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Accused Student’s Rights & Responsibilities

Students accused of misconduct have opportunities to make decisions affecting their own welfare throughout the process by which an allegation of misconduct is resolved. This is fundamental to the principles of fairness upon which the Code and its procedures are constructed. A student accused of either academic or social misconduct always has the right to be heard and to present his/her side of the story. Specifically, each student subject to disciplinary action has the following rights and responsibilities:

a. The right to notification of the charges with sufficient specificity to allow for preparation to defend against those charges.

b. The right to be accorded the procedures outlined in the Code of Student Conduct, including a prehearing conference at which the student may challenge, on the basis of actual bias, the presence of any member of the SCC at the hearing; to meet with a Judicial Educator and to have an advisor, if s/he so chooses; and the right to propose evidentiary witnesses, one character witness, and one ex-pert witness.

c. The right to adjudication of charges at a hearing.

d. The right to attend the hearing, to make a statement to the Student Conduct Committee, and to question witnesses through the Co-Chairs.

e. The right to respond to all statements, testimony, or other evidence offered at the hearing. (However, the accused may not make statements while witnesses are testifying and being questioned.)

f. The right to be free from harassment from the accusing party or other witnesses (or parties acting on their behalf) at any time during or after the investigation and hearing.

g. The right to appeal a decision of the Student Conduct Committee to the ad hoc Appeals Panel.

h. The responsibility to refrain from contact (direct or indirect) with accusing party or other witnesses, certain members of the Bates community or members of the community at large involved in the pending case, or with members of the Student Conduct Committee, when so directed by the Dean, the Student Conduct Com-mittee, or its Co-Chairs.

i. The responsibility to make a good-faith effort at mediation when the option of mediation is chosen by all parties as an alternative method of resolution.

j. The responsibility to abide by the instructions of the Co-Chairs of the Student Conduct Committee, including instructions regarding witness testimony. (The Co-Chairs of the SCC always have the au-thority to remove from the hearing any individual whose conduct unduly interferes with the proceedings.)

k. The responsibility to testify truthfully at the hearing.

l. The responsibility to abide by the terms of a mediation agreement or by any penalties determined by the Student Conduct Committee, a Dean’s Review, or a Dorm or House Council.

The accused student may consult with an attorney, but that attorney may not be involved in the College’s disciplinary processes. In the very specific circumstance where the College has initiated disciplinary proceedings while a serious criminal case arising out of the same conduct is pending against the student in court, the student shall be allowed to have an attorney present during the College disciplinary proceeding. Even then, any attorney retained by the student has an extremely limited role as an advisor: the attorney may not make statements or ask questions at the hearing, but is simply available to advise the student during the proceedings. Note that if a current member of the College community is otherwise eligible to serve as an advisor to a student, that individual will remain eligible to serve as an advisor regardless of her/his status as a practicing or nonpracticing attorney, or of her/his experience or education in the legal field.

Note: The Committee Co-Chairs always have the right to remove from the hearing any individual, including an attorney, whose conduct unduly interferes with the proceedings. In the event that an accused student plans to have an attorney attend the Student Conduct Committee hearing, s/he must inform the Co-Chairs in a timely manner so that the College can determine whether it wants its own attorney present.

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