100 EDUCATIONAL PHILOSOPHY

100 Legal Status of the School District

 

EDUCATIONAL PHILOSOPHY

Series 100

 

Policy Title:  Legal Status of the School District

Code No.  100

 

Iowa law authorizes the creation of a Common Schools System.  As part of this Common Schools System, this school district is a school corporation created and organized under Iowa law.  This school district is known as the Oskaloosa Community School District.

This school corporation is located in Mahaska County, and its affairs are conducted by elected school officials, the Oskaloosa Community School District Board of Directors.  This school corporation has exclusive jurisdiction over school matters in the territory of the school district.

 

Approved:  December 10, 2002

Reviewed:  May 9, 2017

Revised:

Legal Reference:  Iowa Code §§ 274.1, .2, .6, .7; 278.1(9); 279.8; 594A (2013).

Cross Reference:  200 Legal Status of the Board of Directors

101 Educational Philosophy

 

EDUCATIONAL PHILOSOPHY

Series 100

 

Policy Title:  Educational Philosophy of the School District

Code No  101

 

As a school corporation of Iowa, the Oskaloosa Community School District, acting through its Board of Directors, is dedicated to promoting an equal opportunity for a quality public education to its students.  The Board’s ability may be limited by the school district’s ability and willingness to furnish financial support in cooperation with student’s, parents and school district community.  The Board is also dedicated to providing the opportunity to develop a healthy social, intellectual, emotional, and physical self-concept in a learning environment that provides guidance to and encourages critical thinking in the students for a lifetime.

The Board endeavors, through the dedication of the school district’s resources, to encourage students, who come to the school district from a variety of backgrounds, to look forward to the time when they will have jobs, homes, families, places in the school district community, and attain recognition as individuals.  In order to achieve this goal, the Board will seek qualified employees dedicated to development of their professional skills for the betterment of the education program and for the expertise for educational productivity.

Instruction and curriculum are the key elements of a public education.  Critical thinking and problem solving skills that will assist the students’ preparation for life is instructed as part of a sequentially coordinated curriculum.  The school district strives to prepare students for employment, to discover and nurture creative talent and to prepare them to meet and cope with social change in an atmosphere conducive to learning.

The support and involvement of the home and the school district community are essential to achieve educational excellence in the school district.  The school district strives to maintain an active relationship with the home and the school district community to create within the students an awareness of dignity and worth of the individual, civic responsibility and respect for authority.

 

Approved:       December 10, 2002

Reviewed:       May 9, 2017

Revised: 

Legal Reference:    Iowa Code §§ 256.11 (2013).

Cross Reference:   102 Equal Educational Opportunity; 103 Long-Range Needs Assessment; 209 Board of Directors’ Management Procedures; 600 Goals and Objectives of the Education Program; 602 Curriculum Development

102 Equal Educational Opportunity

 

EDUCATIONAL PHILOSOPHY

Series 100

 

Policy Title:  Equal Educational Opportunity

Code No.  102

 

The Board will not discriminate in its educational activities on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, religion, creed, age (except students), marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, and socioeconomic status (for programs).

The Board requires all persons, agencies, vendors, contractors, and other persons and organizations doing business with or performing services for the school district to subscribe to all applicable federal and state laws, executive orders, rules, and regulations pertaining to contract compliance and equal opportunity.

The Board is committed to the policy that no otherwise qualified person will be excluded from educational activities on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, religion, creed, age (except students), marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, and socioeconomic status.  Further, the Board affirms the right of all students and staff to be treated with respect and to be protected from intimidation, discrimination, physical harm, and harassment.

 

Approved:       December 10, 2002

Reviewed:       May 9, 2017

Revised:          December 31, 2016

Legal Reference:    20 U.S.C. §§ 1221 et seq; 20 U.S.C. §§ 1681 et seq.; 20 U.S.C. §§ 1701 et seq.; 29 U.S.C. § 206 et seq.; 29 U.S.C. § 794; 42 U.S.C. §§ 2000d and 2000e; 42 U.S.C. §§ 12101 et seq.; 34 C.F.R. Pt. 100; 34 C.F.R. Pt. 104.

