Middlebury College crafts policy on student-teacher romances

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Middlebury College faculty members are expected to vote this month on a new policy on romantic relationships between students and professors.

The policy under consideration would discourage but not forbid such liaisons and require that they be reported to the academic dean.

Discussion of the sensitive topic began last fall, when the Faculty Council began reviewing the liberal arts school’s sexual harassment policy and some members said it was too vague.

Many schools have grappled with the issue. St. Michael’s College in Colchester effectively bans such relationships and calls them unprofessional conduct by the faculty member.

The University of Vermont and Vermont state colleges bar faculty-student romances when the faculty member has supervisory authority over the student.

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