Crisis Assistance for Faculty, Staff, and other Departments
When the Office of Student Life (OSL) receives a call or e-mail about a student, our goal is to determine the best course of action to assist the student within the K-State community. Working with the student’s academic college, we can be supportive of the student and faculty and staff, as well. You will often be the first person to notice that a student needs assistance. We encourage you to use your relationship with the student to help him or her find answers to problems.
When the student’s problems are more than you are comfortable handling, we can help. Together we can develop a plan to help identify appropriate referral services and make a plan for follow-up, when necessary.
When to contact the Office of Student Life
When you notice a student appears confused, distraught, or is not herself or himself and is not following advice or directions:
- Inquire about the problem and get an idea of the issues the student is struggling with.
- Depending on the situation, refer the student to the appropriate resources on campus, such as his or her academic advisor, the college dean’s office, OSL, Counseling Services, or Residence Life.
When you haven’t seen a student in your classroom for a while and you’ve done the following with no success:
- Contacted the student by e-mail and phone to let him or her know you’ve noticed his/her absence and want to talk.
- Asked other faculty members if the student is attending his or her classes and make contact with the student through them.
When you think the Office of Student Life (OSL) needs to know about a student’s situation:
- If you feel a student has issues that are serious in nature, trust your instincts and let us know.
- Many times we can intervene and assist students in making good choices and reaching out to the many support services K-State has available.
Reporting a Student of Concern
Contact the Office of Student Life at 785-532-6432, or use the Student of Concern reporting form.
Students who are having difficulties in class may be experiencing difficulties in other areas of their lives. Please call our office to consult so we can work to develop and action plan to best help students in these situations.
Our office can send a letter or e-mail to inform faculty and staff of a student absence or crisis situation. Notifications may include:
- A call to the student’s college dean’s office to notify faculty members and academic advisors.
- An announcement of an emergency situation that has taken a student away from campus or classes.
- A source of information for you so you can anticipate the absence and when you can expect the student to return to class.
- A written reminder for students that they should work with you to arrange how they will proceed in your course given their absence.
What they are not:
- A requirement that you excuse a student from class. We recognize that faculty members have the freedom to use their discretion concerning a student’s absence from class. Please keep in mind that a student in crisis could benefit from your flexibility.
- A requirement for students. If a student notifies you that he or she will be absent from your class, you can decide to work out the details one-on-one and not involve the college dean’s office or the OSL.
The student is asked to verify the days they miss classes due to doctor appointments, hospitalization, funerals, and other crisis situations. The notification to faculty is based on verification. The student may also share the documentation directly with you, rather than through the Office of Student Life.
As a reminder, K-State does not have a university excused absence policy. Faculty set their course attendance policies in their syllabi. According to the University Handbook, Section F62: Class attendance policies shall be determined by the instructor of each course. Instructors will determine the manner in which missed class work and examinations may be made up. Faculty should make judgments about student absences and may request that students provide them with acceptable documentation for non-crisis situations. Decisions regarding academic accommodations are made at the faculty member’s discretion.
In the case of an on-campus emergency
Faculty and staff can access campus resources through information and contacts for responding to student crises. This is a comprehensive list of student concerns and the campus staff who can respond and provide assistance.
The K-State Crisis Management Committee has developed protocols to use when crises happen on campus. The protocols can assist faculty and staff members in responding in an appropriate manner, utilizing campus resources. The categories of campus crises include: