The online version of the Student Handbook is currently undergoing revisions. For the latest version of the college handbook, please see the Rhodes College Student Handbook PDF (updated September 2022).

XI. Investigation and Resolution Processes

  1. Preliminary Review

    Rhodes will gather and review all reports of sexual harassment reported to the Title IX Coordinator, the Provost or the Chief Human Resources Officer. In this phase, the Title IX Coordinator will conduct a limited investigation to determine if the alleged conduct reported is covered by Rhodes’ Title IX Policy. If the Title IX Coordinator determines that the alleged conduct is not covered by Rhodes’ Title IX Policy, the Title IX Coordinator will close the matter under Title IX but may take other action pursuant to Appendix A.

    If the Title IX Coordinator determines that the alleged conduct is covered by Rhodes’ Title IX Policy, the Title IX Coordinator will consult with the Complainant to determine if the Complainant wishes to file a formal complaint and review other available resources and options, including requesting supportive measures, as discussed above. Even if the Complainant does not wish to file a formal complaint, the Title IX Coordinator may file a formal complaint if they determine that the reported conduct implicates Rhodes’ Title IX obligations to maintain a safe and non- discriminatory campus environment. Regardless of whether a formal complaint is filed, the Title IX Coordinator will make supportive measures available to all parties.

  2. Filing a Formal Complaint

    At the time of filing a formal complaint, a Complainant must be participating in or attempting to participate in an education program or activity of the College. A formal complaint filed by a Complainant must include the Complainant’s physical or digital signature or otherwise indicate that the Complainant is the person filing the formal complaint. Where the Title IX Coordinator signs a formal complaint, the Title IX Coordinator is not a Complainant or a party during a complaint resolution process and must comply with requirements for Title IX personnel to be free from conflicts and bias. Upon receipt of a formal complaint, the Title IX Coordinator will promptly provide written notifications to all known parties. This notification will include the following information:

    1. Notice of the allegations constituting potential sexual harassment, including all relevant details known at the time, with sufficient time to prepare a response before any initial investigative interview. These details will include, at a minimum, the identities of the parties involved in the incident(s), if known, the alleged conduct that could constitute sexual harassment, and the date and location of the alleged incident(s), if known. If, in the course of an investigation, the College decides to investigate allegations that are not included in the original notice, the College will provide notice of the additional allegations to the parties whose identities are known;1

    2. A statement that the Respondent is presumed not responsible for the alleged conduct unless a determination regarding responsibility is made at the conclusion of the complaint resolution process;

    3. A description of Rhodes’ complaint resolution process, including the rights and responsibilities of the parties during the investigation, hearing, and appeal process, and the availability of any informal resolution process (as set forth more fully in this Title IX Policy);

    4. A statement that the parties may have an advisor of their choice, who may be, but is not required to be, an attorney; and

    5. A statement that the parties may inspect and review any evidence obtained as part of the investigation that is directly related to the allegations raised in a formal complaint, including evidence that Rhodes does not intend to rely on in reaching a determination.

      In the Title IX Coordinator’s discretion, Rhodes may consolidate multiple formal complaints where the allegations arise out of the same facts or circumstances.

      Unless the formal complaint resolution process results in a determination that a Respondent was responsible, Rhodes will not impose disciplinary actions or take any other actions under this Policy that are not supportive measures.

      At the discretion of the Title IX Coordinator, a temporary delay or limited extension of deadlines in the formal complaint process may be granted for good cause. Good cause includes the absence of a party, advisor or witness; concurrent law enforcement activity; or the need for language assistance or the accommodation of disabilities.

  3. Dismissal of a Formal Complaint

    If the allegations in a formal complaint are not within the scope of this Policy because they do not meet the Title IX definition of sexual harassment, or because the alleged activities did not occur in Rhodes’ education program or against a person in the United States, then the Title IX Coordinator shall dismiss the formal complaint for purposes of Title IX.

