Russell Sage College is committed to student freedom, coupled with an acceptance of full responsibility for individual action and the consequences of such action. In line with this commitment, the college has adopted a restorative and educational approach in responding to incidents, recognizing that mistakes and conflicts provide valuable opportunities for personal growth and learning.

Rather than focusing solely on punitive measures, this approach emphasizes facilitating dialogue, encouraging self-reflection, and fostering an understanding of the impact of one’s actions on others. Students will engage in a process that enables them to take responsibility for their behavior while receiving the necessary support and resources to make positive changes. 

The Student Code of Accountability serves as a guide, articulating our shared expectations for behavior. It ensures that every member of our community has the opportunity to thrive academically, socially, and emotionally. It is essential to acknowledge that our community standards encompass not only the explicit prohibitions listed in this code but also extend to the implicit responsibilities of each individual.

We extend an invitation to each member of the Sage community to be mindful of their role in upholding our shared values. Whether in classrooms, residence halls, extracurricular activities, or digital spaces, our aim is to create an inclusive environment where individuals feel safe, valued, and heard. By collectively committing to these standards, we enhance the educational experience; support the personal growth and well-being of all community members; and promote the high standards captured by the college motto — “Be. Know. Do.” — and embodied by the RSC students and graduates who always strive to grow as people and improve the world around them.

What is restorative justice?

Restorative justice is an approach to addressing misconduct that focuses on repairing harm, promoting accountability, and fostering meaningful dialogue and understanding among all parties involved. It aims to shift the traditional disciplinary paradigm from punishment to healing, growth, and restoring relationships within the college community.

Why does Sage take this approach?

RSC subscribes to the ideal that resolutions for conflict should be as unique as the types of incidents and students involved. Restorative and educational approaches align with an educational philosophy that emphasizes personal growth, learning from mistakes, and encourages students to take responsibility for their actions. These approaches also place a strong emphasis on relationships and rebuilding trust within the campus community by engaging in open dialogue and collaborative problem-solving. Finally, these alternative resolutions provide an opportunity for student empowerment, as it involves students in the decision-making process and allows them to actively participate in resolving conflicts.