In accordance with its Statement of Nondiscrimination and Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Florida Career College’s policy is to maintain an environment for students, staff and third parties that is free of all forms of sex discrimination and harassment. Florida Career College is committed to providing a prompt and equitable response to all Title IX related Complaints. Florida Career College will take all steps necessary to eliminate the sex discrimination/harassment, to prevent its recurrence, and eliminate its effects.
1. SCOPE OF POLICY AND PERSONS COVERED
Florida Career College prohibits all forms of sexual or gender-based discrimination, harassment, and misconduct, including sexual assault, non-consensual sexual contact, intimate partner violence, sexual exploitation, and stalking (collectively, “Prohibited Conduct”). Florida Career College also prohibits retaliation against a person who reports, complains about, or who otherwise participates in good faith in any matter related to the Title IX Complaint/Grievance Procedure Policy (“Policy”). The Policy applies to all reports of Prohibited Conduct committed by any Florida Career College student, Florida Career College employee, or third party. The Policy applies to all school and school-related programs and activities, whether or not they occur on or off campus. Any individual, regardless of affiliation with Florida Career College, may file a Complaint. Florida Career College strongly encourages reports of Prohibited Conduct regardless of who engaged in the conduct.
When used in this Policy, “Complainant” refers to the individual who is identified as the subject of Prohibited Conduct. “Respondent” refers to the individual alleged to have engaged in Prohibited Conduct. A “Third-Party” refers to any other participant in the process, including a witness or an individual who makes a report on behalf of a Complainant.
2. HOW TO FILE A COMPLAINT
Florida Career College strongly encourages all individuals to report Complaints of Prohibited Conduct to Florida Career College and/or local law enforcement. These reporting options are not mutually exclusive. Both internal and criminal reports may be made simultaneously.
Florida Career College recommends that individuals report Prohibited Conduct orally or in writing to the Title IX Coordinator, whose contact information is as follows:
Title IX Coordinator
Director of Human Resources
International Education Corporation
16485 Laguna Canyon Rd Ste. 300
Irvine, CA 92618
An individual may also notify the Campus President/Executive Director, Campus Security Authority (CSA), or any other Florida Career College employee.
An individual also has the option of filing a Complaint through the Answer Program as follows:
Sending an email to [email protected]
Calling toll free (866) 591-8588
Mailing the Complaint to:
International Education Corporation
16485 Laguna Canyon Rd Ste. 300
Irvine, CA 92618
3. TIME FRAME FOR MAKING A COMPLAINT
There is no specific time frame for individuals who have experienced Prohibited Conduct to file a Complaint pursuant to this Policy. Individuals are, however, encouraged to make a report soon after the incident in question in order to maximize Florida Career College’s ability to investigate and reach a finding.
4. ANONYMOUS COMPLAINS
An individual may make an anonymous report concerning an act of Prohibited Conduct. Depending on the extent of information available about the incident or the individuals involved, however, US Colleges’ ability to respond to an anonymous report may be limited.
Should Florida Career College become aware of a concern that Prohibited Conduct is alleged to have occurred, the Title IX Coordinator, or its designee, has an obligation to review the available information and determine whether to proceed to an investigation. The Complainant may ask Florida Career College not to disclose the Complainant’s identity to the Respondent. Should a Complainant make such a request for confidentiality, the Title IX Coordinator, or its designee, will inform the Complainant that Florida Career College’s ability to respond to the allegations and investigate may therefore be limited if the request is granted. A Complainant who initially requests confidentiality is not prohibited from later waiving confidentiality and requesting that Florida Career College conduct a full investigation.
The Title IX Coordinator, or its designee, will inform the Complainant that due to various federal and state laws, it is not always possible to guarantee confidentiality regarding incidents of Prohibited Conduct, even if a Complainant later chooses to not to proceed with a Complaint. Under those laws, Florida Career College’s decision to share information with others is subject to a balancing test that requires Florida Career College to consider a range of factors when a Complainant’s request for confidentiality would preclude a meaningful investigation.
