Community Colleges Face Unique Challenges to New Title IX Regulations

 In Best Practices, Student Conduct

While colleges and universities have to grapple with what COVID-19 means for them come fall 2020, they are also navigating the new waters of the recently revised Title IX regulations. The deadline to implement these new procedures is Aug. 14, a deadline quickly approaching at a time when higher education institutions are responding to the pandemic and making preparations for whatever an institution’s new normal looks like. Yet, community colleges could find it the hardest to meet this Aug. 14 deadline.

Community college administrators and staff feel that the 2,000-page updated regulations from the U.S. Department of Education did not take into account the considerations of community colleges across the nation. Administrators and staff feel that these regulations are acutely burdensome do the lack of resources and public funding available to them. In particular, the updated regulations require a live hearing with cross-examination process which has been widely criticized as placing survivors subject in the position of being interrogated by someone from an opposing party. Sexual assault advocates have strongly criticized this component of the regulation saying it could be harder for students to report sexual misconduct.

This specific requirement means that staff have to be trained and assigned to conduct the hearings (either virtually or in person) which requires training funding, staff, and money to hire staff. These hearings require three separate officials to work on different areas of a Title IX complaint which include: a coordinator, investigator, and a decision maker. Requiring three separate staff members to conduct this portion of the regulations puts a huge burden on community colleges with limited staff and funding.

So how can community colleges effectively navigate these changes by Aug. 14? Used by more than 30 community colleges are already, Symplicity Advocate is the trusted solution for student conduct, Title IX, and behavioral intervention. Advocate allows users to streamline cases management reporting, detect and address students concerns proactively, consolidate data for key data in real-time to help with key decision-making, and allow for you to create a workflow to route cases based on the type of case, the student involved, or any other information needed. This streamlined system can help community colleges save both money and time by removing the need for storage, shredding, and training staff on how to intake. You can instead record, track, and train all within the Advocate platform. New Title IX regulations will require student conduct offices to put in places systems that are easily manageable and effective. Symplicity Advocate helps institutions avoid liability issues by ensuring compliance with DOE and OCR.

For those interested in learning more about Advocate, schedule a conversation with us or email info@symplicity.com.

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