POLICY NO: 1-22 EFFECTIVE DATE: 03/02/2010
VCCS POLICY NO: 3.14.5 REVISED DATE: 01/28/2021

I. Purpose:

To promote a safe, healthy environment that is conducive to learning and to comply with Code of Virginia, Title 23, Chapter 8, Section 23.1-805, Violence prevention committee; threat assessment team.

II. Definitions:

Direct threat: a situation where there is a high probability of substantial harm to an individual or individuals.

Respondent: a person whose behavior warrants an investigation by the college pursuant to this policy.

Student: a person who has applied, been accepted, and registered/enrolled at the college.

III. Policy:

As an institution of learning, J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College (Reynolds) expects and encourages students to maintain acceptable standards of behavior as well as a reasonable concern for their own social well-being. The following shall be used to address behavioral concerns raised by anyone in the immediate community or beyond:

A. The college shall maintain a threat assessment team otherwise known as the Behavioral Intervention Team (BIT), but referred to as "team" throughout the remainder of this policy.

B. The team is a multidisciplinary group of administrators, faculty, and staff that is responsible for threat assessment on campus, including evaluating and responding to reports of students or others whose behavior reflects personal crisis and/or which may pose a threat to the safety of the campus community.

C. The team shall permanently be composed of the following positions or designees: chief of police, associate vice president of human resources, dean of students, counselor for behavioral intervention, counselor for student accommodations, counselor for retention services, one (1) academic dean, and one (1) full-time teaching faculty. Dean of Students or designee, shall serve as the team leader. In addition, a mental health professional contracted to provide services by the college shall serve as a member of the team to provide needed assistance when responding to behavior which may be due to a mental health crisis or mental illness. By recommendation of the team leader, additional team members may be added as needed on a case-by-case basis. In accordance with Reynolds College Leadership and Governance practices, team members who are not designated as permanent members within this policy shall serve a two-year (2-year) term, at which point their membership will end.

D. The team is not limited to considering only behavior that has occurred on campus. Off-campus and online behavior may be considered in those instances where a threat exists to the campus community.

E. The following are examples of matters that by their nature may be considered to be threatening or to involve a potential threat and, thus, may be referred to and reviewed by the team:

1. admission denials/revocations because an applicant/student poses a threat (Reynolds Policy No. 1-11, Admissions; and Procedures for Denial or Revocation of Admissions Status)

2. incidents of sexual misconduct (Reynolds Policy No. 4-17, Title IX - Sexual Misconduct)

3. certain violations of the Student Conduct Code that involves threatening behavior(s) (Reynolds Policy No. 1-35, Student Conduct)

4. certain types of classroom disruption that involves threatening behavior(s) (Reynolds Policy No. 2-18, Classroom Interruptions)

F. Students may be temporarily suspended if it is believed that a direct threat to other students, faculty, staff, or the public exists, or if the student's behavior creates a serious disruption to normal college operations. These decisions are interim measures conducted to mitigate risk. The student may appeal the temporary suspension; however, the burden is on the student to prove that their presence on campus is not a significant threat to the college community. The team shall review information related to the appeal and make a determination regarding the temporary suspension. If the student is enrolled in classes at the time of suspension, the team shall assist the student with gaining access to complete their assignments and coursework in an alternate format. However, academic and/or financial decisions as a result of the temporary decision are the responsibility of the student.

G. In cases where the behavior or threat falls under the auspices of this policy, the team shall investigate matters and make a determination regarding the behavior or threat. Decisions by the team may consist of recommendations that include psychological assessments (see Addendum, Mandated Assessment Procedures), follow-up meetings, referrals to counseling and other services, or student conduct referrals. The team may also recommend administrative withdrawals or removals, where appropriate.

H. In the event that a student fails to comply with the recommendations of the team, the student may be referred to the student conduct process.

I. At least four (4) members of the team shall be present during the decision-making process regarding a student's standing at the college. Decisions shall be made by a simple majority vote.

