Board Policy 7260
Uniform Grievance Procedure
Any student, parent/guardian, employee, or community member has the right to report or file a complaint that the School Board, its employees, or agents have violated the rights of any student, parent/guardian, employee, or community member guaranteed by the State or federal Constitution, State or federal statute, or Board policy, including any one of the following:
- Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act
- Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, excluding Title IX sexual harassment complaints addressed under policy 7265, Title IX Sexual Harassment Grievance Procedure
- Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973
- Title VI of the Civil Rights Act, 42 U.S.C. §2000d et seq.
- Equal Employment Opportunities Act (Title VII of the Civil Rights Act), 42 U.S.C. §2000e etseq.
- Sexual harassment prohibited by the State Officials and Employees Ethics Act, Illinois Human Rights Act, and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964(Title IX sexual harassment complaints are addressed under policy 7265, Title IX Sexual Harassment Grievance Procedure)
- Bullying, 105 ILCS 5/27-23.7
- Misuse of District funds including but not limited to funds received for services to improve educational opportunities for educationally disadvantaged or deprived children
- Curriculum, instructional materials, and/or programs (challenges to textbook and instructional materials will be referred to the procedures under Board Policy 6400)
- Victims’ Economic Security and Safety Act, 820 ILCS 180
- Illinois Equal Pay Act of 2003, 820 ILCS 112
- Provision of services to homeless students
- Illinois Whistleblower Act, 740 ILCS 174/.
- Misuse of genetic information (Illinois Genetic Information Privacy Act (GIPA), 410 ILCS 513/ and Titles I and II of the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA), 42 U.S.C. §2000ff et seq.)
- Employee Credit Privacy Act, 820 ILCS 70/.
- Breastfeeding accommodations for students, 105 ILCS 5/10-20.60 (P.A. 100-29)
Right to Pursue Other Remedies Not Impaired
The right of a person to prompt and equitable resolution of a report or complaint under this policy will not be impaired by the person’s pursuit of other remedies, e.g., criminal complaints, civil actions, etc, although temporary delays may be warranted in the discretion of the District, particularly for concurrent law enforcement investigations. Use of this grievance procedure is not a prerequisite to the pursuit of other remedies and use of this grievance procedure does not extend any filing deadline related to the pursuit of other remedies. If a person is pursuing another remedy based on the same or similar operative facts as a complaint under this policy, the District has the discretion to continue with a simultaneous investigation under this policy and will do so in all cases required by law.
If a report is made or a complaint is filed under this policy, a Nondiscrimination Coordinator, Complaint Manager, or designee will address the complaint promptly and equitably. All deadlines under this procedure may be extended as deemed appropriate by the administrator responsible for meeting the deadline under this policy. As used in this policy, “school business days” means days on which the District’s main office is open.
The Nondiscrimination Coordinator or Complaint Manager has the discretion to attempt to resolve reports and complaints of misconduct covered by this policy informally without resorting to the grievance procedures in this policy. Parties to reports or complaints under this policy must voluntarily agree to engage in an informal resolution, may refuse any offer of informal resolution, and may withdraw from any informal resolution process at any time prior to an agreement being reached. The District does not require Complainants to attempt to resolve allegations directly with individuals accused of misconduct (the “Respondent”) or their representatives.
Reports and Complaints
To request use of this grievance procedure, the person should make a report or file a complaint with a District Nondiscrimination Coordinator or Complaint Manager. No person is required to make a report or file a complaint with a particular Nondiscrimination Coordinator or Complaint Manager; individuals may request to speak to a Nondiscrimination Coordinator or Complaint Manager of the same gender. Any employee who receives or complaint of conduct covered by this policy must report the conduct to the Nondiscrimination Coordinator or Complaint Manager.
For reports, the Nondiscrimination Coordinator, Complaint Manager, or designee may request a written statement and/or completion of a written complaint form regarding the report. The Nondiscrimination Coordinator, Complaint Manager, or designee may require a meeting with the Complainant and/or their parent/guardian(s) in relation to a report or complaint.
The following grievance process will be used to address complaints of misconduct covered by this policy unless another policy or document, including a collective bargaining agreement, prescribed a different complaint process for the conduct or concern at issue. In some cases, the Nondiscrimination Coordinator, Complaint Manager, or designee must consider other applicable policies when addressing complaints of misconduct covered by this policy. For example:
- Board policy 5440 Prevention and Response to Bullying, addressing complaints of bullying, intimidation, and harassment (when this policy and policy 5440 are implicated, the reasonable timeframe for completing the investigation will be the timeframe under this policy)
- Board policy 4180 Workplace Harassment Prohibited, addressing workplace harassment
- Board policy 5560 Abused and Neglected Child Reporting, addressing reporting under the Abused and Neglected Child Report Act (“ANCRA”)
- Board policy 5370 Suspensions and Expulsions, addressing procedures required for suspensions and expulsions
If attempts at informal resolution are not successful or appropriate, the Nondiscrimination Coordinator, Complaint Manager, or designee will offer the Complainant an opportunity to file a complaint under this policy. The Nondiscrimination Coordinator, Complaint Manager, or designee will notify the Complainant of any limitations on confidentiality, including that if the District has notice of prohibited conduct that creates a risk for students, employees or other members of the District community other than the Complainant, or if sharing the identity of the Complainant is necessary to complete an investigation into a complaint, the District may not be able to respect a request to maintain the confidentiality of the Complainant. The complaint and identity of the Complainant and any witnesses will not be disclosed except: (1) as required by law, this policy, or (2) as necessary to fully investigate the complaint or implement interim measures, or (3) as authorized by the relevant person (Complainant or witness).
