Student Support and Intervention: Non-Academic Voluntary/Involuntary Withdrawal Policy
|Effective Date:||July 8, 2012|
|Downloadable Version:||Student Support and Intervention: Non-Academic Voluntary/Involuntary Withdrawal Policy|
|Related Procedure(s):||Student Support and Intervention:Decision Review for Non-Academic Voluntary/Involuntary Withdrawal|
|This document is available in alternate format on request.|
The Humber College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning and the University of Guelph-Humber (hereafter referred to as “Humber” or “the College”) are committed to providing a positive and safe learning environment. The College has the right and responsibility to address the behaviour of a student-of-concern in order to ensure the student is fit for academic life and/or to protect that student and/or other members of the College or local community from risks or significant impact posed by their behaviour, whether or not a violation under the Code of Student Conduct has occurred. In some circumstances, withdrawing a student may be the most effective and appropriate course of action to address the situation.
This policy applies to all Humber and University of Guelph-Humber students.
Student-of-Concern: any student whose physical or psychological condition is such that they may be or have become a risk or threat to themselves, others, the educational process, or the Humber community in general.
- When the behaviour of a student gives rise to a threat or risk of harm to the student him or herself or to others, poses significant threat or risk to property, causes significant disruption to or interference with the educational process, interferes with the lawful and proper activities or functions of the institution, its staff and/or members of the campus community, or suggests that the student is unable to engage in the basic required activities to obtain an education, the institution may require a student to involuntarily withdraw.
- A student has a right to procedural fairness. Any time there is an impact on a student's status at the College, based on concerns that are brought forward as a result of this process, procedural fairness will include:
- the right to be made aware of and given an opportunity to respond to, correct or contradict information available, in person and/or in writing;
- the right to have a decision reviewed based on the conditions explained in the Decision Review for Non-Academic Voluntary/Involuntary Withdrawal Procedures; and
- the right to request an advisor or support person be present at any meeting, if desired.
- This process will make every reasonable effort to involve and support the student in order to enable him/her to continue his/her studies.
- an offer of appropriate support or referral; and/or
- support agreement; and/or
- a behaviour contract; and/or
- referral of the case through the Humber Code of Student Conduct; and/or
- immediate interim measures, including interim suspension or interim restrictions on the student’s access to campus or participation in academic or campus life.
- Voluntary withdrawals allow for a student and support people to be actively involved in setting the terms of withdrawal and return. Where possible, this option will be provided to the student before an Involuntary Withdrawal is initiated.
Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner of British Columbia and the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario: Practice Tool for Exercising Discretion: Emergency Disclosure of Personal Information by Universities, Colleges and other Educational Institutions
Role of the Student Support and Intervention Team (SSIT)
- The SSIT will employ a case management model to provide a coordinated response and support to the student-of-concern and College community. The SSIT will meet on a regular basis as a working group to continue to develop and deliver a coordinated response to the issue of students-of-concern at Humber College, including a review of response plans. The SSIT shall be responsible for making recommendations to all front line staff and administration in the support of students-of-concern. The SSIT brings Humber professionals from different backgrounds, all of which are essential in supporting students-of-concern. The team will provide advice and support in reacting to, resolving, and addressing students-of-concern issues. The team will also advise on any return to school protocols and/or conditions.
- SSIT membership shall consist of the following persons or their Designate:
- Director of Student Access, Wellness and Development (Chair)
- Director, Student Life Programs
- Director and/or Associate Director of Public Safety and Risk Management
- Representative from the Office of Human Rights and Diversity
- Manager, Student Wellness and Development
- Manager, Student Access
- Representative from the Academic Community (Dean or Associate Dean)
1. Associate Dean or Faculty member
2. Representative(s) from Counselling Services
3. Representative(s) from Disability Services
4. Representative(s) from Health Services
5. Representative(s) from Human Resources
6. Representative(s) from International Student Services
7. Representative(s) from Marketing and Communications
8. Representative(s) from the Registrar’s Office
9. Representative(s) from Residence Life/Services
10. Representative(s) from the University of Guelph-Humber
A Commitment to Fairness and Respectful Action
Accommodation of Students with Disabilities
Addressing the conduct of a student-of-concern can pose unique challenges to the College where that student has a learning, psychological, or physical disability that is contributing to the concerning behaviour. The College acknowledges that it has a duty to accommodate a student with a disability, in accordance with provincial law and College policy. Accommodation of students with disabilities should be made in accordance with the following principles: respect for dignity, individualized accommodation, and inclusion and full participation.
The College has a duty to accommodate up to the point of undue hardship. The Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC, Policy and guidelines on disability and the duty to accommodate, 2000) sets out three considerations in assessing whether an accommodation would cause undue hardship:
(ii) outside sources of funding, if any
(iii) health and safety requirements, if any.
The Commission further states that “health and safety risks will amount to undue hardship if the degree of risk that remains after the accommodation has been made outweigh the benefits of enhancing equality for persons with disabilities”(pg. 28). The student seeking accommodation has a corresponding responsibility to make full disclosure of their disability and to cooperate with the College in making appropriate accommodation for them, including advising College officials of the need for accommodation, cooperating with College officials in the accommodation process, and providing medical or other requested information relating to the disability and the required accommodation.
Ontario Human Rights Commission Policy and guidelines on disability and the duty to accommodate
Privacy and Confidential Information
Humber College personnel strive to protect the personal information of its students, and to exercise discretion at all times. If it is not necessary, personal information will not be shared. However, as outlined by the Privacy Commissioner in the “Emergency Disclosure of Personal Information by Universities, Colleges and other Educational Institutions” [excerpt]:
In emergency situations, privacy laws in Ontario do not prohibit universities, colleges or other educational institutions from responsibly disclosing a student’s personal information, including information about their mental, emotional, or other health conditions, to parents or others who may be able to help in a crisis.
Ontario’s Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (Ontario FIPPA) (Ontario MFIPPA) permits the disclosure of personal information “in compelling circumstances affecting the health or safety of an individual.” It also allows for disclosure “in compassionate circumstances, to facilitate contact with the spouse, a close relative or a friend of an individual who is injured, ill or deceased.”
Ontario’s Personal Health Information Protection Act (Ontario PHIPA) also allows for the disclosure of personal health information if the health information custodian “believes on reasonable grounds that the disclosure is necessary for the purpose of eliminating or reducing a significant risk of serious bodily harm to a person or group of persons.” Ontario PHIPA also permits disclosure “for the purpose of contacting a relative, friend or potential substitute decision-maker of the individual, if the individual is injured, incapacitated or ill and unable to give consent personally.”
Ontario FIPPA and Ontario MFIPPA contain similar emergency disclosure provisions that allow student residence advisors, school counsellors, and other personnel to disclose a student’s information, without consent, where they become aware of compelling circumstances affecting the health or safety of an individual or others. This includes serious mental health concerns or threats of violence.
Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario: Practice Tool for Exercising Discretion: Emergency Disclosure of Personal Information by Universities, Colleges and other Educational Institutions