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Policy Development and Management

Approved by: President
Responsible Officer: Vice President for Human Resources
Responsible Office: Human Resources
Originally Issued: 04/27/2020
Last Revision: New
Category: Administrative
Related Policy
SD BOR 1.6.C (2.2) and (2.5) Appointment, Authority, and Responsibilities of Presidents and Superintendents

I. REASON FOR THIS POLICY

This policy establishes the process for creating new, revising existing, or repealing existing University policies and procedures to ensure that the Dakota State University has institutional policies that are up-to-date, coherent, user-friendly, consistent, regulatory compliant, and widely available to the University community.  

II. DEFINITIONS

  1. Approved By. Only the President shall provide final policy approval.
  2. Category. Group by which a policy is sorted for ease of user accessibility.
  3. History. Appears at end of a policy and briefly lists each change made in a policy over time with date.
  4. Last Revision Date. Date the policy was last significantly changed.
  5. Originally Issued Date. Date the policy was originally approved.
  6. Policy. Formalizes how the University functions in its operations (why and what). Provides the transparent, consistent direction needed to coordinate and execute activity throughout the institution. Policy governs institutional procedures and changes infrequently.
  7. Policy Committee. Annually appointed by University President. Reviews policy requests submitted to the University Policy Officer. Provides feedback about policy templates and process. As needed for a specific policy, responsible to obtain feedback from respective constituent areas. Makes recommendations to Cabinet.
  8. Policy Library. Website containing University policies by category, policy template, new policies, policies under review, and archival information.
  9. Policy Officer. Charged with stewardship of the policy development and management process (guides Responsible Officers and Responsible Offices through the policy request form, template use, draft editing to ensure clarity/coherence, and maintenance of the policy online library). Consults with legal counsel to determine when a policy needs legal review. Designs, implements, and maintains policy development templates, forms, and operating procedures. Facilitates meetings of the University Policy Committee.
  10. Policy Revisions (Non-Significant). At times the University must make amendments or corrections to policy for changes that are editorial (e.g., website links, numbering, formatting). The University will make these changes and post revised policy without going through the formal policy development process.
  11. Policy Revisions (Significant). Amendments to existing institutional policy that result in substantive changes (e.g., significant differences in essential principles, scope, or application) shall go through the institutional policy development process.
  12. Policy Sponsor. A member of President's Cabinet with whom the Responsible Officer under their jurisdiction collaborates to  initiate a new policy, significantly revise existing policy, or repeal existing policy.
  13. Policy Template. Standardized form used by all individuals engaged in policy development and subject to update by the Policy Officer as needed.
  14. Procedures. Minimal established methods required to implement a University policy successfully. Procedures are guardrails for the policy to ensure that employees achieve results through a series of uniform, repetitive steps or cycles. Procedures refer to processes that describe “how, when, and who” rather than results, and while procedures may change over time for continuous improvement and/or to comply with new legal requirements, each published iteration of procedure shall be the required steps to follow and the forms/documents to use. Procedures do not include granular details of performing job tasks.
  15. Reason for This Policy. Statement on the front page of the policy that explains why the policy exists. Identifies any legal or regulatory requirements, any University risk, and relevant connection to the University mission.
  16. Related Documents, Forms, and Tools. Related documents, forms, and tools provide instructions and set out processes to implement a policy.
  17. Responsible Office. Develops and administers a policy, which includes dissemination of the policy, development of procedures where appropriate, communication and training related to the policy, and policy revisions as needed. Consults with the University Policy Officer regarding policy development process and content.
  18. Responsible Officer. Collaborates with a member of President's Cabinet. Designates the Responsible Office within a department/office under jurisdiction that develops, revises, and administers a policy or supporting documents. Annually initiates the five-year policy review cycle.
  19. Statement of Policy. Concise, high level, formal statement with broad application throughout the University, or to major components of the University, that indicates how the University will act in an aspect of its operation. Helps ensure compliance with applicable laws and regulations, promotes operational efficiencies, supports the University's mission, and reduces risk to the institution. Should be developed for any area of the University's operation where direction or purpose needs to be set in order to conduct University business and to influence decisions and actions.
  20. Unit. Identifies a work entity/section/office within the university organization. Units are categorized in four ways: a) academic, b) administrative, c) co-curricular, and d) committee.

