EFFECTIVE: July 1, 1998
RETITLED: September 14, 2000
RETITLED: August 25, 2001
REVISED: January 10, 2011
REVISED: May 9, 2012
REVISED: July 31, 2013
REVISED: June 1, 2014
REVISED: October 1, 2014
REVISED: June 30, 2015
REVISED: October 1, 2019
REVISED: February 10, 2021
REFERENCE(S): Board Policy (BP) 4-30, Student Behavioral Expectations and Responsibilities
/ Joe Garcia /
Joseph A. Garcia
This procedure applies to students within the Colorado Community College System, including its Colleges (CCCS or System). This procedure applies to violations of the Code of Student Behavioral Expectations and Responsibilities (Code) (Appendix A).
If a student is alleged to have violated the Code, this procedure outlines the steps that can be taken in resolving the matter. Students reported to have violated the Code be given the opportunity to participate in the behavioral expectations and responsibilities process. The procedure aims to engage students in a restorative, fair, educational, and developmental process, and to prevent future occurrences of student misconduct.
For definitions applicable to this procedure, refer to Appendix B.
This procedure applies to behaviors from students that take place on a CCCS campus, at CCCS sponsored events, and may also apply to off-campus and to online behavior when the Senior Student Affairs Officer (SSAO) or designee determines that the off-campus or online behavior affects a substantial CCCS interest. A substantial CCCS or College interest includes, but is not limited to the following, when the circumstances are such that there is a disruption to CCCS or College operations, a significant negative impact to the campus community, or a detriment to the educational interests of the System or College:
Any online postings or other electronic communication by students, including cyber-bullying, cyber-stalking, cyber-harassment, etc., occurring completely outside of the System or the College’s control (e.g., not on System or College networks, websites or between System or College email accounts) will only be subject to this procedure when those online behaviors can be shown to cause a substantial on-campus disruption. Otherwise, such communications are considered speech protected by the First Amendment to the Constitution.
The Colorado Community College System is committed to a procedure of equity and justice. We accept the responsibility to create an environment free from discrimination.
Any member of the System community may allege a violation by any student of the Code by reporting the matter to the appropriate SSAO. The SSAO manages reports of Code violations made under this procedure and may delegate this responsibility. Students, faculty, instructors, staff, authorized volunteers, and guests are encouraged to report behavior that potentially violates the Code or that may be criminal in nature. Formal reports can be made by completing a College incident report. If the conduct is believed to be criminal in nature, the SSAO should immediately report the alleged violation to campus law enforcement or security or external law enforcement.
There is no time limit on reporting violations of the Code; however, the longer someone waits to report, the harder it becomes for College officials to obtain information and witness statements and to make determinations regarding alleged violations. Anonymous complaints are permitted, though doing so may limit the College’s ability to investigate and respond to a complaint effectively.
Complaints, concerns, or reports without reasonable cause will not be pursued. Upon receipt of the report, the SSAO or designee shall review the matter to determine if it alleges sufficient information to support reasonable cause that a violation has occurred. If so, the SSAO shall promptly notify the Complainant (if any) and the Respondent in writing of the allegations and any interim action that is being imposed. Should a student withdraw from the institution prior to the conclusion of the conduct process, the College will proceed with or without the student’s involvement.
The SSAO will identify a conduct resolution pathway as outlined below based on the nature of the allegations and input from the involved parties. Decisions made by the SSAO shall be final unless subject to appeal. Any outcomes and restrictions imposed take effect immediately unless the SSAO agrees to delay or stay the outcome.
Proceedings initiated under this procedure are separate from civil or criminal proceedings that may relate to the same incident. Investigations or conduct proceedings by the College are not postponed while criminal or civil proceedings are pending unless otherwise determined by the SSAO.
