by submitting a written statement to the Appeals Board setting forth the basis for the challenge of actual bias no later than two calendar days prior to the meeting of the Appeals Board. The Appeals Board shall determine whether to sustain or deny the challenge. This determination cannot be appealed. If the request is sustained, a replacement shall be appointed to serve temporarily on the Appeals Board as in 6.D.

H. Should any student member of the Appeals Board have been found responsible for a violation, that member shall be removed from the Appeals Board and be ineligible to serve again.

I. When the College is in session, a Secretary of the Judicial Board shall act as Secretary of the Appeals Board. When the College is not in session, the Chair of the Appeals Board shall select a Secretary. The Secretary shall keep minutes of the Appeals Board hearings. The Secretary shall not be present during deliberations.

Section 7. Appeals

A. Ordinarily, the appeals process is not a rehearing of the case. The basis for an appeal shall be limited to the following grounds:

i.   The sanctions are believed to be excessively lenient or severe.

ii.  There was a procedural error that significantly affected the outcome of the hearing.

iii. New or newly discovered evidence is of a character that it could have significantly affected the outcome of the hearing or the decision of the President or of the President’s designee.

B. Jurisdiction.

i.  In all cases, a respondent or complainant has the right to appeal the decision of the President or of the President’s designee. In cases not involving academic misconduct, appeals shall be made in writing to the Chair of the Appeals Board who shall contact the members of the Appeals Board within five working days of receiving the appeal in order to schedule a meeting time, generally within no more than a further five working days.

ii.  In cases involving academic misconduct, the appeal should be made, in writing, to the Administration Committee of the Faculty in accordance with the Faculty Code and the Reed College Community Constitution.

iii. Should a decision be appealed, the Appeals Board (or, if the appellant(s) desire an out-of-session appeal, a duly-appointed Appeals Board [See 6.A & 6.C] shall hear the appeal in accordance with the procedures of the Appeals Board as set forth in Sections 6 and 7. 

iv. When the Administration Committee has primary jurisdiction in a case involving academic misconduct as in 1.L, the appeal of its decisions shall be brought before the four-member ‘out-of-session’ Appeals Board as described in 6.C.

v.  An appeal must be made in writing within ten working days of the notification of the decision of the Administration Committee or the President or the President’s designee, unless good cause is shown for filing the appeal later, and shall contain a statement of the grounds of appeal. The President of the College will decide whether or not a late appeal will be heard.

vi. One final appeal may be made to the President of the College no later than ten working days after the decision on a previous appeal made to another body.

C. The complete case file shall be forwarded to the appropriate appellate body, or the President of the College at the time of the appeal.

D. The appropriate appellate body or the President of the College shall decide within seven calendar days of notice of an appeal whether to entertain it.

E. The appellate body shall work from the case file, and may hear testimony as it deems fit, or call for new evidence and testimony. If the appeal is based on a claim of procedural error, the appellate body may consult the Procedural Aide for that case.

i.  If the appellate body chooses to base its decision solely on the documentary record, it shall conduct its deliberations in closed meeting.

ii. If evidence and testimony is reheard or new evidence is heard, the appellate board shall follow the procedure of the Judicial Board as described in Section 4, except that if the appeal is heard by the Appeals Board, the Chair of the Appeals Board shall also perform the duties of the Procedural Aide, and if the appeal is heard by the Administration Committee, an administrative member of the Administration Committee shall also perform the duties of the Procedural Aide.

iii. Decisions of the Appeals Board require the agreement of the voting members of the board with no more than one dissenting vote and shall take the form of recommendations to the President of the College.

F. The Chair of the appellate board shall send a copy of that board’s file to the Chair of the original adjudicating body. The Chair of the appellate board shall be responsible for assembling all appeals files, including the minutes of any hearings or meetings, correspondence to and from the board, and official conclusions and recommendations of the board, and forwarding them to the Dean of Student Services for deposition.

G. The Appeals Board shall make a determination regarding any dispute or disagreement over an interpretation of the Judicial Board Code or any other community or college document pertaining to judicial procedures affecting students.