III. STATEMENT OF POLICY

  1. Policy Alignment with Mission. University policies and procedures connect the University's mission and values to everyday activities and operational functions and clarify and define the University's expectations of its campus community. No unit at the University may adopt or maintain a unit-level policy that is inconsistent with, conflicts with, appears to or otherwise expands the obligations of the University and its mission beyond those set forth in official policies without written approval from the President.
  2. Policy and Operational Effectiveness. University policies enhance efficiency and fairness, mitigate risk, and support compliance with all applicable federal and state laws, regulations, and South Dakota Board of Regents policies.
  3. Policy Applicability. This policy applies to systemwide University policies and procedures related to administrative, business, and safety functions that affect many or most University units.
  4. Policy Accountability. Dakota State University formally approves, issues, and maintains in a consistent format official university policies in a central public online library. Individuals engaged in developing and maintaining University policies shall follow the requirements outlined in this policy.
  5. Policy Review for Updating Timeline. University policies and procedures shall be reviewed through the policy development procedures process within a five-year timeframe.
  6. University Oversight. The President, or designee, reserves the right to amend, modify, delete, or add any policy at any time in order to meet the needs of the University community, to comply with law, or any other University-determined reason.

Exclusions

The President, or designee, shall determine exclusions that apply to processes and procedures that only affect operations within a single unit or limited number of units.

Exceptions

While all employees and students are expected to follow University policies, the President, or designee, may grant exceptions to University policy for good cause shown, such as unusual facts or rare circumstances that make adherence to the University policy impossible or impractical. Exception requests shall be submitted in writing and granted or denied in writing.

IV. PROCEDURES (MAJOR)

  1. Institutional Policy Process: Non-Significant Revisions to Existing Policy
    • 1.1 Revising Existing Policy. A Responsible Officer recognizing need to revise existing policy shall contact the Policy Officer to determine if the revisions are significant or non-significant.
      1. Non-Significant Revisions of Existing Policy. A Responsible Officer shall work with the Policy Officer to make non-significant policy revisions which shall go directly to President's Cabinet for review, President's (or designee's) approval, and posting.
      2. Significant Revisions of Existing Policy. If significant revisions are needed, the Responsible Officer shall submit a policy request to go through the institutional policy development process as outlined below.
  1. Institutional Policy Process: New Policy, Significant Revisions to Existing Policy, or Repealing Existing Policy
    • 2.1Policy Sponsorship. A Responsible Officer shall collaborate with a Policy Sponsor (a member of President's Cabinet) to initiate a request for new policy, significant revision to existing policy, or repealing of existing policy.  Individuals, departments, colleges, programs, offices, or other administrative or operating units shall make policy recommendations through a Responsible Officer.
    • 2.2 Policy Request Form. The Responsible Office designated by the Responsible Officer shall submit a completed Policy Request Form to the Policy Officer for review by the Policy Committee.
    • 2.3 Policy Committee Review of Policy Request. This committee shall review the policy request and send its recommendations to Cabinet. The committee shall not have the authority to approve or deny the policy request.
    • 2.4 Cabinet Review of Policy Request. After review of the Policy Request Form, recommendations from the University Policy Committee, consultation with the University Policy Officer and legal counsel, if warranted, Cabinet shall send all recommendations to the President. If Cabinet denies the policy request as submitted, it shall not move forward.
    • 2.5 President Policy Request Decision. The President shall, after review of all recommendations, approve or deny the policy request.
    • 2.6 Draft Preparation. The Policy Officer shall guide the Responsible Office in, but not limited to, the following areas: format, clarity, and consistency. The Responsible Office shall use the University policy template that contains, at a minimum, the following content:
      1. Reason for Policy
      2. Definitions
      3. Statement of Policy
        • Exclusions
        • Exceptions
      4. Procedures
      5. Related Documents, Forms, and Tools
      6. History
    • 2.7 Cabinet Review of Policy Draft. The Policy Officer shall submit the initial policy draft to Cabinet for review and recommendations. Cabinet shall make recommendations for addition revisions as needed or approve “posting for comment” as is.
    • 2.8 Posting Draft Policy for Comment. The Policy Officer shall post the policy draft to the campus community (councils, committees, colleges, departments, etc.) for 30 days with targeted communications to groups most impacted as needed and compile feedback for the Responsible Office.
    • 2.9 Revisions. The Responsible Office shall revise the policy draft as warranted by constituency feedback.
    • 2.10 Final Cabinet Review. Cabinet shall review the final policy. The President, or designee, shall approve the policy or send it back to the Responsible Office for further modification or consultation.
    • 2.11 Policy Publication. Once approved, the Policy Officer shall date, publicly post, and communicate the new policy and/or significant changes to affected constituencies.
    • 2.12 Policy Implementation. The Responsible Officer shall ensure that the new, significantly revised, or repealed policy is operationalized.
    • 2.13 Policy Maintenance/Evaluation. The Responsible Office shall be accountable to field questions about the new, significantly revised, or repealed policy, provide clarifying information if needed, and complete formal review of policy within its jurisdiction at least once every five years to ensure continued policy applicability or repeal.

