For faculty who wish to support their students who have experienced sexual assault, harassment, dating violence or stalking, the syllabus presents a unique and proactive opportunity to educate every student about their rights and resources on campus. Survivors of sexual assault are significantly more likely to experience depression, anxiety, PTSD, and substance abuse. Because survivors often experience shame, stigma, and self-blame, it can be difficult for them to seek resources for support. By placing information in a syllabus, faculty provide an opportunity for students to have easy and private access to information on their rights, resources and reporting options. By including this statement, we are taking steps to create a safer campus and a better community at Cal Poly both inside and outside of the classroom.
Additionally, all faculty and staff - with the exception of licensed counselors at Counseling Services and state-certified advocates at Safer - have mandatory reporting responsibilities under Title IX (read more here). In order to help ensure that students are making informed decisions about sharing their personal experiences, it is best practice to provide information up front about your mandatory reporting responsibilities. If you have questions regarding your reporting responsibilities, please contact Safer or Title IX.
Sample syllabus language regarding sexual misconduct and confidentiality can be found below:
SEXUAL MISCONDUCT AND CONFIDENTIALITY
Cal Poly is committed to fostering a safe, productive learning environment for all students. Title IX and CSU policy prohibit discrimination on the basis of sex, which includes sexual harassment, domestic and dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking. We understand that sexual violence can undermine students’ academic success and we encourage students who have experienced some form of sexual misconduct to access appropriate resources so they can get the support they need and deserve.
As an instructor, I have a mandatory reporting responsibility as a part of my role. It is my goal that you feel comfortable to share information related to your life experiences in classroom discussions, in your written work, and in our one-on-one meetings. I will seek to keep information you share private to the greatest extent possible. However, I am required to report information I receive regarding sexual misconduct or information about a crime that may have occurred during your time at Cal Poly. There are several on campus resources available to support survivors. Please see the list below:
Students can report incidents of alleged sexual misconduct to either or both of the following resources:
- Office of Equal Opportunity (Title IX)| email@example.com | 805-756-6770 | equalopportunity.calpoly.edu
- Cal Poly Police Department | firstname.lastname@example.org | 805-756-2281 | afd.calpoly.edu/police
Students can access confidential support from two separate resources on campus:
- Safer | email@example.com | 805-756-2282 | safer.calpoly.edu
- Counseling Services | firstname.lastname@example.org | 805-756-2511 | chw.calpoly.edu/counseling
A 24-hour confidential hotline for survivors is also available through the local San Luis Obispo non-profit RISE at 855-886-7473.