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Title IX

Cedar Springs Public Schools prohibits unlawful sex discrimination, including harassment and retaliation, in any of its education programs or activities in accordance with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and corresponding implementing regulations.  If an employee or student believes that he or she has been discriminated against in violation of Title IX, please reference the District’s Title IX Grievance Procedures below.
CSPS Title IX Board Policy
 
The District designates the following people as the Title IX Coordinators: 
Matt Blood
Human and Community Services Director, Title IX Coordinator
204 E Muskegon Street
Cedar Springs, MI  49319 
616-696-1204
Matt.Blood@csredhawks.org
 
April Stevens
Assistant Director of Student Services, Title IX Coordinator
204 E Muskegon Street
Cedar Springs, MI 49319
616-696-1204
April.Stevens@csredhawks.org

Definitions

  1. “Sexual Harassment” means conduct on the basis of sex that satisfies one or more of the following: 
    • A District employee conditioning the provision of a District aid, benefit, or service on a person’s participation in unwelcome sexual conduct;  
    • Unwelcome conduct that a reasonable person would determine to be so severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive that it effectively denies a person equal access to the District’s education program or activity; or 
    • Sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence, or stalking, as defined by the Violence Against Women Act, 34 USC § 12291 et. seq., and the uniform crime reporting system of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, 20 USC 1092(f)(6)(A)(v). 
      • “Sexual assault” means an offense classified as a forcible or nonforcible sex offense under the uniform crime reporting system of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. 
      • “Dating violence” means violence committed by a person who is or has been in a romantic or intimate relationship with the Complainant. The existence of such a relationship is based on a consideration of the length of the relationship, the type of relationship, and the frequency of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship.
      • “Domestic violence” means felony or misdemeanor crimes of violence committed by a current or former spouse or intimate partner of the Complainant, person with whom the Complainant shares a child, person who is cohabitating with or has cohabitated with the Complainant as a spouse or intimate partner, person similarly situated to a spouse of the Complainant under the domestic or family violence laws of Michigan; or any other person against an adult or youth Complainant who is protected from that person’s acts under the domestic or family violence laws of Michigan.
      • “Stalking” means engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to (1) fear for the person’s safety or the safety of others; or (2) suffer substantial emotional distress.
  2. “Actual Knowledge” means notice of sexual harassment or allegations of sexual harassment to the District’s Title IX Coordinator or any District employee. Imputation of knowledge based solely on vicarious liability or constructive notice is insufficient to constitute actual knowledge. This standard is not met when the only District employee with actual knowledge is the Respondent.
  3. “Appeals Officer” is the person designated by the District to handle appeals of a dismissal or determination of responsibility for matters investigated under this Policy. The Appeals Officer may not be the same person as the Investigator, Title IX Coordinator, or Decision-Maker on a specific matter.
  4. “Complainant” is a person who is alleged to be the victim of conduct that could constitute Title IX sexual harassment.
  5. “Consent” means a voluntary agreement to engage in sexual activity by a person legally capable of consenting. Someone who is incapacitated cannot consent. Past consent does not imply future consent. Silence or an absence of resistance does not imply consent. Consent to engage in sexual activity with one person does not imply consent to engage in sexual activity with another. Consent can be withdrawn at any time. Coercion, force, or threat of either invalidates consent. Sexual conduct or relationships between District employees, volunteers, or contractors and students, regardless of age or consent, are prohibited.
  6. “Day,” unless otherwise indicated, means a day that the District’s central office is open for business. 
  7. “Decision-Maker” is the person designated by the District to review the investigation report and provide a written determination of responsibility that provides the evidentiary basis for the Decision-Maker’s conclusions. The Decision-Maker may not be the same person as the Investigator, Title IX Coordinator, or Appeals Officer on a specific matter.
  8. “Education Program or Activity” means any location, event, or circumstance over which the District exhibits substantial control over both the Respondent and the context in which the harassment occurred.
  9. “Formal Complaint” means a written document or electronic submission signed and filed by a Complainant or signed by the Title IX Coordinator alleging sexual harassment against a Respondent and requesting that the District investigate the sexual harassment allegation.
  10. “Grievance Process” is the process by which the District handles Formal Complaints.
  11. “Investigator” is the person designated by the District to investigate a Title IX Formal Complaint or report. The Investigator cannot be the same person as the Decision-Maker or Appeals Officer on a specific matter. The Title IX Coordinator may serve as the Investigator on a particular investigation, unless the Title IX Coordinator signed the Formal Complaint.
  12. “Report” means an account of Title IX sexual harassment made by any person (regardless of whether the reporting party is the alleged victim). 
  13. “Respondent” is a person who has been reported to be the perpetrator of conduct that could constitute Title IX sexual harassment.
  14. “Supportive Measures” are non-disciplinary, non-punitive, individualized services offered and implemented by the Title IX Coordinator as appropriate, as reasonably available, and at no-cost to the Complainant and the Respondent before or after the filing of a Formal Complaint or when no Formal Complaint has been filed. Supportive measures are designed to restore or preserve equal access to the District’s education program or activity without unreasonably burdening the other party, including measures designed to protect the safety of all parties or the District’s educational environment, or deter sexual harassment. 
  15. “Title IX Coordinator” is the person(s) designated by the District to coordinate the District’s Title IX compliance. The Title IX Coordinator may not be the same person as the Appeals Officer or Decision-Maker on a specific matter. A person not serving as a Title IX Coordinator in a particular investigation is not disqualified from serving in another role in that investigation. The Title IX Coordinator may also serve as the Investigator on a particular investigation, unless the Title IX Coordinator signed the Formal Complaint.

Grievance Process

The Grievance Process begins when a Formal Complaint is filed or when the Title IX Coordinator signs a Formal Complaint. The District will endeavor to complete the Grievance Process within 45-60 days, absent extenuating circumstances or delays as described in Board Policy. The District will treat both the Complainant and the Respondent equitably throughout the Grievance Process. 
 
 

Formal Complaint

“Formal Complaint” means a written document or electronic submission signed and filed by a Complainant or signed by the Title IX Coordinator alleging sexual harassment against a Respondent and requesting that the District investigate the sexual harassment allegation.
 

Title IX Training

All District employees and Board members must be trained on how to identify and report sexual harassment.
All District Employees Training

Any person designated as a Title IX Coordinator, Investigator, Decision-Maker, Appeals Officer, or any person who facilitates an informal resolution process must be trained on the following:
  1. The definition of sexual harassment;
  2. The scope of the District’s education programs or activities;
  3. How to conduct an investigation and the District’s grievance process, including, as applicable, hearings, appeals, and informal resolution processes; and
  4. How to serve impartially, including avoiding prejudgment of the facts at issue, conflicts of interest, and bias.
Investigators must receive training on how to prepare an investigation report as outlined in Subsection F(4) above, including, but not limited to, issues of relevance.

Decision-Makers and Appeals Officers must receive training on issues of evidence and questioning, including when questions about a Complainant’s prior sexual history or disposition are not relevant. 

Any materials used to train District employees who act as Title IX Coordinators, Investigators, Decision-Makers, or who facilitate an informal resolution process must not rely on sex stereotypes and must promote impartial investigations and adjudications of Formal Complaints.