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Office of Student Conduct
218 Hullihen Hall
Newark, DE 19716
Phone: (302) 831-2117
Fax: (302) 831-8191
Office Hours: 8am - 5pm
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Frequently Asked Questions By Presenting Parties

  • Click here for questions frequently asked by students
  • Click here for questions frequently asked by parents
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    What will I have to do in a hearing?
    What should I bring with me to the hearing?
    What if I can’t remember something that happened?
    What if the student starts asking me questions?
    What if the student persists in asking irrelevant questions?
    What if the hearing gets out of control?
    What happens if the student doesn't show up? What happens if I don’t show up?
    When and where are hearings held?
    How will I know if I am required to attend a hearing?
    What if I have a conflict with the hearing time?
    Do I have to bring witnesses?
    What if another staff member was involved with me? Do we both have to attend?
    What if charged students and/or their parents contact me before the hearing?
    After the hearing, will I need to do anything else?
    What if I disagree with the outcome of a hearing or an appeal?

     

    What will I have to do in a hearing?
    In the course of an Administrative Hearing, you will serve as the complainant. The complainant (also referred to as the "presenting party" or "reporting party") is the person who observed possible violations of the Code of Conduct and documented the incident. The hearing begins with each charged student entering a plea for each charge. Then, as the presenting party, you will give a recollection of the incident. You may read directly from your original incident report, from memory, or a combination of the two. It is most helpful to the hearing officer to get a full understanding of the incident and each student’s involvement. Presenting information in a chronological order and with the facts (not opinions) is best. Once you have finished, the hearing officer may ask clarifying questions to get more information. The charged student(s) will also have the opportunity to ask you clarifying questions.

    The charged student(s) will then give information about the case, after which both the hearing officer and you will be given the opportunity to ask questions to gain more information.

    If witnesses are presented (either by you or the charged student(s)), you will be given an opportunity to ask them questions after they have shared information about the incident.

    Both you and the charged student(s) will give a closing statement (if you wish) before the hearing concludes.

    What should I bring with me to the hearing?
    You should bring a copy of the incident report you submitted, as well as any supporting documents you feel are necessary. If you are unable to get a copy of the report beforehand, the hearing officer will have a copy in the case file, which he or she will give to you.

    What if I can’t remember something that happened?
    You are expected to be truthful and complete when answering questions and providing information. If you do not recall something, please say so. Writing a thorough report at the time of the incident will be helpful if it becomes necessary to attend a hearing.

    What if the student starts asking me questions?
    The student has the right to ask you questions regarding the incident and your recollection of it. Again, you want to be honest about what you did and said. If the student tries to ask questions which are not relevant to the case, the hearing officer will not permit the question.

    What if the student persists in asking irrelevant questions?
    The hearing officer will not have knowledge of the case beforehand, nor will he or she know of any history you may have with the charged student(s). Therefore, the hearing officer may not realize a question is not relevant to the case. If you feel a question is irrelevant, you may ask the charged student to explain the relevance of the question before you answer it.

    What if the hearing gets out of control?
    If a charged student becomes unruly and disruptive, the hearing officer will ask the student to leave the hearing. In that case, the hearing would continue without the student. If you as the presenting party become unruly, the hearing officer will ask you to leave, the hearing will end and all charges against the student will be dropped. While both of these scenarios are rare, these guidelines are in place to ensure the hearing is civil and professional.

    What happens if the student doesn't show up? What happens if I don’t show up?
    A charged student has the right not to appear for an Administrative Hearing; should this occur, the hearing will be conducted in his or her absence. In this situation, information will be provided only by you as the presenting party and any of your witnesses. As the presenting party, if you fail to appear for the hearing, the charges against the student may be dropped.

    When and where are hearings held?
    Hearings take place during regular business hours – Monday through Friday between 8AM and 4PM. Hearings most often take place in Hullihen Hall (the building in which the Office of Student Conduct is located). They also occur in various offices or conference rooms across campus. If you are unfamiliar with the location of the hearing, please call the Office of Student Conduct for directions.

    How will I know if I am required to attend a hearing?
    If you are required at a hearing, you will be notified via e-mail. The hearing notice will include the time, date and location of the hearing. It will also include the names of all the charged students who requested a hearing (meaning they denied responsibility for the violation(s) during their pre-hearing). If a student you documented is not listed on the hearing notice, it is most likely the student accepted responsibility during the pre-hearing.

    You will be notified at least five business days before the hearing. This will give you adequate time to review the case, organize supporting materials and contact any witnesses you may want to bring. Hearings are typically scheduled within two to three weeks after the incident date.

    What if I have a conflict with the hearing time?
    When scheduling hearings, the Office of Student Conduct takes into consideration your schedule (academic commitments for student staff and work schedules for professional staff and faculty) as well as the academic schedules of the students.

    If, after being notified of the hearing, you realize you have a conflict (such as another work-related commitment) please contact the Office of Student Conduct as soon as possible, so the hearing can be re-scheduled.

    Do I have to bring witnesses?
    While it is not absolutely necessary, you might consider a witness if that person has important information that will support your recollection of the incident. If, for example, a colleague dealt with some of the students in the case, and you with others, it would be important for that colleague to appear. It is your responsibility to determine which witnesses are needed and to inform them of the date, time and location of the hearing. If a witness has an academic conflict, he or she may give you a written statement to be read into the record. Ideally, though, all witnesses should attend the hearing in person.

    What if another staff member was involved with me? Do we both have to attend?
    When scheduling a hearing, the Office of Student Conduct assumes the person listed as “Reporting Party” on the original incident report will be the presenting party in the hearing. It is the responsibility of the reporting party to identify and inform any witnesses of the hearing. If your colleague dealt with some of the charged students and you with others, it would be helpful to the hearing officer to have you both attend the hearing. In some situations, there can be two reporting parties (you and your colleague), especially when you were equally involved in the situation.

    What if charged students and/or their parents contact me before the hearing?
    Charged students and/or parents may come to you because they are nervous about the hearing or have questions about the hearing process. If you feel comfortable answering general procedural questions, feel free to do so; if not, you can refer them to the Office of Student Conduct. Due to privacy rights of the students, you should not share any specific information about the case or charges with parents. If the charged students or parents contact you to encourage you to drop the case, press you about what you’re going to say in the hearing or try to influence you in any way, you should not speak with them. Again, refer them to the Office of Student Conduct.

    After the hearing, will I need to do anything else?
    You will be notified of the outcome of the hearing (via e-mail) at the same time as the student. The student does have the right to appeal the decision or sanctions. In that case, you will be contacted by the Office of Student Conduct and asked to respond to the student’s appeal. As with the hearing process, you should be truthful and honest when responding to an appeal.

    What if I disagree with the outcome of a hearing or an appeal?
    If you have questions about the outcome of a hearing or appeal, you may contact the hearing officer or the Office of Student Conduct for clarification. Hearing officers are usually willing to talk to you about how they came to the decision they did as well as why they applied certain sanctions. This information can be helpful to you, as it can help you when observing, documenting and recalling future incidents.