Students’ Rights and Responsibilities Administrative Witness Responding Party Witness
Procedural Statements for the Accountability Process Reporting Party (Physical Force or Attempted Physical Force) Responding Party Witness Rights
Responsibilities and Rights -
Administrative Case Review
Reporting Party Rights (Physical Force or Attempted Physical Force) Reporting Party Witness
Responsibilities and Rights –
Accountability Board Process
Reporting Party Reporting Party Witness Rights
Responsibilities and Rights - Sexual Misconduct Reporting Party Rights


Students’ Rights and Responsibilities

Students’ rights and responsibilities as described here are not definitive; rather, they are indicative of the direction of a growing and changing educational environment. Students enjoy the same basic rights and are bound by the same responsibilities to respect the rights of others, as are all citizens.

For the purposes of the Student Handbook, the term "student" includes all persons who enroll or take courses at the university, either full-time, part-time, pursuing credit, dual-enrolled, and/or non-degree seeking.  “Student” status will begin at the payment or waiver of the deposit for admission or the application fee for admission to classes or programs through Outreach and Engagement and continue through the completion of all academic requirements for a declared degree program(s), as verified by their academic program and the Office of the Registrar, or the completion of classes or programs through Outreach and Engagement.

  1. The student, as a citizen, has the rights of freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of peaceful assembly and association, freedom of political beliefs and freedom from personal force and violence, threats of violence and personal abuse.

  2. The student, as a citizen, has a right to be considered equally for admission to, employment by and promotion within the campus in accordance with the provisions against discrimination in the general law.

  3. James Madison University is not a sanctuary from the general law; furthermore, the campus is a community of growth and fulfillment for all rather than a setting described in the concept of in loco parentis.


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Procedural Statements for the Accountability Process

  1. The Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices will structure and execute the Accountability Process in a manner that presumes the Responding Party not responsible for violating policy, provides fairness to the parties involved, and facilitates a determination based on a preponderance of the evidence standard concerning the allegations presented.

  2. The Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices will make public the range of possible sanctions for violations of university policies, as well as clearly formulate and communicate the adequate cause for separation from the university.

  3. The Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices can address behavior that occurs on and off campus. Student behavior on-campus that allegedly violates policies listed in the JMU Student Handbook may be addressed by the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices.  Alcohol, drug, or felony violations, violations of state or federal law, and other student behavior that occurs off-campus within the City of Harrisonburg or Rockingham County may be addressed by the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices in accordance with university policies and procedures. Student behavior that is against the mission of the institution, including but not limited to felonies or sexual misconduct, may be addressed by the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices regardless of the location in which it occurred.

  4. The Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices will not represent reporting faculty, staff or students, but will provide a process for fact-finding and fair decision-making.

  5. In evaluating evidence and information presented in the Accountability Process, the technical rules of evidence applicable in civil and criminal cases shall not apply.


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Responsibilities and Rights - Administrative Case Review

Procedural Responsibilities of the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices

  1. The Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices will provide a fair and impartial process that presumes the Responding Party not responsible for violating policy.

  2. The Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices will ensure the use of a preponderance of the evidence standard to determine if a Responding Party is responsible for violating policy.

  3. The Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices will notify the Reporting Party of the outcomes of the case related to the alleged violation of J43-100 Physical Force or Attempted Physical Force.

Responding Party Rights in an Administrative Case Review

A Responding Party has the following rights at an Administrative Case Review:

  1. The right to receive notification of all policies allegedly violated via their official JMU email address; the right to know the alleged behavior leading to the allegation(s).

  2. The right to be notified of the date, time, and location of the Administrative Case Review at least three days prior to the Administrative Case Review.

  3. The right to attend the entire Administrative Case Review, except for administrative consultation or follow up.

  4. The right to not answer the Case Administrator’s questions or provide information to be used in the adjudication of the case.

  5. The right to know and respond to all information being used by the Case Administrator to make a decision in the case; the right to provide information to be included in the adjudication of the case in accordance with any deadlines and restrictions that may be listed in the Accountability Process.

  6. The right to be notified orally of the Case Administrator’s decision once the Case Administrator has made a determination of whether or not the student is responsible for the violation and, if applicable, the sanctions imposed.

