Board Policy & Admin Regulation 5145.7
Sexual Harassment

Pod

Board Policy 5145.7

Students

Sexual Harassment

The Governing Board is committed to maintaining a safe learning environment that is free of harassment and discrimination. The Board prohibits, at school or at school-sponsored or school-related activities, sexual harassment targeted at any student by any person. The Board also prohibits retaliatory behavior or action against any person who submits a complaint or testifies about, or otherwise supports a complainant in alleging sexual harassment.

The District strongly encourages any student who feels that they are being or have been sexually harassed on school grounds or at a school- sponsored or school-related activity by another student or an adult, or who have experienced off-campus sexual harassment, including cyber harassment/on-line/social media activity and/or sexual violence, that has a continuing effect on campus, to immediately contact their teacher, the principal, or any other available school employee. Any district employee who receives a report or observes an incident of sexual harassment shall notify the principal, Site Designated Title IX Administrator or a District Title IX Compliance Officer. Once notified, the Site Designated Title IX Administrator or District Title IX Compliance Officer shall take the steps to promptly investigate and address the allegation, as specified in the accompanying administrative regulation. District and site personnel shall take immediate steps to intervene when safe to do so when she or he witnesses an act of discrimination, harassment, intimidation, retaliation, and/or bullying. While the district has promulgated a written complaint form, there is no requirement that the reporting student provide their complaint in writing in order for an investigation to occur.

(cf. 0410 鈥 Nondiscrimination in District Programs and Activities) (cf. 1312.1 鈥 Complaints Concerning District Employees)

(cf. 5131 鈥 Conduct) (cf. 5131.2 鈥 Bullying)

(cf. 5137 鈥 Positive School Climate)

(cf. 5141.4 鈥 Child Abuse Prevention and Reporting) (cf. 5145.3 - Nondiscrimination/Harassment)

(cf. 6142.1 鈥 Sexual Health and HIV/AIDS Prevention Instruction)

Students shall be informed that they should immediately contact a staff member if they feel they are being harassed by a fellow student, staff member, or other person. District and site staff shall promptly report complaints of sexual harassment to the Site Designated Title IX Administrator or the District Title IX Compliance Officer designated in AR 5145.7 and AR 1312.3. District and site staff shall similarly report any such incidents they may observe, even if the harassed student has not complained.

The Superintendent through the District Title IX Compliance Officer shall take appropriate actions to reinforce the District鈥檚 sexual harassment policy.

Prohibited sexual harassment includes, but is not limited to, sexual violence, unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal, visual or physical conduct of a sexual nature made against another person of the same or opposite sex in the educational setting, under any of the following conditions: (Education Code 212.5; 5 CCR 4916)

  1. Submission to the conduct is explicitly or implicitly made a term or condition of an individual鈥檚 academic status or progress.
  2. Submission to or rejection of the conduct by an individual is used as the basis for academic decisions affecting the individual.
  3. The conduct has the purpose or effect of having a negative impact on the individual鈥檚 academic performance, or of creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive educational environment. The conduct is sufficiently severe, persistent, pervasive or objectively offensive, so as to create a hostile or abusive educational or working environment or to limit the individual鈥檚 ability to participate in or benefit from an education program or activity.
  4. Submission to or rejection of the conduct by the individual is used as the basis for any decision affecting the student regarding benefits and services, honors, programs, or activities available at or through any District program or activity.

(cf. 5131 鈥 Conduct) (cf. 5131.2 鈥 Bullying)

(cf. 5137 鈥 Positive School Climate)

(cf. 5145.3 鈥 Nondiscrimination/Harassment)

(cf. 6142.1 鈥 Sexual Health and HIV/AIDS Prevention Instruction)

Types of conduct which are prohibited in the District and which may constitute sexual harassment include, but are not limited to:

  1. Unwelcome leering, sexual flirtations, or propositions
  2. Sexual slurs, epithets, threats, verbal abuse, derogatory comments or sexually degrading descriptions
  3. Graphic verbal comments about an individual鈥檚 body, or overly personal conversation
  4. Sexual jokes, derogatory posters, notes, stories, cartoons, drawings, pictures or obscene gestures, or computer-generated images of a sexual nature
  5. Spreading sexual rumors
  6. Teasing or sexual remarks about students enrolled in a predominantly single-sex class
  7. Massaging, grabbing, fondling, stroking, or brushing the body
  8. Touching an individual鈥檚 body or clothes in a sexual way
  9. Impeding or blocking movements or any physical interference with school activities when directed at an individual on the basis of sex or gender identity or expression
  10. Displaying sexually suggestive objects
  11. Sexual assault, sexual battery, sexual violence, or sexual coercion
  12. Electronic communications containing comments, words, or images described above

Any prohibited conduct that occurs off campus and outside of school- related or school-sponsored programs or activities will be regarded as sexual harassment in violation of District policy if it has a continuing effect on or creates a hostile school environment for the complainant or victim of the conduct.

