638 petitions

Update posted 3 weeks ago

Petition to Jerome Webster, John Kasich, Kathleen S. Tighe, Rob Portman, Sherrod Brown

Stop Terra State Community College's unethical behaviors!

Terra State Community College has unethically practiced lying to their students to collect FAFSA & out of pocket student money; while I was trying to enroll to further my education there, I was a person this happened to. This is something everyone needs to be aware of, so they won't do this to future students! After signing up for classes at TSCC, I was forced to withdrawal after finding out from the financial aid department that I was not going to be eligible for aid. The woman working the financial aid center proceeded to tell me I was still in period to drop classes and I would not be penalized for the rest of the semester’s tuition. So essentially she explained that the drop period was the same thing as the refund period, misleading and outright lying to me. She even went as far to pull up their calendar to point out I had a few days left to “drop my classes without being penalized financially, with the exception of not receiving my original first months payment to the school”. Seeing as this was her job, to give me the best advice for my situation, I did what she advised and dropped from my classes because I knew I would not have enough money to pay out of pocket. Returning the next semester, with my FAFSA already approved, I was told I could not register for classes because my school account was on a hold. I was then instructed to file an appeal to the school. I did so, twice. Come to find out, ironically enough, my first appeal was never filed. Somehow the school “lost it”. Literally months went by without getting any return response from Terra Community College. No response from either appeal I filed, and of course nothing back from any of the phone calls I made up to the institution asking for answers. Trying to get anything back from the school I then contacted Jerome Webster. After explaining the situation, I guess Doctor Webster had decided that it wasn't worth his time and immediately passed it off to Cory Stine: Vice President of Institutional Advancement. I was contacted by Mr. Stine one time in total, when I was unavailable at work. He left me a message with his contact information and I was never able to get into contact with him. Every time I called his secretary would say that Mr. Stine was unavailable or that he was going to be out of the office for extended periods of time. I left countless messages trying to receive a return phone call, but it never came. The last time I had called Mr. Stine's office was the day I was told he would be back from a two week absence and when I called that day I was informed he would be unavailable for another week. Finally, I decided this was unacceptable and I wanted to speak with someone that day! I did receive a phone call, from Terra's financial aid department. Once again I explained the situation and the woman on the other end of the phone laughed. She went on to say that “it was impossible that had happened and that I should have known that my financial aid wasn't going to go through, I should have thought about not being able to afford classes that before enrolling at their institution, and this was now your (my) problem”. It’s not only frustrating to not only be belittled by someone whose literal job is to advise students financially, but to also be called a liar. That's absolutely unacceptable. A few more months went by. Obviously I was unable to continue my education at Terra, so I selected another institution to follow through with my studies. When transferring to my current institution, Ohio Business College required information from Terra to complete my new financial aid. Again, hesitant to even talk to anyone at Terra, I called up to the school. Speaking to someone, who I believe was part of the records department, I was told that I could not have access to any of my school information; violating my FERPA rights. For a second time, I emailed Terra's president Doctor Webster. This time he pawned me off on Heath Martin Dean of Students and Enrollment. While he did provide me with the correct documentation and a phone conference to discuss the events of what had happened, he failed to resolve ‘my problem’ that was caused by Terra's faculty. Speaking with Mr. Martin, he essentially summed up for me that it's acceptable for their employees to lie and swindle students, having no reasoning as to why it was ok that their financial aid department either 1. Lied to me or 2. Did not have the sufficient knowledge to accurately guide students in making important financial decisions. Therefore, this leaves TSCC at fault because regardless of how you look at it their faculty was not correctly doing their job. He then continued on to tell me he had signed documentation from an orientation in which I never attended. Wanting a copy of this information, and knowing I’m in a tight financial situation being a single unemployed mother, he maliciously told me that I would have to pay for any of the paperwork I had filed with the school. I was set up by this school to be swindled out of my money. When a student goes to a financial aid department at a school, they should be able to confidently trust what they are being told. This was not the case at Terra State Community College. To try and settle this once and for all I filed with the Department of Education. They dismissed my case, and I learned quite a few shocking things. 1. I was eligible for aid that semester. I was lead to believe that I would not have any funds to be dispersed by TSCC's financial aid the day I withdrew from my classes.  2. Either the TSCC financial aid worker was not educated for their job, or they intentionally mislead me to believe that the drop period was what the school considers to be a refund period. When I unenrolled for classes they described the drop period as "a period where the student would not be held accountable for the remaining tuition. Although, would not receive the first month's payment towards classes back". Seeing as the academic calendar used states NOTHING about a refund period on the single sheet of paper they cherry picked from their handbook, in addition to the 25 other students & 2 former financial aid employees that have now come forward to say very similar instances have occurred, I believe it's safe to say TSCC is intentionally practicing fraud. I beg you to hear this story. Help me stop what this school is doing; it's wrong. A school should help try to better it's students, not treat them like disposable pieces of garbage. TSCC needs to be held accountable & responsible for their actions. They need to acknowledge all of these students they have wronged and not only apologize but make things right by keeping their word. Respect, honesty, and integrity are core values I take very seriously. For TSCC to be an institution that claims to have values of "relationships, learning, integrity, and innovation", they should really re-evaluate calling a group of people trying to better their education "liars" when they are indeed actually the ones at fault. Thank you so much for your time!

