The Berkeley Unified School District is committed to providing a safe, secure, and hostile-free learning environment for everyone. Each student and employee has a right to learn and work in an environment that is free from unlawful discrimination. No District student or employee shall be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subject to harassment or other discrimination in any academic, extracurricular, research, occupational training, or other program or activity on the basis of actual or perceived sex, sexual orientation, gender, or gender identity or expression.
Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 is one of several federal and state anti-discrimination laws that ensure equality in education. Title IX prohibits discrimination, harassment, exclusion, denial, limitation, or separation based on sex or gender. Title IX applies to both male and female students in any educational institution receiving federal funding.
Federal Law: Title IX Sexual Harassment
The complaint procedures described in this administrative regulation shall be used to address any complaint governed by Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 alleging that a student, while in an education program or activity in which a district school exercises substantial control over the context and respondent, was subjected to one or more of the following forms of sexual harassment: (34 CFR 106.30, 106.44)
- Quid Pro Quo (Something for Something): A â€˜district employeeâ€™ conditioning the provision of a district aid, benefit, or service on the student’s participation in unwelcome sexual conduct.
- Hostile Environment: Unwelcome conduct determined by a reasonable person to be so severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive that it effectively denies a student equal access to the district’s education program or activity.
- Severe: Sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence, or stalking as defined in 20 USC 1092 or 34 USC 12291
All other sexual harassment complaints or allegations brought by or on behalf of students shall be investigated and resolved in accordance with BP/AR 1312.3 – Uniform Complaint Procedures. The determination of whether the allegations meet the definition of sexual harassment under Title IX shall be made by the district’s Title IX Coordinator.
Because the complainant has a right to pursue a complaint under BP/AR 1312.3 for any allegation that is dismissed or denied under the Title IX complaint procedure, the Title IX Coordinator shall ensure that all requirements and timelines for BP/AR 1312.3 are concurrently met while implementing the Title IX procedure.
Reporting Allegations/Filing a Formal Complaint:
A student who is the alleged victim of sexual harassment or the student’s parent/guardian may submit a report of sexual harassment to the district’s Title IX CoordinatorÂ , or report to any other available school employee, who shall forward the report to the Title IX Coordinator within one day of receiving the report.
Upon receiving such a report, the Title IX Coordinator shall inform the complainant of the right to file a formal complaint and the process for filing a formal complaint. (34 CFR 106.44)
A formal complaint, with the complainant’s physical or digital signature, may be filed with the Title IX Coordinator in person, by mail, by email, or by any other method authorized by the district. (34 CFR 106.30)
Even if the alleged victim chooses not to file a formal complaint, the Title IX Coordinator shall file a formal complaint in situations when a safety threat exists. In addition, the Title IX Coordinator may file a formal complaint in other situations as permitted under the Title IX regulations, including as part of the district’s obligation to not be deliberately indifferent to known allegations of sexual harassment. In such cases, the Title IX Coordinator shall provide the alleged victim notices as required by the Title IX regulations at specific points in the complaint process.
The Title IX Coordinator, investigator, decision-maker, or a facilitator of an informal resolution process shall not have a conflict of interest or bias for or against complainants or respondents generally or an individual complainant or respondent. Such persons shall receive training in accordance with 34 CFR 106.45. (34 CFR 106.45)
Complaint Process Timeline:
The written decision shall be issued within 90 calendar days of the receipt of the complaint. The timeline may be temporarily extended for good cause with written notice to the complainant and respondent of the extension and the reasons for the action. (34 CFR 106.45)
Either party may appeal the district’s decision or dismissal of a formal complaint or any allegation in the complaint, if the party believes that a procedural irregularity affected the outcome, new evidence is available that could affect the outcome, or a conflict of interest or bias by the Title IX Coordinator, investigator(s), or decision-maker(s) affected the outcome.
An appeal must be filed in writing within 10 calendar days of receiving the notice of the decision or dismissal, stating the grounds for the appeal and including any relevant documentation in support of the appeal. Appeals submitted after this deadline are not timely and shall not be considered.
A written decision shall be provided to the parties within 20 calendar days from the receipt of the appeal.
Either party has the right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights within 180 days of the date of the most recently alleged misconduct.
The complainant shall be advised of any civil law remedies, including, but not limited to, injunctions, restraining orders, or other remedies or orders that may be available under state or federal antidiscrimination laws, if applicable.
For inquiries or complaints related to discrimination, harassment, bullying or intimidation of students, based on actual or perceived protected characteristics, contact your Principal, Civil Rights Manager, or:
District Title IX Coordinator/Compliance Officer
Berkeley Unified School District
2020 Bonar Street, Room 117, Berkeley CA 94702
Phone: (510) 486-9338 | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org