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Constituent Services (Parent Student Handbook)

2018-19 Parent Student Handbook

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Question

Department / Office

Phone

  • Whom can I contact if I have concerns about my child’s school?
  • Whom can I contact, if I have concerns about a school employee?

Contact your child’s principal.

See school directory on page 80.

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Constituent Services Office

The Board created the Constituent Services Office on June 13, 2007, and the main responsibilities are:

  • To provide an efficient pathway for families, community members and staff to resolve concerns informally and respond to formal complaints
  • Meet with parents, community members, and advocates to problem solve and facilitate resolution
  • Provide constituents with requests for district information and or other services
  • Resolve and/or respond to concerns related to Personnel, Williams Act, Uniform Complaints Procedures, special education, requests for information, and Public Records Acts (PRA) requests
  • Ensure that constituents receive a timely response for requests for information and services
  • Support and maintain the process of Board policies revision and review
  • Report on regular basis to the Superintendent and the Board regarding the services provided to constituents
  • Provide training to staff, parent groups, organizations, and advisory committees related to constituent services

Constituent Services can be reached at 457-3736.

It is the district’s goal to resolve most parents/guardians concerns or complaints informally and/or at the level closest to the concern/complaint as possible with the assistance of the school site administrators and the Ombudsperson, who is part of the Constituent Services Office. If this is not possible, or if parents/guardians wish to file a written complaint about, an employee, or unlawful discrimination, discriminatory harassment, intimidation, or bullying in district program and activities, or alleged violations of federal or state laws/regulations, or deficiencies related to instructional materials, the condition of a facility that is not maintained in a clean or safe manner or in good repair, a teacher vacancy or misassignment, or requiring students to pay fees, deposits for participating in educational activities; parents/guardians may initiate the formal complaint process.

The Constituent Services Office is responsible for receiving, logging, and distributing Personnel and Uniform Complaints to the Superintendent’s designees and to offer informal resolution or mediation through the Ombudsperson to resolve the complaint.

Procedures for Filing Complaints

  1. Complaint forms are specific to the type of complaint (i.e., employee, program, discrimination, Williams Act, Uniform Complaints, etc.). Complaint forms are available at any school site, the Constituent Services Office or at www.fresnounified.org
  2. The process begins by completing a complaint form and returning it to the site administrator, department head, or the district person/department identified to receive the complaint.
  3. The complaint process is handled in a confidential manner. Retaliation for filing complaint is prohibited by law and Board policy.

Complaints Concerning School Personnel

(BP/AR 1312.1)

Complaint forms can be obtained at any school site, the Constituent Services Office (457-3736) or at www.fresnounified.org . The form must be completed in full and submitted within three months of the alleged incident to the Constituent Services Office. If the complaint is not resolved informally, a written response will be submitted to the complainant within 40 working days.

Key Information Related to the Uniform Complaint Procedures (UCP)

BP 1312.3: 5CCR & 4631

For students, employees, parents or guardians of its students, school and district advisory committees, appropriate private school officials or representatives, and other interested parties

The Fresno Unified School District has the primary responsibility to ensure compliance with applicable state and federal laws and regulations and has established procedures to address allegations of unlawful discrimination, including discriminatory harassment, intimidation, bullying, and complaints alleging violation of state or federal laws governing educational programs, the charging of unlawful pupil fees and any complaints alleging that the district has not complied with legal requirements related to lactation accommodations, educational rights of foster youth homeless students and former juvenile court school students, course periods without educational content, physical education instructional minutes (grades 1-6), and the non-compliance of our Local Control and Accountability Plan (LCAP).

The Fresno Unified School District shall investigate all allegations of unlawful discrimination, discriminatory harassment, intimidation, or bullying against any person in district programs or activities, including but not limited to, those programs or activities funded directly by or that receive or benefit from and state financial assistance, based on actual or perceived characteristics of race or ethnicity, color, ancestry, nationality, national origin, immigration status, ethnic group identification, ethnicity, age, religion, marital or parental status, physical or mental disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, gender expression, or genetic information, or any other characteristic identified in Education Code 200 or 220, Penal Code section 422.55, or Government Code 11135 or based on their association with a person or group with one or more of these actual or perceived characteristics.

The UCP shall also be used when addressing complaints alleging failure to comply with state and/or federal laws in:

  • Adult Education
  • Agricultural Vocational Education
  • After School Education
  • American Indian Education Centers
  • Bilingual Education
  • Career Technical Education
  • Child Care and Development Programs
  • Consolidated Categorical Aid Programs
  • Compensatory Education
  • Early Childhood Education Program Assessments
  • Economic Impact Aid
  • English learner programs federal education programs in Title I-VII
  • Migrant Education
  • Peer Assistance and Review Programs for Teachers
  • Child Nutrition Programs
  • Regional Occupational Centers and Programs
  • School Facilities
  • Special Education Programs
  • Safety Planning requirements
  • School Safety Plans
  • State Preschool Programs

and any other district-implemented program which is listed in Education Code 64000(a).

