Schools aren’t always great at protecting the rights of students. As a student, though, you have a right to be treated fairly and to have your rights as a human being honored. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case, even in the best of schools. If you find yourself in a position in which this isn’t happening, you’ll need to follow the advice below.
Choose the Right School
This may go without saying, but the best way to ensure that your rights are protected is to pick a school at which you won’t have to fight for them. Do some research before you go to college, speaking to current students and faculty when you can. The better the reputation your school has for standing up for its students, the less of a chance there is that you will encounter any problems. Not only does this ease the burden on you, but it also supports those colleges that make an effort to take proper care of their student body. If you are unsure of the standing your school has with students rights, do some research and try these other steps to give your school a chance to prove themselves.
Reach Out to Student Services
Most students would be amazed by how often problems can be solved without having to escalate. If you notice that there’s a problem on campus that is infringing upon your rights as a student, reaching out to Student Services can make a huge impact. In fact, most things can be solved by speaking to the right people and starting with Student Services is usually the best way to find the person to whom you need to speak. If the University has a genuine concern for their students, then student services will be well equipped to help you solve your issue.
Talk to the Dean
If Student Services won’t help, you’ll need to go up the ladder to someone with more power. The dean of an individual school generally has a great deal of leeway to make decisions that impact students and requesting a meeting can be far easier than you might imagine. While most deans will be happy to hear out students, not all of them will actually take action. Still, talking to a dean helps to show that you’ve exhausted your options before taking any other steps. It also provides the dean the opportunity to hear first-hand what is affecting students and take the opportunity to fix things in larger policy changes.
Get Lawsuit Funding
If talking doesn’t work, you may need to fight. Unfortunately, schools tend to have more resources than individual students and it can be hard to fight when you’re broke. That’s where lawsuit funding for plaintiff students come in, allowing that who have legitimate cases to move forward even when they can’t afford legal fees. Having financial backing can take some of the pressure off of you and put you in a better position to press your case against your school.
No student should ever be forced to fight for his or her own rights. If you find yourself in that position, though, you need to know how to make your case in the most effective manner. While simple conversation can often suffice, don’t be afraid to use the legal system when necessary.