Student Sexual Harassment Policy
The Board of Education is committed to maintaining a safe school environment that is free from harassment and discrimination. The Board prohibits, at school or at school-sponsored or school-related activities, sexual harassment targeted at any student by anyone. The Board also prohibits retaliatory behavior or action against any person who reports, files a complaint or testifies about, or otherwise supports a complainant in alleging sexual harassment.
The District strongly encourages any student who feels that he/she is being or has been sexually harassed on school grounds or at a school-sponsored or school-related activity by another student or an adult who has experienced off-campus sexual harassment that has a continuing effect on campus to immediately contact his/her teacher, the principal, or any other available school employee. Any employee who receives a report or observes an incident of sexual harassment shall notify the principal or a District compliance officer. Once notified, the principal or compliance officer shall take the steps to investigate and address the allegation.
Examples of Sexual Harassment
Conduct (including electronic communications, acts or postings) which may constitute sexual harassment includes, but is not limited to, the following:
- Verbal - unwelcome conduct such as the use of suggestive, derogatory, or vulgar comments; the use of sexual innuendos or slurs; making unwanted sexual advances, invitations, and/or comments; pestering for dates; making threats; and/or spreading rumors about or rating others as to their sexual activity or performance; threats/demands/pressure to submit to sexual requests in order to keep a job or academic standing or to avoid other loss, and/or offers of benefits in return for sexual favors.
- Visual - unwelcome conduct such as the display of sexually suggestive objects, pictures, posters, written material, cartoons, or drawings; the use of graffiti, texting and/or computer-generated images of a sexual nature; and/or the use of obscene gestures or leering.
- Physical - unwelcome conduct such as unwanted touching, pinching, kissing, patting, or hugging; the blocking of normal movement; stalking; sexual acts or assault; and/or physical interference with work or study directed at an individual because of the individual’s actual or perceived sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.
Complaint Process and Disciplinary Actions
Sexual harassment complaints by and against students shall be investigated and resolved in accordance with law and district procedures specified in AR 1312.3 - Uniform Complaint Procedures. Principals are responsible for notifying students and parents/guardians that complaints of sexual harassment can be filed under AR 1312.3 and where to obtain a copy of the procedures.
Upon investigation of a sexual harassment complaint, any student found to have engaged in sexual harassment or sexual violence in violation of this policy shall be subject to disciplinary action. For students in grades 4-12, disciplinary action may include suspension and/or expulsion, provided that, in imposing such discipline, the entire circumstances of the incident(s) shall be taken into account.
Upon investigation of a sexual harassment complaint, any employee found to have engaged in sexual harassment or sexual violence toward any student shall have his/her employment terminated in accordance with law and the applicable collective bargaining agreement.
Complaint Investigation and Resolution
Any student who believes that he/she has been subjected to sexual harassment by another student, an employee, or a third party or who has witnessed sexual harassment is strongly encouraged to report the incident to his/her teacher, the principal, or any other available school employee. Within one school day of receiving such a report, the school employee shall forward the report to the principal or the district's compliance officer identified in AR 1312.3. In addition, any school employee who observes an incident of sexual harassment involving a student shall, within one school day, report his/her observation to the principal or a district compliance officer. The employee shall take these actions, whether or not the alleged victim files a complaint.
When a report or complaint of sexual harassment involves off-campus conduct, the principal shall assess whether the conduct may create or contribute to the creation of a hostile school environment. If he/she determines that a hostile environment may be created, the complaint shall be investigated and resolved in the same manner as if the prohibited conduct occurred at school.
When a verbal or informal report of sexual harassment is submitted, the principal or compliance officer shall inform the student or parent/guardian of the right to file a formal written complaint in accordance with the district's uniform complaint procedures. Regardless of whether a formal complaint is filed, the principal or compliance officer shall take steps to investigate the allegations and, if sexual harassment is found, shall take prompt action to stop it, prevent recurrence, and address any continuing effects.
If a complaint of sexual harassment is initially submitted to the principal, he/she shall, within two school days, forward the report to the compliance officer to initiate investigation of the complaint. The compliance officer shall contact the complainant and investigate and resolve the complaint in accordance with law and district procedures specified in AR 1312.3.
In investigating a sexual harassment complaint, evidence of past sexual relationships of the victim shall not be considered, except to the extent that such evidence may relate to the victim's prior relationship with the respondent.
In any case of sexual harassment involving the principal or the District compliance officer, the report may instead be submitted to the Superintendent or designee who shall determine who will investigate the complaint.
All complaints and allegations of sexual harassment shall be kept confidential except as necessary to carry out the investigation or take other subsequent necessary action.
However, when a complainant or victim of sexual harassment notifies the district of the harassment but requests confidentiality, the compliance officer shall inform him/her that the request may limit the district's ability to investigate the harassment or take other necessary action. When honoring a request for confidentiality, the district will nevertheless take all reasonable steps to investigate and respond to the complaint consistent with the request.
When a complainant or victim of sexual harassment notifies the district of the harassment but requests that the district not pursue an investigation, the district will determine whether or not it can honor such a request while still providing a safe and nondiscriminatory environment for all students.
At any time during the investigative process, students, parents, or guardians, may contact the Title IX Coordinator to report or file an informal complaint directly with the District. A student or parent/guardian is not required to attempt resolution through the school site before contacting the District IX Coordinator and/or filing a formal Uniform Complaint.
Dr. Nicole Wesley, Title IX Coordinator
Redondo Beach Unified School District
1401 Inglewood Avenue
Redondo Beach, CA 90278
310.379.5449, ext. 1223
Please see the BP/AR link.