Grievance Policy

Policy brief & purpose

Windsor University grievance procedure policy explains how students can constructively voice their complaints. University's staff should be well aware of matters that annoy students or hinder their work to resolve the issue promptly. Students should follow the grievance procedure to be heard and avoid conflicts.
The Institute encourages students to communicate their grievances. That way, Windsor University can foster a supportive and pleasant learning environment for students and staff members.

Scope

This policy refers to all students enrolled at Windsor University.

Policy Elements

Grievance Definition

Windsor University defines a grievance as any student complaint, problem, or concern regarding their grades, learning environment, or relationship with students or staff members.

Students can file grievances for any of the following reasons:

  • Learning environment harassment
  • Health and safety
  • Student or Staff member’s behavior
  • Adverse changes in enrollment conditions

This list is not exhaustive. However, students should try to resolve less important issues informally before they resort to a formal grievance.

Students who file grievances can:

  • Reach out to their academic advisor or Student Affairs Department
  • File a grievance letter stating the following:
    • The Recipient: The Letter’s recipient must be carefully considered to ensure that the grievance is addressed and redressed. The recipient may depend on the nature of the complaint and the person against whom the complaint is being made.
    • The Actual Issue: This is the core of the Letter and must be thoroughly detailed out. The complete information helps the recipient to make the correct decisions. Concealing information or misrepresenting facts weakens the purpose of writing the Letter.
    • Supporting Evidence: This section is essential. This evidence must be in the form of events (in chronological order) with dates or a proper reference. Students having supporting documents to their claim should attach a copy with the filed Letter.
    • Proposed Solution: The recipients find it better to address letters containing complaints and options seen as a solution by the complainant. This helps the employer with a starting point for the discussion to address the concern.
  • Refuse to attend formal online meetings on their own
  • Appeal on any formal decision

Students who face allegations have the right to:

  • Receive a copy of the allegations against them
  • Respond to the allegations
  • Appeal on any formal decision

The Institute is obliged to:

  • Have a formal grievance procedure in place
  • Communicate the procedure
  • Investigate all grievances promptly
  • Treat all students who file grievances equally
  • Preserve confidentiality at any stage of the process
  • Resolve all grievances when possible
  • Respect its non-retaliation policy when students file grievances to the Institute or the Higher Education Licensure Commission (HELC)

Procedures

Students are encouraged to talk to their assigned advisor or the Student Affairs Department to resolve their problems. However, when this is not possible, students should know how to file a grievance:
1. Communicate informally with their assigned advisor. The advisor will try to resolve the problem. When students want to complain about their advisor or instructor, they should first discuss and resolve it. In that case, they are advised to request an informal meeting. Advisors and instructors should try to resolve any grievance as quickly as possible. When they cannot do so, they should refer to the Student Affairs Department and cooperate with all other procedures.

2. Suppose the grievance relates to a staff member's behavior that can bring disciplinary action (e.g., sexual harassment or violence). In that case, students should refer directly to the Student Affairs Department, then the President.

3. Accommodate the procedure outlined below

The Student Affairs Department will follow the procedure below:
1. Ask the student to send a grievance letter

2. Talk with the student to ensure the matter is understood completely

3. Provide the student who faces allegations with a copy of the grievance

4. Organize mediation procedures (e.g., arranging a formal meeting)

5. Investigate the matter or ask the help of an appropriate investigator when needed

6. Keep students informed throughout the process

7. Communicate the formal decision to all students involved

8. After discussing with and receiving approval from the President or the Chief Academic Officer, take actions to ensure the formal decision is adhered to

9. Deal with appeals by gathering more information and investigating further
10. Keep accurate records

This procedure may vary according to the nature of a grievance. For example, if a student or staff member is found guilty of racial discrimination, the Institute will begin disciplinary procedures.

Suppose the Institute's solution was unappealing to the student. In that case, they may forward their grievance letter to the Higher Education Licensure Commission (HELC) via the following contact information:

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