If a report is received alleging that a student has engaged in conduct that may violate UWS Chapter 17 as it applies to Title IX, including sex discrimination, sexual harassment, sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence, and/or stalking, the information will be provided to the Title IX Coordinator within the Office of Compliance. In such cases, the Title IX coordinator serves as the primary investigator, although in some cases, the Title IX Coordinator will be assisted by additional investigators who are hired on a contract basis.
In most cases, the Title IX Coordinator will start by contacting the complainant and asking the complainant’s consent to proceed with an investigation. If the complainant agrees to be interviewed, the complainant may be accompanied by a person of their choosing and will meet with the assigned investigator to provide a statement. The complainant will also be asked to provide any documentary evidence (text messages, social media posts, etc.) the complainant wants to be considered during the investigation and to identify any people who might provide information to support the complainant’s statement.
Once the complainant interview is complete, the investigator will send a letter to the respondent that describes the alleged misconduct and invites the respondent to meet with the investigator to respond to the allegations. The respondent may be accompanied by a support person of their choosing at the meeting. The respondent will also be asked to provide any documentary evidence (text messages, social media posts, etc.) the respondent wants to be considered during the investigation and to identify any people who might provide information to support the respondent’s statement.
The investigator will also interview relevant witnesses and/or review relevant witness statements, if any, and review any documentary evidence provided by the complainant, the respondent or other sources, including witnesses.
Once this investigation is complete, the investigator will prepare a report outlining the information gathered during the investigation. Both the complainant and the respondent are afforded an opportunity to review the report for accuracy before it is submitted.
The report is then submitted to the Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards (OSCCS). The staff member in the OSCCS assigned to the case will review the information in the report to determine whether any violation of UWS Chapter 17 occurred. The OSCCS staff member consults with at least two other OSCCS staff members in making this determination.
Once a decision has been reached, the OSCCS staff member sends a letter to both the complainant and the respondent outlining the findings and, where applicable, the recommended sanction(s).
If the OSCCS staff member determines the student respondent is not responsible for the alleged misconduct by a preponderance of the evidence:
The complainant may appeal the OSCCS staff member’s determination. The appeal must be made, in writing, within fourteen days of receiving written notification of the OSCCS staff member’s “no preponderance” determination. The appeal should be sent to the Office of the Chancellor at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Upon receiving a timely written appeal of a “no preponderance” determination, the Office of the Chancellor or designee will notify the student respondent.
The chancellor or designee shall issue a written decision within thirty days. The chancellor’s or designee’s decision shall be based upon the record gathered during the investigation. The decision of the OSCCS staff member will be upheld unless the chancellor or designee finds:
(a) The information in the record does not support the findings or decision;
(b) Appropriate procedures were not followed which resulted in material prejudice to the student respondent or complainant; or
(c) The decision was based on factors proscribed by state or federal law.
The written decision will be simultaneously sent to the complainant and the respondent. If the determination of “no preponderance” is reversed, the chancellor or designee may: send the case back for further investigation, send the case back for hearing, or order other appropriate relief not inconsistent with the Wisconsin Administrative Code (UWS) Chapter 17.
If the determination of “no preponderance” is upheld, the complainant may appeal to the Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System. The Board of Regents, in its discretion, may consider an appeal based on the written record. The appeal must be made, in writing, within fourteen days of receiving the written decision from the chancellor or designee. The appeal should be sent to the Office of the Board of Regents at: email@example.com.
If the OSCCS staff member determines that the preponderance of the evidence supports a finding that misconduct occurred:
The respondent has the right to a formal hearing to contest the determination that the respondent engaged in misconduct, contest the disciplinary action recommended, or both. The hearing may be scheduled at the respondent’s request or may be scheduled automatically, depending on the recommended sanction. In cases where the recommended discipline includes suspension or expulsion, UWS Chapter 17 provides for the hearing to be scheduled automatically unless the respondent waives the right to the hearing in writing.