Title IX Amendments, Procedures / District Policy for BISD Fine Arts Staff – The following Amendments / Procedures are established to enhance the safety of our students and staff. For more information on policies and procedures, employees may refer to the BISD Policies & Regulations or confer with the Coordinator of Fine Arts or Director of Human Resources. The term “parent” shall be used herein to mean both parent and/or legal guardian.
Title IX – Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 prohibits sex discrimination against students and employees of educational institutions. Title IX prohibits discrimination, exclusion, denial, limitation, or separation based on gender in any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance, including the District’s fine arts programs. More importantly, Title IX regulations explicitly prohibit sex discrimination, which includes sexual harassment. It is important to recognize that Title IX’s prohibition of sexual harassment does not extend to legitimate nonsexual touching or other nonsexual conduct.
- For example, a high school fine arts teacher hugging a student who made a first division or a teacher’s consoling hug for a child with a skinned knee may not be considered sexual harassment. However, in some circumstances, nonsexual conduct may take on sexual connotations and may rise to the level of sexual harassment. A teacher’s hugging and putting his or her arms around students under inappropriate circumstances could create a hostile sexual harassment environment.
- Accordingly, the District’s fine arts staff should observe all District policies pertaining to conduct with students. For further guidance, please reference the District Employee Handbook.
Sexual Harassment and Reporting Suspected Abuse – District employees shall not engage in conduct constituting sexual harassment or sexual abuse of students, co-workers or parents. Sexual harassment includes any welcome or unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal (oral, written, email or sent by text), physical, or visual conduct of a sexual nature.
Reporting: Any District employee who receives information about sexual harassment or sexual abuse of a student that may reasonably be characterized as known or suspected child abuse or neglect will need to make a report to the appropriate authorities, as required by law. Any employee who suspects or knows that a student is being sexually harassed or sexually abused by a school employee or by another student shall inform his or her principal, administrator, immediate supervisor, or Title IX coordinator.
Investigations: Any allegations of sexual harassment or sexual abuse of students will be investigated and addressed. In considering and investigating allegations that an employee has sexually harassed or sexually abused a student, the investigation shall proceed from the presumption that the employee’s conduct was unwelcome. For further guidance in any of the above areas, please reference District Employee Handbook under BISD Policies & Regulations.