These factors include, but are not limited to:
- Multiple reports of Prohibited Conduct relating to a single Respondent
- A report that Prohibited Conduct involved a weapon, physical restraints or battery;
- The age of Complainant; and
- The availability of other means to obtain relevant evidence.
If the Title IX Coordinator, or other designee, determines that Florida Career College cannot honor the request for confidentiality and must disclose the Complainant’s identity to the Respondent and pursue an investigation, it will inform the Complainant before making this disclosure and put in place interim measures, discussed below, as necessary to protect the Complainant and the Florida Career College community.
6. REPORTING BY RESPONSIBLE EMPLOYEES
All “Responsible Employees”, as defined below, are required to promptly report a Title IX concern. A “Responsible Employee” includes any employee who: (1) has the authority to take action to redress the harassment; (2) has the duty to report to appropriate school officials sexual harassment or any other misconduct by students or employees; or (3) a student could reasonably believe has the authority or responsibility to take action.
Under this definition, all Florida Career College employees who do not have legally protected confidentiality are considered Responsible Employees. This includes all employees with supervisory or leadership responsibilities on campus, including, but not limited to, faculty, Campus Department Chairs, Associate Directors of Education, Directors of Education, and CSAs. Florida Career College requires that all Responsible Employees share a report of misconduct with the Title IX Coordinator or a Title IX Compliance Team Member. The Title IX Compliance Team consists of the Campus President/Executive Director, or designee, at each Florida Career College campus, Director of Employee Relations, and Regional Vice Presidents of Operations, where applicable. The purpose of this requirement is to permit Florida Career College to take immediate and corrective action to respond to allegations of Prohibited Conduct.
7. INTERIM MEASURES AND REMEDIES
Upon receipt of a Complaint, Florida Career College will provide reasonable and appropriate interim measures, if needed, designed to eliminate the alleged discrimination/harassment and protect the parties involved. Florida Career College will make reasonable efforts to communicate with the parties to ensure that all safety, emotional and physical well-being concerns are being addressed. Interim measures may be imposed regardless of whether formal disciplinary action is sought by the Complainant or Florida Career College, and regardless of whether an alleged crime is reported to local law enforcement.
A Complainant or Respondent may request a no contact order or other protection, or Florida Career College may choose to impose interim measures at its discretion to ensure the safety of all parties, the broader campus community, and/or the integrity of the process. Florida Career College will maintain the privacy of any remedial and protective measures provided under this Policy to the extent practicable and will promptly address any violation of the protective measures. All individuals are encouraged to report concerns about failure of another individual to abide by any restrictions imposed by an interim measure. Florida Career College will take immediate and responsive action to enforce a previously implemented restriction if such restriction is violated.
Interim measures will be implemented at the discretion of Florida Career College. Potential remedies that may be applied include:
- Access to counseling services and assistance in setting up initial appointment, both on and off campus;
- Imposition of a no contact order;
- Rescheduling of exams and assignments (in conjunction with appropriate faculty and staff as necessary);
- Providing alternative course completion options (with the agreement of the appropriate faculty and staff);
- Change in class schedule, including the ability to take an “incomplete,” drop a course without penalty, etc. (with the agreement of the appropriate faculty and staff);
- Change in work schedule or job assignment;
- Limit an individual’s access to certain Florida Career College facilities or activities pending resolution of the matter;
- Voluntary leave of absence;
- Providing an escort to ensure safe movement between classes and activities;
- Providing medical services;
- Providing academic support services, such as tutoring;
- Interim suspension or imposed leave; and
- Any other remedy that can be tailored to the involved individuals to reasonably achieve the goals of this Policy.
