Judicial Affairs Appeals

Students found responsible for a violation of the code of conduct may submit an appeal request only when they believe one or more of the criteria for appealing exist. In cases involving alleged sexual misconduct, both the accused student and the complainant have the right to outcome results and to submit an appeal based on the same criteria.

Except as may be necessary to explain the basis of a “new evidence” (Type B) appeal, appeals bodies may limit their review to the original case materials, verbatim record of the proceeding and information that is available at the time a request for an appeal is received. Reasons for appeal are limited to:

  1. A procedural error occurred: A request for consideration on grounds that a student found responsible believes that a procedural error occurred that was so substantial it effectively denied them a fair hearing.
  2. New information: A request for consideration on grounds that a student found responsible believes new information is now available (not brought out at the original hearing because it was not known to the person appealing) might be sufficient to alter the decision.
  3. The sanction imposed was overly severe: A request for consideration on grounds that a student found responsible believes that the sanction(s) imposed was overly severe for the violation they were found to have committed.

Appeal forms can be secured from the Residence Life Office and the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities. All appeals must be submitted in writing within 5 days of receipt of original results. Appeal letters shall be no longer than 5 pages long. While an appeal is being considered or a scheduled appeal hearing is pending, the original sanctions imposed remain in effect. The chairperson of a Judicial Board or Board Member (if the chair is unavailable) that rendered a decision under appeal, may be asked to attend an appeal hearing or respond in writing to the students written appeal. A student who appeals is not required to attend, but is entitled to attend and be accompanied by an advisor. Notification of appeal decisions shall be communicated within 48 hours after the conclusion of a hearing not counting weekends. Outcomes shall be disclosed in writing by email.Timelines may be adjusted upon mutual consent or when, after a good faith effort, it was not possible to convene the Appellate Board according to the timelines.

After reviewing an appeal regarding an individual staff member’s administrative decision, the designated staff member hearing the appeal may decide to a. deny the appeal and uphold the original decision or b. grant the appeal and change the original decision. All decisions made by the Appellate Board are final.

After reviewing an appeal regarding a Judicial Board’s decision, an Appellate Board may decide to a. deny the request and uphold the decisions of the original Judicial Board, or b. grant the appeal and direct the case to be heard by a new college judicial board. In cases where the substance of a request causes the Appellate Board to believe such action is warranted, members of the original board may be replaced or an entirely new board may convene to hear the case. All decisions made by the Appellate Board are final. Presidential power remains.

  1. Appeals of decisions by Residence Hall Directors must be submitted in writing to the Director of Residence Life within 5 days of receipt of the original results. The Director of Residential Life or designee will hear the appeal.
  2. Appeals of decisions by the Director of Residence Life must be submitted in writing to the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities within 5 days of receipt of the original results. The Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities or designee will hear the appeal.
  3. Appeals of decisions by the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities must be submitted in writing to the Provost within 5 days of receipt of the original results. The Vice President of Student Affairs or designee will hear the appeal.
  4. Appeals of decisions by a College Judicial Board must be submitted in writing to the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities within 5 days of receipt of the original results.

Between Semesters

During the period between semesters including the spring and fall semesters, pending cases involving alleged violations will be handled as described below.

  1. Conduct reports will be reviewed to determine whether disciplinary charges are warranted. For cases where College suspension or expulsion would not likely be an outcome if the student were found responsible, the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities may determine what violations are alleged, determine the finding (responsible or not), and any sanctions that are merited.
  2. Notification of the decisions will be sent to the student’s permanent address, unless it is known by the College that the student is residing at another location. The student shall have the option to accept the decision or file an appeal with the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities within 5 days of receipt of the notification letter and request a hearing. Should an accused student accept the decision or fail to appeal within 5 days, they will be expected to comply with the sanctions assigned.
  3. In the event the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities believes that College suspension or expulsion could be an outcome, a Judicial Board Hearing will be convened at the earliest possible time. Should it not be possible to resolve a case between semesters, a College Judicial Board hearing may be held as soon as possible during the following semester. Students will receive a letter of the possible financial repercussions with a form to return acknowledging their understanding. Upon receipt of the form, the hold on the students account will be removed.

Student’s Rights to Review Discipline Records

Students have the right to review their discipline record within 45 days of the day the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities receives a request for access. Students should submit a written request that identifies the record(s) they wish to inspect. The Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities or her/his designee shall arrange for access and notify the student of the time and place where the records may be inspected on campus.

Student Discipline Records

Records over which a student may exercise rights to review include the student discipline records maintained in the Office of Residence Life and the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities. Exception: Institutional records which are in the sole possession of the maker, and which are not accessible to any other person except a substitute.

Amendment of Discipline Records

Students may ask the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities to amend a record that they believe is inaccurate or misleading. They should identify the part of the record they wish to have changed and provide justifications. If the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities or designee decides not to amend the record as requested by the student, the student will be notified and advised of their right to a supervisory administrative hearing regarding the request for amendment. Additional information regarding the hearing procedures will be provided to the student when notified of the hearing.

Release of Student Disciplinary Records

Release of records to a third party is prohibited unless student consent is given in writing and is on file except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent.

Exceptions

  1. School officials, central administration, and other SUNY Colleges who have been determined to have legitimate educational interests, i.e., necessary to fulfill her/his professional responsibility. A school official is employed by the college in an administrative, supervisor, academic or research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff, a person or company with whom the college has contracted), a person serving on the Board of Trustees, or a student serving on an official committee such as a disciplinary committee or assisting another school official in performing her/his tasks.
  2. Officials of other schools in which the student seeks to enroll provided the student is given a copy of the record if he or she desires.
  3. Authorized representatives of certain State and Federal agencies where such access is necessary to evaluate federally funded programs and the collection of personally identifiable data is specifically allowed by federal law
  4. In connection with student’s application for, or receipt of, financial aid.
  5. Research organizations conducting studies for the educational institution in relation to predictive tests, administering student aid programs, or instruction, if the records are destroyed when no longer needed in the research and identification of students or parents by persons outside the research organization is not permitted.
  6. Accrediting organizations, solely to carry out their accrediting functions.
  7. Parents of dependent students if the students are listed as deductible dependents for income tax purposes.
  8. A transcript of the recordings may be made at a student's request, however, the student is responsible for coordinating a transcriptionist to type the transcript based on the recording in the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities during normal business hours. Any expense related to the production of a redacted transcript will be at the student's expense. The Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities does not produce transcripts of recordings.