    At any time during the investigation or complaint resolution hearing, Rhodes may dismiss the formal complaint under the following circumstances:

    1. A Complainant notifies the Title IX Coordinator in writing that they would like to withdraw the formal complaint in whole or in part. In such instance, the Title IX Coordinator may, in their discretion, sign the formal complaint to continue the process.

    2. The Respondent is no longer enrolled in or employed by Rhodes.

    3. Specific circumstances prevent Rhodes from gathering evidence sufficient to reach a determination as to the formal complaint, in whole or in part.

      Upon dismissal, the Title IX Coordinator will promptly send written notice of the decision to dismiss the complaint and the reasons for such decision to both parties. Even if the formal complaint is dismissed, however, Rhodes still may address the allegations pursuant to Appendix

      A. When a formal complaint is dismissed, supportive measures may be continued.

  4. Investigation After a Formal Complaint is Filed

    1. Appointment of Investigator

      Once a formal complaint is filed, the Title IX Coordinator will appoint an investigator (“Investigator”) to handle the investigation. This Investigator will be a different person than the Title IX Coordinator, and will be properly trained on Title IX and free of conflict of interest or bias towards either Complainant or Respondent. The Investigator will begin an investigation as soon as practicable and generally not later than ten (10) days after written notice of the formal complaint has been delivered to all parties.

    2. Use of Advisors and Supporters

      During the investigation process, each party will have the same opportunity to select an advisor of the party’s choice who may be, but need not be, an attorney. Rhodes will provide a pool of trained advisors from which the parties may choose.

      The adviser may assist with all written submissions made by a Complainant or a Respondent, may assist with preparing questions or other information for the Complainant or the Respondent to use at the hearing, and may facilitate scheduling and other processes. During any pre-hearing meeting or proceeding, the adviser may be present to observe and provide support and counsel to the participant. The adviser may not, at this stage, present evidence on a party’s behalf, present argument, examine witnesses, testify, or disrupt or otherwise obstruct meetings or proceedings.

      Should a matter proceed to a complaint resolution hearing, advisors for both the Complainant and the Respondent are permitted to ask questions of the Investigator, the Complainant, the Respondent and any witnesses.

      If a party does not choose an advisor for the hearing, Rhodes will provide one without fee or charge to ask questions of witnesses on behalf of that party. The advisor may be, but is not required to be, an attorney. A party who has not chosen an advisor must notify the Title IX Coordinator in writing at the same time the party provides a list of expected attendees and witnesses.

      Both Claimants and Respondents may also choose a designated Supporter. The role of the Supporter is primarily to provide emotional support during the process by accompanying the Claimant or Respondent to any hearing, conference or related proceeding. The Claimant and the Respondent may choose any person, regardless of their association with the College, to perform the role of Supporter and to support them through a portion of or the entire Title IX process. Neither party is required to have and be accompanied by a Supporter; however, the College encourages the presence of a Supporter at all stages of the proceedings, including the reporting and investigation stages, in order to provide the Claimant and Respondent with emotional and personal support. The Supporter may be present during any stage of these processes but will not be allowed to make opening or closing statements, present evidence, make procedural objections, question witnesses, or otherwise actively participate during complaint resolution hearings and informal resolution conferences.

      Rhodes may limit the quantity of people in attendance at hearings, conferences and related disciplinary proceedings but will not interfere with parties' choices of specific attendees. A fact witness can serve as an Advisor / Supporter and will not be prohibited from testifying as a witness, but they will be subject to the witness sequestration rule and subject to exclusion from most parts of the complaint resolution hearing. There is no restriction on former Advisors or Supporters testifying as fact witnesses.

    3. Conduct of the Investigation

      The Investigator collects and examines the facts and circumstances of the alleged conduct and provides an investigative report to the Title IX Coordinator. Although the burden of investigation remains on the College, the Investigator will provide equal opportunity for the parties to present fact and expert witnesses and other inculpatory and exculpatory evidence.

      The Investigator will send written notice of any investigative interviews or meetings involving the parties to the parties and their advisors, allowing each party adequate time to prepare in advance.

