Student Success and Report
The entire West Valley College community is working together to improve both access and success so our students can thrive and accomplish their educational goals. All California Community Colleges are required to comply with the Student Success Act of 2012. New students who have completed assessment, orientation and developed educational plans (Ed Plans) as well as continuing students in good standing who have not exceeded 100 units by April 2014 (not including units in basic English, Math or English as a Second Language) have priority over students who do not meet the criteria. “Priority Registration” is explained in the following:
To ensure a priority registration date for enrollment, continuing and new community college students are now required to complete assessment, orientation, and create an educational plan. This applies to ALL students, including military, CalWORKs, veterans, EOPS and DESP who started Fall 2014 and beyond. Students on academic probation, dismissal, or nearing 100 units must seek guidance from a counselor before registering for classes. Students who are active-duty military, veterans, and participants in EOPS and DESP will continue to have priority registration if they meet the same criteria listed above. Foster Youth is exempt from this requirement.
In order to satisfy the priority registration requirement, students must have at least completed a "preliminary" or an abbreviated Ed Plan focusing on two semesters. By the end of their first year, all students must have a "comprehensive Ed Plan." To develop an educational plan, students need to schedule an appointment with a counselor.
For priority registration, students must take the appropriate Assessment/Placement tests, attend an orientation, and complete an Educational Plan (Ed Plan) by the designated deadline. Priority registration dates vary depending on the group to which you belong. See Priority Registration deadlines and registration schedule.
Retention at West Valley College has multiple facets: it is the goal of all student services, faculty, and administrators, and is, therefore, threaded in the many aspects of our college. Additionally, retention at West College is about students persisting until they reach their reported educational goal, whether that is a certificate, transfer, or earning an Associate degree. It is the intention of West Valley College to help students reach their educational goal in the shortest timeline possible. Student Success recognizes that students define success, and benefit from West Valley College in multiple ways, including personal development, progression into the labor market, and life-long learning. Both retention and student success are central to the West Valley College Mission statement and is at the heart of all of our professional, and educational, work.
Early Alert is a proactive early intervention for students who instructors assess as experiencing difficulties in their respective courses. The program provides faculty with the collaborative opportunity to identify the needs of these students and then assist them to carefully access support services to ensure their academic success. The faculty process of identifying students is done electronically in our college portal. The data is then mined by student service staff, and students are pointed to take advantage of the multiple student service programs that exist, see a Counselor, and attend college enrichment workshops. In the past, students have been given an incentive to complete the workshop series, where Counselors, teaching Faculty, and Administrators work together to ensure their academic success."
Academic Probation Overview
West Valley College is dedicated to academic achievement and student success. WVC requires that students maintain a 2.0 GPA in order to remain in good academic standing. If a student earns a cumulative GPA below a 2.0, the student is placed on Academic Probation. When a student is placed on Academic Probation, the student will be sent a letter indicating their status. Additionally, students will also receive follow up about the Academic Probation Program which is intended to ensure students progress towards academic achievement and personal success.
Academic Probation Program
The Academic Probation program consists of two parts. First, students are sent dates and times of an Academic Success and Personal Development workshop. This workshop has received outstanding reviews from students whom have participated in the program. The workshop consists of group activities, values and goals exercises, personal narratives, and reflection, along with specific information about being successful at West Valley College.
Second, the program asks students to see their academic counselor at least twice over the duration of the semester. Meeting with a counselor twice, once at the start of the semester and once after midterms, has shown significant increase in academic achievement for students. This is because our counselors can provide resources and information about being successful in the courses a student is taking.
Ultimately, our goal is for all students to reach their goals. By placing students on Academic Probation, we ensure that students receive additional support in order to maintain good grades and to help student persist through graduation or transferring. We know that sometimes personal or professional issues get between a student and their course work; for that reason, West Valley College provides this additional support to ensure a student can get back on track with their academic goals.
West Valley College is part of the West Valley-Mission Community College District and shares one Student Conduct Policy and Procedures. Students are expected to conduct themselves in a manner which respects the rights and property of others. All students and all college/district personnel deserve a safe and healthy learning environment. The college also places great value on civility, academic integrity, and upholds the structures of an academic community. Students must conform their behavior to the standards of conduct that are designed to protect the safety, dignity, rights of all students and personnel, and preserve the integrity of the institution.
Common Mission Statement
To support the college by providing a safe and civil environment through conduct standards, disciplinary processes, training and intervention efforts.
The disciplinary/adjudication process provides the opportunity to educate students who violate the student conduct standards by applying appropriate action that modifies and redirects inappropriate behavior into productive behavior.
College Definition of Student Discipline
Formal action taken when a student is found to be in violation of the policies or rules and regulations of the west valley-mission community college district or its colleges.
Any student, faculty or staff member may file a complaint of misconduct against a student.
- To modify behavior
- To decrease discipline referrals
- To provide training at all levels
- To provide instructor support and intervention
- To provide appropriate referrals to students
- To ensure students understand their rights and responsibilities
- All colleges must have district policies on student conduct
What happens when a student commits a violation?