  7. The right to receive the decision in writing within ten business days of when the Responding Party accepts the decision made by the Case Administrator.

  8. The right to reject the decision made by the Case Administrator and have the case re-heard by member(s) of the Accountability Board at an Accountability Board Case Review.

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Responsibilities and Rights - Accountability Board Process

Procedural Responsibilities of the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices and the Accountability Board

  1. The Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices and the Accountability Board will provide a fair and impartial process that presumes the Responding Party not responsible for violating policy.

  2. The Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices and the Accountability Board will ensure the use of a preponderance of the evidence standard to determine if a Responding Party is responsible for violating policy.

  3. The Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices will notify the Reporting Party of the outcomes of the case related to the alleged violation J43-100 Physical Force or Attempted Physical Force.

Responding Party Rights in an Accountability Board Process

A Responding Party has the following rights at an Accountability Board Process:

  1. The right to receive notification of all policies allegedly violated via their official JMU email address; the right to know the alleged behavior leading to the allegation(s).

  2. The right to be notified of the date, time, and location of the Accountability Board Case Review and, if applicable, Appeal Review at least three days prior to the Accountability Board Case Review or Appeal Review.

  3. The right to attend the entire Accountability Board Case Review, except for closed deliberation. In Appeal Reviews granted on the grounds of new evidence, the right to present the new evidence to the Appeal Board.

  4. The right for a Support Person or Attorney to attend the Accountability Board Case Review or Appeal Review in accordance with the restrictions outlined in the Accountability Process. An Attorney or Support Person attending an Accountability Board Case Review or Appeal Review may not communicate for or speak on behalf of a Responding Party, but may provide support or advice on how to present the case.

  5. The right to not answer questions or provide information to be used in the adjudication of the case.

  6. The right to know and respond to all information being used to make a decision in the case; the right to provide information to be included in the case file and used in the adjudication of the case in accordance with the deadlines and restrictions listed in the Accountability Process.

  7. The right to question all witnesses who present at the Accountability Board Case Review or Appeal Review, when applicable.

  8. The right to have witnesses present at the Accountability Board Case Review or Appeal Review in accordance with the restrictions listed in the Accountability Process, provided witnesses are able to attend the scheduled Accountability Board Case Review or Appeal Review; the right to provide witness statements to be included in the adjudication of the case in accordance with the deadlines and restrictions listed in the Accountability Process.

  9. The right to have previous history in the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices and/or sanctions imposed not be disclosed to the voting Board Members serving on the Accountability Board Case Review unless they find the Responding Party is responsible for violating policy in order to determine the appropriate sanctions to impose or recommend. The Responding Party may elect to share previous violations or sanctions with the Board Members as a part of their own statements.

  10. The right to be notified of the Accountability Board’s decision or recommendation and, if applicable, sanctions at the conclusion of the Accountability Board’s closed deliberation. When a student does not attend the Accountability Board Case Review, the right to receive the Accountability Board’s decision or recommendation and, if applicable, sanctions on the following business day. 

  11. The right to submit a written appeal of the decision made at the Accountability Board Case Review within four days of the Accountability Board Case Review on the following grounds:

    • An allegation that OSARP violated procedural standards by failing to adhere to its responsibilities and/or the Accountability Process.

    • New evidence that was not available or accessible at the time of the Accountability Board Case Review or only relevant to refute information shared for the first time at the Accountability Board Case Review.

  12. The right to have access to a recording of the Accountability Board Case Review solely for the purpose of preparing a written appeal upon request.

  13. The right to receive the decision rendered at the Accountability Board Case Review in writing within ten business days of the Accountability Board Case Review if an appeal is not submitted. If an appeal is submitted and an Appeal Review is not granted, the right to receive the decision rendered at the Accountability Board Case Review in writing within ten business days from when notification is received that the Appeal Review will not take place.

  14. When an Appeal Review is granted, the right to receive the decision rendered at the Appeal Review in writing within ten business days of the Appeal Review if a review by the Dean of Students or designee is not required.

  15. In cases where the Dean of Students or designee is required to conduct a final review of the recommendation rendered at the Accountability Board Case Review or Appeal Review, the right to receive the final decision in the case in writing within ten business days of when the Dean of Students or designee concludes their review.