      The Investigator will complete the investigation as quickly as possible, generally within sixty (60) days. The amount of time needed to complete an investigation will depend in part on the nature of the allegation(s) and the evidence to be investigated (e.g., the number and/or availability of witnesses involved), as well as the College’s academic calendar.

      The Complainant, Respondent, witnesses, and others sharing information with the Investigator are expected to provide all relevant and truthful information and to do so at their earliest opportunity to facilitate prompt resolution. Medical records will not be received by the Investigator without the written consent of the subject of the medical records. Rhodes’ students and employees remain subject to the policies in the Student and Employee Handbooks during investigations and may be subject to discipline for failing to provide information, making false statements or knowingly submitting false information during the investigation.

      Rhodes will keep the parties reasonably informed of the status of the investigation. If it is determined that more time is needed for the investigation, Rhodes will communicate the additional estimated amount of time needed to complete the investigation.

      When the investigation is complete, the Investigator will provide the parties with a preliminary report, which will include, as applicable, the Complainant’s statement, the Respondent’s statement, each witness statement, and either a copy or written summary of any other evidence obtained as part of the investigation that is directly related to the allegations raised in the formal complaint. The preliminary report will be provided in an electronic format that restricts the parties from downloading or copying the evidence. Each party will have ten (10) days to review the preliminary report and to provide written feedback. Each party’s written feedback, if any, will be attached to the final investigative report.

      After consideration of the parties’ final responses to the preliminary report, or after ten (10) days have elapsed without comment, the Investigator will prepare and send to the parties and to their advisors a final investigative report that includes the parties’ written feedback, if any. The report will be in electronic format or hard copy. The parties will have at least ten (10) days after receipt of the final investigative report to prepare for any scheduled hearing.

      The parties may also provide a written response to the final investigation report to the Title IX Coordinator within five (5) days of receipt of the final investigative report so that the party’s response will be available to both parties and the decision-maker(s) prior to the hearing. If warranted, the Investigator may choose to update the final investigative report to take a party’s response into account, in which case the hearing date may be postponed.

    4. Coordination with Law Enforcement

      If Rhodes is made aware that there is a concurrent criminal investigation, the Investigator will inform any law enforcement agency that is conducting its own investigation that a Rhodes investigation is also in progress. The Investigator will ascertain the status of the criminal investigation and determine the extent to which any evidence collected by law enforcement may be available to the College in its investigation. At the request of law enforcement, Rhodes may agree to temporarily defer part or all of its own investigation (or subsequent hearing) until after the initial evidence-gathering phase of the law enforcement investigation is complete. The Investigator will communicate with the parties, consistent with the law enforcement request and the College’s obligations, regarding procedural options, anticipated timing, and the implementation of any necessary interim measures.

  5. Informal Resolution

    At the discretion of the Title IX Coordinator and after the filing of a formal complaint, the Complainant and Respondent may mutually agree to forego an investigation and complaint resolution hearing and pursue an informal resolution of the complaint. Waiver of the right to an investigation and adjudication of formal complaints will never be required as a condition of enrollment or continuing enrollment, employment or continuing employment, or enjoyment of any other right.

    An informal resolution is a voluntary, non-adversarial, remedies-based, non-judicial process designed to eliminate or address potential sexual harassment. This process, which is similar to mediation, aims to assure fairness, to facilitate communication, and to maintain an equitable balance of power between the parties. Rhodes will not offer or facilitate an informal resolution to resolve allegations that an employee sexually harassed a student.

    The Title IX Coordinator will make an initial decision about whether a formal complaint qualifies for an informal resolution, and if both parties then agree in writing to pursue that path, Rhodes will halt any investigation or scheduled complaint resolution hearing so that the parties can schedule an informal resolution process led by a facilitator who is free of bias and conflicts of interest. The facilitator is not an advocate for either party but rather assists the parties in reaching a resolution upon which they can both agree.

