Sent: Mon, June 6, 2011 9:13:35 AM
Subject: Bretney, James - Appeal Response
June 3, 2011
James Bretney, ID #352571
1421 W. Venice Blvd. #7
Venice, CA 90291
This letter serves as a response to your appeal of the sanction letter issued to you on May 17, 2011, regarding an incident with staff in which it was reported that you had tampered with work being uploaded by a faculty member for a school project; your behavior in this instance was reported as rude, non-compliant, and aggressive. According to the information I reviewed, you were found responsible for violating the following student conduct policies stated in the 2010-2011 Student Handbook:
6.b.ii. Breach of peace on college property or at any college-sponsored or supervised program
14.a. Persistent or gross acts of willful disobedience or defiance toward college personnel
14.b. Failure to comply with the direction of college officials, faculty, staff, or security officers who are acting in the performance of their duties.
15.e.vi. Use of computing facilities to interfere with the work of another student, faculty member, or school official.
You were also found to be in violation of the terms of your Final Conduct Probation of February 7, 2011, which violates the following student conduct policies:
11.f. Failure to comply with the sanction(s) imposed under the Student Conduct Policy
As a result, you were placed on Conduct Suspension from the Art Institute until May 13, 2012.
The standard for determining if a student is responsible for violating a policy is based on whether it is more likely than not that the alleged actions took place. During your conduct meeting on May 13, with Dawn Kohn, Kate Jones, and Samuel Pena regarding this incident, these individuals all reported that you exhibited the same kind of hostile and non-compliant behavior - including raising your voice and interrupting staff repeatedly. They further reported that you refused to answer questions that were being asked specifically to gather information about this incident for proper, thorough follow-up.
Appeal letters require students to provide evidence of extenuating circumstances or evidence of treatment that is not in adherence to The Art Institute's policies and procedures. To ensure this, a hearing board was assembled, consisting of the three aforementioned staff, to listen to your perspective and to gather facts necessary to make a decision about your case. In an appeal letter to me, dated May 17, 2011, you stated that you have been unhappy with your experience at The Art Institute and, specifically, reiterated that you have felt singled out for your identity as a veteran and as a heterosexual man over 30. However, the appeal letter you submitted did not include specific evidence or documentation of this. Further, the appeal letter did not outline any additional or extenuating circumstances, nor did it provide evidence that this academic hearing was without adherence to The Art Institute policies and procedures.
After careful consideration of all information in your appeal letter, as well as the information gathered from staff, faculty, and other witnesses involved directly with this incident, my decision is to uphold the sanctions outlined in the letter delivered to you on May 17, 2011.
For further questions regarding this final decision, please contact me at email@example.com or 310-314-6075.
Dean of Student Affairs
cc: Laura Soloff, President