There are three CARES teams across the district: One per region. It is a multidisciplinary team comprised of the following:
- Regional Executive Dean-Team Chair
- Deans of Student Affairs-Conduct Representatives
- ACC Police Department Mental Health Sergeants and Officers-Public Safety Representatives
- ACC Associate Dean of Counseling-Mental Health Representative
There are many ways to refer to a student of concern:
- Ideally, community members would fill out the reporting form: Report an Incident. This is helpful because it notifies team members quickly, and the information can be easily triaged, recorded, and continuously followed. The CARES Team recognizes that community members will have different levels of comfort when sharing information.
- The CARES teams are committed to allowing the community to report through the Online Referral, calling a CARES team member, stopping by the office of a CARES team member, or sending emails to either the central CARES team email or to individual CARES team members. Anonymous reports are also taken by the team; however, this is not ideal if there are more questions.
You have the right to indicate on the Online Referral that you would like to remain anonymous. The CARES team will make every effort to maintain anonymity. However, please know that anonymity can never be guaranteed. Reports submitted through CARES are student records protected under the FERPA privacy regulations which allows students having access to their records. The CARES team may need to follow up to gather additional information to help us most effectively support the student.
Any community member can make a CARES referral. If you are concerned that an ACC student is exhibiting significant behavior changes or disruptive behavior, or is a threat to himself/herself or others, you may refer him/her to the CARES team.
If the situation or behavior is not a life-threatening situation and you are comfortable speaking with the student, you may express your concern to the student and offer them a campus or community resource. You may refer them to ACC District Clinical Counseling Services and/or contact a Dean of Student Affairs. If warranted, a CARES team representative can connect the student to the appropriate support service. If you are unsure about how to approach the student, you may consult with any Student Affairs Dean, Associate Dean of Counseling, or Campus Police for assistance in determining if a CARES referral would be appropriate.
CARES is for students only. If you have concerns for an ACC employee, please contact their supervisor or Human Resources.
If the CARES team determines that the referred person’s behavior merits intervention, then the CARES team creates a plan for the student and designates a contact person who will handle the situation. If applicable, the CARES team member will contact the person to discuss his/her behavior and the teams recommended intervention(s). CARES participation is optional to the student.
The CARES teams will have access to related referrals. In the event additional resources need to be utilized to effectively respond to a situation, reported information will be handled discreetly. All CARES team members sign a statement of confidentiality.
The reporter will not be contacted unless there is not enough information on the initial CARES referral. As long as the reporter’s email is input on the referral form, an auto-generated email will be sent stating the referral was successfully submitted. Don’t try to handle the situation alone! The CARES team recommends talking to your Dean or supervisor to make them aware of the situation and seek support.
The CARES team will address every report brought to the committee. The reporter will not be privy to the outcome of an investigation based on factors involved and the student’s privacy.
Please report all incidents that are concerning. This may require multiple referrals. It is helpful to the CARES team to understand if the behavior is escalating, remains an issue, or resolved. In addition, the incidents help establish a pattern of behaviors that may be occurring across the college. Observable behaviors, writing examples, direct quotes, and/or screen shots of concerning online posts allow the CARES team to get a more holistic view of how to help a student.
Don’t try to handle the situation alone! Never hesitate to call, email, or refer so that you can be supported.