The SSAO, in consultation with appropriate administrative personnel, may implement interim actions intended to protect the safety and well-being of the CCCS community; preserve CCCS property; address the effects of the reported behavior; and prevent further violations while the matter is under review or investigation. Interim actions may include, but are not limited to:
In all cases in which an interim action is imposed, the individual will be given the opportunity to meet with the SSAO prior to such action being imposed, or as soon thereafter as reasonably possible, to show cause why the interim action should not be implemented. The SSAO shall have sole discretion to implement or stay an interim action, and to determine its conditions and duration. Violation of an interim action may be grounds for imposition of an outcome, up to and including expulsion.
The SSAO, in consultation with the involved parties, may determine informally resolving student conduct matters through an alternative conflict resolution process is appropriate to resolve the reported concerns. The primary focus during alternative conflict resolution remains the welfare of the parties and the safety of the CCCS community, but it does not involve a formal investigation.
Alternative conflict resolution, includes, but is not limited to, dialogue, conflict coaching, mediation, restorative justice, or shuttle diplomacy. Alternative conflict resolution works best when students take responsibility for their actions, have a desire to restore the impact created in the incident, and actively participate in deciding and agreeing upon an outcome. If a resolution is reached, the matter will be closed without opportunity for an appeal.
At any time during the alternative conflict resolution process, the SSAO may elect to initiate formal investigation as deemed appropriate to resolve the matter. The parties can elect to cease the alternative conflict resolution process at any time before it concludes and proceed with a formal investigation.
Where formal investigation is designated, the SSAO shall investigate the allegations, provide the Respondent an opportunity to be heard, and render a decision as outlined below:
The SSAO may also conduct any other investigation, such as meeting with the Complainant (if any), meeting with other relevant witnesses, and evaluating relevant documents, information, and evidence.
The following outcomes can be implemented by the SSAO as a result of finding a violation in the formal investigation process or as part of an agreed upon alternative conflict resolution. These outcomes are intended to develop an educational and restorative experience for individuals engaging with the conduct process. These outcomes may also be put in place to ensure safety of the individual and/or the CCCS community. Outcomes will be effective immediately upon notice to the student, except that the SSAO may delay or stay the effective date, in their discretion, upon request from the student (e.g., it may be appropriate to stay an outcome pending the resolution of an appeal).
A student found responsible for violating the Code through the formal investigation process has a right to appeal if suspension or expulsion are imposed.
If an outcome other than suspension or expulsion is imposed as a result of a formal investigation, a student may request in writing a discretionary appeal to the designated Appellate officer. A request for a discretionary appeal must be in writing and submitted to the Appellate officer within five (5) business days of the notice of decision. The Appellate Officer must notify the student in writing of whether the appeal will be permitted and if permitted, the below appeal deadlines apply from the date of that decision.
All appeals must be made in accordance with procedures outlined in this section.
A student may only appeal upon one or more of the following grounds:
Regardless if a case is appealed, all outcomes imposed in the case will go into effect immediately unless they are officially stayed pending the appeal decision.
Appeals must be filed in writing within ten (10) business days of the notice of the initial conduct decision or decision allowing discretionary appeal. A student may file a written appeal by completing and submitting the College’s appeal form, if applicable, and sending it to the Appellate Officer. It is the student’s obligation to provide any and all materials for consideration at the time of appeal submission. Subsequent information and/or revisions to the appeal after initial submission will not be accepted.
Upon receipt of an appeal, the Appellate Officer shall conduct an initial review to determine if the appeal meets the limited appeals criteria and is timely. The student will receive notification about the decision of the initial review of appeal within five (5) business days of receipt of the student’s appeal. If the appeal is found to meet these criteria, the Appellate Officer shall give written notice to other involved parties, if applicable, to allow the other parties an opportunity to provide a response to the appeal.
If it is determined an appeal meets the appeal criteria, the Appellate Officer will review the appeal.
In reviewing the appeal, the Appellate Officer may only consider the information contained in the record of the case, but may seek clarification of the decision rendered by the SSAO.
Upon review of an appeal, the Appellate Officer shall have the authority to:
The Appellate Officer will notify the student in writing of the decision, typically within ten (10) business days of completing the review.
During this appeal process, if the Appellate Officer requires additional time, they shall promptly notify the parties.
