Title IX: Sexual Harassment, Sexual Assault, and discrimination based on sex
The Education Amendments Act of 1972, prohibits sex discrimination in any federally funded educational program. This applies to all institutions receiving federal financial support and includes all educational experiences—academics, athletics, and extracurricular activities. The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) provides guidance and enforcement of the law with regard to sex discrimination, which includes sexual harassment and sexual assault.
No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subject to discrimination under any educational program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.
(Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972)
Students and staff are protected against sexual harassment by anyone in any school program or activity, including on the school campus, on the school bus, or off-campus during a school-sponsored activity.
Sexual harassment is unwelcome behavior or communication that is sexual in nature when:
- A student or employee is led to believe that he or she must submit to unwelcome sexual conduct or communications in order to gain something in return, such as a grade, a promotion, a place on a sports team, or any educational or employment decision, or
- The conduct substantially interferes with a student's educational performance or creates an intimidating or hostile educational or employment environment.
Examples that may constitute sexual harassment:
- Pressuring a person for sexual favors
- Unwelcome touching of a sexual nature
- Writing graffiti of a sexual nature
- Distributing sexually explicit texts, e-mails, pictures, or videos
- Making sexual jokes, rumors, or suggestive remarks
- Physical violence, including rape and sexual assault
Below is a list of individuals designated to handle inquiries regarding the District’s Title IX non-discrimination policies:
Title IX Compliance Officer
Lillie Huddleston, PhD
125 Electric Avenue
Decatur, GA 30030
404-371-3601, ext. 1026
Title IX Coordinator for
Athletics and Student Activities
310 North McDonough Street
Decatur, GA 30030
Title IX Liaisons - School principals serve as local Title IX liaisons for each school. You can report sexual harassment or discrimination based on sex to the school principal, any staff member, or to the district's Title IX Compliance Officer, listed above. You also have the right to file a complaint (see below).
Title IX Grievance Policies & Procedures
COMPLAINT OPTIONS: DISCRIMINATION BASED ON SEX AND SEXUAL HARASSMENT If you believe that you or your child have experienced discrimination, discriminatory harassment, or sexual harassment at school, you have the right to file a complaint. You can report discrimination and discriminatory harassment to any school staff member, the principal (who serves as the Title IX Liaison), or the district’s Title IX Compliance Officer listed above.
Before filing a formal complaint, you can seek an informal resolution by discussing your concerns with your child’s principal or with the school district’s Title IX Compliance Officer. You may also file a formal complaint through the procedures listed below.
Step 1: Complaint to the School District. Write Your Complaint. In most cases, complaints must be filed within one year from the date of the incident or conduct that is the subject of the complaint. A complaint must be in writing. Be sure to describe the conduct or incident, explain why you believe discrimination, discriminatory harassment, or sexual harassment has taken place. Send your written complaint—by mail or hand delivery—to the district compliance officer.
Step 2: School District Investigates Your Complaint. Once the district receives your written complaint, the compliance officer will give you a copy of the complaint procedures and make sure a prompt and thorough investigation takes place. The complaint will be conducted in cooperation with the Staff Support Department if the alleged harasser is an employee. The investigation may include an interview with the charged party or parties, interviews with witnesses, if any, and an examination of any relevant documents or artifacts. The district compliance officer will respond to you in writing within 30 school days. If your complaint involves exceptional circumstances that demand a lengthier investigation, the district will notify you in writing to explain why staff need a time extension and the new date for their written response.
Step 3: School District Responds to Your Complaint In its written response, the district will include a summary of the results of the investigation, notification that you can appeal this determination, and any corrective measures the district has taken. If you disagree with the compliance officer’s decision, you may appeal to the school superintendent. You must file a notice of appeal in writing to the superintendent within 10 school days of the date of the district’s response.
The superintendent will schedule an appeal meeting within 20 school days after receipt of your appeal. The superintendent will send you a written decision within 30 school days after the appeal meeting. If your appeal involves exceptional circumstances that demand a lengthier process, the superintendent will notify you in writing to explain why a time extension is needed and the new date for his written response.
Retaliation against an individual for filing a charge of discrimination, participating in an investigation, or opposing discriminatory practices is prohibited.
Other Title IX Complaint Option:
Office for Civil Rights, Atlanta Office, U.S. Department of Education
61 Forsyth St. SW, Suite 19T70
Atlanta, GA 30303-8927
Telephone: 404-974-9406 Fax: 404-974-9471