Policy review and updates

Policy Meeting

June 2021

6.14 Family Medical Leave Act

No changes

6.20 Criminal Background Checks

  • Added “court ordered” to section B.3.
  • Updated the correct description of GRCC Police department throughout the policy.
  • Added item #7 to Policy Statement (Independent Contractors).
  • Removed from the entities affected group….faculty who are academic advisors (they are included as an employee and don’t need to be identified separately).

10.6 Withdrawal & Return of Federal Tuition Assistance (FTA) Funds

  • Clarified Reason for Policy – The Department of Defense requires schools to provide student veterans information on their policy regarding return of Federal Tuition Assistance funds.

6.6 Title IV Loan School Code of Conduct

  • Section B. Interaction with Borrowers – All Direct Loans are assigned to the Federal Government as the lender and have been for some time. The removed lines will eliminate any confusion that a Direct Loan would be assigned to anyone other than the Federal Government. 
  • Section E. Staffing Assistance – Added a small update to include “education sessions” as something that is allowable for the College to accept assistance from a lender on.
  • Code of Conduct, section D. Advisory Board Compensation – In the federal regulations, it includes some specific guidance for any reasonable expenses incurred with participating and how to report those to ED.  

9.1 Fundraising (NEW)

The 9.3 GRCC Foundation fundraising policy was eliminated in 2017 because at that time, it was a policy that reflected only the work of the GRCC Foundation, so there was no need for it to be included in the GRCC Policies. With the shift in the past couple of years to widely accessible fundraising platforms like Gofundme and crowdfunding, there now needs to be a college policy in place to preserve the integrity of the formal GRCC Foundation fundraising efforts and practices. This policy ensures that the College is able to control the types of fundraising that can be conducted in the name of GRCC and the GRCC Foundation.

15.3 Web & Digital Content

II. Policy Name and Subsection: Updated from “Web Content” to “Web & Digital Content”

III. Policy Statement: Removed unnecessary language around an “increasing digital society.” 

IV. Reason for the Policy: Added: “This policy also aims to address problems with social media accounts that are started and abandoned, or have ceased to be updated because of lost passwords. Such problems leave outdated, inaccurate and misbranded information on the social media platforms, damaging the college’s reputation and hindering recruitment and enrollment efforts.”

V. Entities Affected by this Policy: Edited to be more succinct and to include visitors to any of our web properties.

VI.Who Should Read this Policy: Updated to include anyone who wishes to manage a college Web Property.

VII. Related documents: Added: Social media best practices and guidelines.

VIII. Contacts: Added Director of Web & Digital Strategy as co-owner, as well as Vice President for College Advancement and Chief Information Officer for additional contacts.

IX. Definitions

  • Added definitions for Digital Signs, Digital Displays and Web Property. 
  • Edited Web Content definition to expand upon web content and include any GRCC-affiliated Web Property.
  • Social Media: Added TikTok and LinkedIn.

A. GRCC Webpages

  1. Edited to note that training is now provided by the Web and Digital Strategy Dept. rather than Communications and IT, and training is required on a yearly basis to ensure accessibility, branding, quality and timeliness of web content.
  2. New language that encourages departments to rely on the Web Team for editorial needs, but supervisors may identify a primary and secondary web editor. A rationale will be requested for a third editor.
  3. The item that was originally listed as item 3 moved to item 5 in this section. New language: Web editors who do not log in after nine months will lose editor status  due to inactivity and a lapse of practice in applied accessibility and branding standards obtained during training. They will have the option to retrain and resume web editor access at the request of their supervisor.
  4. New language: All web content will be reviewed by the Web and Digital Strategy department for accessibility, branding and quality prior to being published to the website. The Web and Digital Strategy department may make adjustments as needed to meet best practice standards