Student conduct records will be maintained in accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and SP 4-80a, Student Educational Records and Directory Information. Generally, student conduct records are sealed seven (7) years after a final decision is delivered in the resolution process, except as required by law. Student conduct records may be sealed earlier by the SSAO upon written request from the student. Conduct records that result in a separation from the College (suspension or expulsion) and those that fall under Civil Rights, to include a Title IX investigation, will be maintained for seven (7) years.
Students who are suspended or expelled as a result of the conduct process will not receive a refund of any tuition, fees, or other charges, and will be responsible for any outstanding balances owed to the College. Students who are terminated from housing will be responsible for fulfilling their housing and dining contract fees, if applicable.
It is a violation of this procedure to engage in retaliation, such as taking adverse employment or educational action, against any person who reports an incident of a Code violation or because of the person’s participation, or perceived participation, in any aspect of this procedure. Retaliation includes acts to intimidate, threaten, coerce, or discriminate against any individual for the purposes of interfering with any right or privilege provided by this procedure.
CCCS reserves the right to change any provision or requirement of this procedure at any time and the change shall become effective immediately.
A College community is defined by its values for learning, teaching, and service that reflect academic excellence, holistic student development, and societal impact. To guide student success, the Colorado Community College System (CCCS) has created the Code of Student Behavioral Expectations and Responsibilities (Code), which includes standards of behavior that support an engaged learning environment for all students. The Code embraces the institutional values of integrity, excellence, learning, diversity, intellectual freedom, and equal opportunity, and is rooted in conflict resolution practice to support students in resolving their own conflicts.
Each College’s Student Affairs Division is authorized to enact the Code and utilize the Code procedures to support students while holding them accountable to the behavior that supports the College mission and vision. The outcomes of the student conduct process are designed to assist students in their development, help them think through their moral and ethical decision-making, and realign their behavior with the College’s community expectations. In certain incidents, this may involve separation from the College either temporarily or permanently.
Outcomes are assigned based on the severity of the violation, cumulative conduct history, and educational needs of the student.
Students at each College are provided a copy of the Code and are responsible for reading and adhering to the Code. The Code in no way creates a contractual obligation and CCCS reserves the right to revise the procedure at any time.
The College considers the behavior described in the following subsections as inappropriate and in opposition to the values of the College community. These responsibilities apply to all students including continuing education. The College encourages and expects students, faculty, and staff to engage as active bystanders and report to College officials incidents that involve the following behaviors. Any student found to have violated or to have attempted to violate the following responsibilities may be subject to the conditions, restrictions, and outcomes outlined in SP 4-30a, Student Behavior Expectations and Responsibilities Resolution Procedure.
The following section is organized alphabetically by violation followed by an explanation.
Abuse of Conduct Process: Abuse or interference with College processes, including conduct and academic integrity meetings:
Academic Integrity: Plagiarizing, cheating, or committing any other form of academic misconduct including, but not limited to, unauthorized collaboration, falsification of information, and/or helping someone else violate reasonable standards for academic behavior. Students who engage in any type of academic dishonesty are subject to both academic consequences as determined by the instructor and to outcomes as set forth in the Student Behavioral Expectations and Responsibilities Resolution Procedure.
Alcohol/Drugs: Use, being under the influence, manufacturing, possession, cultivating, distribution, purchase, or sale of alcohol and/or drugs (illegal and/or dangerous or controlled substance) and/or alcohol/drug paraphernalia while on College-owned or College-controlled property, and/or at any function authorized or supervised by the College, and/or in state owned or leased vehicles.
Animals/Pets: Animals are not permitted on campus except as permitted by law or as specifically approved by the College.
Bullying/Non-physical abuse: Bullying includes repeated and/or severe aggressive or negative actions or behaviors intentionally or reasonably likely to intimidate, hurt, control, or diminish another person, physically, mentally, or emotionally. Bullying may include direct or indirect communications in verbal or nonverbal form and specifically includes bullying by electronic means (e.g., cyberbullying).