Iowa Code §§ 216.6; 216.9; 256.11; 280.3.

281 I.A.C. 12

Cross Reference:   101 Educational Philosophy of the School District; 401.1 Equal Employment Opportunity; 500 Objectives for Equal Educational Opportunities for Students; 506.1 Student Records

102.E1 Section 504 Notice of Non-Discrimination

                                                                                                                      

Code No.  102.E1

 

SECTION 504 NOTICE OF NONDISCRIMINATION

 

It is the policy of the Oskaloosa Community School District not to illegally discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, religion, creed, age (for employment), marital status (for programs), sexual orientation, gender identity, and socioeconomic status (for programs) in its educational programs and its employment practices.  Any person having inquiries concerning the school district's compliance with the regulations implementing Title VI, Title IX, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), 504 or Iowa Code 280.3 is directed to contact:

 

(Title)  Chad Vink

(where located)  Central Office

(telephone number)  641-673-8345

 

who has been designated by the school district to coordinate the school district’s efforts to comply with the regulations implementing Title VI, Title VII, Title IX, the ADA, 504 and Iowa Code 280.3 (2007).

                                                           

102.E2 Grievance Form

Uploaded Files: 

102.E3 Grievance Documentation

Uploaded Files: 

102.E4 Sec. 504 Student and Parental Rights

Code No.  102.E4

 

SECTION 504 STUDENT AND PARENTAL RIGHTS

 

The Oskaloosa Community School District does not discriminate in its educational programs and activities on the basis of a student’s disability.  It has been determined that your child has a qualifying disability for which accommodations may need to be made to meet his or her individual needs as adequately as the needs of other students.  As a parent, you have the right to the following:

  • participation of your child in school district programs and activities, including extracurricular programs and activities, to the maximum extent appropriate, free of discrimination based upon the student’s disability and at the same level as students without disabilities;
  • receipt of free educational services to the extent they are provided students without disabilities;
  • receipt of information about your child and your child’s educational programs and activities in your native language;
  • notice of identification of your child as having a qualifying disability for which accommodations may need to be made and notice prior to evaluation and placement of your child and right to periodically request a re-evaluation of your child;
  • inspect and review your child’s educational records including a right to copy those records for a reasonable fee; you also have a right to ask the school district to amend your child’s educational records if you feel the information in the records is misleading or inaccurate; should the school district refuse to amend the records, you have a right to a hearing and to place an explanatory letter in your child’s file explaining why you feel the records are misleading or inaccurate;
  • hearing before an impartial hearing officer if you disagree with your child’s evaluation or placement; you have  a right to counsel at the hearing and have the decision of the impartial hearing officer reviewed.

Inquires concerning the school district’s compliance with the regulations implementing Title VI, Title IX, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), 504 or Iowa Code 280.3 should be directed to:

(Title)  Andy Hotek, Middle School Principal                                                   

(Where located)  Middle School    (Phone No.)  641-673-8345

who has been designated by the school district to coordinate the school district’s efforts to comply with the regulations implementing Title VI, Title IX, the ADA, 504 and Iowa Code 280.3 (2001).

102.R1 Grievance Procedure Regulation

 

EDUCATIONAL PHILOSOPHY

Series 100

 

Administrative Regulation:  Grievance Procedure

Code No.  102.R1

 

It is the policy of the Oskaloosa Community School District not to illegally discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, religion, creed, age (for employment), marital status (for programs), sexual orientation, gender identity, and socioeconomic status (for programs) in its educational programs and its employment practices.

Students, parents of students, employees, and applicants for employment in the school district will have the right to file a formal complaint alleging discrimination under federal or state regulations requiring non-discrimination in programs and employment.

