Equity Office » Knowledge #1: Sexual Harassment and Sex-Based/Gender Discrimination

Knowledge #1: Sexual Harassment and Sex-Based/Gender Discrimination

On all ABCUSD school campuses students can make a report to a teacher, counselor, principal, assistant principal or a staff member. The school employee will notify the school site Title IX School Compliance Officer who will then work with student to make the report. 
Students and parents/guardians can also complete a report form, found on this page along with the name, phone number and email of your school's School Compliance Officer  CLICK HERE
DISTRICT Title IX Coordinator-Students
Blain Watson, Equity Officer &
P: 562-926-5566 ext. 21184
If you are in imminent danger, have recently been assaulted,
and/or are in need of medical attention, please call 911.
ABCUSD students of all genders who are experiencing any form of abuse, dating or sexual violence, (cyber)stalking and/or harassment, bullying or discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity are protected under the Title IX law. 
Title IX prohibits conducts of harassment, discrimination and retaliation by school employees and students towards students to:
exclude them from participation in
---or be denied the benefits of an education program
---or activity (e.g., sports)
---or subjected to discriminatory acts on the
basis of gender, sexual orientation or
gender identity.
Any student who feels that he/she/they has been subjected to unlawful discrimination described above or in district policy (See BP5145.7 ) is strongly encouraged to immediately contact their School Compliance Officer, a trusted staff member or by using the direct line District Safety Hotline 562-888-0472.  In addition, any student who observes any such incident is strongly encouraged to report the incident. Whether or not the alleged victim seeks to file a formal complaint. WE ARE YOUR ADVOCATES. 




Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972(TIX) is a Federal civil rights law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender in all education programs and activities. Title IX keeps students safe and in school by reducing barriers and protecting students from an environment that interferes with educational programs or activities or that creates an intimidating, offensive, or hostile educational climate.
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The reporting party (or "complainant") is the person alleged to have been harmed by another person. You do not have to go through this alone. Please make sure to reach out to us. It is important to address your emotional and/or physical needs first. Your School Compliance Officer will help you complete a report of the incident. The priority of Title IX policy is a response is student safety.

Upon notification of an incident, the School Compliance Officer will take immediate steps to ensure both parties (if applicable) are safe and protected from further harm. This may include a request that the parties cease communication and/or the implementation of immediate interim safety measures in your school building. Depending on the severity and type of discrimination alleged, a school-based investigation begins. If the report contains information that may include a crime, the School Compliance Officer may consult with law enforcement to determine whether a police response is needed. If this is necessary, outreach to law enforcement is coordinated in collaboration with the student and their parent(s)/guardian(s).  If child abuse or neglect is suspected, a report is made through the county child abuse reporting hotline.

Furthermore, your School Compliance Officer will work closely with the District Title IX Coordinator to coordinate a grievance procedure for Title IX formal complaints. The School Compliance Officer and the District Title IX Coordinator work together to ensure consistent enforcement of the Title IX policy. Our goal is for students to have freedom to learn and throve in a safe and trusted environment. 
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Title IX prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex, which can include sexual harassment or sexual violence.  Title IX outlines specific responsibilities that school districts have to address sexual harassment and sexual violence including:
  • The responsibility to respond promptly and effectively.  Schools must take immediate action to eliminate sexual harassment or sexual violence, prevent its recurrence and address its effects.
  • Even if a student or his/her parent does not want to file a complaint or does not request that the school take any action on a student's behalf, if a school knows or reasonably should know about possible sexual harassment or sexual violence, it must promptly investigate to determine what occurred and then take appropriate steps to resolve the situation.
  • A criminal investigation into allegations of sexual harassment or sexual violence does not relieve the school of its duty under Title IX to resolve complaints promptly and equitably
The responding party (or "respondent") is the person alleged to have harmed another person. The priority of Title IX policy and response is student safety. Once an incident is formally reported to the school, we will take immediate steps to ensure both parties are safe and protected from further harm. This may include a request that the parties cease communication and/or the implementation of immediate interim safety measures in your school building or online. Depending on the severity and type of discrimination alleged, a school-based investigation may begin.
If it is determined that a Title IX investigation is appropriate, you will be notified by the School Compliance Officer or Title IX designee about the nature of the allegation and your rights under Title IX. Under Title IX and the U.S. Constitution, everyone has a right to due process protections. At a minimum, this means a presumption of innocence. In other words, only after receiving due process, can someone be deemed "responsible" for an alleged behavior. 

A school-based investigation is not the same as the criminal process; the most significant consequence that a school can apply is suspension or expulsion for a period of time. Expulsion is reserved for the most serious and dangerous behaviors.

Not all Title IX reports end in school discipline or consequences. In some cases, an informal resolution (such as restorative justice or supportive measures are provided) may be appropriate (if agreed to by both parties and only if doing so would not create additional harm). In other cases, there may not be enough information to reach a conclusion based on the “preponderance of the evidence standard” means that it is more likely than not (greater than 50%) that the alleged events constituting the Title IX violation occurred). Each case is unique; regardless, the safety and well-being of every member of our school community is our top priority - that includes both complainant and respondent.

Once a report is formally made using one of the options above, it is strictly prohibited to retaliate, intimidate, harass or threaten the individual who reported the matter. The following are strictly prohibited:

  • Threatening to harm, spread rumors, or other misinformation about the named student
  • Intimidating or harassing behavior towards the named student
  • Threats, coercion, or intimidation on your behalf by a third party (such as another ABCUSD student) towards the named student

Any actions perceived as retaliatory should be immediately reported to the School Compliance Officer and may be subject to disciplinary consequences.

1. Contact your School Compliance Officer - Click here
2. Tell a trusted adult such as a teacher or other school staff
3. Make a report here English or Spanish.
The School Compliance Officer or  Title IX Designee begins to take corrective action once the report of sexual harassment, discrimination or intimidation is received. The School Compliance will offer supportive measures to involved parties ("Complainant " an individual who reports a violation of this policy and the " "Respondent" an individual identified as allegedly engaged in prohibited conduct) and will assist the complainant or the complainant’s representative in understanding the grievance process in order to file a formal complaint of sexual harassment, if requested. Your school will coordinate supportive measures for both parties, even if a formal complaint report is not made.  Remember witnesses and complainants both can report violations of Title IX.