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Legal Issues Conference

Getting the Information You Need: Data Collection Under Clery
Abigail Boyer, M.S., Associate Executive Director
Clery Center

Although institutions sometimes think of Clery Act compliance as an annual obligation, Clery Act requirements require ongoing data collection and established relationships between many individuals and departments on campus. Your campus procedures must collect reports from the right people and capture the necessary information in order to be effective. This session will:

  • identify who's required to report under Clery and promising practices for gathering that data
  • explore how to address information gaps or barriers
  • offer a space for campus planning and peer-sharing

University Title IX Compliance in the Age of Regulation/Due Process
Peter Lake, J.D., Professor of Law, Charles A. Dana Chair, and Director of the Center for Excellence in Higher Education Law and Policy
Stetson University College of Law

In September 2017, the U.S. Department of Education issued “interim” and “substantial” guidance on Title IX, with a focus on due process and procedural protections. As we anticipate a promised period of “notice and comment” regarding new regulations under Title IX, what should we expect? Are significant changes in procedural requirements on the horizon? Professor Peter Lake will discuss the new focus on “procedural protections” under Title IX by the Trump administration.

The Future of Fraternities and Sororities: Issues and Trends
Kim Novak, Founder and CEO

Conversations about the behaviors of fraternities and sororities have been on institutional agendas since the 1800’s, however, in recent years those conversations have elevated and now include a question of the viability of the future of these organizations as part of the campus life experience. A primary question many educational administrators have is; what are the inter/national organizations doing to align their organizations with the educational missions of host institutions. With 24 years of experience working with both institutions and inter/national organizations, Kim Novak will offer insight into what our inter-fraternal partners are doing to advance risk mitigation efforts. Additionally, Kim will identify examples of actions institutions have taken to advance our shared values and vision for our fraternity and sorority communities.

Setting Priorities: Lessons Learned from Clery Act Program Reviews
Abigail Boyer, M.S., Associate Executive Director
Clery Center

Campus leaders spend a lot of time making decisions and with so many competing needs, it can be difficult to prioritize where to focus efforts and resources. Clery Act program reviews can be a key source of information on both common challenges in regards to Clery Act compliance and, more importantly, possible solutions. This session will:

  • discuss trends in Department of Education Clery Act findings
  • identify practical departmental or Clery committee tasks for proactively addressing compliance challenges
  • aid leaders in establishing a comprehensive annual plan for Clery compliance

First Amendment Case Law Update: Learning from the Past to Predict the Future
Will Creeley, Senior Vice President of Legal and Public Advocacy
Foundation for Individual Rights in Education

When it comes to recent First Amendment decisions from federal courts, what's old is new again. In this session, FIRE's Will Creeley will provide attendees with a detailed review of recent First Amendment decisions and settlements from district and appellate courts nationwide, beginning with an overview of the long-standing legal principles that guide judges reviewing today's campus speech controversies.

Forecast! How the Trump Administration May Shape Higher Education Policy in the Next Three Years and Beyond
Peter Lake, J.D., Professor of Law, Charles A. Dana Chair, and Director of the Center for Excellence in Higher Education Law and Policy
Stetson University College of Law

Over the last year and a half, we have seen shifts in policies in governmental student lending, Title IX, and even shifts in immigration policy that has impacted higher education, inter alia. How will the Trump administration’s policies continue to impact the academy? What lies ahead in the face of 2018 midterm elections and beyond? Professor Peter Lake will look into his crystal ball to see what may be on the horizon.

Prevention is a Process NOT a Program: Applying a Prevention Framework to Your Education Efforts in Fraternity and Sorority Life
Kim Novak, Founder and CEO

Federal Legislation regarding sexual violence and relationship violence as well as the Clery Campus Crime Reporting Legislation all indicate that campuses should have prevention efforts in place for specific behaviors. Pending legislation will soon include hazing as a reportable “crime” and require hazing prevention programs on all campuses. Additionally, staffs are often faced with the directive to come up with an activity or program to prevent a community “problem.” Fraternity and Sorority communities are often the focus of such expectations or directives. Using a prevention-based approach to problem-solving based on the framework and principles utilized in Public Health Prevention work, Kim will engage participants in a workshop that will provide:

  • a framework for identifying the "real problem"
  • a process for designing strategies to meet compliance requirements or address a campus issue
  • a model for designing tactics & activities that will move us towards prevention and not another program

Rescind, Review, and Rebalance: Title IX and Campus Sexual Violence in a New Era
Melissa Nunn, Title IX Coordinator
Mercer University

Over the last 45 years, the course of Title IX has ebbed and flowed with the political climate, and the progressive development of today’s society. After the release of the 2011 Dear Colleague Letter, the pendulum swung in favor of victims, and much of that swing was welcomed and necessary. Unfortunately, in some situations the pendulum swung too far, and the rights of accused students were neglected. The Department of Education has recently made an attempt to rebalance the process to assure due process rights for those accused of sexual misconduct. Will this rebalance come at the expense of the hard-fought advances that survivors achieved over the last six years? This session will provide a look at how the interpretation of Title IX is changing under the new administration and how colleges and universities are responding to the changes.