Section 8. Publicity

A. The Judicial Board, the Sexual Misconduct Board, and each Temporary Hearing Board shall arrange for the publication of a summary report, not violating confidentiality, regarding any matter affecting the College Community, excluding unresolved cases and those cases still subject to appeal, every semester.  The report shall contain summary statements of the findings and sanctions, recommended by the Boards, as well as the resulting Presidential decisions, as in 5.B, for the previous semester’s cases. It shall contain the results of completed appeals processes, including recommendations made by the Appeals Board, and associated Presidential decisions, as in 7.E.iii, or directly by the President, as in 7.B.vi. Individual parties may consent to have their names published through a written request filed with the appropriate Board. A copy of the report shall be sent to the Editor of the Quest and to any other regular campus publication that requests the report. The Judicial Board Advisors shall assist the Chairs of the Judicial Board, the Sexual Misconduct Board, and the Temporary Hearing Boards, in coordinating and publishing their contributions to the report.

B. Public copies of the reports required by 8.A shall be deposited in the College Archives to provide a cumulative record of community judicial decisions of general concern.

Section 9. Disposition of Confidential Records

A. All records regarding the disposition of those formal complaints and/or mediated disputes which have resulted in a finding of or acknowledgment of a violation shall be placed in confidential disciplinary files, separate from all other records pertaining to a respondent. These files shall be kept, maintained, and protected by the Dean of Student Services. Each Board may also keep a copy of the file of each particular case it handles, which it shall protect as confidential.  When requested to do so, the Dean shall open an individual’s file for inspection by the Chair of any Board. At their discretion, the Dean may release summaries of the records or details of a particular case to any faculty member or other officer of the College whom the Dean believes has a reasonable need to know. Disciplinary records, including any files in the keeping and protection of any Board, shall be maintained for the duration of a student’s enrollment at the College, and for seven years thereafter, and shall be destroyed at the end of that period.

B. Should the recommendation to release an action not appear in a Board’s determinations of fact and recommendations of sanctions to the President, the decision as to whether to release information about violations to other institutions shall be made by the Dean of Student Services at their discretion. The College shall release any information or records at the written request of the student involved.

Section 10. Sexual Misconduct Board

A. The Sexual Misconduct Board shall hear and decide complaints involving sexual misconduct. Sexual misconduct includes sexual assault, sexual harassment, and any other form of dishonorable conduct of a sexual nature.

B. The Sexual Misconduct Board should consist of at least six staff (non-student, non-faculty), together with all members of the Student Judicial Board. Each year, the President, in consultation with the Vice Presidents and the Faculty and Staff Advisors to the Judicial Board, shall appoint the staff members of the Sexual Misconduct Board, appointing one staff (non-student) member as its Chair. No person who has been found, following completion of the staff grievance process, to have violated the Honor Principle or any college policy relating to sexual misconduct, violence, or dishonesty may serve as a staff member of the Sexual Misconduct Board. In consultation with the Judicial Board Advisors, the President may remove any staff member for negligence of duty. The President in consultation with the Faculty and Staff Advisors to the Judicial Board, shall replace any staff member who has been removed from office under this section or who has resigned from the Board or who has ceased to be employed by the College.

C. All members of the Sexual Misconduct Board shall receive training in sexual misconduct adjudication, as well as general training concerning the adjudication of violations of the Honor Principle.

D. Each complaint heard by the Sexual Misconduct Board shall be heard by a Hearing Board of five members of the Sexual Misconduct Board, appointed by the Chair. The Hearing Board shall be at least one-third staff members and at least one-third students. The standards and procedures for disqualification of a member of a Hearing Board of the Judicial Board specified in 1.H shall also apply to members of a Hearing Board of the Sexual Misconduct Board. The Chair of the Sexual Misconduct Board shall appoint one member of the Hearing Board as Chair and an additional member of the Sexual Misconduct Board to serve as the Procedural Aide in the case.

(last modified: January 22, 2015)