Damage and Destruction: Reckless and/or unauthorized damage to, or destruction of, College property or the individual property of another, regardless of intention. Damage or destruction of community, public, or private property.
Deceitful Acts: Engaging in deceitful acts, including, but not limited to: collusion, forgery, falsification, alteration, misrepresentation, non-disclosure, or misuse of documents, records, identification and/or educational materials.
Discrimination and Harassment: Discrimination is any distinction, preference, advantage, or detriment given to a person based on one or more actual or perceived protected classes. Harassment is a form of discrimination that includes Quid Pro Quo and Hostile Environment.
Disruptive Behavior: Engaging in any behavior that negatively affects or impedes teaching or learning (regardless of mode of delivery or class setting) or disrupts the general operation of the College.
Endangerment or Defacement: Conduct that is detrimental to the College, and/or to community safety. Examples include, but are not limited to, slamming doors, throwing chairs, and/or defacing of College property or property of others.
Failure to Comply:
Fire Safety: Violation of federal, state, local, or campus fire policies including, but not limited to:
Gambling: Gambling as prohibited by the laws of the State of Colorado. Gambling may include, but is not limited to, raffles, lotteries, sports pools, and online betting activities. Participation in illegal gambling activities on College-owned or College-controlled property, and/or any function authorized or supervised by the College, and/or in state owned or leased vehicles.
Harm to individuals: Intentionally or unintentionally causing physical harm, threating to cause harm, endangering the health and/or safety of any individual, or demonstrating violent behavior.
Hazing: Defined as an act that endangers the psychological, emotional, intellectual, and/or physical health and/or safety of a student, or that destroys or removes public or private property, for the purpose of initiation, admission into, affiliation with, or as a condition for continued membership in a group, team, or organization. Additionally, any act that places a student in a subservient role within an organization is considered hazing. Participation or consensual cooperation by the individual(s) being hazed does not excuse the violation. Failing to intervene to prevent, failing to discourage, and failing to report those acts may also violate this code.
Indecent Exposure: Deliberately and publicly exposing one’s intimate body parts, public urination, defecation, and public sex acts.
Retaliation: Retaliatory acts include, but are not limited to intimidation, verbal or physical threats, harassment, coercion, or other adverse action(s) against a person who reports an incident of misconduct.
Rioting: Causing, inciting, or participating in any disturbance that presents a clear and present danger to self or others, causes physical harm to others, or results in damage and/or destruction of property.
Theft: Obtaining, retaining or exercising control over property of another without authorization, or by threat or deception, with the purpose and/or effect of depriving the person(s) to whom the property belongs of its use or benefit.
Tobacco Violation: Smoking and the use of tobacco and related products, including electronic smoking, where contrary to applicable laws or policies established by the College. This includes smoking inside buildings or in areas where smoking is posted as prohibited.
Trademark Violation: Unauthorized use, including misuse, of the College or organizational names and images without the express written consent of the institution or organization.
Unacceptable Use of College Equipment, Network or System: Unacceptable uses of any College-owned or operated equipment, network or system including, but not limited to: knowingly spreading computer viruses; reposting personal communications without the author’s consent; copying protected materials; using the network for financial or personal gain, commercial activity, or illegal activity; accessing the network using another individual’s account; unauthorized downloading/uploading software and/or digital video or music; downloading/uploading, viewing or displaying pornographic content, or any other attempt to compromise network integrity. For more information, see SP 4-32,
Unauthorized Access and Entry: Unauthorized access to any College facility, including misuse of keys, cards, restricted access areas, or unauthorized possession, duplication or use of other individual’s means of access to any College facility; failing to provide a timely report of a lost College identification card or key; misuse of access privileges to College premises or unauthorized entry to or use of facilities, including trespassing, propping, or unauthorized use of alarmed doors for entry into or exit from a College facility.
Violation of Laws, Directives and Signage: Violating any municipal, county, state or federal laws, or executive orders, or violating any public health orders in a manner that adversely impacts the health and well-being of the campus environment and those on campus.