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Administrative Witness

An Administrative Witness is a university faculty member, staff member, student, or other employee or volunteer that provides a report, statement, evidence, or other information to be used in the placing or adjudication of an alleged policy violation in the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices. Administrative Witnesses are not called as a witness by a Responding Party or Reporting Party, but is determined by the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices as having relevant information necessary for the adjudication of the case. Administrative Witnesses include, but are not limited to, Residence Life Staff, Professors reporting violations, University Staff, Police Officers, and Title IX Officers/Coordinators. Administrative Witnesses do not present against a Responding Party, but it is often their interaction with a Responding Party and/or Reporting Party that led to an alleged policy violation being placed against a student. Written statements provided by Administrative Witnesses are typically used during Administrative Case Reviews. The availability of an Administrative Witness is considered when the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices schedules an Accountability Board Case Review or Sexual Misconduct Case Review. Administrative Witnesses do not have the right to be accompanied by either an Attorney or Support Person at an Accountability Board Case Review or Sexual Misconduct Case Review.


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Reporting Party (J43-100 Physical Force or Attempted Physical Force)

A Reporting Party (J43-100 Physical Force or Attempted Physical Force) is a person who reports that they are allegedly a victim of behavior committed by a JMU student that is covered by JMU Policy J43-100 Physical Force or Attempted Physical Force that does not fall under J34-100 Sexual Misconduct. A Reporting Party (J43-100 Physical Force or Attempted Physical Force) need not necessarily present alleged policy violation(s) against a Responding Party, but it is often their interaction with a Responding Party that led to an alleged policy violation being placed by the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices. Written statements provided by a Reporting Party (J43-100 Physical Force or Attempted Physical Force) are typically all that is used during Administrative Case Reviews. The availability of a Reporting Party (J43-100 Physical Force or Attempted Physical Force) is considered when the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices schedules an Accountability Board Case Review. The Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices confers the rights outlined in the Reporting Party Rights (J43-100 Physical Force or Attempted Physical Force) to those who meet this definition.

 

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Reporting Party Rights (J43-100 Physical Force or Attempted Physical Force)

The Reporting Party for an incident that allegedly violates JMU Policy J43-100 Physical Force or Attempted Physical Force has the following rights:

  1. The right to be notified of the date, time and place of the Accountability Board Case Review at least three days prior to the Accountability Board Case Review via email.

  2. The right for a Support Person or Attorney to attend the Accountability Board Case Review in accordance with the restrictions outlined in the Accountability Process. A Support Person or Attorney for the Reporting Party may not also serve as a witness in the case. 

  3. The right to be informed of the outcomes in the case related to the alleged violation of J43-100 Physical Force or Attempted Physical Force and any sanctions.

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Reporting Party

A Reporting Party is a person who reports that they are allegedly a victim of behavior committed by a JMU student that is covered by JMU policy(s) that does not fall under J34-100 Sexual Misconduct or J43-100 Physical Force or Attempted Physical Force. A Reporting Party need not necessarily present alleged policy violation(s) against a Responding Party, but it is often their interaction with a Responding Party that led to an alleged policy violation being placed by the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices. Written statements provided by a Reporting Party are typically used during Administrative Case Reviews. The availability of a Reporting Party is considered when the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices schedules an Accountability Board Case Review. The Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices confers the rights outlined in the Reporting Party Rights to those who meet this definition.

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Reporting Party Rights

The Reporting Party for an incident that allegedly violates JMU policy(s) committed by a JMU student that does not fall under J34-100 Sexual Misconduct or J43-100 Physical Force or Attempted Physical Force has the following rights:

  1. The right to be notified of the date, time and place of the Accountability Board Case Review at least three days prior to the Accountability Board Case Review via email.

  2. The right for a Support Person or Attorney to attend the Accountability Board Case Review in accordance with the restrictions outlined in the Accountability Process. A Support Person or Attorney for the Reporting Party may not also serve as a witness in the case. 

