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15. Consensual Relations Policy

Consensual Relations

1. “Sexual relations between students and faculty members with whom they also have an academic or evaluative relationship are fraught with the potential for exploitation. The respect and trust accorded a professor by a student, as well as the power exercised by the professor in an academic or evaluative role, make voluntary consent by the student suspect…In their relationships with students, members of the faculty are expected to be aware of their professional responsibilities are to avoid apparent or actual conflict of interest, favoritism, or bias. When a sexual relationship exists, effective steps should be taken to ensure unbiased evaluation or supervision of the student.” [AAUP Policy cited by AAUP Staff counsel in Sexual Harassment in the Academy: Some Suggestions for Faculty Policies and Procedures, October 2002.]

2. Similar concerns exist when sexual relations occur between students and staff members in supervisory, evaluative, or trust positions.

3. Accordingly, the College of Charleston adopts the following policy regarding consensual relationships between students and faculty or staff:

All sexual relationships between students and faculty/staff are strongly discouraged. Further, no faculty or staff member shall have an amorous relationship (consensual or otherwise) with a student who is enrolled in a course being taught by the faculty member or whose work is being supervised, evaluated, or otherwise impacted by the faculty or staff members.