Mandatory Reporting

Mandatory Reporter Policy


This document provides the College’s policy regarding mandated reporting by employees of alleged gender discrimination, sexual misconduct, sexual harassment, sex crimes, and other concerning behaviors. It explains briefly the meaning and purpose of "mandatory reporters," outlines the legal context, and articulates a straightforward set of guidelines for employees to follow.

Mandatory Reporters: Who, What and Why?

Three federal laws require certain college employees to report certain types of crimes and incidents, including sexual misconduct---the Clery Act, Title VII and Title IX. Additionally, state law imposes mandates with respect to reporting child abuse and sexual abuse. Each of these laws has a different purpose, but generally they are intended to protect members of the campus community, visitors and guests from criminal and discriminatory behavior. The responsibilities established by these laws give rise to the phrase Rhodes College has termed “mandatory reporter.” As described below, the College has adopted a policy that identifies all individuals who are required to report information about certain crimes or incidents to the College in order to assist the College with identifying, investigating and taking steps to address such incidents as appropriate.

The Legal Context

Title IX is a comprehensive federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in any federally-funded education program or activity. It creates obligations for the College to investigate allegations of sex/gender discrimination and sexual misconduct, and to provide interim or permanent remedies when appropriate to avoid interference with educational opportunities. (See Rhodes' Sex/Gender Discrimination and Sexual Misconduct Policy for definitions of those terms.  Sex/gender discrimination and sexual misconduct include but are not limited to sexual assault and other forms of sexual violence, dating violence, exploitation, stalking, sexual harassment and gender discrimination.) Under Title IX, the College is obligated to investigate and potentially take corrective action when certain employees receive notice of a potential incident of sex/gender discrimination or sexual misconduct, or when the College, in the exercise of reasonable care, should have known about a potential incident of sex/gender discrimination or sexual misconduct.

College Policy

1.  The College has adopted a policy that identifies the following groups of individuals to be "mandatory reporters" under this policy: all Rhodes faculty, all Rhodes staff (excluding "confidential resources" and student employees), and all resident assistants. 

The following organizations and individuals, also referred to as "confidential resources," are not considered mandatory reporters under this policy:  Student Counseling Center staff, the Chaplain's office, or any member of the Student Health Services staff.

2.  When a mandatory reporter receives information concerning an alleged act of sex/gender discrimination or sexual misconduct, the mandatory reporter must promptly contact the Title IX Coordinator (  Reports may be made directly to the Title IX Coordinator or by using the form found under the "File a Report" link.

3.  When a mandatory reporter thinks that a student or other member of the Rhodes community may be about to disclose to them an act of sex/gender discrimination or sexual misconduct that the mandatory reporter would be required to report under this Policy, they should, if at all possible, preemptively inform the disclosing individual about certain confidentiality considerations mandated under Title IX. The mandatory reporter should tell the disclosing individual that the College will attempt to maintain the confidentiality of the information, if requested, but the mandatory reporter is required to report the allegations and the names of the parties involved to the College subject to the College's Title IX obligations. If the disclosing individual expresses reservations about sharing information they would prefer to keep confidential, the mandatory reporter should refer the disclosing individual to Rhodes' confidential resources: the Counseling Center, the Chaplain's office, or the Student Health Services. Mandatory reporters should encourage all persons who have experienced or witnessed potential sex/gender discrimination or sexual misconduct to report the incidents in accordance with their own sensitivities to maintaining confidentiality, but no employee (other than the staff in the Counseling Center and in the Student Health Services) can or should promise confidentiality. For more information about maintaining confidentiality and Rhodes' confidential resources, please refer to Rhodes' Sex/Gender Discrimination and Sexual Misconduct Policy, including Sections VIII and X.

4.  The Title IX Coordinator will promptly notify Campus Safety and other College officials, when appropriate.  Mandatory reporters may assist disclosing individuals with contacting Campus Safety, law enforcement, or other people or resources at the request of the disclosing individual.

For more information, please refer to Rhodes' Sex/Gender Discrimination and Sexual Misconduct Policy.