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Policy 1020 Implementation Procedures - Sexual Discrimination

Implementation Procedures

I. Announcement/Dissemination

  1. Notification of the provisions of Policy 1020 - Sexual Discrimination and these procedures will be provided on a regular basis to all students, families, employees, and third parties. Principals are responsible for notifying all students, families, third parties, and employees in their schools. Supervisors are responsible for notifying those under their supervision. Notification may be through these customary channels:

    1. Announced in schools over the public address system at the beginning of the school year and at other times deemed appropriate

    2. Published in school and system newsletters and/or handbooks

    3. Posted in commonly used areas

    4. Posted on school and system websites

    5. Reviewed with students by classroom teachers or other appropriate employees

    6. Provided to new students and parents through the registration process.

  2. Sexual discrimination information and complaint forms will be prominently displayed in school guidance offices, published on the school system website, and available on request from the Title IX Coordinator.

II. Reporting Violations of Policy

  1. General

    1. Employees who receive a complaint of sexual discrimination of a student should immediately consider whether the issue may constitute child abuse. If so, Policy 1030 - Child Abuse and Neglect, must be followed, including all reporting requirements.

    2. Reports to the Title IX Coordinator should be directed to:

      Title IX Coordinator
      10910 Clarksville Pike
      Ellicott City, MD 21042
      410-313-6600

    3. All complaints of sexual discrimination will be conducted in a prompt, adequate, reliable, and impartial manner, which includes an opportunity for the parties to present witnesses and other evidence.

    4. If no formal written complaint has been filed by or on behalf of a complainant who alleges he/she has been subjected to conduct that constitutes unlawful sex discrimination, any school-based administrator who receives a report of a possible violation shall, in consultation with the Title IX Coordinator, cause an informal investigation to proceed and shall take all necessary interim actions reasonably calculated to prevent any violations from occurring during the period before the completion of informal and formal procedures under this policy. If the informal investigation suggests that there has been a violation, the school-based administrator, in consultation with the Title IX Coordinator, shall initiate a formal investigation under the procedures provided herein. If the informal investigation suggests that there has been no violation, a notice of outcome and appeal procedures will be forwarded to both parties. This informal procedure is optional and without prejudice to the complainant’s right to pursue a formal complaint.

    5. Timelines

      1. Complaints shall be filed within sixty (60) calendar days after an alleged incident constituting a violation of this policy, or they shall be deemed untimely unless special circumstances exist which justify an extension of this requirement.

      2. The school-based administrator shall ensure that an investigator is appointed and initiates a formal investigation within forty-eight (48) hours after the filing of an oral or written complaint under this policy, unless extenuating circumstances justify a reasonable extension of that deadline.

      3. The school-based administrator or the individual assigned to investigate the complaint shall prepare and send to the complainant and the accused a written report within fifteen (15) calendar days of commencing the investigation, unless additional time to complete the investigation is required. In that case, the school-based administrator or investigator shall report on the status of the investigation to the complainant, the accused, and the Title IX Coordinator at the expiration of the fifteen (15) day period and every fifteen (15) days thereafter.

      4. If the complainant is not satisfied with any finding or recommend corrective action proposed in the investigative report, he/she may, within fifteen (15) calendar days of receipt of the written report of findings, submit a letter of appeal, stating the grounds for the appeal, with the Title IX Coordinator. All appeals will be conducted by an impartial decision-maker.

    6. The Howard County Public School System (HCPSS) will comply with law enforcement requests for cooperation and such cooperation may require that the fact-finding aspect of the investigation be temporarily suspended while the law enforcement agency is in the process of gathering evidence. HCPSS will promptly resume its investigation upon notification by the law enforcement agency that it has completed the evidence gathering process, which typically takes three (3) to ten (10) calendar days, although the delay may be longer in certain circumstances. In the event that the investigation is delayed at the request of a law enforcement agency, appropriate steps will be taken to provide for the safety of the complainant and the school community and to prevent retaliation against the complainant or the accused.

  2. Sexual Discrimination of Students by Other Students

    1. A student should report sexual discrimination by other students promptly to a teacher, school counselor, school-based administrator, or the Title IX Coordinator. Such reports may be made orally or in writing. Students are encouraged to use the Bullying, Cyberbullying, Harassment, or Intimidation Reporting Form which can be obtained from the HCPSS website, the school guidance office or the Title IX Coordinator.

