What is Title IX? Title IX is a civil rights law that was passed by Congress in 1972 and required equality for both genders in education. It reads as follows:
“No person in the United States shall, based on sex, be excluded from participating in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.”
Title IX also includes sexual and gender-based harassment and sexual violence. A key provision in new Title IX legislation is that schools must take sexual harassment seriously, while also ensuring a fair process for everyone involved.
Duval County School Board Policy 10.10 - Anti-Discrimination and Harassment states that “The School Board forbids sexual harassment, or any other form of illegal harassment, of any employee, student, volunteer or visitor. The Board will not tolerate sexual harassment, or any other form of illegal harassment by any of its employees, students, volunteers or agents. ... The prohibition against discrimination including sexual and other forms of illegal harassment shall also apply to non-employee volunteers who work subject to the control of school authorities, and to all vendors or service providers who have access to School Board facilities."
Title IX Process
For the purpose of addressing formal complaints of sexual harassment, a recipient's grievance process must comply with the requirements of the Title IX regulations. Further, a recipient's grievance process must treat Complainants and Respondents equitably by providing remedies to a Complainant where a determination of responsibility for sexual harassment has been made against the Respondent, and by following a grievance process that complies with the regulations before the imposition of any disciplinary sanctions or other actions that are not supportive measures as defined in 34 C.F.R. §106.30 against a Respondent.
The following is a general outline of the Title IX Process.
Step 1 - The Complainant (i.e., victim) or a third party reports allegations of sexual harassment.
Step 2 - The Title IX Coordinator conducts initial meetings with the parties (i.e., the Complainant and Respondent) and offers supportive measures.
Step 3 - A formal written complaint is filed.
Step 4 - The grievance process begins.
Step 5 - A determination is made as to whether Title IX applies to the allegations.
If Title IX does apply, a written notice of allegations is provided to the parties, and the investigation begins.
If Title IX does not apply, a determination is made as to whether a dismissal is warranted. In the event of a dismissal, either party may appeal.
Step 6 - The Investigator conducts the investigation (i.e., interviews the parties and witnesses, gathers evidence, etc.), presents all evidence to the parties for review and inspection, drafts an Investigative Report, and provides the report to the parties.
Step 7 - The Decision-Maker facilitates a question and answer process for the Complainant and Respondent, determines relevancy of questions, and renders a written determination based on the facts contained in the Investigative Report.
Step 8 - Either party may appeal the written determination, and the Appellate Decision-Maker provides a final written determination regarding the appeal.
For questions or to make a report, please contact the School Title IX Coordinator.
School Title IX Coordinator
Loietta Holmes, Ed.S Assistant Principal
7301 Parker School Road
Jacksonville, FL 32209