3.8.1 Student Complaints and Grievances Procedure

3.8.1 Student Complaints and Grievances Procedure

Part 1. Definitions
For the purposes of Policy 3.8 and Procedure 3.8.1, the following definitions apply:

Subpart A. Appeals.
A request for reconsideration of a grievance decision under Policy 3.8 or Procedure 3.8.1.

Subpart B. Complaint.
An oral or written claim concerning a College issue brought by a student alleging improper, unfair, or arbitrary treatment.

Subpart C. Grievance.
A written claim raised by a student alleging improper, unfair, or arbitrary action by an employee involving the application of a specific provision of a College rule or regulation or a board policy or procedure. This policy does not apply to those College rules or to board policies or procedures that include an appeal or grievance process.

Subpart D. Retaliation.
Retribution of any kind taken against a student for participating or not participating in a complaint or grievance.

Subpart E. Student.
An individual who is enrolled in the College or a group of such individuals or the campus student government.

Part 2. Notification and Publication
The College shall inform students of the established complaint and grievance policy and procedures. These policies and procedures shall be publicized to students at least annually and include information for students about how and where to obtain the Student Concern form.

Part 3. Complaints
This procedure is to be used when a student has a concern/complaint about their education at the College. The objective of the procedure is to resolve problems as quickly and efficiently as possible at the level closest to the student so the students’ educational progress can continue. Nothing within this process precludes a student from seeking legal counsel at any step.

The student brings the concern/complaint to the appropriate staff or faculty member. If the student is uncomfortable with approaching the college employee directly, the student may select an advocate (counselor, advisor or another staff member) to accompany them. If the concern is not resolved satisfactorily within 10 working days, the student may file a grievance.

Part 4. Grievances
If a student is dissatisfied with the results of the complaints process, a grievance may be filed. All grievances must be submitted in writing. Forms are available in the Student Services or Academic Affairs offices and should be returned to the Assistant to the Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs who will forward the concern to the appropriate administrator for written response to the student within ten (10) working days.

Part 5. Appeals
The student has the right to appeal the grievance decision by filing a written appeal to the Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs. Appeals must be filed within ten (10) working days from receipt of the appeal. The decision of the Vice President is final and binding.

If the complaint involves Minnesota State policy or actions by the College President, a student may further appeal the college decision to the Chancellor. The decision of the Chancellor is final and binding.

Part 6. Retaliation Prohibited
No retaliation of any kind shall be taken against a student for participating or refusing to participate in a grievance. Retaliation may be subject to action under appropriate student or employee policies.

Part 7. Records Retention
All records of complaints and grievances shall be logged and housed in the Academic Affairs Office and retained for a period of five (5) years.

Date of implementation/Presidential Approval: 05/31/2012

Date of last review: 2/2/2021

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