If a complaint is filed, the Nondiscrimination Coordinator, Complaint Manager, or designee will consider whether the conduct, if true, would be conduct covered by this policy. If so, the Nondiscrimination Coordinator, Complaint Manager, or designee will investigate the complaint or appoint another individual to investigate the matter.
If no complaint is filed, the Nondiscrimination Coordinator, Complaint Manager, or designee will consider whether to open an investigation even without the filing of a complaint. An investigation may be warranted if the reported conduct involves allegations against an employee, multiple allegations against the same alleged perpetrator, or creates a risk to the safety of the general District community.
During an investigation, the Nondiscrimination Coordinator, Complaint Manager, or designee assigned to conduct the investigation (the “Investigator”) will provide both parties an equal opportunity to present evidence. If a party or witness is a student under 18 years of age, the Investigator has the discretion to include the student’s parent(s)/guardian(s) during investigatory meetings involving the student. Nothing herein limits the right of school employees to hold investigatory meetings with students under the right of in loco parentis. The investigator will inform, at regular intervals, the parties about the status of the investigation.
Within 60 school business days of the date the complaint was filed, the Investigator will prepare a written document summarizing the investigation and Investigator’s recommendations. All decisions will be based upon the preponderance of evidence (more likely than not) standard.
For minor infractions, which are matters of a severity which, for example, (for students) typically would be handled by a student’s teacher or Assistant Principal/Dean of Students or (for employees) an employee’s direct supervisor, the investigator’s summary can be informal (such as, for students, a suspension notice). The summary will be the final step in this General Grievance Process, subject only to review appeal options available to students, employees, and third parties under generally applicable policies and procedures, handbooks, collective bargaining agreements, contracts, etc. for discipline imposed.
Decision and Appeal
Within 5 school business days after receiving the Investigator’s report for a more serious infraction, the Superintendent (or the Board, if the complaint contains allegations involving the Superintendent or one or more Board members) will mail a written determination to the Complainant and the Respondent by first class U.S. mail, with a copy to the Nondiscrimination Coordinator or Complaint Manager. All decisions shall be based on the preponderance of evidence (more likely than not) standard.
Within 10 school business days after receiving the Superintendent’s decision, the Complainant or the Respondent may appeal the decision to the Board by making a written request to the Nondiscrimination Coordinator or Complaint Manager. Upon receipt of an appeal, the Nondiscrimination Coordinator or Complaint Manager will promptly forward materials relevant to the complaint to the Board.
Within 30 school business days after receipt of an appeal, the Board or a designee will affirm, reverse, or amend the Superintendent’s decision or direct the Superintendent to reopen the investigation process for gathering additional information. If the investigation is reopened, a new Investigator report, Superintendent written determination, and opportunity to appeal will be provided. Within five school business days after the Board’s appeal decision, the Board or a designee will mail its written appeal decision to the Complainant and the Respondent by first class U.S. mail, with a copy to the Investigator.
This grievance procedure shall not be construed to create an independent right to a hearing before the Superintendent or Board. The failure to strictly follow the procedures or other timelines in this grievance procedure does not automatically prejudice a party or impact the outcome of the process.
Appointing Nondiscrimination Coordinator and Complaint Managers
The Superintendent shall appoint a Nondiscrimination Coordinator to manage the District’s compliance with this policy The Nondiscrimination Coordinator also serves as the District’s Title IX Coordinator.
The Superintendent shall appoint at least one Complaint Manager to administer this policy. If possible, the Superintendent will appoint two Complaint Managers, one of each gender. The District’s Nondiscrimination Coordinator may be appointed as one of the Complaint Managers.
The Superintendent shall insert into this policy and keep current the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of the Nondiscrimination Coordinator and the Complaint Managers.
Nondiscrimination/Title IX Coordinator:
Dr. William Schmidt
7925 Janes Avenue
Woodridge, IL 60517
Dr. Anne Bowers
Dr. William Schmidt
7925 Janes Ave
7925 Janes Avenue
Woodridge, IL 60517
Woodridge, IL 60517