Involuntary Administrative Withdrawal Policy
The procedures for involuntary administrative withdrawal of a student
from the Institute are to be used only after reasonable attempts to secure voluntary cooperation for psychological or medical evaluation or withdrawal have been exhausted, and will be used only after thoughtful consideration by members of the Student Affairs staff.
Students subject to the Involuntary Withdrawal Policy are encouraged to involve family members whether an administrative withdrawal is voluntary or involuntary. Family members of students under 18 years of age will be informed without, but preferably with, the students’ permission.
Students may become subject to this policy through referral to the Vice President for Student Affairs. These referrals will primarily come through the Institute Assessment and Care Team, Health and Counseling Services, Student Conduct, or Security. Community members observing disruptive or dangerous behavior should contact one of these departments.
Conditions For Involuntary Administrative Withdrawal
A student will be subject to involuntary administrative withdrawal from the Institute when, in the judgment of the Vice President for Student Affairs, there is a substantial and significant possibility that the student, as a result of a physical or psychological condition:
- Will harm him/herself or others
- Will cause significant property damage
- Will be substantially unable to meet his or her responsibilities as a student
- Will be unable to care for his or her daily physical needs without assistance and has failed to secure such assistance
- Will directly impede the lawful activities of others
- Will directly and substantially interfere with the Institute’s normal operations
If the student has engaged in an activity that subjects him or her to Institute disciplinary action, the matter will be handled through the Institute’s student conduct process unless the Vice President for Student Affairs determines that the student, as a result of psychological conditions:
- Lacks the capacity to respond to pending conduct charges against him or her, or
- Did not know the nature or wrongfulness of the conduct at the time of the offense.
The Assessment and Care Team consists of representatives from relevant offices at the Institute who meet regularly to discuss student behavior.
Referral For Evaluation
In determining whether or not a student’s behavior meets the criteria, the Vice President for Student Affairs will consult with Health and Counseling Services staff members and may refer the student for evaluation by an independent licensed psychiatrist, psychologist, or other medical provider approved by the Institute. If an evaluation is required, the student will be informed in writing, either by hand delivery or by certified or overnight mail.
The evaluation must be completed within five (5) business days from the date of the referral letter, unless an extension is granted in writing by the Vice President for Student Affairs.
Meeting with the Vice President for Student Affairs
- A student may be requested in writing and/or orally (depending on the urgency of the situation) to attend an informal meeting with the Vice President for Student Affairs for the purpose of determining whether the student, as a result of a physical or psychological condition, falls within the criteria for involuntary withdrawal, and, if so, the necessity for withdrawal. Such a request will include a statement of the reasons for the Institute’s concern.
- If the student is determined to lack the capacity to participate in such a meeting, the student will be subject to immediate interim withdrawal as outlined in that section.
- Other appropriate personnel may be present and/or consulted. Parents, spouses, or any person who would be of support to the student may, with the consent of the Vice President for Student Affairs and of the student, participate in the informal meeting. At the meeting, the reasons for the Institute’s concern regarding the student will be stated and the student will be given an opportunity to respond to these concerns.
- If, after the meeting, the student is found not to fall within the criteria, he or she will be so informed in writing by the Vice President for Student Affairs and allowed to continue as a student.
Voluntary Administrative Withdrawal
If after the informal meeting with the Vice President for Student Affairs the student agrees to withdraw voluntarily from the Institute, regular withdrawal procedures will be followed. The student may be permitted to withdraw voluntarily without grades if, in the judgment of the Vice President for Student Affairs (after consultation with and approval by the student’s instructors), the circumstances warrant such action. For more information please refer to the Medical Withdrawal and Leave of Absence Procedures at www.pratt.edu/health_counseling_ services.
Involuntary Administrative Withdrawal
If, after the informal meeting, the Vice President for Student Affairs decides that the student should withdraw from the Institute and only be permitted to re-enter the Institute with her approval, the student shall be involuntarily withdrawn from the Institute. The student will be informed in writing of this decision within five (5) business days of the informal meeting. The notification will also include the basis for the decision, the period of time during for which the student is not permitted to re-enroll and the conditions under which the student may re-enroll.
If the student fails to accept the involuntary administrative withdrawal, the student shall notify the Vice President for Student Affairs of such refusal within five (5) business days of receipt of the written decision. If the student fails to notify the Vice President for Student Affairs of such refusal within five (5) business days of receipt of the written decision, the student will be deemed to have waived his or her right to appeal the withdrawal decision.
The student may appeal the withdrawal decision to an Appeals Committee which will include the Director of Residential Life, the Director of Health and Counseling, and the Institute’s Section 504/ Title IX Coordinator. The Committee shall review the withdrawal decision using the following criteria:
- Was the evidence reviewed by the Vice President for Student Affairs sufficient to justify a determination?
- Was the determination in keeping with the gravity of the behavior?
- Is there evidence that the Vice President for Student Affairs acted in a capricious or prejudicial manner?
The Appeals Committee shall prepare a written decision containing findings and conclusions. Copies of the decision shall be furnished to the student and the Vice President for Student Affairs. The decision of the Appeals Committee shall be final and conclusive and not subject to further appeal.
Immediate Interim Withdrawal
An immediate interim withdrawal may be implemented if a student is found to be:
- Causing serious physical harm to self or others
- Causing significant property damage
- Directly impeding lawful activities of others
- Directly and substantially interfering with the Institute’s normal operations
- Currently unable to participate in academic activities due to the presence of delusions, hallucinations, grossly disorganized or catatonic behavior, or incoherent speech
- Neglecting to complete a required psychological or medical evaluation
- Lacking in the capacity to participate in a meeting with the Vice President for Student Affairs to discuss an administrative withdrawal
A student subject to immediate interim withdrawal will be notified in writing and/or orally (depending upon the urgency of the situation), then be given an opportunity to appear personally before the Vice President for Student Affairs, or designee, within two (2) business days from the effective date of the immediate interim withdrawal, in order to review the following issues only:
- The reliability of the information concerning the student’s behavior
- Whether or not the student’s behavior poses a danger of causing imminent physical harm to the student or others or causing property damage, or directly impeding the lawful activities of others
- Whether or not the student has completed or submitted an evaluation, in accordance with the standards and procedures as described in the section on Referral for Evaluation.
- Whether or not the student has fulfilled the requirements for reinstatement outlined in the notification letter
At the conclusion of this meeting, the Vice President for Student Affairs will either uphold or cancel the immediate interim withdrawal. Regardless of whether the immediate interim withdrawal is upheld or cancelled, the involuntary administrative withdrawal process will proceed according to the steps that are outlined in this policy.
As this policy is intended to protect the student who is the subject of these proceedings and the Pratt community as a whole, the Vice President for Student Affairs may reasonably deviate from these guidelines to the extent indicated by the facts of the case or proceedings, unless significant prejudice to a student may result.
Vice President for Student Affairs
Student Conduct Coordinator