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Magnolia Avenue students talking on campus
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Frequently Asked Questions - Staff

What is the Behavioral Intervention Team (BIT)?

The Behavioral Intervention Team (BIT) is a resource that works to ensure our campus community is a safe place for teaching and learning to occur. The BIT is not a disciplinary board, but rather the central point of contact for reports of concerning behavior for the campus community to coordinate intervention services. The team includes personnel from the dean of students office, counseling services, campus police, human resources, and members of the faculty who have received training and education to assist those exhibiting concerning behavior.

 

When do I refer students to the BIT?

If danger is imminent, always call Campus Police, 694-6649 or 9-911.

If you are concerned about a potentially risky or dangerous behavior by a person to him/herself or others, you can contact the BIT. Some examples include:

  • Extreme verbal or written harassment or threats;
  • Extremes, or changes in, appearance such as looking disheveled, disoriented, extreme low energy or apathetic;
  • Disturbing writings or talking about suicide, violence in their past or future, obsessions with harming or violence;
  • Signs of paranoia or making references that are not germane to the topic or not related to the situational context;
  • Under the influence of drugs/alcohol.

 

Can I remain anonymous when referring someone to the BIT?

Anonymous reports will be investigated as best as possible given the information provided. However, it is vital that the BIT be able to communicate and follow up with the person referring should additional information be needed to complete the assessment. Contact the dean of students or chief of police if you have concerns about confidentiality.

 

What can I do if a student is raging at me?

Stay calm and do not raise your voice to their level. Look the person in the eye and say, “I understand that you are upset/angry. I want to help you but it’s not okay with me that you are _____ (state the specific objectionable behavior, e.g. yelling, cursing, interrupting, etc.) If you’ll _____ (be specific in stating an appropriate behavior, e.g. lower your voice, stop cursing, interrupting, etc.) we can discuss the situation and work to find a solution. If you don’t you will need to leave or I will call Campus Police.”

 

What will happen when I refer someone to the BIT?

The BIT Team will look to gather additional information related to the reported incident. This often includes talking with anyone who may have been present to witness the behavior, review security camera footage, etc. The BIT will then work together and look for ways to provide support to the student and take appropriate steps to ensure the campus remains safe. Depending upon the nature of the report, the BIT may take any or all of the following actions:

  • Recommend no action and continue to gather information and monitor the situation
  • Assist faculty or staff in developing a plan of action
  • Meet with the student or employee of concern
  • Refer student or employee to existing campus and/or community support resources
  • Refer the concern to the appropriate office for potential disciplinary action
  • Take other action as deemed necessary and consistent with college policies and procedures

 

When and how do I refer students to the counseling office?

Counselors welcome the opportunity to consult with faculty and staff anytime about student issues or concerns. When making a referral, please review the Counseling Services website for suggestions. 

 

When and how do I document an incident?

Written documentation includes description of what happened, what was said, when it happened, who was involved, and what action was taken. Write objectively and give a factual accounting of what happened in a non-judgmental manner. It is important to refrain from inserting personal analysis, opinions or conclusions about the student’s character. See Student Conduct Resources section for examples.

 

What should I do if I feel threatened or intimidated by a student’s behavior?

If danger is imminent, always call Campus Police, 694-6649 or 9-911.

A warning is not necessary before directing a student to leave if the student is engaging in violent or unsafe behavior – throwing books, coming to class intoxicated, or threatening physical harm, etc. If the student does not leave, dismiss class and call Campus Police. Document the incident and report it to the BIT.

 

What should I do if a student complains to me about another student stalking or harassing him/her?

Questions or concerns about harassment or discrimination based on race, color, religion, ethnic or national origin, sex, sexual orientation or gender identity, disability, age or status as a covered veteran should be directed to the executive director, Equity and Compliance, 865-539-7401 http://www.pstcc.edu/compliance/index.php

 

What should I do if a student complains that a college employee is sexually harassing him or her?

Questions or concerns about harassment or discrimination based on race, color, religion, ethnic or national origin, sex, sexual orientation or gender identity, disability, age or status as a covered veteran should be directed to the executive director, Equity and Compliance, 865-539-7401 http://www.pstcc.edu/compliance/index.php

 

What should I do if a student disrupts the learning environment in an online class?

The same standards of the classroom environment apply to the online classroom. See Resources section for examples. 

 

What should I do if a student sends me an inappropriate or offensive email or text message?

Tell the student specifically what about the message was inappropriate/ unacceptable and that if it continues, the student will be reported to the dean of students for disciplinary action. You could use this as a teachable moment and educate the student as to what is appropriate in the online environment. Retain copies of the offensive message and your response.