Policy Categories

Each University policy shall be identified by category and published in the online library under that same category to make location of policy user-friendly.

  1. Academics: Policies and procedures relating to the establishment and management of academic degrees and honors.
  2. Administrative: Policies and procedures regarding governance of the University (President, Provost, Cabinet, University structure, University committees, Assessment).
  3. Athletics: Policies and procedures addressing intercollegiate sports (women's, men's, co-ed) and support systems, including but not limited to, the Trojan Athletic Club (TAC), Trojans Unite Campaign, and Corporate Sponsors.
  4. Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion: Policies and procedures related to discrimination, harassment, disability-related reasonable accommodation, religious accommodation/expression, recruitment, recruitment exceptions, web accessibility, child protection, sexual violence response, student preferred name, and related policies. Note: These policies may be repeated in other categories.
  5. Facilities and Real Estate: Policies and procedures that allow for the effective management, maintenance, and development of University-owned or operated structures.
  6. Finance, Business, and Auxiliary Services: Policies and procedures related to the University's financial records, budget, payroll, accounting, assessment management, and equipment/service purchasing to meet the University's needs.
  7. Foundation/Donations. Policies and procedures related to the DSU Foundation and charitable contributions made to the University.
  8. Human Resources/Employment: Policies and procedures addressing, but not limited to, employee recruitment, employment, benefits, retention, conflict management, ethics, equal employment opportunity, affirmative action, separation, and recognition.
  9. Libraries. Policy and procedures related to library management and information.
  10. Public Relations, Identity, and Design: Policies and procedures related to use of University logo, colors, fonts, and communication templates as well as approved communication channels.
  11. Research, Sponsored Programs, and Intellectual Properties: Policies and procedures related to data collection for research purposes intended for publication.
  12. Safety, Security, Environmental Health, and Risk Management: Policies and procedures that are designed to protect the University community and its assets and compliance with applicable laws, rules, and regulations, evaluate risks, protecting the environment, prepare for emergencies, provide adequate controls and build alliances.
  13. Student Life, Services, and Enrollment Management: Policies and procedures addressing student recruitment, enrollment, and retention and the management and delivery of student services.
  14. Technology: Policies and procedures related to the management of IT networks, security, privacy, and the responsible and ethical use of IT resources and services.

Additional Links of Interest

  • South Dakota Board of Regents
  • University Policy Guides and Manuals
  • New and Recently Revised

V. RELATED DOCUMENTS, FORMS AND TOOLS

Policy Request Form (Office of Institutional Effectiveness, Assessment, and Policy)
Policy Template (Office of Institutional Effectiveness, Assessment, and Policy)
Policy Workflow Chart (Office of Institutional Effectiveness, Assessment, and Policy)

VI. POLICY HISTORY

New Policy 4/27/2020