    Informal resolution is available at any time prior to a determination regarding responsibility. For cases selected to be resolved through informal resolution:

    1. The parties will receive simultaneous written notice of the allegations, the name and contact information for the facilitator, the requirements of the informal resolution process, the fact that a party may withdraw from the informal resolution process and proceed with the investigation and determination of the formal complaint at any time prior to reaching an informal resolution, and any consequences resulting from participating in the informal resolution process, including any records of the process that will be maintained or shared.

    2. The facilitator will set up an informal resolution conference at a time agreeable to both parties but within a reasonable amount of time after the decision to participate in the process is made.

    3. Advisors and/or Supporters may be present at each party’s option, but may not actively participate during the conference.

    4. The College will not compel face-to-face confrontation between the parties or participation in any particular form of informal resolution.

    5. The informal resolution conference ends when a resolution has been reached or when the facilitator determines that further proceedings will not allow the parties to reach an agreement. Agreements reached in an informal resolution conference will be reduced to writing and signed by both parties. Such agreements are final and not subject to appeal.

  6. Complaint Resolution Hearing

    A complaint resolution hearing is Rhodes’ disciplinary proceeding through which one or more decision-maker(s), through a live hearing, evaluates evidence related to a complaint to determine whether a Respondent is responsible or not responsible for a violation of this Policy, based on the criteria of “a preponderance of evidence.” Under this standard, the burden of proof is met and a Respondent may be found responsible for a Policy violation if the decision-maker(s) determines that it is more likely than not that the Respondent committed the violation. If the Respondent is found in violation of the Policy, the Respondent may be subjected to disciplinary action.

    1. Decision-maker(s)

      The decision-maker(s) will be selected by the Title IX Coordinator and may vary based on the enrollment or employment status of the Respondent:

      1. Student and staff respondent cases will typically be heard by a hearing board consisting of three faculty and/or staff members. A chair will be chosen to confer with the Title IX Coordinator concerning procedures and evidence related to the hearing.

      2. Non-tenured faculty respondent cases will typically be heard by the Faculty Governance Committee.

      3. Tenured faculty respondent cases will typically be heard by the Faculty Governance Committee or the Faculty Committee on Appeals consistent with Section X of the Faculty Handbook, as modified for Title IX compliance.

      Decision-makers must have had no prior involvement in the case and be free of conflicts of interest and bias for or against either the Complainant or Respondent. Decision-makers will receive

      regular training on how to conduct a fair and impartial hearing. Neither the Title IX Coordinator nor the Investigator can be a decision-maker.

      The Title IX Coordinator will identify the decision-maker(s) at least five (5) days prior to the hearing date. Either party may challenge the selection on the grounds of conflict of interest or bias by submitting their objection in writing to the Title IX coordinator no less than two (2) days prior to the hearing date stating the basis for their objection. The Title IX Coordinator has sole discretion to keep or replace a decision-maker, and may postpone the hearing to allow for a replacement decision-maker, if necessary.

    2. Pre-Hearing Procedures

      The parties will be provided notice of the date, time and location of the hearing. At least ten (10) days prior to a hearing, both parties and the decision-maker(s) will be provided access to a hearing packet containing the investigation report, supporting evidence, and other information about the hearing. The packet may not be copied and must be returned at the end of the hearing because it will typically contain other parties’ confidential and FERPA-protected information. Receipt of the hearing package will be conditioned upon each recipient’s agreement not to re-disclose or use outside of the hearing other people’s confidential information learned as a result of the investigation or hearing.

      At least five (5) days’ prior to the hearing, the parties must give the Title IX Coordinator and the other party a list of expected attendees (including any advisor) and their expected witnesses (including themselves), in order of appearance. Witnesses expected to testify only to the good character of a party will not be permitted. The parties will not be strictly bound to their lists, but they should be made in good faith.

