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Student Rights

The Santa Barbara Community College District exists in order to foster knowledge, the pursuit of truth, the development of students and the general well-being of society.
This can only be achieved in an environment where there are appropriate educational opportunities and academic freedom, including the freedom to teach and the freedom to learn in an environment where students are encouraged to develop their critical judgment and engage in a free search for truth.

To achieve the environment and conditions essential to the pursuit of these goals, SBCC has developed a policy regarding student rights and responsibilities. This policy may be obtained from the Dean, Educational Programs, Room CC-222.

A.     Students shall have the right of protection against prejudiced or capricious academic evaluation. Students have the right to impartial, objective evaluation of their academic performance and to receive in writing, at the beginning of each course, information outlining the method of evaluating student progress toward, and achievement of, course goals and objectives, including the method by which the final grade is determined.
B.     Students shall be assured that all college programs and activities are available to all persons without regard to ethnic group identification, sexual orientation, religion, age, gender, color, or physical or mental disability. The Santa Barbara Community College District subscribes to the principles and implementation of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action and to the provisions of Assembly Bill 803. (Further information may be obtained from the District’s Affirmative Action Officer/Vice President of Human Resources and Legal Affairs.)
C.     Students shall be free from acts or threats of intimidation, harassment, mockery, insult, or physical aggression. Santa Barbara City College expressly prohibits sexual harassment by all faculty, staff and students. The college is committed to creating and maintaining an educational environment which is free of objectionable and disrespectful conduct, and communication of a sexual nature that interferes with an individual’s work or classroom performance or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive working or learning environment.
D.     Students shall have the right to free assembly and to exercise free expression. This includes the right to hear and to present speakers on any subject. The right to free assembly is subject only to regulations that ensure the regular functioning of the college; these regulations shall include reasonable provisions for the time, place and manner of conducting these activities. The exercise of free expression includes, but is not limited to, the use of bulletin boards and the distribution of buttons, badges and other insignia. The right of free expression does not include discriminatory harassment, speech, or other expressions which insult or stigmatize individuals or groups on the basis of gender, race, color, disability, religion, sexual orientation, or national and ethnic origin.
E.     Students shall have the right to form an organization around any particular interest and to join student organizations, subject to published district policy.
F.     Students shall have the right to be informed on all campus matters that can be shown to be directly relevant to them and to have a voice in decision-making that affects their academic future. Students are to have an active role in campus governance by having student members on all faculty and administrative committees, as well as groups which deal with matters related to student concerns (with the exception of staff appointments, terminations and tenure or confidentiality where other students are concerned). In case of conflict, the determination of what campus matters are relevant to students will be determined by a campus-designated student/faculty/administrative committee.
Students have the right to have student publications which are free from censorship and advance copy approval, except as provided by published district regulations which adhere to the guidelines for responsible journalism.

Academic Records
A.     Students shall have the right to have their academic records treated in a confidential and responsible manner as required by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 and outlined in SBCC district policy which stipulates that any release of student educational records be made with the student’s written consent, except where specified.
B.     Students have a right to inspect and review the content of their educational records and to request copies of these records.

Due Process
Procedures for due process are described in the District’s Standards of Conduct for Members of the College Community and Guidelines for Due Process. Copies are distributed to all new students during advisement. For more information, contact the Office of the  Dean of Educational Programs, Room CC-222.

Family Educational Rights & Privacy Act
All Santa Barbara City College student records are kept in accordance with the provisions of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 and Title 5 regulations of the State of California adopted in 1976.
Students may request access to those campus records which personally identify the student; the student may challenge the accuracy of the record or the appropriateness of its retention in the campus records. Student consent is not needed for the release of records covered by the Act to outside parties (e.g., campus officials, other schools, federal educational and auditing officers, and requests in connection with the application or receipt of financial aid). The college may forward pertinent information and transcripts to other educational institutions in which the student seeks or intends to enroll. These provisions apply to records received and used after Nov. 19, 1974.

Educational records are maintained in the college’s Admissions and Records Office (SS-110), which is supervised by the Director, Admissions and Records. Students also have the right to review their personal information at the Health/Wellness Office (Nurse, SS-170); Financial Aid Office (Financial Aid Specialist, SS-210); Veterans Office (Clerk, ECOC-1, Rm. 7); Foundation for SBCC (Executive Director, A-210); Extended Opportunity Program/Services (Director, SS-240); and Disabled Student Program/Services (Director, SS-160).

Directory information which may be released includes confirmation of current enrollment at SBCC, dates enrolled, the degrees/awards received and qualifying for the President’s Honor Roll.

A student may file a complaint with the Department of Education regarding alleged violations of the rights accorded them by the Act.

A student may request a copy of a record which the student has requested or consented to be released. If a student desires a copy of file material subject to his/her review, it will be provided at a cost of $1.00 for the first copy and 50 cents for each additional copy.