8. RESOLUTION OF COMPLAINT
The Title IX Coordinator has primary responsibility for coordinating resolution of all reports of Prohibited Conduct. The Title IX Coordinator shall work with and receive support from the Title IX Compliance Team, and/or any other designee. Florida Career College investigates only those concerns raised in which the Title IX Coordinator determines that the allegations are plausible under the totality of the circumstances and, if true, would constitute Prohibited Conduct, and will notify in writing any Complainant whose Complaint will not be investigated, including providing the reason(s) why. Florida Career College is committed to providing an adequate, reliable and impartial investigation, including providing both Complainant and Respondent the equal opportunity to present witnesses and relevant evidence. The Title IX Coordinator will assign a Title IX Compliance Team Member to be the primary investigator for the matter. In some circumstances, the primary investigator may be the Title IX Coordinator.
A. Conflicts of Interest
Florida Career College prohibits any individual with a real or perceived conflict of interest from participating in the investigation process. A conflict of interest exists if the individual has prior involvement in or knowledge of the allegations at issue in the case, has a personal relationship with one of the parties or witnesses, or has some other source of bias.
B. Standard of Evidence
Allegations in Complaints of Prohibited Conduct shall be investigated by applying a preponderance of the evidence standard, meaning that it is “more likely than not” that something did or did not occur.
C. Scope of Investigation
The scope of an investigation will vary depending on the allegations and circumstances of each individual case. Each Complaint will be assessed on an individualized basis. For purposes of illustration, an investigation may include the following steps, as appropriate:
- Reviewing the Complainant’s Complaint;
- Gathering additional information or statements from Complainant;
- Gathering information from any witnesses (for example faculty, staff or other students with potentially relevant information);
- Reviewing relevant documentation and policies;
- Obtaining a response or written statement and other information from Respondent;
- Attempting a resolution of the Complaint between the Complainant and the Respondent (only if appropriate); and
- Assessing the information and determining findings and proposed resolution of the Complaint.
A Complainant will not be required to work out an issue directly with a Respondent. In all circumstances, sexual assault Complaints will not be mediated, even on a voluntary basis. The use of evidence of past relationships of the Complainant are not allowed except in dating violence cases where there is evidence that the Complainant has had a relationship with the Respondent.
The primary investigator shall inform the Complainant at regular intervals regarding the status of the investigation.
D. Length of Investigation
Florida Career College will address and resolve Complaints of Prohibited Conduct promptly and effectively. It is Florida Career College intent that the entire process for investigating and resolving Complaints be concluded promptly following receipt of a Complaint. However, the length of time will vary, making an investigation shorter or longer depending on the complexity of the investigation, the severity and extent of the misconduct, the quantity and availability of witnesses, and other factors of significance that may affect the length of the investigation.
E. Results of Investigation
Upon the completion of an investigation, the primary investigator shall promptly provide written notice of the outcome of the Complaint to the Complainant and Respondent.
F. Potential Remedies and Sanctions
If based on the investigation, the Respondent is found responsible for any form of Prohibited Conduct, Florida Career College will issue sanctions commensurate with the violation(s). Possible sanctions may include, but are not limited to:
- Warning: Notice, in writing, that continuation or repetition of Prohibited Conduct may be cause for additional disciplinary action.
- Censure: A written reprimand for violating Florida Career College’s nondiscrimination policies. This conduct status specifies a period of time during which the student’s good standing with Florida Career College may be in jeopardy. The student is officially warned that continuation or repetition of Prohibited Conduct may be cause for additional disciplinary action, including probation, suspension, expulsion or termination from Florida Career College.
- Disciplinary Probation: Exclusion from participation in privileged activities for a specified period of time. Additional restrictions or conditions may also be imposed. Violations of the terms of disciplinary probation or any other Florida Career College policy violations may result in further disciplinary action.
- Restitution: Repayment to Florida Career College or to an affected party for damages (amount to be determined by Florida Career College) resulting from a violation of this Policy. To enforce this sanction, Florida Career College reserves the right to withhold its transcripts and degrees or to deny a student participation in graduation ceremonies and privileged events.
- Suspension: Exclusion from Florida Career College premises, attending classes, and other privileges or activities for a specified period of time.