Kristen Todd
113 supporters
Update posted 3 weeks ago

Petition to Cathy Ann Hardaway, Louise Brzuchalski, Gregory Madensky, Michele Tierney, Michael Mahon

Change the AHSD Dress Code

Dress code is necessary. Students of the Abington Heights School District certainly realize this; however, while it was adopted to help students, it is hurting them, and not many students are happy or comfortable with this dress code in particular, and want change. To give background knowledge, here are the basic policies: No wording. No advertisements (aside from a Nike swoosh, but "Under Armour" isn't permitted.) Must wear a collared shirt and have it buttoned up. Skirts and dresses must go to the knee, even if there are leggings or any other form of pants underneath. The only permitted outerwear worn during class time are hoodies and sweatshirts. Must cover collarbone. No hats. Anything deemed distracting. There have been many complaints made by both students and parents over the years, but nothing has been changed. I am a student about to go into high school next year, the fastest and most important time of my life, and I would like to worry less about my social life and comfort and more on my education. During my middle school years, all I worried about was my classmates' perspective on me, and I want to be less stressed, and I also want my peers to be less stressed. Education is much more important than consequence for breaking dress code. Kids are being  pulled out of class to change their clothing and are embarrassed. I want to change this dress code for the better because: The AHSD dress code has strongly affected both myself and my peers. While the school strongly supports individuality, their dress code says otherwise. The students are barely given a chance to express themselves with their own style, and most people dress the same while in school. No one sticks out. Shy kids, such as I, who cannot express themselves by speaking that often, have no opportunity to show their interests. It is very hard for them to make friends as well, because there isn't a way to start a conversation. If the dress code was removed, students would be able to interact with each other. If a certain t-shirt showed, for example, Doctor Who, two students would be able to interact for a similar liking for a show. If the shy person was approached by a new person, they would immediately feel happier, and they would be able to make friends, and vise versa. Removing the dress code would allow students make friends and greatly benefit a large group of students in the Abington Heights School District. Furthermore, the AHSD dress code policy ignores students who cannot afford to buy new shirts. While they do offer help and programs in order to help students financially, students should not have to undergo this process when they could be wearing clothing that they bought themselves and rightfully own. It is expensive to buy an entirely new wardrobe, as most people don't own a variety of button up shirts and flannels, as that isn't exactly the current style. Students have a life outside of school. It is causing many people to struggle. The policy about the advertisements is supposed to help students not be bullied, but kids are bullied anyways, mostly due to the dress code. If a student cannot afford ten new shirts, they will wear what they can, and may be picked on for being "poor", something I have witnessed before. Students have called me "goth" and have made fun of me and many other of their classmates because they tend to wear similar things around the same color and style. They may also be picked on for not having a fashion taste, when in reality, they do, but the dress code doesn't allow them to express it. Finally, the dress code is sexualizing the bodies of students. Since students must cover the collarbone and wear shorts, skirts, and dresses to their knees, this may leave an influence that they must always do this. Why should students be deemed distracting for showing skin? Why can't they be comfortable in their own skin, which is what we should be teaching students instead. We should not be sexualizing the bodies of children. Students might be wearing their outfit because it looks good to them, not because they want to impress their peers and behave inappropriately. Regardless, it should be none of AHSD's concern whether a student wants to wear skirts that go to their thigh or if they want to wear jeans. That should be solely the student's decision. To conclude, the dress code of the Abington Heights School District has been affecting kids for years, and it's time to put a stop to it's unjustified and unnecessary rules. I speak for a majority of students, and I want them all to enjoy the rest of their educational career instead of being publicly embarrassed, shy, and be the target of bullies. Please support me in my effort to change things for students and the students by signing this petition, thank you.

Allie Katz
106 supporters
Started 1 month ago

Petition to Ole Miss Student Housing

Residence Halls at The University of Mississippi allowing Desk Hutches

It has been brought to our attention, the incoming freshmen at The University of Mississippi, that desk hutches are no longer allowed inside residence halls. Unfortunately, that puts us at a disadvantage. Having desk hutches not only allows for extra storage space, but as well as a space to complete school work. With these pieces of furniture it allows the student to finish their homework with a brighter light setting to better see their assignments, and a power strip to have a convienent place to keep laptops charged as well as having a accessible location to a printer. The University has done a poor job at spreading the word to all students that these pieces are prohibited. At this point in time, majority of the incoming freshman have already purchased hutches for their dorm room. It is still unclear as to why they decided to change the rules last minute. As a concerned student and incoming member of the freshmen class, I am trying to make a difference by starting a petition to portray how this new implemented rule is unfair due to Crosby Hall having built in hutches while the others do not. This is a more efficient way to have personal space and a way to prevent students from hanging pieces on the wall. This problem could easily be solved by just allowing student to have these custom pieces of furniture in the residence halls. 

Gabby Martinez
346 supporters