J. Decisions shall be communicated by way of certified mail, email (to the student's VCCS email account), or telephone (where appropriate).

In all cases where a student's educational rights are affected, due process will be afforded.

IV. Procedures:

A. Any faculty, staff, or student who believes a student's behavior on campus is of concern or threatening, or who learns information regarding a student or individual that may present a threat to the community, should contact the Office of Student Affairs, or the campus Department of Police. The individual will be asked to complete JSRCC Form No. 75-0005, Behavioral Intervention Referral form. In the event that the observed behavior is an immediate threat to the safety of the college community, the campus Department of Police should be notified immediately (804-523-5911).

B. The team leader, dean of students, chief of police or designee, and other needed members of the team will review the complaints and determine the appropriate process to be initiated.

1. If the alleged behavior appears to violate the student conduct code, the team leader will initiate the student conduct process using Reynolds Policy No.1-35, Student Conduct.

2. If the alleged behavior or information is concerning an applicant to the college or recently admitted student who is not enrolled at the college, Reynolds Policy No. 1-11, Admissions; and Procedures for Denial or Revocation of Admissions Status will be initiated.

3. If the alleged behavior is of a sexual nature and discriminates against a student, the team leader may initiate Reynolds Policy No. 4-17, Title IX - Sexual Misconduct.

In the event that the team leader is unavailable, the dean of students will lead the discussion regarding how the situation will be handled. If the dean of students is unavailable, the chief of police will assume the lead of the discussion regarding the matter.

C. If the members of the team determine that the alleged behavior is a result of emotional distress, the team leader or designee will contact the student to arrange a meeting.

D. At the meeting the team leader or designee will:

1. provide notice to the respondent/student of the behavior of concern.

2. provide the respondent/student with a copy of Reynolds Policy No. 1-22, Behavioral Intervention;

3. interview the respondent/student regarding the issues of concern or the observed behavior; and

4. depending on the nature and severity of the situation, require that the respondent/student sign a release of information that will assist the team in gathering information related to the student's background. In addition, the team may require a psychological assessment of the student.

E. Upon receipt of all requested information, the team will review the information and make a determination regarding the status of the student at the college. Consideration will be given to the following:

1. the nature, severity, and frequency of the behavior

2. the risk level associated with the behavior

3. options available to assist the student with the behavior of concern

F. The team leader or designee will issue a decision notice to the respondent/student.

G. Appeals

The respondent/student may appeal the decision of the team by submitting a written appeal to the team leader within ten (10) business days. An appeal may be initiated on one (1) or more of the following:

 inaccurate information gathered by the team, or new information that might affect the outcome of the decision

 excessive recommendations by the team

 violation of due process or procedures as outlined in this policy

All appeals should provide documentation to support the claim of the respondent/student.

The team leader will gather all documentation from the chief of police and present the file to the Vice President of Enrollment Management and Student Success (VPEMSS). The VPEMSS will review all information and communicate a decision within ten (10) business days of the date the appeal was submitted by the respondent/student. The decision of the VPEMSS is final and cannot be appealed.

H. Record retention and student privacy

All documentation gathered through an investigation by the team will be treated as an educational record pursuant to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99) and Reynolds Policy No. 1-26, Student Privacy and Release of Student Information. The college will only release such documentation after the personally identifiable information of individuals who provided such information in confidence is redacted.

V. Other Information:

Code of Virginia, Title 23, Chapter 8, Section 23.1-805, Violence prevention committee; threat assessment team

Addendum, Procedures for Denial or Revocation of Admissions Status

Addendum, Mandated Assessment Procedures

Reynolds Policy No. 1-11, Admissions

Reynolds Policy No. 1-26, Student Privacy and Release of Student Information

Reynolds Policy No. 1-35, Student Conduct

Reynolds Policy No. 2-18, Classroom Interruptions

Reynolds Policy No. 4-17, Title IX - Sexual Misconduct

JSRCC Form No. 75-0005, Behavioral Intervention Referral