    2. Every teacher, school counselor or school-based administrator who receives a complaint of sexual discrimination from a student or who believe sexual discrimination has occurred shall take prompt action to stop the sexual discrimination. The school-based administrator will report the complaint to the Title IX Coordinator.

    3. School-based administrators receiving complaints of discrimination shall ensure that an investigation is conducted within the applicable timelines and take appropriate steps, which may include contacting each student’s parents, to address any findings of sexual discrimination.

    4. The Title IX Coordinator will refer complaints received directly from students alleging student to student sexual discrimination to school-based administrators for investigation and appropriate action unless the Title IX Coordinator determines that extenuating circumstances, such as significant or repeated sexual discrimination by the same offender, warrant the Title IX Coordinator’s involvement.

  3. Sexual Discrimination of Students by Employees/Third Parties

    1. A student should report sexual discrimination by employees or third parties promptly to a teacher, school counselor, school-based administrator, or the Title IX Coordinator. A complaint against an administrator should be filed with the Title IX Coordinator. Such reports may be made orally or in writing. Students are encouraged to use the Bullying, Cyberbullying, Harassment, or Intimidation Reporting Form which can be obtained from the HCPSS website, the school guidance office or the Title IX Coordinator.

    2. Administrators receiving complaints alleging sexual discrimination by a school system employee or third party must immediately notify the Title IX Coordinator.

  4. Sexual Discrimination of Employees/Third Parties

    1. An employee or third party should report sexual discrimination promptly to the Title IX Coordinator or a school-based administrator or supervisor, as appropriate. Employees/Third Parties are encouraged to use the Employee/Third Party Sexual Harassment Complaint Form, which can be obtained from the HCPSS website, the school guidance office or the Title IX Coordinator.

    2. School-based administrators and supervisors must forward complaints of sexual discrimination from employees or third parties to the Title IX Coordinator.

III. Investigations Involving the Title IX Coordinator

  1. The Title IX Coordinator will document complaints received, investigate them, and render findings (except as noted in II.B.4).

    1. The documentation, investigation, and forwarding of written findings to the complaints and the accused regarding complaints will be completed within thirty (30) days of the receipt of the complaint.

    2. If the Title IX Coordinator is unable to complete these activities within the prescribed time limit, all parties will be notified and a revised timeline will be provided.

  2. If the investigation reveals that a violation has occurred, the Title IX Coordinator will make recommendations to the Superintendent/Designee designed to ensure an appropriate resolution.

IV. Resolution of Complaints

When violations have occurred, employees in supervisory or management positions are responsible for taking steps designed to end any existing sexual discrimination by those under their supervision, prevent any recurrence, and remedy any detrimental effects on the complainant and others. Remedies available to complainants include, but are not limited to, counseling, imposition of an order against the guilty party prohibiting further contact with the complainant or others, reinstatement of employment to the complainant, reconsideration of an award of a contract with the school system or any other remedy as is just and serves the interest of reinstating the complainant to his/her position prior to the discrimination.

  1. Disciplinary action against a student will be administered in accordance with the HCPSS Student Code of Conduct and Policy 9200 - Student Discipline. Disciplinary action against school system employees will be administered in accordance with Policy 7030 - Employee Conduct and Discipline. Action against third parties will be taken in accordance with relevant school system policies and other applicable state and federal laws.

  2. A student who violates this policy may also be required to participate in an appropriate education intervention and/or counseling designated by the school administrator and designed to increase his or her understanding of the offense and its impact on others.

  3. A violation of this policy may require, as a condition of continuing an employment or other relationship with the school system, participation in counseling and/or other interventions designed to assist in the recognition and correction of unwelcome sexual conduct.

  4. An individual who has been the object of, or who has been affected by, conduct prohibited under this policy will be contacted by a school administrator, supervisor, or the Title IX Coordinator to discuss the availability of appropriate assistance.

V. History

ADOPTED: May 28, 1992

REVIEWED:

MODIFIED: June 11, 2015

REVISED: October 27, 1994, January 11, 1996, March 21, 1996, May 14, 1998, January 30, 2001, February 7, 2008

EFFECTIVE: July 1, 2015