A complaint of noncompliance with laws relating to pupil fees may be filed pursuant to the local UCP. A pupil fees/and or LCAP complaint may be filed anonymously if the complainant provides evidence or information leading to evidence to support the complaint. A pupil enrolled in a public school shall not be required to pay a pupil fee for participation in an educational program, including curricular and extracurricular activities.

Any complaint alleging district noncompliance with the prohibition against requiring students to pay fees, deposits, or other charges for participation in educational activities (5 CCR 4610)

Complaints of noncompliance with laws relating to pupil fees are filed with a principal of a school.

A pupil fee includes, but is not limited to, all the following:

1. A fee charged to a pupil as a condition for registering for school or classes, or as a condition for participation in a class or an extracurricular activity, regardless of whether the class or activity is elective or compulsory, or is for credit

2. A security deposit, or other payment, that a pupil is required to make to obtain a lock, locker, book, class apparatus, musical instrument, clothes, or other materials or equipment

3. A purchase that a pupil is required to make to obtain materials, supplies, equipment, or clothes associated with an educational activity

A pupil fee complaint shall not be filed later than one year from the date the alleged violation occurred.

Complaints should be filed in writing and signed by the complainant. If a complainant is unable to put their complaint in writing, for example, due to conditions such as a disability or illiteracy, district staff shall assist them in the filing of the complaint.

Any complaint, by or on behalf of a homeless student as defined in 42 USC 11434a, a former juvenile court school student, or a child of a military family as defined in Education Code 49701 who transfers into the district after their second year of high school, alleging district noncompliance with any requirement applicable to the student regarding the award of credit for coursework satisfactorily completed in the juvenile court school or the grant of an exemption from Board-imposed graduation requirements (Education Code 51228.1 and 51228.2)

When an allegation that is not subject to the UCP is included in a UCP complaint, the district shall refer the non-UCP allegation to the appropriate staff or agency and shall investigate and, if appropriate, resolve the UCP related allegation(s) through the district’s UCP.

The Governing Board designates the following compliance officer(s) to receive formal and informal complaints from constituents, including students, and investigate them to ensure district compliance with law (Title II, V, IX, Title 5, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act):

Executive Director Title 5 Compliance Officer Constituents Services Office 2309 Tulare Street, Room 218, Fresno, California 93721 (559) 457-3736

Manager Section 504 Coordinator Fresno Unified School District 1301 “M” Street Fresno, CA 93721 Fresno, CA 93726 (559) 457-3308

Chief of Human Resources Title IX Officer/AgeDA (Discrimination Act) Fresno Unified School District 2309 Tulare Street Fresno, California 93721 (559) 457-3730

Special Education Assistant Superintendent Fresno Unified School District 1301 “M” Street Fresno, CA 93721 (559) 457-3226

Complaints alleging unlawful discrimination, discriminatory harassment, intimidation or bullying must be filed not later than six (6) months from the date the alleged discrimination, discriminatory harassment, intimidation, or bullying occurred or six months from the date the complainant first obtained knowledge of the facts of the alleged discrimination, discriminatory harassment, intimidation or bullying. The time for filing may be extended for up to 90 days by the Superintendent or designee for good cause upon written request by the complainant setting forth the reasons for the extension.

As appropriate for any complaint alleging retaliation, unlawful discrimination, discriminatory harassment, intimidation, or bullying, the Superintendent may keep the identity of the complainant confidential to the extent that the investigation of the complaint is not obstructed.

Complaints will be investigated and a written decision or report will be sent to the complainant within sixty (60) days from the receipt of the complaint. This sixty (60) day time period may be extended by written agreement of the complaint. The Local Educational Agency (LEA) person responsible for investigating the complaint shall conduct and complete the investigation in accordance with sections 4680-4687 and in accordance with local procedures adopted under section 4621.

The complainant has a right to appeal the LEA’s decision to the California Department of Education (CDE) by filing a written appeal within 15 days of receiving the LEA’s decision. In any complaint alleging unlawful discrimination (such as discriminatory harassment, intimidation, or bullying), the respondent also shall have the right to file an appeal with the CDE in the same manner as the complainant, if they are dissatisfied with the district’s decision. The appeal must include a copy of the complaint filed with the LEA and a copy of the LEA’s decision.

Civil law remedies may be available under state or federal discrimination, harassment, intimidation, or bullying laws, if applicable. In appropriate cases, an appeal may be filed pursuant to Education Code Section 262.3. A complainant may pursue available civil law remedies outside of the LEA’s complaint procedures. Complainants may seek assistance from mediation centers or public/private interest attorneys. Civil law remedies that may be imposed by a court include, but are not limited to, injunctions and restraining orders.

The UCP shall also be used when addressing any complaint alleging district noncompliance with legal requirements related to the implementation of the local control and accountability plan (Education Code 52075)

The UCP shall also be used when addressing complaints alleging retaliation against a complainant or other participant in the complaint process.

A copy of the Fresno Unified School District’s UCP policy and complaint procedures shall be available free of charge.

