Private College Conduct Hearings
Tuesday, September 6, 2011 at 3:19PM
Jason Block

Here's a quick link to an interesting issue. Sewanee: the University of the South was ordered to pay about $26,500 in damages to a student. A federal jury found that the institution was partly negligent in how it handled a sexual misconduct hearing in which the plaintiff was the accused student. Both the Chronicle and Inside Higher Ed have reported on this case. The Chronicle's article is here. Moral of the story: private institution policies and procedures are often looked at by courts as contracts with students. If an institution has policies and procedures for conduct hearings, those procedures need to be fundamentally fair and followed consistently. Deviation from the procedure can, as this case shows, lead to damages.

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