Instruction/Information

The Superintendent and District Title IX Compliance Officer shall ensure that students receive age-appropriate information related to sexual harassment. Such instruction and information shall include:

What acts and behavior constitute sexual harassment, including the fact that sexual harassment could occur between people of the same sex and could involve sexual violence;

  1. A clear message that students do not have to endure sexual harassment under any circumstance;
  2. That any and all students are encouraged to immediately report observed incidents of sexual harassment even where the alleged victim of the harassment has not complained;
  3. A clear message that student safety is the District鈥檚 primary concern, and that any separate rule violation involving an alleged
  4. victim or any other person reporting a sexual harassment incident will be addressed separately and will not affect the manner in which the sexual harassment complaint will be received, investigated, or resolved;
  5. A clear message that, regardless of a complainant鈥檚 noncompliance with the writing, timeline, or other formal filing requirements of a uniform complaint, every sexual harassment allegation that involves a student, whether as the complainant, respondent, or victim of the harassment, shall be investigated and prompt action shall be taken to stop any harassment, prevent recurrence, and address any continuing effect on students;
  6. Information about the District鈥檚 procedure for investigating complaints and the person(s) to whom a report of sexual harassment should be made;
  7. Information about the rights of students and parents/guardians to file a civil or criminal complaint, as applicable, including the right to file a civil or criminal complaint while the District investigation of a sexual harassment complaint is ongoing; and
  8. A clear message that, when needed, the District will take interim measures to ensure a safe school environment for a student who is the complainant or victim of sexual harassment and/or other students during an investigation and that, to the extent possible, when such interim measures are taken, they shall not disadvantage the complainant or victim of the alleged harassment.

The District Title IX Compliance Officer shall receive training and shall oversee appropriate trainings for District staff, including management as well as certificated and non-certificated staff. Each Site Designated Title IX Administrator shall receive initial and ongoing training, as appropriate, to carry out their duties.

(cf. 5131.5 鈥 Vandalism, Theft and Graffiti) (cf. 5137 鈥 Positive School Climate)

(cf. 5141.41 鈥 Child Abuse Prevention)

(cf. 5145.3 鈥 Nondiscrimination/Harassment) (cf. 6142.1 鈥 Family Life/Sex Education)

Complaint Process and Disciplinary Actions

Sexual harassment complaints by and against students shall be investigated and resolved in accordance with law, this policy, Administrative Regulation 5145.7, and the District鈥檚 Uniform Complaint Procedures specified in BP and AR 1312.3. Principals and Site Designated Title IX Administrators are responsible for notifying students and parents/guardians that complaints of sexual harassment can be filed under BP/AR 1312.3, and where to obtain a copy of the procedures.

(cf. 1312.3 鈥 Uniform Complaint Procedures)

The Site Designated Title IX Administrator shall promptly investigate any report of the sexual harassment of a student pursuant to the processes outlined in AR 5145.7. Upon verifying that sexual harassment occurred, they shall ensure that appropriate action is promptly taken to end the harassment, address its effects on the person subjected to the harassment, and prevent any further instances of the harassment. In addition, the student may file a formal complaint with the District鈥檚 Title IX Compliance Officer in accordance with the District鈥檚 Uniform Complaint Procedures.

(cf. 1312.3 鈥 Uniform Complaint Procedures)

Upon investigation of a sexual harassment complaint, any student found to have engaged in sexual harassment or sexual violence in violation of this policy shall be subject to appropriate disciplinary and/or other corrective action or interventions. For students in grades 4 through 12, the disciplinary action may include suspension and/or expulsion, provided that, in imposing such discipline, the entire circumstances of the incident(s) shall be taken into account.

Students in grades K-3 may not be suspended or recommended for expulsion pursuant to Education Code 48900.2, however appropriate restorative discipline and/or other corrective actions will be provided based upon the totality of the circumstances involved.

(cf. 5144 鈥 Discipline)

(cf. 5144.1 鈥 Suspension and Expulsion/Due Process)

Upon investigation of a sexual harassment complaint, any employee who engages in, permits or fails to report sexual harassment or sexual violence toward any student shall be subject to appropriate disciplinary action up to and including dismissal in accordance with law and the applicable collective bargaining agreement. District personnel shall take immediate steps to intervene when safe to do so when she or he witnesses an act of discrimination, harassment, intimidation, retaliation, or bullying. In addition, criminal or civil charges may be brought against the alleged harasser; sexual harassment also may be considered a violation of laws relating to child abuse.