B. Social Media

  1. Added TikTok and LinkedIn. Edited to note that all social media accounts are managed by the Communications Department.
  2. Item originally listed as 2 moved to item 5. New language: To preserve and promote the college’s brand and reputation and ensure a consistent voice online, faculty and staff requests for a social media account to represent a GRCC entity must be approved by the entity’s ECBO and the GRCC Communications Department prior to creation. Student organizations may create accounts with proper authorization from the Communications Department in conjunction with the Office of Student Life.
  3. New language: “Unauthorized use of the GRCC name, logo or trademarks is strictly prohibited.”
  4. New language: Employees wishing to create a department-, course- or organization-specific social media account must submit a plan to the Director of Communications for maintaining the proposed social media page and ensuring its content is updated and passwords maintained. Social media accounts require regular, active participation to be effective. The plan should include the account’s objectives, intended target audience, and an explanation of why the content requires its own account.
  5. New language: Each social media account will have at least two account administrators assigned in order to maintain access to passwords and contact in an emergency. In addition, all GRCC social media accounts must add the communications director or their designee as an administrator. The Communications Department must be provided with the names of the designated site administrators and the passwords for each page and must be notified if any changes or additions occur in site administrators, to maintain access to passwords and emergency contacts. For accounts maintained by student organizations, passwords and site administrator names must be shared with the Director of Student Life and Conduct, or their designee.
  6. New language: The Communications Department is a resource to help to manage and keep track of accounts as well as promote GRCC-related content to wider audiences on the official accounts when appropriate. The Communications Department is a resource to assist in promotions, growth, and content management for all GRCC social media accounts. Content will only be removed from a social media account if it violates the GRCC Code of Conduct and if it poses an immediate risk to the college. Action would be taken after consulting with the executive budget control officer overseeing the department or organization owning the account. 
  7. New language: The Communications Department will conduct an annual review of all social media accounts to assess effectiveness. The department can offer support and assistance when needed or requested. Accounts that are not updated regularly with appropriate content or are attracting followers will be considered for removal or being merged.
  8. New language: Social media accounts that do not follow the guidelines documented in this policy may not be linked from any official GRCC web property, including the GRCC website.

C. New Section: Digital Signs

  1. Schools, departments and/or units that request digital signs are responsible for the funding of equipment, licenses and installation costs. 
  2. All new requests for digital sign technologies must be approved by the requesting department’s executive budget control officer, Facilities, IT and the Web and Digital Strategy Department prior to installation.
  3. All digital signs must use Carousel software to ensure crisis communications may be published and displayed campus-wide.
  4. Once equipment is approved by IT and prior to installation, content to be displayed on digital signs must be coordinated, created and approved through GRCC Web and Digital Strategy team in order to maintain branding, accessibility and best practices
  5. New sign installation must be coordinated through IT in order to ensure consistent technological and installation requirements. 
  6. All digital sign content requests must be submitted to the Web and Digital Strategy team at least three weeks in advance to the requested publish date in order to ensure time for design and content creation.
  7. All digital sign content requests will be reviewed  by the Web and Digital Strategy team prior to publishing. The Web and Digital Strategy team may edit content to ensure readability and accessibility prior to publishing.
  8. All digital signs will run for no less than one week, and no more than two, unless extenuating circumstances arise, which may be planned in collaboration with the Web and Digital Strategy team.

D. New Section: Additional Web Properties and Digital Content

  1. To ensure security, quality, branding and federal accessibility compliance as outlined by the Americans with Disabilities Act – Sections 503 and 508; any web property affiliated with Grand Rapids Community College must be approved by the Web and Digital Strategy and/or Communications departments prior to being published or shared online.
  2. Any web property created on behalf of Grand Rapids Community College without the proper approval may be subject to removal at the discretion of the Web and Digital Strategy and/or Communications departments. The unit, division, department, office, institute, center, committee, group, or individual that created the account will be required to comply.
  3. To ensure the security and ability to recover web properties and accounts, web properties may only be created using an official GRCC email account. 

II. Forms

Added two forms: Social Media Account Request and Digital Sign Request

V. Next review/revision date

May, 2023 or TBD, depending on need to address/include language on new LED signage when that is up and running

10.1 Tuition & Fees

  • Requirement for age of student changed from 24 to 26
  • An armed forces service member on active duty, their spouse, and/or dependent child will qualify for non-resident tuition once they have resided in Michigan for 30 days. Appropriate documentation must be provided to the Veteran’s Benefits Office prior to the start of the semester.           
  • All veterans and their dependents using benefits who have recently moved to Michigan will immediately qualify for non-resident tuition rates. They must present proof of veteran status and educational benefit eligibility to the Veteran’s Benefits Office prior to the start of the semester.
  • VA has different requirements for schools related to active duty versus veterans; the 30 day waiting period required for active-duty students is needed to confirm active-duty student’s posting location. GRCC is required to provide non-resident tuition to veterans immediately per the VA.

3.3 Ethics Reporting (NEW)

  • Incorporates the Ethics Monitoring System information into a formal policy and identifies related policies.
  • Establishes reporting expectations for employees.
  • Intended to provide guidance and clarity around GRCC ethics reporting processes and responses.
  • Includes contact information for General Counsel and Human Resources if employees have questions.
  • Developed in conjunction with the new ‘Roadmap for Leaders” which provides more detail about investigations of employee related concerns.
  • The Policy was been reviewed to ensure that there are no conflicts with the Roadmap.