Grievance Process for Residents of Participating NC-SARA States, Districts and Territories
United States federal guidelines require that distance learning and related activities offered to residents outside of an institution’s home state are regulated. To comply with these guidelines, St. Joseph’s University New York has joined the National Council of State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements (NC-SARA), which establishes a set of recognized standards and regulations for offering postsecondary online education. NC-SARA works in conjunction with four regional education compacts (Midwestern Higher Education Compact, New England Board of Higher Education, Southern Regional Education Board and the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education) and membership is open to all degree-granting postsecondary institutions accredited by an agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education. For a current list of states, districts and territories that participate in NC-SARA, please visit the NC-SARA website.
NC-SARA consumer protection provisions and complaint resolution policies apply to interstate distance education delivered by SARA-participating institutions to students in other SARA states*. A student residing in a SARA state other than that of the institution they are attending has the right to file a complaint or grievance resulting from distance education courses, activities and operations. NC-SARA provides detailed information about the student complaint process in relation to their policies.
Under NC-SARA rules, students have the right to lodge a complaint or grievance if that student’s experience in an online program is not what they anticipate. SJNY wants to ensure that all student complaints are addressed fairly and resolved promptly. Students must contact the following distance education administrator to file a formal complaint, which will then be reviewed and addressed in a timely manner by the appropriate St. Joseph’s University administration, department, and/or staff.
Dr. Amy Poland
Associate Dean and Director of Online Learning
155 West Roe Boulevard
Patchogue, New York 11772
Students who are not satisfied with the outcome of the institutional process for handling complaints may appeal, within two years of the incident about which the complaint is made, to the New York SARA Portal Entity via the New York State Education Department (NYSED), which publishes complaint process instructions, along with a complaint form, on their website. The State Portal Entity (SPE) for NC-SARA is:
*Grievances regarding a SARA institution’s in-state operations are resolved under the state’s normal provisions rather than through SARA. Complaints about grades or conduct violations are subject entirely to institutional policy and the laws of the SARA institution’s home state. Allegations of criminal offenses or alleged violations of a state’s general-purpose laws may be made directly to the relevant state agencies.
Grievance Process for Non-NC-SARA Residents
To be in compliance with the United States Department of Education’s Program Integrity regulations, St. Joseph’s University, New York is required to provide all prospective and current students with the contact information of the state agency or agencies that handle complaints against post-secondary education institutions offering distance learning within that state. Prior to filling out a complaint with the state we encourage our students to try to resolve any issue by following steps outlined on the “Grievance Processes” page found on the student portal. Students who deem their issue not solved at the institutional level and who wish to file a complaint regarding St. Joseph’s University may do so by contacting:
Middle States Commission on Higher Education
3624 Market Street 2nd Floor West
Philadelphia, PA 19104