(cf. 4118 鈥 Suspension/Disciplinary Action)

(cf. 4218 鈥 Dismissal/Suspension/Disciplinary Action) (cf. 4119.11/4219.11/4319.11 鈥 Sexual Harassment) (cf. 5141.4 鈥 Child Abuse Reporting Procedures)

(cf. 1312.3 鈥 Uniform Complaint Procedures)

The District prohibits retaliatory behavior against any complainant or any participant in the complaint process. Information related to a complaint of sexual harassment shall be kept confidential to the extent possible, and individuals involved in the investigation of such a complaint shall not discuss related information outside the investigation process.

(cf. 4119.23/4219.23/4319.23 鈥 Unauthorized Release of Confidential/ Privileged Information)

Record-Keeping

The District鈥檚 Title IX Compliance Officer shall maintain a record of all reported cases of sexual harassment to enable the District to monitor, address, and prevent repetitive harassing behavior in District schools.

(cf. 3580 鈥 District Records)

Legal Reference:

EDUCATION CODE

200-262.4 Prohibition of discrimination on the basis of sex

Sexual harassment

Sexual harassment policy

48900 Grounds for suspension or expulsion

48900.2 Additional grounds for suspension or expulsion; sexual harassment

48904 Liability of parent/guardian for willful student misconduct 48980 Notice at beginning of term

CIVIL CODE

51.9 Liability for sexual harassment; business, service and professional relationships

1714.1 Liability of parents/guardians for willful misconduct of minor UNITED STATES CODE, TITLE 20

1681-1688 Title IX, 1972 Education Act Amendments UNITED STATES CODE, TITLE 42

2000d & 2000e et seq. Title VI & Title VII, Civil Rights Act of 1964 as amended

Franklin v. Gwinnet County Schools (1992) 112 S. Ct. 1028

Doe v. Petaluma City School District (1995, 9th Cir.) 54 F.3d 1447 Donovan v. Poway Unified School District, (2008) 167 Cal.App.4th 567 Gebser v. Lago Vista Independent School District, (1998) 524 U.S. 274 Oona R.-S. etc. v. Santa Rosa City Schools et al (N.D. Cal. 1995) 890 F.Supp. 1452

Patricia H. v. Berkeley Unified School District (N.D. Cal. 1993) 830 F.Supp. 1288

Davis v. Monroe County Board of Education (1999) 526 U.S. 629 CSBA PUBLICATIONS

Providing a Safe, Nondiscriminatory School Environment for Transgender

and Gender-Nonconforming Students, Policy Brief, February 2014 Safe Schools: Strategies for Governing Boards to Ensure Student Success, 2011

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION, OFFICE FOR CIVIL RIGHTS PUBLICATIONS Q&A on Campus Sexual Misconduct, September 2017

Examples of Policies and Emerging Practices for Supporting Transgender Students, May 2016

Dear Colleague Letter: Title IX Coordinators, April 2015 Sexual Harassment: It鈥檚 Not Academic, September 2008

Revised Sexual Harassment Guidance: Harassment of Students by School Employees, Other Students, or Third Parties, January 2001

WEB SITES

CSBA:

California Department of Education:

U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights: http://

Policy SACRAMENTO CITY UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT

adopted: November 16, 1998 Sacramento, California

revised: April 15, 2002

revised: October 18, 2018

Administrative Regulation AR 5145.7

Students

Sexual Harassment

Prohibited sexual harassment includes, but is not limited to, unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal, visual or physical conduct of a sexual nature when: (Education Code 212.5)

  1. Submission to the conduct is explicitly or implicitly made a term or condition of an individual鈥檚 academic status or progress.
  2. Submission to or rejection of the conduct by an individual is used as the basis for academic decisions affecting the individual.
  3. The conduct has the purpose or effect of having a negative impact on the individual鈥檚 academic performance, or of creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive educational environment.
  4. Submission to or rejection of the conduct by the individual is used as the basis for any decision affecting the individual regarding benefits and services, honors, programs, or activities available at or through the school.