- Expulsion: Permanent termination of student status and exclusion from Florida Career College premises, privileges, and activities.
- Termination: Termination of employment.
- Withholding Degree: Florida Career College may withhold awarding a degree otherwise earned until the completion of the process set forth in this Policy, including the completion of all sanctions imposed, if any.
- Other: Other sanctions may be imposed instead of, or in addition to, those specified here.
- Multiple Sanctions: More than one of the sanctions listed above may be imposed for any single violation.
Florida Career College shall maintain documentation of all investigations and any related proceedings under this Policy.
10. TITLE IX TRAINING
Florida Career College provides training to all individuals within the community who are involved in responding to, investigating, or resolving reports of Prohibited Conduct, including the Title IX Coordinator, Title IX Compliance Team, and CSAs. This training includes, but is not limited to, training in processing sexual violence or sexual harassment Complaints, training about Florida Career College’s Title IX Complaint/Grievance Procedure Policy and confidentiality requirements.
Retaliation includes adverse action taken against a person for making a good faith report of Prohibited Conduct or participating in any proceeding under this Policy. Adverse action includes conduct that threatens, intimidates, harasses, coerces or in any other way seeks to discourage a reasonable person from engaging in activity protected under this Policy. Retaliation can be committed by or against any individual or group of individuals, not just a Respondent or Complainant. Retaliation does not include good faith actions lawfully pursued in response to a report of Prohibited Conduct. Retaliation may be alleged even where there is a finding of “no violation(s)” of the Policy.
Florida Career College will take immediate and responsive action on any report of retaliation and will pursue disciplinary action as appropriate. An individual reporting Prohibited Conduct is entitled to protection from any form of retaliation following a report that is made in good faith, even if the report is later not proven.
Consent: Affirmative, conscious, voluntary, and revocable. Consent to sexual activity requires of both persons an affirmative, conscious, and voluntary agreement to engage in sexual activity.
Sexual Harassment: Any unwelcome sexual advance, request for sexual favors, or other unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature, whether verbal, physical, graphic, or otherwise. Specific examples of sexual harassment by an individual may include, but are not limited to, making written, verbal, physical, and/or visual contact of a sexual nature when the conduct or speech is so severe, persistent, or pervasive, and unwelcome, as to undermine others’ educational experiences and thus deny or limit equal access to Florida Career College resources.
Sexual Violence: Sexual violence refers to physical sexual acts perpetrated against a person’s will or where a person is incapable of giving consent (e.g., due to the student’s age or use of drugs or alcohol, or because an intellectual or other disability prevents the student from having the capacity to give consent). A number of different acts fall into the category of sexual violence, including rape, sexual assault, sexual battery, sexual abuse, and sexual coercion. Sexual violence can be carried out by school employees, other students, or Third Parties.
Sexual Assault – Penetration: Without the consent of the Complainant, penetration, no matter how slight, of the vagina, anus, or mouth by a penis; or the vagina or anus by any body part or object.
Sexual Assault – Contact: Without the consent of the Complainant, touching an intimate body part (genitals, anus, groin, breast or buttocks) (i) unclothed or (ii) clothed.
Dating Violence: Conduct by a person who is or has been in a romantic or intimate relationship with the Complainant that intentionally, or recklessly, causes bodily injury to the Complainant or places the Complainant in reasonable fear of serious bodily injury. The nature of the relationship between the Complainant and Respondent is determined by the length, type and frequency of interaction between them.
Domestic Violence: Conduct by a current or former spouse or intimate partner of the Complainant; or a person with whom the Complainant shares a child in common, that intentionally, or recklessly, causes bodily injury to the Complainant or another, or places the Complainant or another in reasonable fear of serious bodily injury.
Stalking: Repeated conduct directed at a Complainant (e.g., following, monitoring, observing, surveilling, threatening, communicating or interfering with property), of a sexual or romantic nature or motivation, that would cause a reasonable person to fear for their safety, or the safety of others, or to suffer substantial emotional distress.