      Typically, the parties will be responsible for choosing and supplying their own witnesses to the hearing. When necessary for the pursuit of truth and to gather evidence sufficient to reach a determination, the decision-maker(s) may request the Title IX Coordinator to arrange for the availability of other witnesses after the witness lists have been submitted; recognizing, however, that Rhodes cannot compel any witness to attend. Such additional witnesses will be disclosed to the parties in advance of the hearing.

      The Title IX Coordinator, in consultation with the decision-maker, shall have discretion to exclude witnesses based on investigation results that show their expected testimony is not relevant to the facts at issue in the hearing. The parties may object to such a determination, but the Title IX Coordinator shall have ultimate discretion on this issue.

       

    3. Conduct of Hearing

      At the live hearing, the decision-maker(s) will permit each party’s advisor to ask the other party and any witnesses all relevant questions and follow-up questions, including those challenging credibility. Such cross-examination must be conducted directly, orally, and in real time by the party’s advisor, never by the party personally. At the request of either party, the hearing will be conducted with the parties located in separate rooms with technology enabling the decision- maker(s) and parties to simultaneously see and hear the party or the witness answering questions. Live hearings may be conducted with all parties physically present in the same geographic location or, at Rhodes’ discretion, any or all parties, witnesses, and other participants may appear virtually, with technology enabling participants to simultaneously see and hear each other.

      At the start of the hearing, each party will have the option to provide an opening statement, summarizing their position. The Investigator will then present the investigation report and be available for questioning by the decision-maker(s) and the parties’ advisors.

      Each party will then be permitted to call their own witnesses, including themselves. Witnesses will be asked to affirm adherence to the Honor Code, if applicable. Prospective witnesses, other than the Complainant and the Respondent, may be sequestered, i.e., excluded from the hearing during the statements of the Investigator and other witnesses, at the request of any party.

      The decision-maker(s) and the parties, acting through their advisors, will have an opportunity to question witnesses who appear at the hearing. Any person who offers testimony at the hearing must remain available to answer questions from the decision-maker(s) and both parties’ advisors. Typically, the decision-maker(s) will ask questions first, then permit the questions of the advisor of the party whose witness it is, then the questions of the advisor of the other party.

      All hearings will be recorded and closed to the public. Attendance at the hearing by those other than the parties, their witnesses, their supporters and their advisors, will be at the discretion of the decision-maker(s). Any person who engages in disruptive behavior may be removed at the discretion of the decision-maker(s). The recording of the hearing and/or a transcript will be made available to the parties upon request.

    4. Rules Governing Proof

      At the hearing, all relevant evidence will be objectively evaluated. Relevant evidence is any evidence that tends to make the allegations at issue more or less likely to be true. Credibility determinations will not be made on the basis of a person’s status as a complainant, respondent, or witness.

      The decision-maker(s) will be responsible for ensuring in advance that each question asked by one party’s advisor to the other party is fair and relevant. Questions that seek to elicit solely character evidence or have the effect of impermissibly badgering or harassing the witness will not be permitted. If a question is not permitted, the decision-maker(s) will provide the parties with the basis for that decision.

      Questions and evidence about the Complainant’s sexual predisposition or prior sexual behavior are not relevant, unless the questions and evidence are offered to prove that someone other than the Respondent committed the conduct alleged, or are concerning specific incidents with the Respondent that are offered to prove consent. If the Respondent is found in violation of the Policy, any previous discipline for sexual misconduct received by Respondent may be subject to inquiry by the decision-maker(s) only in connection with determining potential sanctions.

      The standard of evidence to determine responsibility in hearings under this Policy is the preponderance of the evidence standard, which means that, based on the evidence presented, it is more likely than not that the Respondent is responsible for a violation of Title IX. The Respondent is presumed not responsible and can be found responsible only if the evidence preponderates in favor of a finding of responsibility.

      Legal rules of evidence or criminal or civil procedure are not binding on the decision-maker(s) at complaint resolution hearings, but may inform the decision to include or exclude or give proper weight to evidence in order to insure the fundamental fairness of the process.

