What is a bias incident?
A bias incident can be behavior taken by an individual or group based on negative or hostile prejudgements (implicit or explicit) that may involve but is not limited to, assault, bullying, coercion, damage to property, sending of threatening mail or e-mail, graffiti, stalking, verbal harassment and other bias-motivated behavior that is so severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive that an individual is effectively denied equal access to institutional benefits and opportunities.
Bias may be directed toward individuals based on, but not limited to, their age, disability, ethnicity, gender, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, or other social identities. All of these acts are antithetical to the University’s and the School of Education's values of inclusion, diversity, equity, and social justice. While such acts may be focused on one individual or group, these acts negatively impact our entire community.
The Dean of the School of Education is committed to ensuring a welcoming and inclusive environment for all students, faculty and staff in the School of Education. If you have any concerns regarding bias or prejudice to include racist, sexist, homophobic behavior, discriminatory comments; or inequitable treatment in the education environment, please report them using the form below:
- VCU Helpline and Reporting
(For asking a question regarding ethics, compliance, or company policy; for reporting an incident regarding issues such as harassment, theft, and substance abuse; or for checking the status of a question or report)
For students: You may also contact Dr. Tomika Ferguson, the School of Education's Assistant Dean for Student Affairs and Inclusive Excellence, at email@example.com. For other complaints, contact the VCU Dean of Students Office.
For faculty and staff: You may also contact Terri Dickerson, the School of Education's Director of Human Resources, at firstname.lastname@example.org or William E. King, the VCU Ombudsperson, for confidential, informal dispute resolution at email@example.com.
We will work to ensure the privacy of all parties while seeking to gather information to address your concerns.
What happens after an incident is reported?
Reported concerns go directly to VCU Equity and Access Services (EAS). EAS completes its review based on areas it has responsibility for (discrimination based on protected classes and sexual misconduct) before the concern is ever routed to the School of Education.
If the matter involves only students, it goes to the Division of Student Affairs to be handled in conjunction with the School of Education. If it involves a faculty or staff member, it is routed to the Integrity and Compliance Office (ICO) in Audit and Compliance Services for handling, which may include support from the School of Education or another central office (such as research or human resources, depending on the issue), with oversight and assistance from the Integrity and Compliance Office.
Within the School of Education, concerns are handled in the dean's office under the supervision of the assistant dean for student affairs and inclusive excellence. If the complaint involves a faculty or staff member, the department chair or supervisor is notified and, if appropriate, is engaged in the process. Meetings are scheduled with the complainant and the respondent to better understand the concerns, and meetings together are encouraged if all parties are comfortable. Efforts are made to arrive at resolution to the concerns reported.
If faculty, staff, or students desire consultation with an outside party during this process, they may contact the Office of the Ombudsperson at 804-827-4357 for confidential and informal dispute resolution processes.