Types of conduct which are prohibited in the district and which may constitute sexual harassment include, but are not limited to:

  1. Unwelcome sexual flirtations or propositions
  2. Sexual slurs, leering, epithets, threats, verbal abuse, derogatory comments or sexually degrading descriptions
  3. Graphic verbal comments about an individual鈥檚 body, or overly personal conversation
  4. Sexual jokes, notes, stories, drawings, pictures or gestures
  5. Spreading sexual rumors
  6. Teasing or sexual remarks about students enrolled in a predominantly single-sex class
  7. Touching an individual鈥檚 body or clothes in a sexual way
  8. Purposefully cornering or blocking normal movements
  9. Limiting a student鈥檚 access to educational tools
  10. Displaying sexually suggestive objects Notifications

A copy of the district鈥檚 sexual harassment policy and regulation shall:

  1. Be included in the notifications that are sent to parents/ guardians at the beginning of each school year (Education Code 48980) (cf. 5145.6 鈥 Parental Notifications)
  2. Be displayed in a prominent location near each school principal鈥檚 office (Education Code 212.6)
  3. Be provided as part of any orientation program conducted for new students at the beginning of each quarter, semester or summer session (Education Code 212.6)
  4. Appear in any school or district publication that sets forth the school鈥檚 or district鈥檚 comprehensive rules, regulations, procedures and standards of conduct (Education Code 212.6)
  5. Be provided to employees and employee organizations

Investigation of Complaints at School (Site-Level Grievance Procedure)

  1. The principal or designee shall promptly investigate all complaints of sexual harassment. In so doing, he/she shall talk individually with:
    • The student who is complaining
    • The person accused of harassment
    • Anyone who saw the harassment take place
    • Anyone mentioned as having related information
  2. The student who is complaining shall have an opportunity to describe the incident, present witnesses and other evidence of the harassment, and put his/her complaint in writing.
  3. The principal or designee shall discuss the complaint only with the people described above. When necessary to carry out his/her investigation or for other good reasons that apply to the particular situation, the principal or designee also may discuss the complaint with the following persons:
    • The Superintendent or designee
    • The parent/guardian of the student who complained
    • The parent/guardian of the person accused of harassing someone
    • A teacher or staff member whose knowledge of the students involved may help in determining who is telling the truth
    • Child protective agencies responsible for investigating child abuse reports
    • Legal counsel for the district (cf. 5141.41 鈥 Child Abuse Prevention)
  4. When the student who complained and the person accused of harassment so agree, the principal or designee may arrange for them to resolve the complaint informally with the help of a counselor, teacher, administrator or trained mediator. The student who complained shall never be asked to work out the problem directly with the accused person unless such help is provided.
  5. The principal or designee shall tell the student who complained that he/she has the right to file a formal complaint at any time in accordance with the district鈥檚 uniform complaint procedures. If the student wishes to file a formal complaint, the principal or designee shall assist the student in doing this. (cf. 1312.3 鈥 Uniform Complaint Procedures)
  6. In reaching a decision about the complaint, the principal or designee may take into account:
    • Statements made by the persons identified above
    • The details and consistency of each person鈥檚 account
    • Evidence of how the complaining student reacted to the incident
    • Evidence of past instances of harassment by the accused person
    • Evidence of past harassment complaints that were found to be untrue
  7. To judge the severity of the harassment, the principal or designee may take into consideration:
    • How the misconduct affected one or more students鈥 education
    • The type, frequency and duration of the misconduct
    • The number of persons involved
    • The age and sex of the person accused of harassment
    • The subject(s) of harassment
    • The place and situation where the incident occurred
    • Other incidents at the school, including incidents of harassment that were not related to sex
  8. The principal or designee shall write a report of his/her findings, decision, and reasons for the decision and shall present this report to the student who complained and the person accused.
  9. The principal or designee shall give the Superintendent or designee a written report of the complaint and investigation. If he/ she verifies that sexual harassment occurred, this report shall describe the actions he/she took to end the harassment, address the effects of the harassment on the person harassed, and prevent retaliation or further harassment.
  10. Within two weeks after receiving the complaint, the principal or designee shall determine whether or not the student who complained has been further harassed. The principal or designee shall keep a record of this information and shall continue this follow-up at his/ her discretion.

Enforcement

The Superintendent or designee shall take appropriate actions to reinforce the district鈥檚 sexual harassment policy. As needed, these actions may include any of the following:

  1. Removing vulgar or offending graffiti
  2. Providing staff inservice and student instruction or counseling
  3. Notifying parents/guardians
  4. Notifying child protective services
  5. Taking appropriate disciplinary action. In addition, the principal or designee may take disciplinary measures against any person who is found to have made a complaint of sexual harassment which he/she knew was not true.

Regulation SACRAMENTO CITY UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT

approved: November 16, 1998 Sacramento, California

reviewed: June 11, 2002