Community Living Agreement

The following expectations are designed to aid in the development of community life with a distinctively Christian emphasis. All students in attendance commit to the following lifestyle expectations for their semester at FLI:

Above all, students are expected to base their conduct on biblical principles and strive to follow the example of Christ in all things. More specifically, students are expected to demonstrate love for other people and respect for federal, state and local ordinances, as well as policies established by Focus on the Family and the Institute itself. Students should conduct themselves in a manner that is honest, upright and committed to lovingly confronting sin.

The Institute recognizes that the Scriptures do not provide definitives on all matters of conduct or social practice. The Scriptures do, however, provide guidelines such as requiring self-restraint in that which is offensive or harmful to others. This applies to both behaviors and attitudes. While the Institute understands that some individuals will not have personal convictions fully in line with our lifestyle expectations, members of the Institute community are expected to subordinate their individual prerogatives and personal preferences in standards of conduct for the benefit of the community. Applicants who cannot, with integrity, support these standards should seek another living/learning environment.

Furthermore, the Institute acknowledges that it is entirely possible for these standards to be broken without the knowledge of FLI administration. For this reason, students are asked to exercise self-discipline, take responsibility for the choices they make and hold one another accountable (Matthew 18:15-20). Students are encouraged to confront their peers if they witness the standards outlined in this catalog being broken. The Student Life staff will offer support and help to all students who wish to confront but are not sure how to proceed. It should also be understood that presence with a group involved in activities which veer from these standards may subject a student to discipline whether or not he or she is participating in the offense.

Attitudes and behaviors that violate the Institute’s lifestyle expectations or which are destructive or disruptive to the community atmosphere of the Institute may by subject to discipline up to and including dismissal from the program.

Prohibited Conduct

The following conduct is prohibited for students attending the Focus Leadership Institute, either because it is directly prohibited by Scripture or civil law, or because it has been deemed detrimental to the Christian community the Institute strives to establish.

The following actions constitute misconduct for which students may be disciplined. FLI’s Director is ultimately responsible for defining the terms listed here and determining which (if any) category of conduct expectation has been violated. This list of misconduct that the Institute has set forth gives students fair notice of behavior that will not be tolerated from FLI students, but is not an exhaustive list. The Institute reserves the right to administer disciplinary sanctions in situations not expressly covered by the prohibited conduct section.

Harm or harassment: Any behavior that threatens or actually causes harm to any member of the FLI or local communities. This includes, but is not limited to, written and verbal abuse and physical harm, whether reckless or intentional.

Sexual misconduct: Consensual sexual activity between unmarried partners; nonconsensual sexual activity of any type, including rape, attempted rape, sexual harassment and indecent exposure; homosexual activity; distribution of, use of, or access to pornography, including Internet access.

Theft: The unlawful use or possession of property, virtual property, or services belonging to Focus on the Family, the Institute or any member of the community.

Use of prohibited substances: The use of tobacco or illegal drugs or the abuse of prescription drugs. The consumption of alcoholic beverages by students enrolled in the Institute is also prohibited, regardless of whether the student is of legal drinking age.

Dishonesty: Cheating, plagiarism or forgery; intentionally giving false reports or emergency warnings.

Disorderly conduct: Intentional or reckless disruption of Institute events; obscene or indecent behavior or language displayed on or off the FLI campus.

Failure to comply: Any behavior or language which demonstrates the unwillingness of a student to respectfully follow instructions given by an FLI faculty or staff member in the performance of his or her duties; any behavior that violates an official agreement made between the Institute and/or its staff and a student.

Other violations: Violations of other published FLI regulations or policies; violations of federal, state, and local law ordinances, either on or off campus.

Additional Lifestyle Guidelines

Required Activities: In most cases, Student Life-sponsored activities are considered optional. Meals, monthly events and other such activities are not required, but are strongly recommended for the purpose of establishing and building community. There are, however, a limited number of events throughout the semester which will be required for all students. These activities include, but are not limited to, chapels, broadcast tapings, retreats, Q&A sessions with FOF senior leadership, and check-out events. Every effort will be made to inform students of these events with reasonable lead time, and attendance will be monitored by the Student Life staff. Permission to be absent from any of these events must be requested from the Resident Supervisor at least three days prior to the event, using the form supplied by Student Life. Unexcused absences will result in a $25 fine.

Curfew: The Institute’s policy regarding student curfew has been established to help each student gain maximum benefit from the Institute experience. The time at the Institute is a multi-faceted, fast-track, intense and concentrated experience that requires both spiritual and personal discipline. Because of this, the Institute has established a student curfew of midnight, Sunday through Thursday. Students are expected to be in the apartment complex at this time, preferably in their own apartments. The enforcement of this policy depends on the desire and willingness of each student to participate fully in the Institute’s program and to do all that is possible to see that fellow students can do so as well. There will be no room checks; it will be an opportunity for each student to abide by the curfew, not because they will be punished if they do not, but because there is a race to be won and a prize to gain. Jesus said that the Sabbath was made for people, not people for the Sabbath. This curfew is established in the same spirit as the Sabbath.

Apartment visitation The apartments are good places for male-female social interaction, group study and a variety of other positive things, but there are privacy issues involved in apartment living. For those reasons, and the concern about the appearance of sexual impropriety, visitation in the bedroom areas is prohibited. The living room, dining and kitchen areas are available for the appropriate coed socialization. Please note, however, that overnight stays—as defined between the hours of 2 a.m. until 7 a.m.—by a member of the opposite sex in any area of the apartments will not be permitted.

Student dress code: The standard for dress is modesty and discretion. Students agree to abide by this standard and to follow guidelines for internship dress, classroom dress and casual dress as appropriate.

Entertainment choices: Entertainment should be chosen with discretion, using biblical principles as a guide.

Nonfraternization: In order to maintain the efficient operation of the Focus Leadership Institute as an organization and to avoid misunderstandings, complaints of favoritism, other problems of supervision, security, morale and possible claims of sexual harassment, FLI staff members and students are not permitted to date or pursue romantic relationships.

Lifestyle Covenant: In accepting your admission to FLI you agree to abide by all policies set forth in these lifestyle expectations and you make the following commitment:

Community Living Agreement: When an ongoing conflict occurs between students, all involved parties agree to discuss the problem and work to resolve it. Students will create a solution and put it in writing. Once the agreed-upon solution has been written, all students involved will sign the agreement and do their part to fulfill the terms.

If the conflict continues and creates extreme discomfort for students, involved parties will bring the problem and their attempted solutions to their Resident Supervisor. The Resident Supervisor will listen to the problem areas, evaluate the solution and assess if each student has done his or her part to fulfill the terms of the agreement. If a discussion with the Resident Supervisor does not resolve the problem, he or she will determine a solution and set up a contract for all students to abide by. If the problem continues, the issue will be brought to the Director of Student Services for evaluation and necessary discipline.

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