The following letter is a communication that was sent to all students, faculty, and staff on September 4, 2020 to address Kalamazoo College’s response to the regulatory changes published by the Department of Education in May, 2020.
*Note: hyperlinks have been removed for this archived message.
Dear K Community,
As the new director of gender equity and Title IX coordinator, I would like to join the many voices sharing a welcome message for new students as we prepare to begin a new academic year, one which will look different than in past years but will be no less academically challenging and rewarding. There is certainly much to know about what will be new this quarter, and I write with an update regarding what is new with respect to Title IX.
Effective August 14, Kalamazoo College has amended its Title IX-related policies and procedures to comply with federal regulations released by the U.S. Department of Education in May of this year. These regulations seek to provide strong due process protections to those who are accused of sexual misconduct while also balancing the rights of those who experience sexual harassment, assault, dating violence, domestic violence, retaliation, and/ or sex- or gender-based discrimination.
The new Title IX regulations have garnered both criticism and support; however, our goal at Kalamazoo College is to continue our tradition of providing a fair and equitable process to all members of the K community by:
• Providing clear and prompt notice to anyone accused of misconduct;
• Conducting a fair and impartial investigation;
• Delivering resolutions to complaints as promptly as possible;
• Issuing sanctions and/ or disciplinary measures for policy violations; and
• Ensuring all decisionmakers are impartial and free from bias.
The regulations leave it to Kalamazoo College to decide to be more protective than the law, and in that way, we view the regulations as setting the floor of what we must do. Here at K, we are aiming for the ceiling of best practices in as many areas as we can. Fair process is a priority, as is repairing harm and facilitating healing and safety for all members of our community irrespective of race, sex, gender identity or expression, age, ability, religion, socio-economic status, or the other qualities and identities that we value within a diverse community.
To learn more about the Policy Against Harassment, you may visit the Title IX website.
We recognize not every member of the campus community will be comfortable with the federal regulations or some aspects of our policies. We understand that and welcome your voices and input in the coming weeks and months as we strive to continually improve our collective efforts to eliminate gender-based violence and discrimination in our community, and to be responsive to all members’ concerns. Please consider attending one of the upcoming Title IX-related virtual sessions to learn more as we embark on a very unique fall quarter. The first opportunity to engage in a dialogue around these changes will be the Title IX Town Hall next Wednesday, September 9, at 4pm. I would like to invite anyone interested in attending to follow this link to the virtual live event.
Director of Gender Equity | Title IX Coordinator