      Introduction of the medical records of any person will not be permitted unless the person whose records are sought to be introduced voluntarily agrees in writing that they may be introduced. No medical records may be introduced at the hearing, regardless of consent, unless they are (1) complete; (2) introduced and explained by a heath care professional with knowledge of the underlying facts; (3) previously provided to the Investigator prior to the completion of the final investigation report.

      The decision-maker(s) may, in their discretion, exclude or grant lesser weight to last-minute information or evidence introduced at the hearing that was not previously presented for investigation by the Investigator or not provided to the other party in sufficient time for that party to adequately address that information at the hearing.

      The decision-maker(s) may rely, if relevant, on a statement of a party or a witness even if that party or witness is not present for the hearing or does not submit to questioning. The decision- maker(s) may not draw an inference for or against a party or witness solely based on their absence from the hearing or refusal to answer questions.

      At the conclusion of the hearing, the Investigator may give a closing statement and each party will have an opportunity to provide a closing statement at their discretion.

    5. Deliberations and Written Decision

All parties, the witnesses and the public will be excluded during the decision-maker(s) deliberations, which will not be recorded or transcribed. The Title IX Coordinator and the Investigator will not participate in the deliberations of the decision-maker(s) in determining responsibility.

In all cases, the decision-maker(s) must consider evidence presented by the Complainant, the Respondent, the Investigator and/or others and determine by a preponderance of the evidence whether a violation of the Policy occurred and impose sanctions, if any.

The decision-maker(s) will issue a written determination regarding responsibility to the parties simultaneously. The written determination will include:

  1. Identification of the allegations potentially constituting sexual harassment;

  2. A description of the procedural steps taken from the receipt of the formal complaint through the determination, including any notifications to the parties, interviews with parties and witnesses, site visits, methods used to gather other evidence, and hearings held;

  3. Findings of fact supporting the determination;

  4. Conclusions regarding the application of the Title IX Policy to the facts;

  5. A statement of, and rationale for, the result as to each allegation, including:

    1. A determination regarding responsibility;

    2. Any disciplinary sanctions to be imposed; and

    3. Whether remedies designed to restore or preserve equal access to Rhodes’ education program or activity will be provided by Rhodes to the Complainant (but not the details of such measures unless necessary to carry them out).

  6. The College’s procedures and permissible bases for the Complainant and Respondent to appeal.

    The decision-maker(s) will use best efforts to issue the written determination regarding responsibility within fourteen (14) days after the hearing. The determination will be issued simultaneously to the parties. Either party may appeal the determination by filing a written appeal, as described below, within ten (10) days after receipt of the determination regarding responsibility. If no appeal is filed, the determination regarding responsibility becomes final ten (10) days from the date of delivery to the parties.

    The Title IX Coordinator will be authorized to stay sanctions pending appeal and/or make further accommodations, including supportive measures, that are consistent with the determination.

  7. Sanctions

When determining sanctions for a Respondent found in violation of the Policy, the following criteria may be considered, among other factors:

  1. The nature, circumstances, and severity of the violation(s);

  2. The College’s responsibility to ensure the effectiveness of behavioral standards for the Rhodes community;

  3. The impact of the violation(s) on the Complainant and the community, protection of the College community and the risk that a Respondent may create a hostile and intimidating environment;

  4. The requests of the Complainant;

  5. The level of cooperation and/or honesty of the Respondent, or lack thereof, during the disciplinary processes;

  6. Any official college report including, but not limited to, prior disciplinary records, criminal records if known, or other official information, the relevance of which will be determined by the decision-maker(s);

  7. Whether other judicial measures have been taken to protect the Complainant or discipline the Respondent (e.g., civil protection orders); and

  8. The housing and course enrollment pattern of the Complainant, giving due regard to the principle that a student found responsible for sexual harassment under the Policy should bear the burden of accommodating the Complainant and not the reverse.

