In its efforts to promote nondiscrimination and as required by law, Ponder ISD does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, gender, sex, disability, age, or any other basis prohibited by law, in providing education services, activities, and programs, including CTE programs, and provides equal access to the Boy Scouts and other designated youth groups.
Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 protects students and employees from sex discrimination, gender-based harassment, sexual harassment (which includes sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence and stalking), gender-based bullying and retaliation , in educational programs and associated activities at institutions that receive Federal funding.
The following information is provided in response to 34 C.F.R. Part 106.8 of the 2020 Title IX Regulations, mandating notice of a nondiscrimination policy and adoption and publication of grievance procedures that provide for the prompt and equitable resolution of student and employee complaints. In accordance with Title IX, the district does not, and is required not to, discriminate on the basis of sex in its educational programs or activities.
The district has designated and authorized the following employee as the Title IX Coordinator (Kent Josselet-Assistant Superintendent) to address concerns or inquiries regarding discrimination on the basis of sex, including sexual harassment, sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence, stalking, and gender-based harassment:
Title IX Team:
- Title IX coordinator: coordinates the compliance efforts for the education entity
- Investigator: investigates the formal complaint; may also serve as Title IX coordinator
- Facilitator: oversees the informal resolution process of a complaint if both parties agree to this process
- Decision-maker: makes a determination after the investigation is completed
- Appellate decision-maker: makes a determination upon an appeal
- The complainant is any individual who is alleged to be the victim of conduct that could constitute sexual harassment, as defined by Title IX.
- The respondent is an individual who has been reported to be the perpetrator of conduct that could constitute sexual harassment, as defined by Title IX.
The regulations define sexual harassment as conduct on the basis of sex that satisfies one or more of the following:
- An employee conditioning an aid, benefit, or service of the district on an individual’s participation in unwelcome sexual conduct (i.e., quid pro quo)
- Unwelcome conduct determined by a reasonable person to be so severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive that it effectively denies a person equal access to the district’s education program or activity (i.e., hostile environment)
- Sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence, or stalking, as these terms are defined in federal law
The new regulations expand the definition of “actual knowledge” as applied to K–12 school districts. The new standard is if any school employee of the district has notice of sexual harassment or allegations of sexual harassment, then the district has “actual knowledge” and legal responsibilities begin.
A document filed by a complainant or signed by the Title IX coordinator alleging sexual harassment against a respondent and requesting the district investigate constitutes a formal complaint. At the time of the filing, the complainant must be participating or attempting to participate in the entity’s programs or activities.
Any person may report sexual harassment whether or not the person reporting is the alleged victim of the misconduct, but a third-party reporter cannot file a formal complaint.
Reference Materials: Implementing the New Title IX Regulations: August 14, 2020: TASB