1.38 Improper Sexual or Romantic Relationships Policy

I. Purpose

Central Piedmont Community College employees are supported in carrying out the mission of the College through an atmosphere of professionalism, academic integrity, trust, and respect. Professionalism, academic integrity, trust, and respect are diminished when those in positions of power abuse their power. Actions of faculty members, supervising administrators, other employees, or students which harm the College's atmosphere of trust and respect undermine professionalism, damage the academic integrity of the College, and hinder the fulfillment of the College's educational mission.

Relationships between faculty members and students and between supervising administrators and the employees they advise, counsel, supervise, or evaluate impose a special burden of responsibility and accountability.

II. Definition

Improper Sexual or Romantic Relationships: any sexual or romantic relationship between a faculty member or employee who engages in advisory, counseling, instructional, or evaluative activities and any student who is enrolled in a course being taught by that person or whose academic work is being supervised or evaluated by that person; any sexual or romantic relationship between a supervising administrator and someone the supervising administrator advises, counsels, evaluates, or directly or indirectly supervises in any way; and any sexual or romantic relationship between any College employee and any student or employee who is less than 18 years of age.

III. Policy

No faculty member or supervising administrator shall initiate, pursue, or be involved in an improper sexual or romantic relationship with any employee or student who is advised, counseled, evaluated by, or supervised directly or indirectly or whose job performance is reviewed or evaluated by that person. However, in accordance with Policy 1.41 Sexual Misconduct Policy, some forms of harassment may also violate the College’s policy against Sexual Misconduct under Title IX.

IV. Procedures for Reporting and Investigating Improper Sexual or Romantic Relationships

A. Any supervising administrator who receives an improper sexual or romantic relationship complaint, or who has knowledge of such a relationship, shall inform his/her immediate supervisor and Human Resources. Human Resources will investigate all improper sexual or romantic relationship complaints.

B. Any College employee may report an improper sexual or romantic relationship, or alleged improper sexual or romantic relationship, to his/her immediate supervisor. If the relationship involves the immediate supervisor, or if the employee prefers, the employee may report the relationship to the next level of management or to Human Resources pursuant to the Improper Sexual or Romantic Relationship Procedures.

V. Disciplinary Action

Central Piedmont will not tolerate improper sexual or romantic relationships, nor will it tolerate any form of retaliation against any employee or student who has brought good-faith concerns to the attention of the College or who has properly participated in the investigation or resolution of such concerns. Anyone found in violation of these provisions is subject to discipline, up to and including dismissal.

The College recognizes that romantic relationships may develop between employees or faculty members that if undisclosed would lead to situations in violation of this policy. In such circumstances, the College encourages the employees or faculty members involved in such a relationship to disclose its existence to Human Resources. In circumstances where such early, voluntary disclosure is made, the College shall have the option of waiving the investigation and disciplinary procedures contained in this policy and addressing the new relationship through any means the College deems appropriate, including reassignment. This option is not available in the event of any improper sexual or romantic relationship involving a student.

Related Procedures

Improper Sexual or Romantic Relationships Procedures


Changes approved by the Board of Trustees on May 6, 2020

Changes approved by Cabinet on January 25, 2005; June 5, 2006; August 10, 2015