Anti-Harassment Policy

Anti-Harassment Policy

ACH

It is the policy of the District to maintain a learning environment that is free from harassment.  The District prohibits any and all forms of harassment because of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, age, marital status, national origin, religion, disability or protected activity (i.e. opposing unlawful harassment or discrimination or participating in an investigation).   Any such conduct will result in disciplinary action and notification of the proper authorities.

It will be a violation of District policy for any student, teacher, administrator or other school personnel of the District to harass a student through conduct of a sexual nature or regarding race, color, sex, sexual orientation, age, marital status, national origin, religion, disability or protected activity as defined by this policy.

It will also be a violation of District policy for any teacher, administrator or other school personnel of the District to tolerate sexual harassment or harassment because of a student’s race, color, sex, sexual orientation, age, marital status, national origin, religion, disability or protected activity as defined by this policy, by a student, teacher, administrator, other school personnel or by any third parties who are participating in, observing or otherwise engaged in activities, including sports events and other extracurricular activities, under the auspices of the District.  For the purpose of this policy, the “school personnel” includes school Board of Education members, school employees, agents, volunteers, contractors or persons subject to the supervision and control of the District.

The District will act to promptly investigate all complaints, either formal or informal, verbal or written, of harassment because of race, color, sex, sexual orientation, age, marital status, national origin, religion, disability or protected activity; to promptly take appropriate action to protect individuals from further harassment; and, if it determines that unlawful harassment occurred, to promptly and appropriately discipline any student, teacher, administrator or other school personnel who is found to have violated this policy and/or to take other appropriate action reasonably calculated to end the harassment.

This policy will be broadly interpreted as evidence of the District’s commitment to equality of opportunity, human dignity, diversity and academic freedom.  No person will retaliate or threaten retaliation against another person for reporting, testifying or otherwise participating in any investigation or proceeding relating to a complaint of harassment.

Procedure for Complaints of Harassment
These regulations are intended to protect the rights of students, employees, administrators, the Board of Education and visitors on District property and to outline procedures that will be followed in the event harassment occurs on District property or at an event sponsored by the District.

Definitions
The following definitions will be used for the purpose of enforcing the Anti-Harassment Policy.

Racial or Color Harassment
Racial or color harassment includes unwelcome verbal, written or physical conduct directed at the characteristics of a person’s race or color, such as nicknames emphasizing stereotypes, racial slurs, comments on manner of speaking and negative references to racial customs.

Sexual Harassment
Sexual harassment consists of unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, sexually motivated physical conduct or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature.  It also includes conduct that is not sexual in nature but that is engaged in because of the gender of the victim.  It includes conduct that is also criminal in nature such as rape, sexual assault, stalking and similar offenses.  Under this policy, sexual harassment is prohibited regardless of the sex of the harasser, i.e., sexual harassment may occur even if the harasser and the person being harassed are the same sex.

Sexual Orientation Harassment
Harassment on the basis of sexual orientation is unwelcome verbal, written or physical conduct directed at the characteristics of a person’s sexual orientation, such as negative name-calling and imitating mannerisms.

Marital Status Harassment
Harassment on the basis of marital status is unwelcome verbal, written or physical conduct directed at the characteristics of a person’s marital status, such as comments regarding pregnancy or being an unwed mother or father.

National Origin Harassment
Harassment on the basis of national origin is unwelcome verbal, written or physical conduct directed at the characteristics of a person’s national origin, such as negative comments regarding surnames, manner of speaking, customs, language, or ethnic slurs.

Religious Harassment
Harassment on the basis of religion or creed is unwelcome verbal, written or physical conduct directed at the characteristics of a person’s religion or creed, such as derogatory comments regarding surnames, religious tradition, religious clothing, religious slurs or graffiti.

Disability Harassment
Harassment based on a person’s disabling mental or physical condition includes any unwelcome verbal, written or physical conduct directed at the characteristics of a person’s disabling condition, such as imitating manner of speech or movement, or interference with necessary equipment.

Reporting Procedures
Any person who feels he/she is being harassed may wish to consider informing the offending person the behavior is inappropriate and not appreciated.  Oftentimes, this is all that is required to stop the harassing behavior.  You are not, however, required to take this step prior to filing a complaint.

Any student, District personnel or visitor who believes he/she has been the victim of harassment by a student, teacher, administrator, other school personnel of the District or by any other person who is participating in, observing or otherwise engaged in activities, including extracurricular activities, under the auspices of the District, is encouraged to immediately report the alleged acts to the building principal.  If the principal is the perpetrator of the harassment, the report of the incident will be made to the Associate Superintendent of Elementary or Secondary Education or the Associate Superintendent of Human Resources.

Any teacher, administrator or other school official who has knowledge of or receives notice that a student or visitor has or may have been the victim of harassment by a student, teacher, administrator or other school district personnel is required to immediately report the alleged act(s) to the building principal unless the principal is the perpetrator.  If the harassment involves the principal, the incident will be reported to the appropriate Associate Superintendent for Elementary or Secondary Education.

Upon receipt of the report, the principal or Associate Superintendent will notify Safety and Security personnel to conduct an investigation of the allegation.  A third party may be involved in the investigation.

The parent/guardian(s) of the student (victim) will be notified immediately unless, after consultation with the student, it is determined not to be in the best interest of the student.

If the alleged harassment is committed by a student, the student’s parent/guardian(s) will be notified that an investigation is being conducted.

Complaints will be kept confidential to the extent possible.  A prompt, thorough and impartial investigation will be conducted of all complaints of violations of this policy.

Upon completion of the investigation, a written report will be submitted to the principal or Associate Superintendent.  The report will include a determination as to whether the allegations have been substantiated as factual and whether they appear to have violated District policy and/or law.  Notification of the outcome of the investigation will be sent to all parties involved.

If the allegation is substantiated, the District will take immediate and appropriate corrective action, including the following:

·         A student will receive a disciplinary sanction as outlined in the Student Handbook and/or notification to the proper authorities;

·         A staff member will receive a disciplinary sanction as outlined in the Employee Handbook and/or the proper authorities will be notified; and

·         A report of the incident regarding a visitor who committed an act while on District property or at an event sponsored by the District will be referred to the proper legal authorities.

Notwithstanding this policy, employees may file a charge of discrimination with the U.S. EEOC. Employers who wish to file a charge must do so within 180 days of the last act of alleged harassment.


Adopted:                      July 26, 2001

Legal References     Title VI of the Civil Rights Act, 1965, 42 U. S. C. § 2000d

                                      Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, 20 U. S. C. § 1681

                                      Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, 29 U. S. C. § 794

                                      Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA),

                                      42 U. S. C. § 12134

 

Cross References:  Student Handbook and Personnel Handbook