Weapons Violation: Possession, use, or distribution of explosives (including fireworks and ammunition), guns (including air, BB, paintball, facsimile weapons, and pellet guns), or other weapons or dangerous objects, such as arrows, axes, machetes, nunchaku, throwing stars, or knives with a blade of longer than three (3) inches. This includes the unauthorized storage of any item that falls within the category of a weapon, including storage in a vehicle parked on College property, other than what is expressly permitted by law.
Violation of course, program, or activity rules: Violation of established rules as contained in courses, programs activities, regulations, or guidelines and established by departments, regulatory boards, or licensing bodies, including all Housing and Residential Education policies, as applicable.
A student group or organization and its officers and membership may be held collectively and individually responsible when violations of this Code occur by the organization or its member(s), including the following conditions:
Conduct meetings for student groups or organizations shall also follow the Student Behavioral Expectations and Responsibilities Resolution Procedure. In any such action, individual determinations as to responsibility will be made and restrictions, conditions, and outcomes may be assigned collectively and individually, and will be proportionate to the involvement of each individual and the organization. Procedures will begin with communication to the President or leadership of said organization.
Assisting an individual by calling for help in an alcohol or drug-related emergency means neither the person who calls for help, nor the person who needs help will be subject to formal investigation nor receive a formal conduct record for their behavior. Students seeking assistance under these provisions may be required to meet with the SSAO and to complete educational, counseling, or other requirements aimed at addressing health and safety concerns. The requirements will be informal or on a deferred basis.
The student must fully comply with reporting to appropriate College officials for amnesty to be considered.
Alternative conflict resolution is a process of addressing differences that allow everyone involved to find a way to work together. Differences may be personal, financial, employment, political, emotional, or interpersonal. It is an alternative to formal investigation of a reported violation. There are many types of alternative conflict resolutions that may be utilized to work through conflict that may arise. Examples include:
Complainant is a person who is subject to alleged inappropriate or unlawful behavior. For purposes of this procedure, a Complainant can be a CCCS employee, student, authorized volunteer, guest, or visitor.
Due process provides a student reported to be in violation of the Code, a written notice of the allegation of misconduct, time to examine the evidence and formulate a response, and the opportunity to explain their version of events to the SSAO.
Notification is an email from the SSAO requesting a meeting. The email will be sent to the student’s College issued email address and will outline the incident in question, process, and rights of the student.
Outcomes are assigned and used to develop an educational and restorative experience for individuals engaging with the conduct process. Outcomes may also be put in place to ensure the safety of an individual and/or the campus community.
The standard of proof that shows more likely than not that a violation occurred, based on what a reasonable person would consider. This standard is utilized by the SSAO in the formal investigation process.
Reasonable cause is defined as credible information that, if true, supports the proposition that a violation of the Code has occurred, including information provided by an anonymous source.
Individual(s) who report an incident of concern and possible Code violation. Reporting parties could be students, faculty, staff, law enforcement, or community members.
Individual(s) against whom the report was filed.
A Resolution Coordinator is a College official who is authorized by the SSAO to coordinate conduct resolution.
The individual designated by the College President to oversee student affairs and be responsible for administering the Code of Student Behavioral Expectations and Responsibilities. The SSAO may delegate some or all aspects of this procedure to another individual (designee/Resolution Coordinator). All references in these procedures to the SSAO include any designee. *Note: Previously referred to as Chief Student Services Officer (CSSO); other policies and procedures may also refer to this role as CSSO.
Anyone who has been admitted within the prior three terms or who has completed a non-credit or academic course within the prior three terms. Withdrawal does not change student status. Students include those currently taking courses at or sponsored by the College(s), pursuing either credit or non-credit courses (or both), including those concurrently attending secondary or post-secondary institutions and College.
An individual or group that are external to the incident or situation that are not directly involved.
 Nancy G. Giacomini, et al. Reframing Campus Conflict: Student Conduct Practice Through the Lens of Inclusive Conflict Excellence. Sterling, Va: Stylus, 2020.