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Reporting Party Witness

A Reporting Party Witness is a person who provides a report, statement, evidence, or other information to be used in the placement or adjudication of alleged policy violation(s) in the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices and who is called by a Reporting Party. A Reporting Party Witness may provide their perspective as a written statement, in person, or both, in accordance with any restrictions put in place as listed in the Student Handbook. A Reporting Party Witness can provide information relevant to the case, including what they know about the alleged incident, what the Reporting Party has shared with them about the alleged incident, or their knowledge of the Reporting Party. In cases alleging violations of policy J34-100 Sexual Misconduct, the Reporting Party Witness may only share their perspective on the character of the Reporting Party in a written statement submitted in accordance with the deadlines listed in the Sexual Misconduct Accountability Process to be used after a determination of responsibility has been rendered. A Reporting Party Witness may not provide their perspective on the character of the Responding Party or what they feel the appropriate decision or sanction in the case should be at any time during the process. The availability of a Reporting Party Witness may be considered when the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices schedules an Accountability Board Case Review and/or Accountability Board Appeal Review, if applicable, depending on the level of involvement of the witness in documenting the incident. The availability of a Reporting Party Witness is not considered when the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices schedules a Sexual Misconduct Case Review and/or a Sexual Misconduct Appeal Review, if applicable. The Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices confers the rights outlined in the Reporting Party Witness Rights to those serving in this role.

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Reporting Party Witness Rights

A witness called by a Reporting Party has the following rights:

  1. The right to be notified of the date, time, and place of the Accountability Board Case Review or Sexual Misconduct Case Review at least three days prior to the case review via email.

  2. When a Reporting Party Witness is called to present at a Sexual Misconduct Appeal Review, the right to be notified of the date, time, and place of the Sexual Misconduct Appeal Review at least three days prior to the Sexual Misconduct Appeal Review via email.

  3. The right for a Support Person or Attorney to attend the Accountability Board Case Review or Sexual Misconduct Case or Appeal Review in accordance with the restrictions outlined in the Accountability or Sexual Misconduct Accountability Process. A Support Person or Attorney for a Reporting Party Witness may not also serve as a witness in the case.

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Responding Party Witness

A Responding Party Witness is a person who provides a report, statement, evidence, or other information to be used in the adjudication of alleged policy violation(s) in the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices, and who is called by a Responding Party. A Responding Party Witness may provide their perspective as a written statement, in person, or both, in accordance with any restrictions put in place as listed in the Student Handbook. A Responding Party Witness can provide information relevant to the case, including what they know about the alleged incident, what the Responding Party has shared with them about the alleged incident, or their knowledge of the Responding Party. In cases alleging violations of policy J34-100 Sexual Misconduct, the Responding Party Witness may only share their perspective on the character of the Responding Party in a written statement submitted in accordance with the deadlines listed in the Sexual Misconduct Accountability Process to be used after a determination of responsibility has been rendered. A Responding Party Witness may not provide their perspective on the character of the Reporting Party or what they feel the appropriate decision or sanction in the case should be at any time during the process. The availability of a Responding Party Witness is not considered when the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices schedules an Accountability Board Case Review, Sexual Misconduct Case Review, and/or Accountability Board or Sexual Misconduct Appeal Review, if applicable. The Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices confers the rights outlined in the Responding Party Witness Rights to those serving in this role.

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Responding Party Witness Rights

A witness called by a Responding Party has the following rights:

  1. The right to be notified of the date, time, and place of the Accountability Board Case Review or Sexual Misconduct Case Review at least three days prior to the case via email.

  2. When a Responding Party Witness is called to present at an Accountability Board Appeal Review or a Sexual Misconduct Appeal Review, the right to be notified of the date, time, and place of the Sexual Misconduct Appeal Review at least three days prior to the Accountability Board Appeal Review or the Sexual Misconduct Appeal Review via email.

  3. The right for a Support Person or Attorney to attend the Accountability Board Case or Appeal Review or the Sexual Misconduct Case or Appeal Review in accordance with the restrictions outlined in the Accountability or Sexual Misconduct Accountability Process. A Support Person or Attorney for a Responding Party Witness may not also serve as a witness in the case.

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Responsibilities and Rights - Sexual Misconduct

Procedural Responsibilities of the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices

  1. The Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices will provide a fair and impartial process that presumes the Responding Party not responsible for violating policy.

  2. The Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices will ensure the use of a preponderance of the evidence standard to determine if a Responding Party is responsible for violating policy.

  3. The Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices will notify the Reporting Party of the outcomes of the case related to the alleged violation(s) of J34-100 Sexual Misconduct or J43-100 Physical Force or Attempted Physical Force.