Level One – Principal, Immediate Supervisor or Personnel Contact Person

Employees with a complaint of discrimination based upon their gender, race, national origin, religion, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability are encouraged to first discuss it with their immediate supervisor, with the objective of resolving the matter informally.  An applicant for employment with a complaint of discrimination based upon their gender, race, national origin, religion, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability are encouraged to first discuss it with the personnel contact person.  This paragraph is for employees and “marital status” isn’t a protected class for employees.

A student, or a parent of a student, with a complaint of discrimination based upon their gender, race, national origin, religion, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability are encouraged to discuss it with the instructor, counselor, supervisor, building administrator, program administrator or personnel contact person directly involved.

Level Two – Compliance Officer

If the grievance is not resolved at level one and the grievant wishes to pursue the grievance, the grievant may formalize it by filing a complaint in writing on a Grievance Filing Form, which may be obtained from the Compliance Officer.  The complaint will state the nature of the grievance and the remedy requested.  The filing of the formal, written complaint at level two must be within 15 working days from the date of the event giving rise to the grievance, or from the date the grievant could reasonably become aware of such occurrence.  The grievant may request that a meeting concerning the complaint be held with the Compliance Officer.  A minor student may be accompanied at that meeting by a parent or guardian.  The Compliance Officer will investigate the complaint and attempt to resolve it.  A written report from the Compliance Officer regarding action taken will be sent to the involved parties within a reasonable time after receipt of the complaint.

Level Three – Superintendent/Administrator

If the complaint is not resolved at level two, the grievant may appeal it to level three by presenting a written appeal to the superintendent within five working days after the grievant receives the report from the Compliance Officer, the grievant may request a meeting with the Superintendent.  The superintendent may request a meeting with the grievant to discuss the appeal.  A decision will be rendered by the superintendent within a reasonable time after the receipt of the written appeal.  If, in cases of disability grievances at the elementary and secondary level, the issue is not resolved through the grievance process, rather, the parents have a right to an impartial hearing to resolve the issue.

This procedure in no way denies the right of the grievant to file formal complaints with the Iowa Civil Rights Commission, the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights or Office of Special Education Programs, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, or the Iowa Department of Education for mediation or rectification of civil rights grievances, or to seek private counsel for complaints alleging discrimination.

Level Four – Appeal to Board

If the grievant is not satisfied with the superintendent’s decision, the grievant can file an appeal with the Board within five working days of the decision.  It is within the discretion of the Board to determine whether it will hear the appeal.

The Compliance Officer is:

Name:  District’s Curriculum Director

Office Address:  1800 North 3rd St., Oskaloosa, Iowa 52577

Phone Number:  641-673-8345

Office Hours:  8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday thru Friday

 

Approved:    December 10, 2002

Reviewed:    May 9, 2017

Revised:       May 9, 2017

103 Long Range Needs Assessment

 

EDUCATIONAL PHILOSOPHY

Series 100

 

Policy Title:  Long-Range Needs Assessment

Code No.  103

 

Long-range needs assessment enables the school district to analyze assessment data, get feedback from the community about its expectation of students and determines how well students are meeting student learning.  The Board will conduct ongoing and in-depth needs assessment, soliciting information from business, labor, industry, higher education and community members, regarding their expectations for adequate student preparation.

In conjunction with the in-depth needs assessment of the school district, the Board will authorize the appointment of a committee, representing administrators, employees, parents, students and community members, to make recommendations and assist the Board in determining the priorities of the school district in addition to the basic skills areas of the education program.

The school district will, at a minimum, report annually to the local community about the district’s progress on the state and other locally determined indicators.  The district will provide other opportunities for informing the community of the long-range needs assessment process.  These opportunities include but shall not be limited to, reports at the Board of Directors’ meetings, at District Advisory Council meetings, publication in the local media, district publications, and posting the information on the district’s web site.

It is the responsibility of the superintendent to ensure the school district community is informed of students’ progress on state and locally determined indicators.  The superintendent will report annually to the Board about the means used to keep the community informed.

