Section II: Scope of Policy

This Formal Grievance Policy will apply to “sexual harassment” in a Rhodes “education program or activity” against a person in the United States, per USDOE Regulations, effective August 14, 2020.  34 C.F.R. § 106.44(a).

A. Definitional Requirement
“Sexual harassment” is defined in the Regulations (§ 106.30) to be conduct on the basis of sex that satisfies one or more of the following:

  1. A Rhodes employee conditioning the provision of an aid, benefit, or service on an individual’s participation in unwelcome sexual conduct (“quid pro quo”);
  2. Unwelcome conduct determined by a reasonable person to be so severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive that it effectively denies a person equal access to Rhodes’ education program or activity; or
  3. Sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence, or stalking.  (These terms are defined in the Definitions section of the Rhodes Sexual Misconduct Policy.)

“Sexual misconduct” is a broader term that covers other sex-based conduct beyond the USDOE’s “sexual harassment” definition.

If alleged sexual misconduct does not satisfy the USDOE’s definitional requirement, then it may be addressed according to the Rhodes Sexual Misconduct Policy and/or Rhodes Anti-Discrimination and Harassment Policy instead of this Policy.

B. Jurisdictional Requirement
An “education program or activity” includes locations, events, or circumstances over which Rhodes exercises substantial control over both the respondent and the context in which the sexual harassment occurs, and also includes any building owned or controlled by a student organization that is officially recognized by Rhodes. USDOE’s Regulations exclude any “education program or activity” that does not occur in the United States. (§ 106.44(a).) 

If alleged sexual misconduct does not satisfy the USDOE’s jurisdictional requirement, such as off-campus behavior alleged to have an on-campus effect, then it may be addressed under the Rhodes Sexual Misconduct Policy and/or Rhodes Anti-Discrimination and Harassment Policy instead of this Policy.

C. Other Definitions
The terms “Complainant” and “Respondent” are used throughout this Policy and the Rhodes Sexual Misconduct Policy. A Complainant is an individual who is alleged to be the victim of conduct that could constitute sexual harassment. A Respondent is an individual who has been reported to be the perpetrator of conduct that could constitute sexual harassment. (§ 106.30.)

Other terms, like Supportive Measures and Formal Complaint, are defined below. 

All relevant terms, including Consent and Incapacitation, are defined in the Rhodes Sexual Misconduct Policy.


“Sexual harassment” is defined differently in different contexts, including for employee issues under Title VII, as described in the Anti-Discrimination and Harassment Policy.