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Student Rights and Conduct

Pregnancy and Newly Parenting Policy - 3C15

This policy and procedure are established to ensure the protection and equal treatment of pregnant students, students with pregnancy related medical conditions including as a result of termination of pregnancy, and students who become new parents including parents adopting or fostering to adopt for the first 12 weeks a child is in the home, in accordance with Federal and State guidelines and regulations. "New Parents" refers to a parent who has recently welcomed a newborn or adopted a child or is fostering to adopt a child and needs support to mitigate the disruption in academic progress within the first 12 weeks of parenting or a parent that needs support due to medical necessity attributed to pregnancy or delivery of a child; care of newborn; or lactation within the first year of child's life or legal adoption/fostering.

A student may reach out to the Office of Equal Opportunity, Access, and Title IX Coordination (EOA) for a pregnancy or newly parenting related accommodation request, a parental leave of absence request, a program modification request, or to learn about resources on campus. The EOA office will assist in seeking reasonable accommodations for students, to help limit any disruption to their academic progress. There is often more than one way to accommodate a situation or activity. For an accommodation to be considered "reasonable," as used throughout this policy, it must:        '

  1. Maintain essential requirements and learning outcomes of a course, program, job, activity, or facility; and
  2. Not compromise the safety of the student or others or cause an undue administrative or. financial hardship.

A student should reach out to the EOA office as soon as possible upon learning they are expecting or preparing to foster/adopt help mitigate the impact on their academic goals but are not required to do so. Please use this form to start the conversation with a representative from EOA: Pregnancy/Parental Accommodation Request Form This information will be kept confidential until a student is ready to implement the approved accommodation request.

The Title IX 'Coordinator or designee has the authority to determine whether an accommodation is appropriate or necessary; and shall inform faculty members, administration, and staff of the necessity of such accommodation and assist with plan development and implementation as needed. Faculty, administration, and staff will regard all information associated with an accommodation request as confidential and will not share such information unless deemed necessary to implement the accommodation. Students and Faculty shall work together to devise a plan for how to best address the academic needs of a student with pregnancy related medical needs and/or a student newly parenting without modification of the essential elements of any academic program. This plan should include how to prepare for absences, minimize the impact of any absences, any modification of academic responsibilities, and support the student to get back on track as efficiently as possible.

Students with a pregnancy related medical condition are entitled to the following:

  1. Be treated similarly to a student with a temporary disability.

  2. Be given reasonable opportunities to make academic preparations in advance of anticipated leave to minimize the disruption to the student, with the assistance of their faculty.

  3. Be given a reasonable opportunity to make up missed work (papers, quizzes, exams, presentations, labs, practicum hours, ) with extended deadlines where necessary. An Incomplete grade may be entered at the end of the semester if course work is still outstanding and shall be updated to the earned grade after a reasonable opportunity to complete said work is given not to exceed 60 days from date grades are due and in accordance with University Policies.

  4. Reasonable accommodations may include but are not limited to ergonomic considerations, assistive supports, accessible seating, time allowances for completion of work, medically excused absences, alternative class modality, time and place for expressing milk, up to 12 weeks parental leave or as medically necessary, and limited exposure to hazardous substances or conditions.

  5. In situations such as group work, where make-up work may be impractical, the faculty will work with the student to devise an alternative approach to completion and/or fulfillment of academic assessments/goals.

  6. If practical and upon proof of medical necessity, a student shall be granted the ability to attend class virtually. If there are limitations to the educational experience offered in this format, this shall be explained to the student in advance of implementation. If determined to be impractical by both faculty and the EOA Office, a reasonable alternative shall be offered such as opening an online platform link in the classroom to allow the student to access the lecture material, recording lectures and placing them in the learning management system, making slide decks available, or any other process deemed a reasonable accommodation by EOA standards, to ensure the materials are available to the student.

  7. In progressive curricular and/or cohort-model programs, students shall be allowed to shift course order, substitute similar courses, or join a subsequent cohort when returning from leave, as is deemed appropriate.

  8. Be excused for medically necessary absences related to pregnancy or termination of and/or medical appointments for the newborn child for the first twelve weeks from date of birth. This is irrespective of classroom attendance requirements set by faculty members, departments, or divisions.

  9. Lactating individuals shall be allowed a reasonable time and space to express milk in a location that is private, clean, and reasonably accessible. A Bathroom will not satisfy this requirement.

  10. If a student resides in University Housing and wishes to cancel their housing contract or relocate from single-student housing to family housing, they must complete all required housing forms, and provide necessary supporting Fees may be incurred for cancellation of a University Housing contract, and additional expenses required for family housing.

  11. Students who choose to take a parental leave of absence under this policy will not lose their current tuition rate nor forfeit their future eligibility for University funding by exercising this right.

    Students receiving financial aid must consult with the Office of Student Financial Aid prior to taking a leave of absence pursuant to this Policy, to obtain complete information regarding the effect that a leave of absence may have on their current and/or future aid. Students receiving external scholarships, grants, or other awards, should consult with the grantors of those funds, to determine any effects that a leave may cause.

  12. Pregnant or parenting student-athletes may fully participate in their sport, including all team-related activities, unless the student-athlete's physician or other medical caregiver certifies that participation is not medically safe.

    Medically necessary absences from team activities due to pregnancy shall be considered excused absences. No coach or other Athletics department personnel shall discriminate against or suggest to any student-athlete that his or her continued participation on a team will be affected in any way by their pregnancy, parental or marital status.

    Student Athletes may take a parental leave of absence for up to 12 weeks. At the end of the leave, they will be re-instated, renewing their award as long as the student-athlete is in good standing academically, remains a member of the athletic team and meets NCAA eligibility standards.

    Returning students are entitled to the assistance and rehabilitation offered to all student athletes regardless of disability.  Returning students may be evaluated in the same manner as any other team member to determine their specific position on the team.

    If a Student Athlete decides to discontinue their participation in athletics upon completion of their parental leave, their roster spot and/or athletic award will be cancelled and/or not renewed.

  13. Graduate Assistants may take unpaid leave from their assistantship position, for up to 12 weeks, beginning upon the birth of their child. Their contractual stipend amount will only be paid for the hours actually worked. Any tuition waiver will be honored for the semester in which the leave begins.

SIUE will not tolerate any acts or statements that are hostile toward pregnancy, termination of pregnancy, or parenting, or that shun or shame a student because she/he/they are pregnant or parenting. Every student shall enjoy the benefits of our collective community and of the rich educational experience offered at SIUE.

A failure to reasonably accommodate a student as reflected in this policy would constitute pregnancy-based discrimination under the Non-Discrimination/Non-Harassment Policy and shall promptly be reported to the Title IX Coordinator. Any member of the SIUE community may report a violation of this policy. All complaints shall be sent to EOA-Complaint-Form.pdf (siue.edu).

Approved by Chancellor effective 4/14/23
This policy was issued on April 14, 2023.
Document Reference: 6F5
Origin: OC 4/14/23

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