As a result of the Board and committee’s work, the Board will determine and prioritize major educational needs; develop long-range goals and plans to meet the needs; establish and implement short-range and intermediate-range plans to meet the goals and to attain the desired levels of student performance; evaluate progress toward meeting the goals and maintain a record of progress under the plan that includes reports of student performance and results of school improvement projects; and annually report the school district’s progress made under the plan to the committee, community and Iowa Department of Education.

 

Approved:       December 10, 2002

Reviewed:       May 9, 2017

Revised:

Legal Reference:    Iowa Code §§ 21; 256.7; 280.12, .18 (2013).

                                 281 I.A.C. 12.8(1)(b).

Cross Reference:   101 Educational Philosophy of the School District; 200 Legal Status of the Board of Directors; 208 Committees of the Board of Directors; 603.1 Basic Instruction Program; 801.1 Buildings and Sites Long Range Planning; 801.2 Buildings and Sites Surveys

103.R1 Long Range Needs Assessment Regulation

 

EDUCATIONAL PHILOSOPHY

Series 100

 

Administrative Regulation:  Long-Range Needs Assessment

Code No.  103.R1

 

School districts also need to develop a process for long-range needs assessment.  The process needs to include three items:

  • provisions  for collecting, analyzing and reporting information derived from local, state and national sources;
  • provisions for reviewing information acquired on the following:
    • state indicators and other locally determined indicators,
    • locally established student learning goals,
    • specific data collection required by state and federal programs;
  • provisions for collecting and analyzing assessment data on the following:
    • state indicators,
    • locally determined indicators,
    • locally established student learning goals.

The long-range needs assessment process is mandatory but it does not need to be an administrative regulation supporting the long-range needs assessment policy.  It is, however, recommended that it become an administrative regulation to support the policy to ensure completeness and consistency.

 

Approved:    December 10, 2002

Reviewed:    May 9,2017

104 Anti-Bullying/Harassment

 

EDUCATIONAL PHILOSOPHY

Series 100

 

Policy Title:  Anti-Bullying/Harassment

Code No.  104

 

Harassment and bullying of students and employees are against federal, state and local policy, and are not tolerated by the Board.  The Board is committed to providing all students with a safe and civil school environment in which all members of the school community are treated with dignity and respect.  To that end, the Board has in place policies, procedures, and practices that are designed to reduce and eliminate bullying and harassment as well as processes and procedures to deal with incidents of bullying and harassment.  Bullying and harassment of students by students, school employees, and volunteers who have direct contact with students will not be tolerated in the school or school district.

The Board prohibits harassment, bullying, hazing, or any other victimization, of students, based on any of the following actual or perceived traits or characteristics, including but not limited to, age, color, creed, national origin, race, religion, marital status, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, physical attributes, physical or mental ability or disability, ancestry, political preference, political belief, socioeconomic status, or familial status.  Harassment against employees based upon race, color, creed, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, religion, age or disability is also prohibited.

This policy is in effect while students or employees are on property within the jurisdiction of the Board; while on school-owned or school-operated vehicles; while attending or engaged in school-sponsored activities; and while away from school grounds if the misconduct directly affects the good order, efficient management and welfare of the school or school district.

If, after an investigation, a student is found to be in violation of this policy, the student shall be disciplined by appropriate measures up to, and including, suspension and expulsion.  If after an investigation a school employee is found to be in violation of this policy, the employee shall be disciplined by appropriate measures up to, and including, termination.  If after an investigation a school volunteer is found to be in violation of this policy, the volunteer shall be subject to appropriate measures up to, and including, exclusion from school grounds.  “Volunteer” means an individual who has regular, significant contact with students.

Harassment and bullying mean any electronic, written, verbal, or physical act or conduct toward a student which is based on any actual or perceived trait or characteristic of the student and which creates an objectively hostile school environment that meets one or more of the following conditions:

  • Places the student in reasonable fear of harm to the student’s person or property;
  • Has a substantially detrimental effect on the student’s physical or mental health;
  • Has the effect of substantially interfering with the student’s academic performance; or
  • Has the effect of substantially interfering with the student’s ability to participate in or benefit from the services, activities, or privileges provided by a school.

