What is Title IX?

Title IX is a federal law that protects all individuals associated with any institution that accepts federal financial aid from any form of gender discrimination and harassment, including sexual violence – specifically, sexual assault, dating/domestic violence, stalking, and sexual harassment.

It is the policy of LaGrange College to maintain an environment for students, faculty, administrators, staff, volunteers, and visitors that is free of all forms of discrimination and harassment, including sexual misconduct. The College has enacted a Sexual Misconduct Policy to reflect and maintain its institutional values and community expectations, to provide fair and equitable procedures for determining when this Policy has been violated, and to provide options for individuals and the community in response to violations of this Policy. A copy of the policy can be found at https://www.lagrange.edu/about/safety-and-security/sexual-misconduct/index.html.

Who is responsible for enforcing Title IX at LaGrange College?

LaGrange College’s Title IX Coordinator oversees college compliance regarding all Title IX related matters, including the investigation of complaints.

Title IX Coordinator:
Dr. Maranah Sauter

Can I report an instance of sexual misconduct to the Title IX Coordinator if I am unsure about filing a formal complaint? A report can be made without requesting any particular course of action. Choosing to make a report, and deciding how to proceed after the report, can unfold over time.

Will my parents/guardians be contacted if I make a report to the Title IX Coordinator?

The Title IX Coordinator will not contact the parents or guardians of any involved parties in the Title IX investigation. The College is prohibited from doing so by the Family Educational and Rights to Privacy Act (FERPA). Under FERPA, your parents cannot access your educational records if you are enrolled in post-secondary education, regardless of age, unless you give written permission. A waiver of your FERPA rights to allow another person to access your educational records can be obtained from the Title IX Coordinator.

What will happen if my parents contact the Title IX Coordinator?

The Title IX Coordinator can answer general questions regarding the College’s Title IX Policy and procedures. However, in order to discuss specifics of a Title IX incident, process, or outcome with a parent or legal guardian, you will need to provide a written FERPA waiver explicitly allowing the Title IX Coordinator to speak with your parents/guardians directly.

Will local law enforcement be contacted if I file a Title IX complaint?

The College is not permitted to report Title IX complaints to local law enforcement. Only the person who alleges sexual misconduct can decide to notify or not notify law enforcement. However, the College does strongly encourage all individuals to seek assistance from law enforcement immediately after an incident of sexual misconduct. The College will help any LaGrange College community member get to a location where they feel safe from immediate danger.

How is a Title IX Investigation different from a criminal investigation?

A criminal investigation by law enforcement seeks to determine whether an individual violated criminal law. In contrast, Title IX investigations conducted by the College determine whether an accused party has violated the College’s policy on sexual misconduct and what disciplinary actions may be appropriate. An individual has the right to pursue a College investigation by filing a formal complaint with the Title IX Coordinator- and also simultaneously pursuing criminal charges through local law enforcement. A reporting party may elect to file a complaint only with the College or only with local law enforcement. The processes are not mutually exclusive.

How will the College support me if I am involved in a Title IX investigation?

Upon receipt of a report of alleged Prohibited Conduct, the College will provide reasonable and appropriate supportive measures designed to eliminate any existing hostile environment and protect all Parties involved. The College will make reasonable efforts to communicate with the Parties to ensure that all safety, emotional, and physical well-being concerns are being addressed. Supportive measures may be implemented regardless of whether a formal complaint is filed by the person who alleges sexual misconduct regardless of whether a crime is reported to Campus Safety or local law enforcement.

What are supportive measures?

Supportive Measures are non-disciplinary services offered as appropriate, reasonably available, and without fee or charge to both the person who reports the sexual misconduct and the person alleged to be responsible for the reported sexual misconduct before or after the filing of a Formal Complaint or where no Formal Complaint has been filed. Supportive measures may include no-contact directives, changes in class or work schedules, changes in College-owned living arrangements, or any other supportive measures that the College deems appropriate. Likewise, the College may work with a reporting student to provide access to on-campus counseling services, provide information regarding off-campus services, increased security monitoring, additional academic support, or even withdrawal from class (or classes) without penalty.

If a formal complaint is filed, how long will it take to resolve the case?

All investigations will be conducted in a timely and impartial manner. Typically, investigations take anywhere from several weeks to a few months to complete. However, both Parties will be informed of the projected timeline for the conclusion of the process and notified if there are significant delays.

What campus and community resources are available to provide support?

On-campus Resources:

  • Ratoya Mason, M.A – Director of Counseling (706-880-8177; rmason3@lagrange.edu)
  • Rev. Ashley Jenkins – Chaplain and Director of Spiritual Life (706-880-8004; ajenkins@lagrange.edu)

Off-Campus Resources:

  • Harmony House, 24-hour hotline, 706-885-1525
  • LaGrange Police Department, 911 for emergencies
  • Domestic Violence Investigator, 706-883-2606
  • Sexual Assault Support Center (Columbus, GA), Crisis Line 706-571-6010
  • West GA Rape Crisis Center (Carrollton, GA), Crisis Line 770-834-7273
  • National Domestic Violence Hotline, 800-799-7233
  • Domestic Abuse Helpline, 888-742-5754