Depending on the gravity instructors may handle minor offenses or refer to Vice President of Student Services
- Instructors redirect/correct misbehavior
- Issues “warning”
- If Inappropriate behavior continues:
- Conference with student and remind student of his/her expectations
- Start documentation process
- Submit complaint
- Adjudicator takes appropriate action
- Inform appropriate individual/administrator who has the right to know of the adjudication process and/or results
How is a case referred to the Hearing Board?
- First, we receive a complaint
- We notify the respondent
- We conference with the respondent and discuss charges
- One of two things can happen:
- Student may take responsibility for his/her actions and accepts the sanction imposed by the Vice President of Student Services or designee
- Student claims not responsible and does not agree with sanctions
- Request for a hearing
Gravity of Situation
- The gravity of the situation is always considered. If it merits rising to the level of immediate action, it will be referred to the Hearing Board.
- The President or designee (Vice President of Student Services) may impose an immediate interim suspension in order to protect lives or property, or to ensure maintenance of order.
- A strong attempt is made to convene the hearing board during the interim suspension.
Roles of the Vice President of Student Services
- Receives complaints and violations of student conduct
- Ensures Due Process procedures consistent with Education Code Sections 66017 and 76030
- Administers procedures
- Takes appropriate action, subject to approval of President and the Chancellor
- Communicates with appropriate faculty, staff, administrators
- Provides required training to Hearing Board and others
Role of Director of Student Development
- Receives complaints/student violations
- Provides initial contact with student
- Issues first level sanctions
- Provides support and intervention for faculty, staff, and students
- Ensures “learning outcome” for students
- Ensures effective communication loop with appropriate individuals (faculty, division chair, student, etc.)
Federal Laws Affecting West Valley College
Institutions of higher education receiving federal funds must develop and implement a program to prevent the unlawful possession, use or distribution of illicit drugs or alcohol by students and employees. The program must include annual notification of standards of conduct, a description of sanctions for violating federal, state, and local and campus policy; a description of health risks, a description of treatment options; and a biennial review of the program’s effectiveness.
Off Campus Incident
- In serious cases such as violations of the Federal Title IX regulations and the campus save act, and other criminal offenses, the code of conduct may follow the student off campus.
- Police action and student disciplinary action may occur at the same time.
- A student or employee who reports to an institution of higher education that she/he has been a victim of crimes such as domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking, whether it has occurred on or off-campus, shall be provided with a written explanation of his/her right and options.
- Remember any faculty, staff member or student can file a complaint of misconduct against a student.
- The complainant bears the burden of providing his/her complaint against the accused student. It is important to provide the full account of the incident.
- When the Vice President of Student Services or Dean recommends suspension of the accused student to the hearing board, the supporting documents compiled based on the complaint are extremely important.
Roles of the Hearing Board
- To search for the truth.
- Designed for both the complainant and accused.
- To Ensure due process.
- Allow opportunity to give their accounts of the incident and to be heard.
- To determine if the accused student is responsible based on a preponderance standard.
Fact finding and questioning
- Who, when,, what, where, how? Tell me more
- Please explain…
- Both the Respondent and complainant must be afforded the same respect.
- Be aware that some questions may trigger trauma***
- Both the complainant and Respondent may have a representative who may speak on his/her behalf.
- ** Hearing Board members are provided basic training/information on trauma informed interview skills
The Dragnet Theory
- Collection of facts and review of facts critically important
- Preponderance of evidence
- 51% more likely than not is the respondent is responsible
Responsible or not responsible?
- Review the charges
- Compile all the information
- Determine if student is responsible or not responsible
- Don’t rush to judgment: Ask yourself the following:
- Did the complainant prove the complaint?
- sufficient information to support the charge?
- Did the violation occur?
Things to consider when Recommending sanctions
- Opportunity to modify behavior
- Potential effects
- attitude of the student
- Witnesses and testimonials
- Prior misconduct
- Can the student be retained?
More than one sanction can be imposed at one time.
- Educational service
- Official Warning (Ed Code 76031)
- Removal from Class (Ed Code 76032)
- Withdrawal of Consent to Remain on Campus (Penal Code Section 626.4)
- Official Reprimand (Ed Code 76031)
- Social Probation (Ed Code 76031)
- Restitution (Ed Code 76031)
- Disciplinary Probation (Ed Code 76031)
- Interim/Emergency Suspension (Ed Code 76030)
- Disciplinary Suspension (Ed Code 66017; 76030; and 76031)
- Expulsion (Ed Code 7603)
Right to Appeal
Student may appeal the findings of the college Hearing board to the college president
Appeal may be based on the following grounds:
- Required procedures were not properly followed
- New evidence, not reasonably available at the time of hearing is presented and is sufficient importance to warrant reconsideration
- The findings were unsupported by evidence in record made before the hearing
- The sanction imposed for the violation is unreasonably harsh or inappropriate when viewed within the context of the nature of violation
NOTE: the burden of responsibility is on the student to prove his/her appeal is valid.