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Edmonds Community College    
 
    
 
  Nov 23, 2017
 
Policy Management
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SS 5.01pr - Student Grade and General Complaints : Procedures


SUMMARY/SCOPE
This procedure sets out the process for various types of student grade and general complaints, including time limits on filing a complaint, general complaint procedures, and grade complaints.

 

DESCRIPTION
Students are advised to consult with the Office of the Vice President for Student Services or designee for guidance in proceeding with the complaint procedures. The Director for the Center for Student Engagement & Leadership (or designee) or a person that the student chooses may act as an advocate who can assist the student in the completion of the complaint process. The student may waive the right to an advocate.

Complaints of discrimination or harassment, including sexual  harassment, should be filed with the Title IX Coordinator, Edmonds Community College, 68th Ave. W., Clearview Building, Room 122, Lynnwood, WA  98036, as per the College’s Nondiscrimination and Harassment Policy.

 

PROCEDURE DETAILS
Time Limits on Filing a Complaint

  • The student must file a complaint within one academic quarter after the action that gives rise to the complaint. The appropriate dean or vice president may suspend this rule under exceptional circumstances such as extended illness, sabbatical leave, or absence of one or both parties to the complaint.
  • When either party of the complaint is no longer in residence at the college and does not expect to return, the appropriate dean or vice president shall give reasonable opportunity to complete appeal procedures or reply to the charges before making a decision.

General Complaints
A general complaint is any expression of dissatisfaction with the performance of a college employee or procedure.

Step One:

  • The student is encouraged to consult first with the employee concerned before initiating a complaint.
  • If the student determines that the complaint may be resolved more appropriately without the employee concerned being involved, the student may contact the immediate supervisor of the employee or the appropriate administrator/dean.
  • If the complaint presented to the appropriate supervisor/administrator has not been resolved, the student may bring the complaint to the appropriate vice president who shall discuss the concern(s) of the student and the options available to resolve the concern(s).
  • If the student should elect to proceed with a formal complaint, the student shall outline in writing the complaint, identifying dates and persons involved as accurately as possible and submit the written complaint to the appropriate dean or vice president.

Step Two:

  • When the student’s written complaint has been received by the appropriate dean or vice president, the complaint shall be forwarded to the appropriate parties and the employee concerned for a written response within 10 instructional days (except summer because employees may not be available during the summer, in which case the responses will be made within 10 instructional days after fall quarter begins). The appropriate dean or vice president shall keep all written statements, transcripts, and minutes associated with the complaint as a record of the proceedings.
  • The appropriate dean or vice president shall inform the student regarding the nature of the written response of the parties. If the written response does not resolve the complaint to the satisfaction of the student, the appropriate dean or vice president may convene a conference of all the parties within 10 instructional days.
  • As a result of the conference, the appropriate dean or vice president shall issue a recommendation to the President for resolution of the complaint.
  • The recommendation of the appropriate dean or vice president will be reviewed by the President who may amend, modify, reverse, or accept the recommendation and who shall then implement the resolution and advise the affected parties.
  • The decision of the President shall be final. Appeals or formal hearings to to the Board of Trustees shall not be provided.

 

Grade Complaints
The evaluation of a course is exclusively within the province of the instructor. Consequently, grade changes may be made only by that instructor or, under extenuating circumstances, by the President or designee. The student has the right to bring the final decision before the Grade Change Committee. The Grade Change Committee will be the final arbiter of a request for a grade change.

If a student has a concern about his or her grade, the student must follow the procedure below:

  • The student is encouraged first to consult with the instructor concerning the disputed grade.
  • It the complaint is not resolved through consultation with the instructor or if the student feels that the complaint may be resolved more appropriately without consulting the instructor, the student may contact the appropriate division dean/administrator.
  • If the complaint is not resolved with the division dean/administrator, the student may submit a formal written complaint to the Executive Vice President for Instruction. The student must indicate the grade received in the course, the reason for the grade complaint, specific information on performance scores and attendance, and the course syllabus or written material on course grading criteria that the instructor provided to the student. The Executive Vice President for Instruction shall keep all written statements, transcripts, and minutes associated with the complaint as part of the college files.
  • The Executive Vice President for Instruction shall investigate the student’s written complaint. The investigation shall include a written response from the instructor listing the grade reported for the student, the evaluation criteria for the course, the student’s attendance record, and the performance scores achieved by the student in that course. The investigation shall also include written documentation of the dean/administrator(s) involvement with the complaint, including the decision.
  • The Executive Vice President for Instruction should inform the student regarding the nature of the written responses of the instructor and dean/administrator(s) as well as the Executive Vice President’s findings and conclusion. If the written response does not resolve the complaint to the satisfaction of the student, the President or designee may petition the Grade Change  Committee for review.  The scope of the petition and review for the Grade Change Committee is part of the collective bargaining agreement between the faculty and the college.
  • The decision of the Grade Change Committee shall be final. Appeals or formal hearings to the Board of Trustees shall not be provided.


RELATED POLICIES AND PROCEDURES
WAC 132Y-300 Nondiscrimination and Harassment Policy

SS 5.0 - Student Grade and General Complaints

SOURCE INFORMATION
(was) C 5.1.501 R101

CONTENT OWNER. The primary responsibility for this policy belongs to:
Vice President for Student Services

PRIMARY CONTENT CONTRIBUTOR (Director/Dean)
Vice President for Student Services

REVIEW PERIOD
3 Years

REVIEW HISTORY
President’s Cabinet Approval 12/16/2015

Revised for Minor Editing Changes 8/15/12

Revised for Minor Editing Changes 8/16/07

Amended 6/14/99

Amended 5/29/90

Adopted 6/1/87



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