After taking into account the above considerations, the decision-maker(s) will determine the sanctions for a Respondent found in violation of the Title IX Policy. One or more of the following sanctions may be imposed upon any student found in violation of the Policy:

  1. Warning: A formal letter to be placed in a student’s record warning the student that any further violations of the Title IX Policy or other violation of institutional policies will lead to more severe consequences, including suspension or expulsion;

  2. Loss of Privileges: Denial of specified privileges for a designated period of time;

  3. Required training or education: Attending or participating in a required number, determined by the decision-maker(s), of educational and/or awareness programs relating to the Policy violation, and providing evidence of engaging in the programs;

  4. Fines: Previously established and published fines may be imposed;

  5. Restitution: Compensation for loss, damage, or injury. This may take the form of appropriate service and/or monetary or material replacement;

  6. Discretionary Sanctions: Work assignments, service to the College or community, education, referral to counseling, required behavioral assessment, or other related discretionary assignments;

  7. Residence Hall Suspension: Separation of the student from the residence halls for a definite period of time, after which the student is eligible to return. Conditions for readmission may be specified;

  8. Residence Hall Expulsion: Permanent separation of the student from the residence halls;

  9. Disciplinary Probation: A period of time in which the student is placed on notice that any further violation of institutional regulations will likely lead to more severe disciplinary sanctions, including suspension or expulsion, if the student is found to violate any institutional regulations during the probationary period. Students can be placed on disciplinary or housing probation. A student on disciplinary probation is considered to be not in good social standing with the College;

  10. College Suspension: Separation of the student from Rhodes College for a definite period of time, after which the student is eligible to return. Conditions for readmission may be specified; or

  11. College Expulsion: Permanent separation of the student from Rhodes College. Pursuant to Rhodes’ academic criteria, expulsion may occur at any time before a diploma is awarded.

The following sanctions may be imposed upon any employee found in violation of the Policy:

  1. Warning: A formal letter to be placed in an employee’s personnel file warning the employee that any further violations of the Title IX Policy or other violation of institutional policies will lead to more severe consequences, including suspension or termination of employment;

  2. Required training or education: Attending or participating in a required number, determined by the decision-maker(s), of educational and/or awareness programs relating to the Policy violation, and providing evidence of engaging in the programs;

  3. Loss of pay increase: The employee would be ineligible for an annual merit or cost- of-living increase for the year in which the violation occurred;

  4. Suspension of employment with or without pay; or

  5. Termination of employment.

G. Appeals

Either Complainant or Respondent may appeal any dismissal of a formal complaint or determination of responsibility within ten (10) days of delivery of written notification of the dismissal or a determination. Such appeal must be in writing and can only be raised on one or more of the following grounds:

  1. A procedural irregularity that could have affected the outcome of the matter;

  2. New evidence that (i) was not reasonably available to the appealing party at the time of the dismissal or determination, and (ii) could have affected the outcome of the matter; or

  3. The Title IX Coordinator, Investigator, or decision-maker(s) had a conflict of interest or bias for or against Complainants or Respondents generally or the individual Complainant or Respondent that affected the outcome of the matter.

The notice of appeal must specifically describe the facts or evidence upon which the appeal is based and how it allegedly affected the outcome. The notice of appeal will be provided promptly to the other party, who may, within ten (10) days of receipt of the notice of appeal, file a written response. The appeal will be reviewed and determined by an Appeals Board,2 members of which shall not be the Title IX Coordinator, the Investigator or the decision-maker(s) who reached the determination of responsibility or decision for dismissal, and shall be free of bias or conflict of interest. The Appeals Board’s decision will be based on a preponderance of the evidence. The Appeals Board will issue a written decision describing the result of the appeal and the rationale for the result. Appeals Board decisions are final and not subject to further review.


1 If the Respondent is a tenured faculty member, in conjunction with the notice requirements listed here, the Provost will also follow the requirements for Preliminary Proceedings Concerning the Fitness of a Faculty Member required by Section X of the Faculty Handbook.

2 For cases involving tenured faculty, any appeal will be to the Rhodes College Board of Trustees consistent with Section X of the Faculty Handbook, as modified to comply with Title IX.