The School Board of Collier County
Bylaws & Policies
 

3362 - ZERO TOLERANCE FOR DISCRIMINATORY AND HARASSING MISCONDUCT BY STAFF

It is the policy of the School Board to create and enhance an environment in the District where diversity and human differences are respected, where the learning, work and interactive environment among students and the District staff personnel is positive, accepting, safe and free from discriminatory behavior, harassment and, abuse. To that end, discrimination and harassment of or by any person, whether employee or student, of the District is forbidden.

Accordingly, it is impermissible for any employee to discriminate against any other employee, student, and/or applicant for employment or student admission for any reason such as, without limitation, on the basis of one's race, color, sex (including sexual orientation and/or gender identity), age, religion (including religious beliefs), disability, genetic information, national origin, ethnicity, ancestry, pregnancy, political affiliation, and/or marital status. This shall include wrongfully isolating, segregating, classifying, limiting, treating differently, hiring, firing, and evaluating any employee and/or student on the basis of the referenced classifications. With respect to communicable diseases, see Policy 8453 and with respect to military status and leave issues under Federal Law (USSERA), see Policy 3437.01.

With respect to the definitions pertaining to individuals under the Americans With Disabilities Act As Amended ("ADAAA") and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, see Policy 2260.01 which definitions and related requirements under law, are incorporated by reference herein..

It is the policy of the Board to prohibit, throughout the District, sexual harassment of and sexual misconduct toward any employee and/or student whether such misconduct involves employee-to-employee and/or employee-to-student misconduct as well as misconduct involving employees and persons not employed by the District. It is fully recognized by the Board that the District's goal is to encourage and promote a healthy academic and work setting free from sexually intimidating, harassing and degrading behaviors that create a hostile environment that injures not only trust and self-esteem, but also reduces the ability and/or desire to perform, achieve and realize one's potential.

Therefore, it is the policy of the Board, in conjunction with its stated diversity objectives, to expand its sexual harassment/misconduct policy to encompass a ban against harassment and misconduct toward any employee, applicant for employment, student, and/or applicant for student admission for any reason such as, without limitation, because of his/her race, color, sex (including sexual orientation and/or gender identity), age religion (including religious beliefs), disability, genetic information, national origin, ethnicity, ancestry, pregnancy, political affiliation, and/or marital status.

In the areas of sexual harassment and sexual misconduct, such conduct shall consist of gender oriented misconduct, including any misconduct based on sexual orientation and gender identity and discriminatory actions related thereto, unwanted sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or inappropriate physical contact or verbal and/or written comments or behaviors that serve to create an intimidating, hostile, offensive or abusive work or school environment, including behaviors that physically threaten any employee or student or in anyway interfere with the ability to perform one's job, receive an education, or participate in District activities and programs.

Similarly, such principles shall apply to the other protected categories referenced above, without limitation. Therefore, harassing or other forms of misconduct including physical contact, inappropriate verbal and/or written comments or behaviors directed toward another because of his/her race, color, sex (including sexual orientation and/or gender identity), age, religion(including religious beliefs), disability, genetic information, national origin, ethnicity, ancestry, pregnancy, political affiliation, and/or marital status that serves to create an intimidating hostile, offensive, or abusive work or school environment, including behaviors that physically threaten any employee, applicant for employment, student, and/or applicant for student admission in the manner described above, is hereby prohibited.

Any employee, volunteer, or other person, who engages in or knows or should have known of any such misconduct as addressed above and fails to report it, shall be subject to disciplinary action up to and including termination as recommended by the Superintendent. The reporting of a complaint or of any misconduct of the kind addressed above will not affect any employee's or applicant's status or the terms and conditions of his/her employment including work assignments, or opportunity to participate in the District's activities; however, knowingly filing a false allegation or making false statements during any investigation or inquiry is prohibited and is subject to discipline.

Complaint Procedures

If a person believes that s/he has been discriminated against on the basis of his/her protected classification and/or subjected to harassment, the person may utilize the complaint procedures as a means of reaching, at the lowest possible administrative level, a prompt and equitable resolution of the matter (See AP 3362). Inquiries and complaints shall be dealt with promptly in accordance with law. An employee found having engaged in wrongful conduct may appeal in accordance with the operative provisions of the collective bargaining agreement if applicable.

All complaints of harassment involving a District employee or any other adult member of the School District community against a student will be formally investigated.

Retaliation

Retaliation against a person who makes a report or files a complaint alleging unlawful discrimination and/or harassment, or participates as a witness in an investigation, is prohibited. Specifically, the Board and District personnel will not discriminate/retaliate against, coerce, intimidate, threaten or interfere with any individual because the person opposed any act or practice made unlawful Federal and State law, or because that individual made a charge, testified, assisted or participated in any manner in an investigation, proceeding, or hearing under those laws, or because that individual exercised, enjoyed, aided or encouraged any other person in the exercise or enjoyment of any right granted or protected by those laws.

The Board reserves the right to have the formal complaint investigation conducted by an external person in accordance with this policy or in such other manner as deemed appropriate by the Board or its designee.

Training on these issues will be provided to all new District employees with annual updating with administrators at the beginning of each school year to review and discuss with District staff.

F.S. 110.1221, 250.481, 760.01, 760.10, 1000.05, 1006.07
20 U.S.C. 1400 et seq., The Individuals with Disabilities Improvement Act of 2004, as amended (commonly known as the Individuals with Disabilities Act)
20 U.S.C. 1681 et seq.
29 U.S.C. 621 et seq., Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967
29 U.S.C. 794, Rehabilitation Act of 1973
29 U.S.C. Part 1635
29 U.S.C. 6101, The Age Discrimination Act of 1975
42 U.S.C. 12101 et seq., Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, as amended (2008)
42 U.S.C. 2000d et seq.
42 U.S.C. 2000e et seq.
42 U.S.C. 1983
42 U.S.C. 2000ff et seq., The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act
National School Boards Association Inquiry and Analysis - May 2008
38 U.S.C. 4301 et seq., The Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act

Revised 12/10/09
Revised 11/18/10
Revised 1/10/12
Revised 10/13/15

© Neola 2011