Rights Granted in the Sexual Misconduct Accountability Process

Responding Parties and Reporting Parties in the Sexual Misconduct Accountability Process have the following rights:

  1. The right to receive notification of the relevant policy or policies allegedly violated; the right to know the alleged behavior leading to the allegation(s).

  2. The right to be notified of the date, time, and location of the Sexual Misconduct Case Review and, if applicable, Appeal review at least three days prior to the Sexual Misconduct Case Review or Appeal Review.

  3. The right for a Support Person or Attorney of their choice to accompany them at any meetings in the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices, provided that Support Person or Attorney’s schedule allows them to attend. An Attorney or Support Person attending a Sexual Misconduct Case Review or Appeal Review may not communicate for or speak on behalf of a party, but may provide support or advice on how to present their case.

  4. The right to request reasonable safety measures be put in place during the Sexual Misconduct Case Review or Appeal Review, including but not limited to partitions, teleconferencing, or police presence.

  5. The right to access all documentation to be used in the adjudication of the case; the right to know and respond to all information, evidence, or witness statements being used in the adjudication of the case.

  6. The right to submit documentation to be used in the adjudication of the case in accordance with the deadlines, guidelines, and restrictions listed in the Sexual Misconduct Accountability Process.

  7.  The right to participate in the entire Sexual Misconduct Case Review, as outlined in the process.

  8.  In Appeal Reviews granted on the grounds of new evidence, the right to attend, present the new evidence or respond to the new evidence.

  9. The right to relate their account of the alleged incident and the right to share information to be used in the adjudication of the case in accordance with the deadlines, guidelines, and restrictions listed in the Sexual Misconduct Accountability Process; the right to not answer questions or provide information to be used in the adjudication of the case.

  10. The right to have witnesses who were formally submitted to the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices by stated deadlines participate at the Sexual Misconduct Case Review or Appeal Review in accordance with the restrictions listed in the Sexual Misconduct Accountability Process, provided the witness is able to attend.

  11. The right to question all witnesses who participate at the Sexual Misconduct Case Review or Appeal Review; parties will be permitted to ask questions of witnesses called by the other party in the case through the Board Chair.

  12. The right to not be questioned directly by the other party in the case; parties will be permitted to ask questions of the other party in the case through the Board Chair.

  13. The right not to have their intimate relationships or sexual history with other people discussed as a part of the case, unless a party brings up their own intimate relationships or sexual history.

  14. The right to read a closing statement at the Sexual Misconduct Case Review or have one read for the record by the Board Chair.

  15. The right for the Responding Party’s previous history in the Office of Student Accountability and Restorative Practices and/or sanctions imposed not be disclosed during the Sexual Misconduct Case Review or deliberation unless the Board finds the Responding Party is responsible for violating policy in order to determine the appropriate sanctions to impose or recommend. The Responding Party may elect to share previous violations or sanctions with the Board Members as a part of their own statements.

  16. The right to be notified in writing of the recommendations rendered as a result of the Sexual Misconduct Case Review including whether or not the Responding Party was found responsible for the relevant violation(s), the Board’s rationale and, if applicable, the relevant recommended sanction(s).

  17. The right to submit a written appeal of the recommendations rendered as a result of the Sexual Misconduct Case Review within four days of sending notification of the recommendations for any of the following reasons:

    • An allegation that OSARP violated procedural standards by failing to adhere to its responsibilities and/or the Sexual Misconduct Accountability Process.

    • New evidence that was not available or accessible at the time of the Sexual Misconduct Case Review or only relevant to refute information shared for the first time at the Sexual Misconduct Case Review.

  18. The right to have access to a recording of the Sexual Misconduct Case Review solely for the purposes of preparing an appeal or response to an appeal upon request.

  19. When an Appeal Review is granted, the right to receive the recommendation rendered at the Appeal Review in writing, including whether or not the Appeal Board found the Responding Party responsible for the relevant violation(s), the Board’s rationale and, if applicable, the relevant recommended sanction(s).

  20. The right to be notified in writing of the relevant final decision in the case within ten business days of when the Dean of Students or designee completes their final review of the case, including whether or not the Responding Party is found responsible for the relevant violation(s), the Dean of Students or designee’s rationale and, if applicable, the relevant sanction(s).

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