Lessons Learned from a Fraternity and Sorority Student Death at LSU
Angela Guillory, Associate Dean of Students & Director of Greek Life
Louisiana State University

Please join Angela C. Guillory in a discussion on her experience this past year as she navigated the terrible student death on her campus in the Greek community. See how she responded to the incident and the lessons she learned from the aftermath of the crisis. Additionally, Ms. Guillory will provide things to think about if this incident were to ever occur on your campus.

First Amendment Rights and Social Media
Peter Lake, J.D., Professor of Law, Charles A. Dana Chair, and Director of the Center for Excellence in Higher Education Law and Policy
Stetson University College of Law

We have entered a vibrant era of free speech and advocacy on campus - the likes of which we may not have seen for decades. The rise of social media and an emphasis on public expression has sometimes cast modern colleges, and administrators/faculty, in the role of “referee” in the “marketplace of ideas”; and there is no reason to believe the “marketplace of ideas” will be free from conflict, digitally or otherwise. Join Professor Peter Lake as he discusses the frontiers of free expression in the digital age on campus in a wide-ranging inquiry from law and policy perspectives.

Public Safety Considerations when Managing a Controversial Free Speech Event on Campus (Gators Not Haters)
Darren J. Baxley, Deputy Chief
Kenneth Allen, Director of Emergency Management
University of Florida

In October of 2017, a controversial speaker rented a venue on the University of Florida campus requiring a significant, unified response from university, local, state and federal agencies. The event precipitated a state emergency declaration, mutual aid support, and national media attention. Learn how university officials planned for and managed this event as well as lessons learned.

Fraternity and Sorority Conduct: Generating Outcomes that Matter
Kim Novak, Founder and CEO

Fraternities and Sororities have been HOT topics in the media during the past several years. Countless articles, televised programs, and opinion pieces have highlighted the risky nature of these organizations and the exposure they create for students, institutions, and their host organizations. Although an environment of collaboration has long defined the relationship between international organizations and host institutions, recent occurrences of interim suspensions and complete closures of entire communities have strained these relationships and challenged campus professionals in their efforts to address the core issues resulting in high-risk behaviors. A framework for effectively adjudicating cases involving chapters while limiting both legal exposure and safety concerns will be provided. Recognizing that alleged violations of campus codes of conduct must be addressed the facilitator will provide a framework for operating with a commitment to fundamental fairness while engaging external partners in the process and determining outcomes that really create change. We must expand our toolbox beyond moratoriums and interim suspensions if we desire to change the culture of fraternity and sorority communities so we can sustain the fraternity & sorority experience as a viable part of the college experience.

Separate and Distinct: Clery Act Timely Warnings and Emergency Notifications
Abigail Boyer, M.S, Associate Executive Director
Clery Center

As we work with colleges and universities nationwide, Clery Center often finds that institutions conflate or confuse Clery Act timely warning and emergency notification and evacuation policy requirements. This session will explore:

  • how to analyze your institution's policy/annual security report for compliance
  • "buzz words" to use or avoid
  • how to explain your process, not just say what you do
  • strategies for navigating campus opinions on your process
  • FAQs regarding putting policy into practice

Questions and Answers about Free Speech
Will Creeley, Senior Vice President of Legal and Public Advocacy
Foundation for Individual Rights in Education

Answering "bad speech" with "more speech" sounds like a good idea in theory, but how does it work in practice? Can you impose gag orders on students in a disciplinary process? Is support for free speech on the wane amongst students and the general public? What control do administrators have over faculty speaking to the media? With midterm elections arriving this fall, can colleges impose rules on campaigning on campus? Bring all of your burning free speech questions to this session for a freewheeling, participant-driven conversation with FIRE's Will Creeley.

ADA Accessibility and Accommodations: Beyond the Basics
Brett Harvey, Director of Title IX and EEO Programs
Mississippi State University

Meeting the minimum requirements of the ADA and Section 504 can be complicated in itself, but the challenge is compounded when universities consider student expectations, logistical complications, and public perception. This presentation focuses on developing disability access and accommodation strategies in areas like housing, parking, animals, and web access that meet the legal minimums but also hold up under the stress of real-world situations.

Legislative Update: State and Federal Lawmakers and Campus Speech Rights
Will Creeley, Senior Vice President of Legal and Public Advocacy
Foundation for Individual Rights in Education

A blizzard of legislative initiatives concerning student and faculty speech has hit state capitols nationwide. Federal lawmakers are considering new campus speech proposals, too. In this session, FIRE's Will Creeley will help you make sense of the good, the bad, and the ugly of campus speech legislation. He'll also offer predictions for what's still to come, and what the impact of these new laws may be at your school.

Extreme Expression: Managing Protests, Controversial Speakers and Activism on Campus
Peter Lake, J.D., Professor of Law, Charles A. Dana Chair, and Director of the Center for Excellence in Higher Education Law and Policy
Stetson University College of Law

Institutions of higher education throughout the country must prepare for a new era in campus discourse - extreme expression. This plenary session will offer an opportunity to learn more about First Amendment and free expression rights and responsibilities, particularly in the context of events that challenge our core mission. Can we turn away speakers or groups who present a risk of violence and disruption? If these speakers come to campus, how can and should we respond? How should we react if we learn that one of our students or colleagues supports such an event? What about the costs associated with managing these highly-charged events? Professor Peter Lake will discuss how campus leaders can and should address the new reality of extreme expression.