Policy 211: Employee and Student Relations
Category: Student Affairs
Covered Individuals: All CEI Employees and Students
The employee-student relationship lies at the foundation of the educational process. As a matter of sound judgment and professional ethics, CEI faculty members and employees have a responsibility to avoid any apparent or actual conflict between their professional responsibilities and personal relationships with students. Students should be assured that the relationships they develop with employees are built upon the highest ethical principles of the education profession. Maintaining professional relationships and mutual respect and trust between employees and students is vital to CEI’s success. This policy does not apply to the spouse or child of an employee under circumstances where the spouse or child is a student at CEI.
Relationship of authority: when one individual in a relationship between two or more people has the power to exercise influence, or the legitimate right to make decisions, carry out actions, or direct others within the relationship. Examples include but are not limited to circumstances where a student is enrolled in a faculty member’s class or subject to an employee’s supervision.
Relationships that create financial, business, or close personal ties between a CEI employee and a CEI student must be avoided. Such relationships can create conflicts of interest that jeopardize the educational process. Employees have a duty to report any relationships of authority of this nature to their immediate supervisor. The immediate supervisor should follow the procedures outlined in Policy 228: Conflicts of Interest.
If any CEI employee becomes aware that a student has a financial need, the employee should direct the student to the Center for New Directions Office. The direct giving of a financial gift to a student is prohibited. Employees may elect to donate by payroll deduction or lump sum directly to the Center for New Directions.
Relationships between employees and students that are of a romantic or sexual nature when a relationship of authority exists are prohibited. No CEI employee shall exercise any academic, supervisory, evaluative or other authority or influence over a student with whom the employee has a romantic or sexual relationship. If a relationship of this nature exists or arises between an employee and a student, any relationship of authority must be eliminated and the employee has the primary responsibility to report the relationship to his or her immediate supervisor and/or Human Resources.
Actions taken will be decided on a case-by-case basis and the procedures outlined in Policy 228: Conflicts of Interest, shall provide guidance. Appropriate actions may include but are not limited to appointment of a qualified alternative instructor to the position of authority; transfer of the student to another course, section, or seminar taught by a different instructor; or assignment or transfer of the student to another academic advisor.
In the event that a CEI employee or student not involved in the relationship believes a relationship is occurring or has occurred between an employee and a student, the employee or student shall disclose such knowledge to the relevant department supervisor and/or Human Resources. To encourage reporting of relationships governed by this policy, disclosures shall be considered confidential. Further, retaliation against any employee or student reporting a relationship under this policy is strictly prohibited.
Any employee who violates this policy will be subject to corrective action up to and including termination of employment.
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