495A-121-065 - Procedural guidelines of the student/faculty disciplinary committee
495A-121-065. Procedural guidelines of the student/faculty disciplinary committee
In addition to this chapter, the student/faculty disciplinary committee shall follow WAC 495A-115-050 through 495A-115-080 when handling allegations of Title IX violations. For other disciplinary actions:
(1) Proceedings of the student/faculty disciplinary committee shall be governed by the Administrative Procedure Act, chapter 34.05 RCW.
(2) The student/faculty disciplinary committee chair will serve all parties with written notice of the hearing not less than seven calendar days in advance of the hearing date. The chair may shorten this notice period if both parties agree and also may continue the hearing to a later time for good cause shown.
(3) The committee chair is authorized to conduct pre-hearing conferences or to make prehearing decisions concerning the extent and form of the discovery, issuance of protective decisions, and similar procedural matters.
(4) A request filed at least five days before the hearing by a party or at the direction of the committee chair will result in the parties exchanging no later than the third day prior to the hearing the lists of potential witnesses and copies of potential exhibits that they reasonably expect to present to the committee. Failure to participate in good faith in the requested exchange may be cause for exclusion from the hearing of the witness or exhibit not disclosed, absent a showing of good cause for the failure.
(5) In advance of the hearing the committee chair may provide to the committee copies of:
(a) The conduct officer's notification of the imposition of discipline or referral to the committee; and
(b) The notice of appeal or response to the referral by the respondent. If doing so, the chair should remind the members that these pleadings are not evidence of any facts they may allege.
(6) Before the hearing the parties may agree to designate specific exhibits as admissible without objection and whether the committee chair may provide copies of these admissible exhibits to the committee members in advance of the hearing.
(7) Upon request the student conduct officer will provide reasonable assistance to the respondent in obtaining relevant and admissible evidence that is within the college's control.
(8) With the exception of procedural communications that are necessary to maintain an orderly process, communications between committee members and other hearing participants regarding issues in the proceeding are generally prohibited without notice and opportunity for all parties to participate, and improper "ex parte" communication will be placed on the record as further provided in RCW 34.05.455.
(9) Each party may be accompanied at the hearing by a nonattorney assistant of the party's choice. A respondent or complainant may elect to be represented by an attorney at their own cost and will be deemed to have waived that right unless at least four days before the hearing written notice of the attorney's identity and participation is filed with the committee chair with a copy to the student conduct officer. The committee is ordinarily advised by an assistant attorney general. If the respondent or the complainant is represented by an attorney, the student conduct officer also may be represented by a second assistant attorney general.
(10) Upon the failure of any party to attend or participate in a hearing the student/faculty disciplinary committee may:
(a) Proceed with the hearing and issuance of its decision; or
(b) Serve a decision of default in accordance with RCW 34.05.440.
(11) The hearing ordinarily is closed to the public. However, if all parties agree on the record that some or all of the proceedings be open, the chair will determine the extent to which the hearing is open. If any person disrupts the proceedings, the chair may exclude that person from the hearing room.
(12) The chair shall cause the hearing to be recorded by a method the chair selects in accordance with RCW 34.05.-449. The recording or a copy will be made available to the party upon request. The chair shall assure maintenance of the record of the proceeding that is required by RCW 34.05.476 that also shall be available upon request for inspection and copying by the party. Other recording also shall be permitted in accordance with WAC 10-08-190.
(13) The chair shall preside at the hearing and decide procedural questions that arise during the hearing except as overridden by majority vote of the committee.
(14) The student conduct officer will present the case for imposing disciplinary sanctions unless represented by an assistant attorney general.
(15) All testimony shall be given under oath or affirmation. Evidence shall be admitted or excluded in accordance with RCW 34.05.452.
(16) At the conclusion of the hearing the student/faculty disciplinary committee shall permit the parties to make closing argument, and the committee will determine the form to be used. The committee also may permit each party to propose findings, conclusions, or a proposed decision for its consideration.
(17) Within thirty calendar days following the later of the conclusion of the hearing or the committee's receipt of closing arguments, the committee shall issue an initial decision in accordance with RCW 34.05.461 and WAC 10-08-210. The initial decision will include findings on all material issues of fact, conclusions on all material issues of law, and provisions of the student conduct code that were violated. Those findings based substantially on the credibility of evidence or the demeanor of witnesses will be identified.
(18) The committee's initial decision will include a determination on appropriate discipline, if deemed applicable. If the matter was referred to the committee by the student conduct officer, the committee shall identify and impose disciplinary sanction(s) or condition(s), as authorized in the student conduct code. If the matter is an appeal by the respondent, the committee may affirm, reverse, or modify the disciplinary sanction(s) or condition(s) imposed by the student conduct officer or impose additional disciplinary sanction(s) or condition(s) as authorized herein.
(19) The committee's initial decision also will include a statement of the available procedures and time frames for seeking reconsideration or appeal.
(20) The committee chair shall cause copies of the initial decision to be served on the parties and their legal counsel of record. The committee chair also will promptly transmit a copy of the decision and the record of the committee's proceedings to the president.(Amended by WSR 19-14-073, Filed 6/30/2019, effective 7/31/2019 Amended by WSR 20-24-107, Filed 12/1/2020, effective 1/1/2021)
Statutory Authority: RCW 28B.50.140(10). 00-11-147, § 495A-121-065, filed 5/24/00, effective 6/24/00.
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