Section 504 is part of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 that prohibits discrimination based upon disability. Section 504 is an anti-discrimination, civil rights statue that requires the needs of students with disabilities to be met as adequately as the needs of students who are not disabled.
Title II applies to State and local government entities and protects qualified individuals with disabilities from discrimination on the basis of disability in services, programs, and activities provided by State and local government entities.
On March 20, 2018, the Keystone Oaks School Board approved the revision of Board Policy 103.1: Nondiscrimination – Qualified Students with Disabilities. With the revision of this Policy, the District also revised its Complaint Procedure, found in Policy 103.1. The Complaint Procedures outline the process that students, parents, and employees are to follow when they suspect that discrimination may have occurred due to a student’s disability. The following is the Complaint Procedure that is to be followed:
Step 1: Reporting
- A student or parent/guardian who believes s/he has been subject to conduct by any student, employee or third part that constitutes a violation of this policy is encouraged to immediately report the incident to the Section 504 building administrator.
- A school employee who suspects or is notified that a student has been subject to conduct that constitutes a violation of this policy shall immediately report the incident to the Section 504 building administrator, as well as properly making any mandatory police or child protective services reports required by law.
- A student or parent/guardian who believe s/he who believe s/he has been subject to conduct by any student, employee or third party that constitutes a violation of this policy is encouraged to immediately report the incident to the Section 504 building administrator. Any person with knowledge of conduct that may violate this policy, is encouraged to immediately report the matter to the Section 504 building administrator.
Step 2: Investigation
- The investigator shall conduct an adequate, reliable and impartial investigation. The complainant and the accused shall be provided the opportunity to present witnesses and other evidence during the course of the investigation.
Step 3: Investigative Report
- The investigator shall prepare and submit a written report to the Section 504 Coordinator within twenty (20) days of the initial report of alleged discrimination, unless the nature of the allegations, anticipated extent of the investigation and the availability of witnesses required the investigator and the Section 504 Coordinator to establish a different due date. The parties shall be notified of the anticipated date the investigative report will be completed and of any changes to the anticipated due date during the course of the investigation.
- The complainant and the accused shall be informed of the outcome of the investigation, including the recommended disposition, within a reasonable time of the submission of the written report. The accused shall not be notified of the individual remedies offered or provided to the complainant.
Step 4: District Action
- The District shall promptly take appropriate steps to prevent the recurrence of the prohibited conduct and to address the discriminatory effect the prohibited conduct had on the complainant and the school or school program environment.
In order to maintain a program of nondiscrimination practices that is in compliance with applicable laws and regulations, the Board designates the Supervisor of Pupil Personnel as the District’s Section 504 Coordinator. In addition, each school within the District shall have a Section 504 building administrator which will be the building principal.
The District shall publish and disseminate this policy and complaint procedure on or before the first day of each school year by posting it on the District’s website, if available, and in the student handbook. The District shall notify parent/guardians of students residing in the District of the District’s responsibilities under applicable laws and regulations, and that the District does not discriminate against qualified individuals with disabilities.
William P. Stropkaj, Ed.D