Complaint/Grievance Procedures for Students
Students who are experiencing academic problems either with a grade or other conditions of the course should first discuss the matter with the professor. It is the professor’s responsibility to explain fully all grades and requirements of the course. If the problem is not resolved, the student or professor should consult the department head. Should further action be required, the matter should be taken to the dean of the school.
Any grievance concerning a grade that has not been satisfactorily resolved by the teacher, the department head, or academic dean may be appealed to the Provost. The grade may be appealed on the basis of a question concerning: (1) clerical or numerical error, (2) personal bias or arbitrary grading. The formal appeal must be made within the first eight weeks of the term immediately following the grading period in which the grade is received. If the grievance can be equitably settled, the matter will be closed. If an agreement acceptable to the teacher and the student cannot be reached through the vice president’s mediation, the case will be referred to Academic Council for action. The decision of Academic Council will be final.
A student who experiences a housing problem during the academic year should discuss the problem with the resident assistant responsible for her floor or the residence director responsible for her residence hall. If the problem cannot be resolved through discussion with the resident assistant or the residence director, the student may make an appointment with the director of residence life for further consideration.
General Student Complaints
Meredith College provides a learning environment that prepares students for responsible lives of life-long learning, professional development and global citizenship. The Meredith experience is designed to encourage collaborative learning among students, faculty and staff. Meredith College has a long and rich history in student self-governance and in promoting the general welfare of all students. To continue to enhance the quality of services and resources offered to students, Meredith College welcomes opinions, feedback and constructive ideas. The College is committed to ensuring that students have an avenue for articulating concerns, complaints and grievances.
In communicating specific concerns, complaints and grievances, students are encouraged to follow established policies and procedures outlined in the online Meredith College Student Handbook and the Meredith College Undergraduate Catalogue. These methods include grievance and appeal procedures for academic problems or grades, academic suspension and other academic policies, harassment and non-discrimination policy complaints, reports of sexual misconduct, Honor Code violations, housing issues, financial aid probation or suspension, disability services, student employment, and access to educational records.
In communicating general concerns, complaints or grievances that do not follow one of the specific grievance procedures indicated above, students have recourse through the following avenues:
Communication of Concerns through the Student Government Association - Any Meredith student may bring a concern to any branch of the Student Government Association. The Student Life Committee, a branch of the Student Government Association, directs attention and study to the concerns and well-being of the students at Meredith College. Students are also invited to participate in forums and student body meetings sponsored by the Student Government Association in fall and spring semesters.
Informal Process for General Complaints – A student is encouraged to resolve concerns or complaints by directly discussing the matter with the staff member or department in which the issue originated. If the complaint is not resolved, the next contact will be the supervisor or responsible administrator to investigate the issue. The student should attempt to resolve the complaint informally as soon as possible but at least within 30 days of the occurrence. Staff members in the Office of the Dean of Students are also available as a resource for students who have complaints.
Formal Process for General Complaints – If the matter is unresolved after following the informal complaint process, the student may complete a formal written complaint by completing a Student General Complaint Form available in the Office of the Dean of Students, 2nd floor Park Center. The formal complaint form must be submitted to the Office of the Dean of Students within ten (10) College working days following the date that the informal complaint process is completed. If the complaint is about the staff in the Office of the Dean of Students, the student may submit the complaint form to the Vice President for College Programs. The formal complaint must contain the following information:
Procedures for Resolution of Formal Complaints:
The staff in the Office of the Dean of Students will log all general formal complaints and send the complaint to the appropriate administrator for review, investigation and decision.
The responsible administrator will usually respond within ten (10) working days to the complainant. Depending on the nature of the complaint, the responsible administrator may call together involved parties to mediate the situation and determine a solution or decision. The administrator will inform the student of the decision in writing. When a decision is made about a formal complaint, a copy of the written decision should be sent to the Dean of Students, who maintains the general complaint log.
If the resolution is unsatisfactory to the student, she may then contact the Dean of Students for a referral to the appropriate Vice President. The Vice President shall respond to the complaint within twenty (20) College working days after receipt of the formal complaint and inform the student of the decision in writing. Decisions and resolutions made by a Vice President are final.
If the complaint is submitted about a Vice President, the complaint will be referred to the President for response and decision.
No person against whom a complaint is filed shall intimidate, threaten, coerce, or discriminate against any student submitting a complaint. Complaints about retaliation may be communicated to the Office of the Dean of Students.
Office of the Dean of Students
2nd Floor, Park Center