“Electronic” means any communication involving the transmission of information by wire, radio, optical cable, electromagnetic, or other similar means.  “Electronic” includes but is not limited to communication via electronic mail, internet-based communications, pager service, cell phones, electronic text messaging or similar technologies.

Harassment and bullying may include, but are not limited to, the following behaviors and circumstances:

  • Verbal, nonverbal, physical or written harassment, bullying, hazing, or other victimization that have the purpose or effect of causing injury, discomfort, fear, or suffering to the victim;
  • Repeated remarks of a demeaning nature that have the purpose or effect of causing injury, discomfort, fear, or suffering to the victim;
  • Implied or explicit threats concerning one’s grades, achievements, property, etc. that have the purpose or effect of causing injury, discomfort, fear, or suffering to the victim;
  • Demeaning jokes, stories, or activities directed at the student that have the purpose or effect of causing injury, discomfort, fear, or suffering to the victim; and/or
  • Unreasonable interference with a student’s performance or creation of an intimidating, offensive, or hostile learning environment.

Sexual harassment means unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when:

  • Submission to the conduct is made either implicitly or explicitly a term or condition of the student’s education or benefits;
  • Submission to or rejection of the conduct by a school employee is used as the basis for academic decisions affecting that student; or
  • The conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with the student’s academic performance by creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive education environment.

In situations between students and school officials, faculty, staff, or volunteers who have direct contact with students, bullying and harassment may also include the following behaviors:

  • Requiring that a student submit to bullying or harassment by another student, either explicitly or implicitly, as  term or condition of the targeted student’s education or participation in school programs or activities; and/or
  • Requiring submission to or rejection of such conduct as a basis for decisions affecting the student.

Any person who promptly, reasonably, and in good faith reports an incident of bullying or harassment under this policy to a school official, shall be immune from civil or criminal liability relating to such report and to the person’s participation in any administrative, judicial, or other proceeding relating to the report.  Individuals who knowingly file a false complaint may be subject to appropriate disciplinary action.

Retaliation against any person, because the person has filed a bullying or harassment complaint or assisted or participated in a harassment investigation or proceeding, is also prohibited.  Individuals who knowingly file false harassment complaints and any person who gives false statements in an investigation shall be subject to discipline by appropriate measures, as shall any person who is found to have retaliated against another in violation of this policy.  Any student found to have retaliated in violation of this policy shall be subject to measures up to, and including, suspension and expulsion.  Any school employee found to have retaliated in violation of this policy shall be subject to measures up to, and including, termination of employment.  Any school volunteer found to have retaliated in violation of this policy shall be subject to measures up to, and including, exclusion from school grounds.

The school or school district will promptly and reasonably investigate allegations of bullying or harassment.  The principal, supervisor or designee will be responsible for handling all complaints by students alleging bullying or harassment.  The principal, supervisor or designee will be responsible for handling all complaints by employees alleging bullying or harassment.

It also is the responsibility of the superintendent, in conjunction with the investigator and principals, to develop procedures regarding this policy.  The superintendent also is responsible for organizing training programs for students, school officials, faculty, staff, and volunteers who have direct contact with students.  The training will include how to recognize harassment and what to do in case a student is harassed.  It will also include proven effective harassment prevention strategies.  The superintendent will also develop a process for evaluating the effectiveness of the policy in reducing bullying and harassment.  The superintendent shall report to the Board on the progress of reducing bullying and harassment.

The Board will annually publish this policy.  The policy may be publicized by the following means:

  • Inclusion in the student handbook
  • Inclusion in the employee handbook
  • Inclusion in the registration materials
  • Inclusion on the school or school district’s web site,

and a copy shall be made to any person at the Central Office at 1800 North 3rd Street, Oskaloosa, Iowa 52577.

