Anti-Harassment and Non-Discrimination

  • Dublin City Schools is committed to having a school environment free from all discrimination, bullying, harassment, and intimidation. All students, administrators, teachers, staff, and school personnel share responsibility for avoiding, discouraging, and reporting any form of unlawful discrimination. Under Federal civil rights laws, discrimination based on race, color, national origin, sex, disability, age, religion, ancestry, or genetic information is strictly prohibited. Furthermore, retaliation against individuals who file a complaint is also prohibited.

    Bullying, harassment, or intimidation includes any intentional, persistent, and repetitive written, verbal, graphic, electronically submitted, or physical act that a student or group of students exhibits toward another student and the behavior both: a) causes mental or physical harm to the other student AND b) is sufficiently severe that it creates an intimidating, threatening, or abusive educational environment for the victim.

    When an incident arises that requires a report to be filed, please direct your complaint to the appropriate personnel below. You can also fill out an anonymous report on our Stay Safe. Speak Up! helpline.

    Stay Safe. Speak Up!

    The Dublin City Schools Board of Education has adopted the policies below to address discrimination, bullying, harassment, and intimidation in the district.

Federal Civil Rights Laws

  • Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964

  • Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973

  • Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972

  • Age Discrimination Act of 1975

  • Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990

  • Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008

Understanding Title IX

  • What is Title IX?

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    The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) enforces, among other statutes, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972. Title IX protects all people from discrimination based on sex in education programs or activities that receive federal financial assistance. This includes people who identify as transgender or gender-nonconforming. 

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  • Who is a transgender student?

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    A “transgender student” is a student who “consistently, persistently, and insistently express[es] a gender that, on a binary [e.g. male vs. female], we would think of as opposite to his/her assigned sex.” A student who identifies as nonbinary, a student born intersex who does or does not identify with their sex-assigned-at-birth, and others whose identities belie gender norms, may also be considered “transgender.”

    Note: Each student’s privacy rights under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (“FERPA”) and R.C. 3319.321 must be respected. Teachers and other school employees cannot reveal information about a student’s transgender status unless the student’s parents or legal guardian (or the student if over 18) consent to such a disclosure.

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  • How does the District decide whether to make accommodations for transgender students?

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    When the parent of a transgender student, or a transgender student, requests accommodations, the building administrator and/or school counselor or social worker will meet with the parent, student, and any other individuals with relevant information. The team will discuss the requested accommodations; the consistency, persistency, and insistency of the asserted gender expression; and any supports needed to ensure equal access to and equal opportunity to participate in the District’s education programs.

    Accommodations are granted on a case-by-case basis, after considering the circumstances. When determining whether to permit an accommodation, the school will consider the following:

    • evidence regarding whether the student has “consistently, persistently, and insistently” expressed the gender identity;
    • ensuring the student has equal access to, and an equal opportunity to participate in, the District’s education programs;
    • student safety and comfort; and
    • protecting student privacy and minimizing stigmatization of the student.
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  • What are the rules with regard to restroom use?

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    The District respects the privacy and dignity of each and every student. The District allows a transgender student access to the facilities consistent with their gender identity, whether that is access to the sex-segregated facilities with which the student identifies, or providing more private alternatives (i.e., access to staff/unisex restrooms) if the transgender student is uncomfortable using either sex-segregated bathroom. The District’s primary aim is protecting the safety and privacy of all students, and it considers each request for an accommodation on an individualized basis. Any student who has a need or desire for increased privacy, regardless of the reason, may request access to a private restroom.

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  • Can a student decide one day to use the female restroom and the next to use the male restroom?

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    No. As explained above, requests for accommodations are granted after considering the specific circumstances. Restroom accommodations will only be made for a student who consistently, persistently, and insistently expresses a gender that differs from their sex-assigned-at-birth, or in situations in which other medical or legal evidence requires accommodation.

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  • Can transgender students participate in extra-curricular activities and athletics?

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    Yes. The Ohio High School Athletic Association (OHSAA) has a policy governing the participation of transgender students in OHSAA sponsored sports. The policy generally allows for the participation of a transgender student on the team corresponding to their gender identity, subject to some restrictions on hormonal therapy and the student's transitional phase. The full policy is available at:
    http://www.ohsaa.org/Portals/0/Eligibility/OtherEligibiltyDocs/TransgenderPolicy.pdf

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  • How does the dress code apply to transgender students?

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    The dress code is outlined in the student handbook and is gender neutral and applies to all students equally.

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  • What about locker rooms or overnight accommodations on school trips?

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    If a student meets the qualifications noted above for restroom access, the District will permit them access to other facilities corresponding to their gender identity. However, as with the options provided to students regarding restroom use, any student who has a need or desire for increased privacy, regardless of the underlying reason, may request access to private changing/restroom stalls or share their concerns regarding overnight accommodations with their building administration.

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  • Why does the District permit these accommodations?

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    The Board of Education has a policy prohibiting discrimination or harassment on the basis of sex, including sexual orientation and gender identity, in all educational programs or activities. Federal courts, including the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, which has jurisdiction over Ohio, have opined that prohibiting a student from using the restroom consistent with his or her consistently and uniformly held gender identity is unlawful sex discrimination under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (“Title IX”), and/or a violation of the student’s equal protection rights under the United States Constitution. Title IX is a federal civil rights law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in federally funded education programs and activities.  A public school that violates these laws may be forced to pay the student money damages and the student’s attorney fees, in addition to its own legal expenses.

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  • What action is the Board taking in relation to Title IX and Transgender Students?

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    Consistent with the law, the Board of Education has a policy prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sex. The administration is responsible for implementing Board policy consistent with law. That is what the administration is doing with respect to transgender students.

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  • I’ve heard that the courts have already ruled on this issue and found against transgender students.

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    The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, which has jurisdiction over the School District, has weighed in on the issue of a transgender student’s restroom use and found for the student. In June 2016, Highland Local School District filed suit against the federal government after the U.S. Department of Education threatened to begin an enforcement action against the district for not allowing a transgender student to use the restroom consistent with the student’s gender identity. Highland sought a court order prohibiting the Department from starting the process to take Highland’s federal funding. The student intervened in the case seeking a court order allowing her to use the girls’ restroom. The Southern District Court of Ohio issued an opinion denying Highland’s request for a court order and granting the student’s request for a court order. The District Court and Sixth Circuit both denied the District’s request to stay the order while the matter was pending. As a result, the student was permitted to use the restroom consistent with her identified gender. If the District chose to act contrary to the ruling in the Highland case by not permitting a transgender student to use the restroom consistent with the student’s gender identity, the District has no reason to expect a different result in its favor.

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  • How can students safely express their views?

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    The District recognizes the First Amendment rights of students and community members to express their opinions and beliefs on controversial topics. But while at school, students’ expression cannot disrupt or attempt to disrupt the educational process. The classrooms are places for learning, and the District’s focus will be on educating all of its students. The District hopes discussions will remain civil. However, the District prohibits bullying, harassment, intimidation and discrimination of students. School counselors are available to all students for further discussion or for help reporting bullying, harassment, intimidation or discrimination.

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  • How can I access resources for addressing my child's gender-related needs in school?

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    If your child has gender-related needs, the first step is to contact your child's school counselor. All school counselors in Dublin City Schools have been provided information and training on House Bill 68 and the process for assisting with gender-related needs.

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