The team meets weekly at 10:00 AM every Wednesday when classes are in session. The agenda is fluid and is coordinated by the Dean of Students. The Chair may call an emergency meeting when the problem is urgent and an immediate response is necessary.
Reporting and Record Keeping
The University has a student conduct database including an incident reporting form that all University community members may use to report student behavior they are concerned about. This reporting form is to be used by members of the community who are not part of an established reporting community (such as Residence Life Incident Reporting Form, the Academic Integrity Reporting Form, and Campus Security Authority Report Form). Although the incident reporting form requests the identity and contact information of the reporter to allow follow-up and clarification of information, anonymous reports will be accepted. Reports missing contact information may adversely affect the team’s ability to fully respond to identified concerns.
The Ethics Hotline is also available for those wishing to report anonymously. Access to the reporting form is narrowly restricted and access to the database is restricted to members of a particular team. The database allows the team to track reports and team member actions taken by team members and collectively to resolve problems. If a situation is an emergency and requires immediate response, dial 911 or Safety and Security (417-836-5509) to request emergency services.
Examples of incidents and situations that are addressed by the Team include classroom disruption, behaviors that may pose a threat to the physical safety or well-being of individuals or groups, and conflicts among individuals or groups that have the potential to escalate and pose a disruption to elements of the University community. Additionally, the BIT examines trends in student behavior suggested by observation and information obtained from professional meetings and literature.
Response and Follow-Through
Upon receiving a report, the Chair has a range of options.
- The first step may be to contact the reporter, obtain additional information as needed, and provide the reporter with recommended actions which may include other campus resources.
- Another early step may be contacting the student exhibiting concerning behavior for a meeting. Meeting goals may include sharing the concern with the student (while maintaining reporter anonymity), learning if the student identifies with the stated problem or has a different experience to share, exploring with the student possible options the student may undertake, and developing a plan of action.
- The Chair may forward the report to the Case Manager or a particular member of the BIT for responses outlined above.
- Regardless of the initial assessment and actions taken, a database case will be created, discussed at the next BIT meeting, and additional actions may be suggested or the case may be recommended to be closed. Committee recommendations will also be recorded in the database.
- Follow-up with the reporter or student may be recommended at different points in the process as either may be in need of support and monitoring.
Following resolution of a situation, there may be a need to evaluate the level and effectiveness of response, the impact of an outcome on individuals, groups, departments, and the University as a whole, and any implications for changes in policies, practices, or procedures.
Records maintained by the Behavioral Intervention Team are subject to the University policy on student educational records and may only be disclosed under provisions outlined in the Family Educational Records and Privacy Act (FERPA).