Complaints/Grievances & Resolution Procedures

Complaints/Grievances & Resolution Procedures

As members of the Danville Area Community College community, students have rights as well as responsibilities. Student rights and responsibilities are guaranteed by state and federal laws and by college policies. They serve to define student life and, concurrently, support a teaching and learning environment based on respect for all members of the campus community as well as regard for the property and facilities of the College.

Sometimes a student of the DACC community experiences a situation or a conflict in which the student thinks her/her rights have not been fully recognized or have been compromised in some manner. The student’s conflict may be with another student, a faculty or staff member, or with a college practice or procedure. When this occurs, it is said that the student has a complaint or a grievance. Again, student rights and responsibilities as defined through college procedures afford students a process by which to resolve a grievance. It is also important to note that the College forbids retaliation against anyone reporting or involved in a reported complaint/grievance. If any student feels that he/she has been retaliated against, he/she is to notify the College’s general complaint officer, the Vice President of Student Services, Stacy Ehmen at 217-443-8746 or the College’s Affirmative Action Officer, Jill Cranmore, Vice President of Human Services at 217-443-8756.

The College recognizes that a student who knows and fully understands his/her rights and responsibilities and abides by the expectations which are inherent within these rights and responsibilities, is a student who is prepared to fully take advantage of the learning experiences and other opportunities afforded him/her at Danville Area Community College. This information has been prepared in support of this concept. The following pages include an overview of student rights, student responsibilities, and the process whereby a student grievance may be resolved.

Procedure

When a student of the DACC community experiences a situation or a conflict in which the student thinks his/her rights have not been fully recognized or have been compromised in some manner, the student may resolve the conflict or his/her perceived grievance by following the College’s process for the resolution of grievances. Grievances may be resolved on an informal basis or on a formal basis. Every attempt will be made to resolve grievances at the point of origin on an informal basis. However, students have the right to end the informal process at any time and begin the formal process which is also noted below.

Informal Resolution Process (Please Note: Students have the right to end the informal process at any time and begin the formal process.)

  1. Within 10 business days of the situation or conflict, the student must first contact and talk with the faculty or staff members with whom the student has the conflict or grievance and make every attempt in cooperation with the given faculty or staff member to resolve the issue.
  2. If the issue is not resolved to the satisfaction of the student at the point of origin within 5 business days, the student may contact and talk with the dean, director, or coordinator of the division, department or office in which the conflict occurred.
  3. If the issue is not resolved at the second level within 5 business days, the student should meet with the appropriate administrator who serves as the lead administrator over the area in which the issue originated. The lead administrator will investigate the matter and make a final determination in resolving the student issue.

At any level of the informal resolution process and when appropriate, a written communication should be prepared and delivered to the student by the college employee involved in the resolution of the issue which details the resolution or decision arrived at or in the case of disciplinary issues, the sanctions which have been imposed.

Due to the nature or the seriousness of some potential student complaints, such as a complaint of harassment, sexual misconduct, or knowledge of a serious conduct violation, the student is encouraged to bypass step one and two and immediately contact a lead administrator to report an issue. The Resolution Process Chart reflects issues that would be of a level of seriousness to warrant this action.