AC -Appendix to Policy
Adopted: November 15, 2001
Responsibilities of School Personnel and Students
In Relation to Witnessed or Reported Bias Incidents
1) All Personnel and Students
- Report bias incidents and civil rights violations to school civil rights administrators.
- Be familiar with basic facts about hate and hate crimes, so as to be able to identify bias incidents and have an understanding of the dynamics.
- Challenge biased attitudes and behavior whenever encountered in school and outside.
- Report hate crimes to police, and summon help in an emergency.
- Uphold school civil rights and safety policies and remain vigilant and alert for violations.
- Take responsibility so as to make a difference in stopping hate conduct, finding and creating individual and group opportunities for action and involvement.
2) Teachers Only
- Set guidelines for classroom behavior to avoid hurt feelings and promote respect.
- Respond to and challenge insensitive behaviors like name calling and exclusion of children who are different.
- Instruct against hate and prejudice, where this message is apropos to classroom subjects and lessons.
- Look for and help implement proactive programs and strategies to promote tolerance and stop hate conduct.
3) School Staff Specifically
- Challenge and try to stop bias incidents when witnessed or encountered in progress, if a safe opportunity is presented.
4) Civil Rights Designees Specifically
- Be available to receive reports of civil rights violations from students, faculty, and other administrators.
- Respond promptly to a report of a civil rights violation by intervening if possible, ensuring that students are safe and free from harassment, and by starting an investigation and quickly ascertaining the facts.
- Put a stop to ongoing harassment immediately and effectively, and refer victims to support services and resources available in the area.
- Take remedial, corrective, and disciplinary action as the circumstances established by the investigation, school policies, and the Code of Conduct, warrant.
- Take steps to avert retaliation against students who report civil rights violations, and act immediately to ensure student safety and freedom from harassment.
- Communicate and coordinate efforts with police on a regular, ongoing basis, and develop a working partnership with police officers assigned to schools and civil rights issues.
- Undergo specialized training to maintain knowledge of hate crimes and civil rights issues as they affect schools.
- Coordinate school prevention programming and activities, drawing on available resources and tools.
Federal and Massachusetts Laws bearing on harassment and bias crimes in school settings
- Title VI.42 U.S.C. Sec. 2000 et seq. (prohibition of discrimination based on race, traits historically associated with race, color, or national origin)
- Title IX, 20 U.S.C. Sec. 168 et seq. (prohibition of discrimination based on sex or blindness)
- Title II of the American with Disabilities Act, 42 U.S.C. Sec. 12134 (prohibition of discrimination based on disability)
- Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. 29 U.S.C. Sec. 794
- G.L.c.71, Sec. 27H (student handbooks required to state disciplinary measures applicable to “violations of other students’ civil rights”)
- G.L.c.76, Sec. 5 (prohibition of discrimination “on account of race, traits historically associated with race, color, sex, gender identity, religion, national original or sexual orientation”, in access to “advantages, privileges and course of study of ([local] public schools”).
- G.L.c.151C (Fair Education Practices Act, includes prohibition of sexual harassment)
- G.L.c.214, Sec. 1B (right of privacy)
- G.L.c.214, Sec. 1C (right of freedom from sexual harassment)
- G.L.c.12, Sec. 11H and 11I (prohibition of threats, intimidation, or coercion interfering with someone’s legal rights)
- G.L.c.265, Sec. 37 (criminal penalties for the use of force or threats to interfere with someone’s legal rights)
- G.L.c.265, Sec. 39 (increasing penalties for assaults, batteries, and property damage motivated by bias on grounds of race, traits historically associated with race, color, religion, national original, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability)
- G.L.c.266, Sec. 127A (criminal penalties for vandalism of a school)
School Committee Policies
- A - Foundations and Basic Commitments
- B - School Board Governance and Operations
- C - General School Administration
- D - Fiscal Management
- E - Support Services
- F - Facilities Development
- G - Personnel
- H - Negotiations
- I - Instructional Program
- J - Students
- K - School-Community Relations
- L - Education Agency Relations