Discipline & Penalties
Disciplinary Hearing Procedures
A student subject to a disciplinary sanction that significantly affects his or her academic career or campus life has a right to petition the Chief Student Affairs Officer (CSAO) for administrative review and to appeal for a formal hearing by the college’s Disciplinary committee. Only the recipient of a disciplinary sanction has the right to appeal to the Disciplinary Committee, and only after the student’s case has been reviewed and ruled on by the CSAO.
It is the student’s responsibility to contact the CSAO to request an initial review of the alleged offense and subsequent sanction. The CSAO will investigate allegations, review relevant documents, provide a fair, informal hearing to the student, and notify the student in writing of his or her decision about sanctions. If the student wishes to appeal the CSAO’s decision, he or she may do so by submitting within ten (10) days of the postmark date on the CSAO’s written decision a written request to the CSAO requesting a formal appeal to the college’s Student Disciplinary Committee.
The appeal petition from the student must specify grounds that justify consideration of the appeal hearing. General dissatisfaction with the outcome of the decision shall not be accorded as a basis for consideration of an appeal. The three bases for an appeal are:
- a procedural error which caused the CSAO’s hearing to lack fundamental fairness; or
- harshness of sanction sufficient to show an abuse of discretion by the CSAO; or
- the emergence of new evidence that could not have been previously discovered by the exercise of due diligence by the student and that, had it been presented at the initial hearing, would have substantially affected the original decision of the CSAO.
For Matters Relating to Student Conduct & Discipline
Policy: Lone Star College System assumes that students eligible to perform on a college level are familiar with ordinary rules governing proper conduct and that they will observe these rules as a matter of training and habit:
- Policies of the System forbid gambling, hallucinogens, alcoholic beverages, and the appearance of any person on System property while under the influence of any of the above listed items. These policies are in effect when attending or participating in any activity sponsored by the college. Possession of firearms or other hazardous weapons while on the campus or while attending activities sponsored by the college are also prohibited.
- No person or groups of persons acting in concert may willfully engage in disruptive activity or disrupt a lawful assembly on the campus or property of Lone Star College System; and, further, the administration is charged with the responsibility of keeping the college free of disruptive activities and may take whatever disciplinary action deemed necessary in instances of disruption.
- Students are expected to dress and groom themselves in an appropriate manner while on campus or while participating in activities sponsored by the college. Students who conduct themselves in such a manner as to cast unfavorable reflection on the college and thereby, on the students, are subject to disciplinary action.
- Student conduct on the campus and in the classrooms is an important ingredient to a successful learning experience. Disruptive activity that hinders other students’ learning or deters an instructor from effective teaching will not be tolerated under any circumstances.
- Students alleged to be in violation of the above policies are guaranteed rights of due process prior to administrative disciplinary action.
Student Disciplinary Committee
A Student Disciplinary Committee will be appointed at each college for one year by the CSAO and shall consist of:
- Two faculty members
- One non-teaching faculty or professional
- One currently enrolled student
The CSAO will appoint one of the members to serve as chairperson of the Committee. Members will be replaced or added by the CSAO if conflict of interest is apparent or specific expertise is required in regard to the circumstances of an appeal.
The Committee will be convened by the Chairperson in a timely manner, and will conduct its activities in private. The student will be permitted to present witnesses and evidence relevant to the appeal. Upon the receipt of a letter of appeal, the CSAO shall forward the letter to the Chairperson of the Student Disciplinary Committee.
The Chairperson shall convene the committee to make an initial determination as to whether or not there are sufficient grounds for appeal. Appeals that do not allege sufficient grounds shall be denied consideration and shall be dismissed. Appeals that do allege sufficient grounds will be accepted by the Disciplinary Committee for consideration.
The Disciplinary Committee may, at its own discretion, permit written or oral statements. The alternatives available to the Disciplinary Committee are:
- to sustain the recommended penalty;
- to reverse the decision; or
- to remand it to the CFAO (to reconsider the penalty, but not to reconsider the issues of guilt or innocence). When a request for formal appeal is received, the CSAO will forward all records of the investigation and initial administrative review to the Disciplinary Committee, designate a time and place for the hearing and notify all parties.
New evidence not available at the time of the original review must be brought to the attention of the CSAO for consideration before it can be presented on appeal. During the consideration of the appeal petition by the Disciplinary Committee, the committee may call witnesses, including the appellant, and may examine the record of the case. Disposition of the petition is made by a majority vote of the membership of the committee.
The Chairperson of the Disciplinary Committee will notify the appellant and the CSAO of the Committee's decision in writing within ten (10) days of the formal appeals hearing. The decision of the Disciplinary Committee is final.