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Interim Policy: Housing Hold Review Process

Photograph of bikes in a residential complex on-campus.

I. Introduction

“Breach of university policies; conduct in violation of the rights of others; misrepresentation of facts during the assignment process or on your housing application; or violation of the terms of the Residence Agreement or any supplemental house agreement may result in the immediate termination of your occupancy and/or the withdrawal of future university housing privileges [“housing hold”], and may result in university disciplinary action under Stanford’s Fundamental Standard of student conduct.” (Residence Agreement)

“By taking occupancy in a residence, you become a member of that residence community. You agree to accept the responsibilities and obligations associated therewith. You agree to be considerate of other residents and staff and to respect the rights of others at all times. Conduct in violation of the rights of others is grounds for immediate termination of your occupancy in university housing and/or the withdrawal of future university housing privileges. If there is a reported violation of the Residence Agreement through misconduct or behavior that negatively affects the community, Residential Education and/ or the Graduate Life Office will respond through the Residence Deans or the Graduate Life Office Deans.”  (Residence Agreement)

II. Housing Hold Overview

The Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Residential Education may place a student on a housing hold if they violate the terms of the Residence Agreement or if misconduct occurs in or proximate to a residence/ residential program and Residential Education determines in the exercise of its judgment and following an individualized assessment that a student reasonably meets one or more of the following criteria.  The student:

  1. Presents a substantial risk of harm to self or others or has engaged in threatening or violent activities;
  2. Significantly disrupts the educational or other activities of the residential community;
  3. Is unable or unwilling to carry out substantial self-care obligations with or without a reasonable accommodation or to participate meaningfully in educational/ community activities; or
  4. Requires a level of care from the residential community that exceeds the resources and staffing that the University can reasonably be expected to provide for a student’s well-being.

A housing hold may be warranted in cases involving multiple incidents of misconduct indicating an alleged pattern of behavior or a single significant incident of misconduct. 

III. Review of Behavior and Written Decision

  1. Where appropriate and feasible, the Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Residential Education or designee will notify a student that their housing status is under review. In rare situations involving an imminent or ongoing threat to the residential community, it may be appropriate for Residential Education to require the student to be away from the residence(s) or relocated to another residence (which may be off campus) while the review is taking place. Students are expected to cooperate with residential staff through this process.  
  2.  The Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Residential Education may assign/ offer a Residence Dean to the student for support as they participate in the housing hold review or other university processes.
  3.  The Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Residential Education may consider relevant documentation made available to them. They may also confer with individuals who have relevant information about the behavior of the student. Although each case will vary, conferring individuals could include:
  • The student’s Residence Dean, or Deans of Graduate Life
  • Residential staff, Resident Fellows, local residential/ professional staff (e.g. custodians, dining staff, program directors)
  • Academic Advising Director; Undergraduate Advising & Research
  • Dean of Students or designee
  • Office of Alcohol Policy and Education staff
  • SUDPS or Care Team members
  • Office of Accessible Education staff
  • Other members of the university community

4.    The Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Residential Education will provide an opportunity for the student to respond to the alleged behavioral concerns.  Students are encouraged to participate in this process. If a student declines to respond or fails to timely respond, the process may proceed without the student’s participation.

5.    Although the Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Residential Education will be advised by others, the decision to impose a housing hold is ultimately the Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Residential Education’s after conducting an individualized assessment of the student’s situation. The Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Residential Education must provide written notice of the decision to the student.

6.    If a housing hold is placed, the written decision must address: 1) a time-frame when the student could be eligible to return to housing; and 2) if applicable, the conditions the student will need to satisfy to be eligible for return.

7.    If the decision is made not to place the student on a housing hold, the Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Residential Education may require conditions for the student’s continued housing at Stanford.

8.    Unless the letter from the Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Residential Education states otherwise, the placement of a housing hold is effective immediately.

9.    All reviews under this policy should be done in a reasonably timely manner. Every effort will be made by the Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Residential Education to reach a decision within 7 business days, provided the student responds timely to requests for information.

IV. Request for Reconsideration to the Vice Provost for Student Affairs

1.    A student has five working days from the receipt of the letter from the Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Residential Education to submit a request for reconsideration of the decision with the Vice Provost for Student Affairs (as noted in the written notification to the student). The request may relate to the decision itself and/or the conditions placed to remain or to return. The Vice Provost for Student Affairs’ review should be limited to:

  • Were the proper facts and criteria brought to bear on the decision? Were improper or extraneous facts or criteria brought to bear that substantially affected the decision to the detriment of the student?
  • Were there any procedural irregularities that substantially affected the outcome of the matter to the detriment of the student?
  • Given the proper facts, criteria and procedures, was the decision reasonable?

2.    If a student chooses to submit a request for reconsideration of the decision, they must move out of the residence at the time specified in the letter. They may not wait for the conclusion of the review of the request to move out of the residence.  

3.    The Vice Provost for Student Affairs may:

  • Uphold the Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Residential Education’s decision without any modifications;
  • Modify the Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Residential Education’s decision;
  • Overturn the Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Residential Education’s decision; or
  • Return the decision to the Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Residential Education for further review.

V.  Return to Housing

1.    Except in extraordinary circumstances, a student will not be permitted to return to University housing until the housing hold period specified in the Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Residential Education’s letter has elapsed and any conditions for return have been satisfied. 

2.    Once the duration of the housing hold has concluded, a student may apply for University housing through the Student Housing R&DE website.  The student is responsible for meeting all Student Housing/ R&DE application deadlines for requisite quarters.

3.    A student may request to return early.  That request can be submitted in writing to the Associate Vice Provost and Dean of Residential Education, who will determine whether the student has met the conditions of their leave (if applicable) and conduct an individualized assessment as to whether the student is ready for return. If a student is not permitted to return early, they may request reconsideration of the decision under section IV above.  

VI. Housing Hold’s Interaction with Other University Matters

1.    A housing hold is an administrative process; it is not a disciplinary process. It is possible that conduct leading to housing hold may also be subject to review under the University’s disciplinary process through the Office of Community Standards. Nothing in this process limits the authority of the Office of Community Standards.  Nothing in this process limits the power of the President to take administrative action to ensure the safety of the community. Nothing in this process limits the University’s ability to place enrollment holds on students for reasons beyond the scope of the Residence Agreement, including but not limited to outstanding financial obligations, failure to register, academic standing or disciplinary suspension.

2.    Nothing in this process relieves a student of financial obligations to the University that were in place at the time a housing hold was placed.  Furthermore, see Residence Agreement: “If you move out of housing and you are not eligible to cancel your contract according to the terms of this agreement, you will be billed at a contract-breaker rate for the remainder of the academic year.” 

3.    Where a student has been referred to the Dean’s Leave of Absence process, any consideration of a housing hold will be made as part of that process, rather than this Housing Hold Review Process. 

4.    As necessary, students should consult the Residence Agreement, Stanford Bulletin and other university offices’ publications for complete information regarding other University matters.

VII. Transcripts

Transcripts will not document a housing hold.

IX. Academic Considerations                       

“All enrolled freshmen and transfer students are required to live in a University residence designated by R&DE Student Housing Assignments. During the first year, losing eligibility for university housing will also likely lead to a loss of student status, unless an extraordinary exemption is granted from the Office of the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education.“ (Residence Agreement)

IX. Confidentiality

The University recognizes the sensitive and private nature of considering a housing hold. Residential Education’s use and disclosure of such information will be guided by laws governing the privacy of student information, such as FERPA, and the limited exceptions for disclosure provided by law.

  • Note: A downloadable copy of this policy may be accessed by clicking here.