 

Approved:    July 10, 2007

Reviewed:    July 11, 2017

Revised:

Legal Reference:    20 U.S.C. §§ 1221-1234i; 29 U.S.C. § 794; 42 U.S.C. §§ 2000d-2000d-7; 42 U.S.C. § 12101 2 et.seq.

                                  Iowa Code §§ 216.9; 280.28, 280.3.

                                  281 I.A.C. 12.3(6).

                                  Morse v. Frederick, 551 U.S. 393 (2007)

Cross Reference:   102 Equal Education Opportunity; 502 Student Rights and Responsibilities; 503 Student Discipline; 506 Student Records

104.E1 Anti-Bullying/Harrassment Complaint Form

Uploaded Files: 

104.E2 Anti-Bullying/Harrassment Witness Disclosure Form

Uploaded Files: 

104.R1 Anti-Bullying/Harrassment Investigation Procedures

 

EDUCATIONAL PHILOSOPHY

Series 100

 

Administrative Regulation:  Anti-Bullying/Harassment Investigation Procedures

Code No.  104.R1

 

Individuals who feel that they have been harassed should:

  • Communicate to the harasser that the individual expects the behavior to stop, if the individual is comfortable doing so.  If the individual wants assistance communicating with the harasser, the individual should ask a teacher, counselor or principal to help.
  • If the harassment does not stop, or the individual does not feel comfortable confronting the harasser, the individual should:
    • tell a teacher, counselor or principal; and
    • write down exactly what happened, keep a copy and give another copy to the teacher, counselor or principal including;
    • what, when and where it happened;
    • who was involved;
    • exactly what was said or what the harasser did;
    • witnesses to the harassment;
    • what the student said or did, either at the time or later;
    • how the student felt; and
    • how the harasser responded.

COMPLAINT PROCEDURE

An individual who believes that the individual has been harassed or bullied will notify the principal or supervisor, the designated investigator.  The alternate investigator is the district’s curriculum director.  The investigator may request that the individual complete the Harassment/Bullying Complaint form and turn over evidence of the harassment, including, but not limited to, letters, tapes, or pictures.  The complainant shall be given a copy of the completed complaint form.  Information received during the investigation is kept confidential to the extent possible.

The investigator, with the approval of the principal, or the principal has the authority to initiate an investigation in the absence of a written complaint.

INVESTIGATION PROCEDURE

The investigator will reasonably and promptly commence the investigation upon receipt of the complaint.  The investigator will interview the complainant and the alleged harasser.  The alleged harasser may file a written statement in response to the complaint.  The investigator may also interview witnesses as deemed appropriate.

Upon completion of the investigation, the investigator will make written findings and conclusions as to each allegation of harassment and report the findings and conclusions to the principal.  The investigator will provide a copy of the findings of the investigation to the principal.

RESOLUTION OF THE COMPLAINT

Following receipt of the investigator’s report, the principal may investigate further, if deemed necessary, and make a determination of any appropriate additional steps which may include discipline.

Prior to the determination of the appropriate remedial action, the principal may, at the principal’s discretion, interview the complainant and the alleged harasser.  The principal will file a written report closing the case and documenting any disciplinary action taken or any other action taken in response to the complaint.  The complainant, the alleged harasser and the investigator will receive notice as to the conclusion of the investigation.  The principal will maintain a log of information necessary to comply with Iowa Department of Education reporting procedures.

POINTS TO REMEMBER IN THE INVESTIGATION

  • Evidence uncovered in the investigation is confidential.
  • Complaints must be taken seriously and investigated.
  • No retaliation will be taken against individuals involved in the investigation process.
  • Retaliators will be disciplined up to and including suspension and expulsion.

CONFLICTS

If the investigator is a witness to the incident, the alternative investigator shall investigate.

 

Approved:    July 10, 2007

Reviewed:    May 9, 2017

Revised:       May 9, 2017