Particular questions with respect to a student’s prerogatives under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 should be directed to the Admissions and Records Office.

Financial Aid Rights
A.     Students have the right as applicants for/or recipients of financial aid to information about procedures, deadlines, refund policies, eligibility requirements and the appeal process. The EOPS/Financial Aid Advisory Committee is available to those students who feel the need to appeal ANY decision, policy, or procedure regarding the distribution of financial aid at Santa Barbara City College. Any committee decision will be final and binding on the Financial Aid Office and the student who registers an appeal—as long as it does not violate any district, state, or federal policy/regulation.
    Names of Financial Aid Advisory Committee members will be furnished on request. Direct your request to the Financial Aid Office, Room SS-210.
B.     Students have the right to file a grievance, in the event of an alleged breach of their rights, as outlined in the student grievance policy which is available from the office of the Dean, Educational Programs, Room CC-222.

Grievance Rights
A.     Students have the right to be free from the imposition of disciplinary sanctions without proper regard fordue process.
B.     Students have a right to file a grievance, in the event of an alleged breach of their rights, as outlined in the student grievance policy.
C.    Students have a right to be informed in writing of the issues and charges, and be given the opportunity to refute the charges, in any conflict relating to student discipline.

For information on grievance procedures, contact the Dean, Educational Programs, Room CC-222.

Matriculation Rights
A.     Each student has the right to develop an individual written student education plan with a counselor within 90 days after a specific individual educational goal has been declared.
B.     Students have the right to have their educational plan reviewed as needed by a counselor/academic adviser to ensure that it continues to accurately reflect the needs and goals of the student.
C.     Students may challenge any prerequisite, using the Prerequisite Challenge Form, on one or more of the following grounds:
i.     The prerequisite is not valid because it is not necessary to succeed in the course for which it is required;
ii.     the student has the knowledge or ability to succeed in the course despite not meeting the prerequisite; or
iii.     the prerequisite is discriminatory or is being applied in a discriminatory manner.
D.     Students may obtain a waiver of any prerequisite or corequisite course for a particular term because the course is not available to students during two consecutive terms.
E.     Students may challenge placement test results, retake the placement tests, and request to enroll in a course which is not recommended by the course placement process.
F.     Students may review the matriculation regulations of the California Community Colleges and file a complaint when they believe the college has engaged in any practice prohibited by these regulations. The regulations are available and complaints may be filed in the office of the Dean, Educational Programs: Student Development, in Room SS-260.
G.     Students may challenge matriculation regulations through the student grievance process available from the Dean, Educational Programs: Student Support Services, Room CC-222.
H.     A list of exemptions to matriculation components is available in Admissions, Counseling, or from the Dean, Educational Programs: Student Development, Room SS-260.
I.     The college’s policy on “priority registration” is available from the Director, Admissions and Records in Room SS-111.

Non-Discrimination Policy
The Santa Barbara Community College District and Santa Barbara City College, in compliance with California State law and regulations, Titles VI and VII of the U.S. Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Age Discrimination Act, does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, ancestry, marital status, age, physical or mental disability, status as Vietnam-era veteran, sexual orientation, ethnic group identification, creed or national origin in any of its policies, procedures, or practices.

This non-discrimination policy covers admission, access and treatment in college programs and activities—including, but not limited to, academic admissions, financial aid, educational services and athletics—and applications for, and treatment in, college employment.

In conformance with the requirements of Title II of the Educational Amendments of 1976, amending the Vocational Education Act of 1963, the college is committed to overcoming sex discrimination and sex stereotyping in vocational education programs.

Furthermore, in compliance with the Vocational Education Guidelines for Eliminating Discrimination on the Basis of Race, Color, National Origin, Sex and Handicap, lack of English language skills alone will not be a barrier to admission to and participation in vocational education programs. Any screening procedures for vocational programs will evaluate skill levels and proficiencies pertinent to the program as criteria for admission.
Students intending to file a complaint regarding any action which they believe discriminates against them on the grounds of race, sex, color, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, or physical or mental disability, may contact Dr. Ben Partee, Dean of Educational Programs, in CC-222, at 965-0581, ext. 2278, for further information and procedures.

Employees who require additional information on the policy and procedures may contact Vice President Susan Ehrlich, Human Resources and Legal Affairs, Room SS-230 (ext. 2261).

If you are a student and you require additional information regarding the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), or Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, please contact the ADA/504/DSPS Coordinator in Room SS-160 (965-0581, ext. 2365 [voice], or 965-8411 [TTY: hearing-impaired]).

If you are an employee and you require additional information, contact Pat English, Human Resources Manager, in SS-230, at ext. 2434 (voice). The ADA/504 Coordinator for employees is the Vice President of Business Services.

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