During its general body meeting Wednesday, Ohio University’s Student Senate heard a presentation from Taylor Tackett, director of the Office of Community Standards and Student Responsibility, or CSSR, on the office’s role on campus.
In his presentation, Tackett outlined the three goals of the CSSR: educating and engaging students, repairing harm and rebuilding trust in the community, and providing a fair and clear process for instances of community standards violations. Tackett also emphasized the role of restorative justice in its actions, as well as educating students throughout all processes.
When a community member demonstrates either academic or behavioral misconduct, the office initiates the first of several steps to address the matter, beginning with an email notice of the alleged violation to the student. From there, the student is made aware of their rights and options, and will have a community standards conference where the issue is discussed. If the student accepts the charges, a sanction will be determined. However, students may also opt to deny charges and request a hearing.
Sanctions range from reprimand to expulsion, and may include items such as educational intervention, fees, reflection paper and follow-up meetings. Tackett noted the university’s suspension and expulsion rates are at their lowest in eight years, however, the office has heard over 1,600 cases so far this year.
Students Defending Students also has a partnership with CSSR to provide peer assistance to students who are facing a judiciary process for advice during conferences and hearings.
At the end of the meeting, current Senate executives all echoed congratulations to the new Senate elects from this week’s election in their weekly reports.
“I am super excited to see what all of you will do … I’m glad to see what Senate can get back to and what it can be. The future is so bright in Senate, so I’m passionate about that and I want to fill Senate with people who are passionate about that,” Senate Treasurer Trinity Robinson said.
However, amendments to the Senate constitution, which were approved at a previous meeting for addition to the Senate ballot, did not make it to the ballot for the student body to vote on.
Senate’s Graduate Assistant Nathaniel Padilla apologized at the end of the meeting for the mistake, stating that it was a slip-up on their end. Padilla also noted that there will be a plan formulated for how to proceed with approval of the amendments.