The Learning College Manual
Student Complaint Policy
Isothermal Community College students and members of the public have the right to file informal and formal complaints regarding Isothermal Community College personnel or actions and to know Isothermal Community College’s policy and procedures for responding to theses complaints. As such the President will establish and publish procedures for filing and responding to informal and formal complaints.
COMPLAINT PROCEDURES (As established and approved by the President)
Given the variety of situations in which complaints might arise the response to concerns will follow either the informal or formal process. In order to make the process as clear as possible the following definitions will be used:
Complaints are considered informal when they are expressed verbally or by email. In these cases the procedure for informal complaints is to be followed.
Complaints are considered formal when the concern is submitted in writing and the document specifically indicates that the writer intends to file a formal complaint. Concerns submitted by email will be considered informal unless the body of the email specifically indicates otherwise.
This policy does not apply to (a) student grade appeals, (b) all human resource policies, (c) all appeal and grievance policies and procedures explicitly described in the Isothermal Community College Policy and Procedure Manual, (d) any formal appeal or grievance covered by another Isothermal Community policy e.g., code of conduct, , financial aid, transfer credit, etc.
Procedure for Informal Complaints
Informal (verbal) complaints by students or members of the public are to be dealt with through a discussion between the complainant and the initial college contact. If the complaint involves an instructor the complainant should first discuss the issue with the instructor prior to initiating a conversation with the instructor’s supervisor. If the complainant has a compelling reason not to discuss the issue with the instructor, he or she may take the issue directly to the instructor's supervisor. If through this process a mutually satisfactory resolution of the complaint cannot be reached, the complainant may put the complaint in writing and move to the policy and procedure on formal complaints (see below) or the complaint will be considered inactive.
It is the responsibility of the administrator involved in an informal complaint to write a memorandum for the record detailing the nature of the complaint and the resolution. The administrator is to retain such memoranda in a file accessible to his/her supervisor upon request. Files must be maintained for a period of five years.
Procedure for Formal Complaints
- Formal complaints by students or members of the public are to be dealt with by the responsible college administrator supervising an area. Faculty and staff who receive a formal complaint should forward it to the supervisor of the area(s) involved in the complaint.
- The administrator handling the complaint is to gather information as necessary. Information must be gathered from the complainant.
- A written response (hard copy or e-mail) is to be sent to the complainant. A copy of the complaint and the written response is to be sent to the appropriate vice president.
- If the complainant is not satisfied with the response, he/she may file a written complaint with the appropriate vice president. In such cases, the vice president will gather information and provide a written response to the complainant with a copy to the administrative assistant to the president.
If a satisfactory resolution cannot be reached, the complainant may file a written complaint with the president. In such cases, the president will gather information and provide a final written response to the complainant with a copy to the Administrative Assistant to the President.
Adopted: August 24, 2010
Policy No: 601-02-02BP