Williams Uniform Complaint Procedures

Education Code 35186 requires that the following notice be posted in your child’s classroom. A.R. 1312.4

  • There should be sufficient textbooks and instructional materials.
  • School facilities must be clean, safe, and maintained in good repair. Good repair means that the facility is maintained in a manner that assures that it is clean, safe and functional as determined by the Office of Public School Construction; and
  • There should be no teacher vacancies or misassignments; and

To file a complaint regarding the above matters, Williams Uniform Complaint forms can be obtained at any school site, the Constituent Services Office (457-3736), or at www.fresnounified.org. Copies of the local educational agency complaint procedures shall be available free of charge. Williams Uniform Complaints may be filed anonymously. However, if you wish to receive a response to your complaint, you must indicate that a response is required and must provide contact information.

Nondiscrimination in District Programs and Activities

BP 0410; BP 0411

The Governing Board is committed to equal opportunity for all individuals in education. District programs, activities and practices shall be free from unlawful discrimination based on race, color, religion ancestry, nationality, national origin, immigration status, ethnic group identification, ethnicity, age, marital, pregnancy or parental status, physical or mental disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity or expression, or genetic information; a perception of one or more of such characteristics; or association with a person or group with one or more of these actual or perceived characteristics.

District programs and activities shall also be free of any racially derogatory or discriminatory school or athletic team names, mascots, or nicknames.

The Superintendent or designee shall review district programs and activities to ensure the removal of any derogatory or discriminatory name, image, practice, or other barrier that may unlawfully prevent an individual or group in any of the protected categories stated above from accessing district programs and activities, including the use of facilities. He/she shall take prompt, reasonable actions to remove any identified barrier.

Pursuant to 34 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) 104.8 and 34 CFR 106.9, the Superintendent or designee shall notify students, parents/guardians, employees, employee organizations, applicants for admissions and employment, and sources of referral for applicants about the district’s policy on nondiscrimination and related complaint procedures. Such notification shall be included in the annual parental notification distributed pursuant to Education Code 48980 and, as applicable,in announcements, bulletins, catalogs, application forms, or other materials distributed by the district. As appropriate, such notification shall be posted in district schools and offices, including staff lounges, student government meeting rooms, and other prominent locations and shall be posted on the district’s web site and, when available, district-supported social media.

Concurrently the Board reaffirms its commitment to promote diversity training, racial harmony among its students, staff and the community; and to promote education that is anti-racist and multi-cultural. (BP 0411 – Diversity, Equity and Inclusion)

District programs and facilities viewed in their entirety, shall be in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and any implementing standards and/or regulations. When structural changes to existing district facilities are needed to provide individuals with disabilities access to programs, services, activities, or facilities, the Superintendent or designee shall develop a transition plan that sets forth the steps for completing the changes.

The Superintendent or designee shall ensure that the district provides auxiliary aids and services when necessary to afford individuals with disabilities equal opportunity to participate in or enjoy the benefits of a service, program, or activity. These aids and services may include, but are not limited to, qualified interpreters or readers, assistive listening devices, assistive technologies or other modifications to increase accessibility to district and school web sites, note-takers, written materials, taped text, and Braille or large print materials.

The individual identified in AR 1312.3 - Uniform Complaint Procedures as the employee responsible for coordinating the district’s response to complaints and for complying with state and federal civil rights laws is hereby designated as the district’s ADA coordinator. He/she shall receive and address requests for accommodation submitted by individuals with disabilities, and shall investigate and resolve complaints regarding their access to district programs, services, activities, or facilities.

Director of Benefits and Risk Management 2309 Tulare Street Fresno, CA 93721 Phone (559) 457-3520 Fax (559) 457-3838

Gender and Identity Inclusion

BP 5145.31

The Governing Board is committed to addressing the safety needs of all students, including those needs related to a student’s actual or perceived gender identity, gender expression, or sexual orientation. The purpose of this Board Policy is to set out guidelines regarding issues related to transgender and gender expansive/gender non-conforming students.

The Board recognizes that a safe and civil school environment is necessary for students to have equal access and opportunities in the district’s academic, extracurricular, and other educational support programs, services, and activities; and is integral to student success.

The Board prohibits, at any district school or school activity, unlawful discrimination, including discriminatory harassment, intimidation, and bullying targeted at any student by anyone, based on the student’s actual or perceived sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, or gender expression, race, ancestry, national origin, ethnicity, ethnic group identification, age, religion, color, marital or parental status, physical or mental disability, age or, the perception of one or more of such characteristics; or association with a person or group with one or more of these actual or perceived characteristics (42 USC 2000d-2000e-17, 20 USC 1681-1688, Education Code 200, 220, 221.5 (f)).

Safe Place: Response to Immigration Enforcement

B.P. 5145.13

The Governing Board is committed to the success of all students and believes that every school site should be a safe and welcoming place for all students and their families irrespective of their citizenship or immigration status.

Formal and Informal Complaints regarding discrimination and inquiries regarding the district’s nondiscrimination policies should be directed to the following:

Compliance Coordinators:

Executive Director Title 5 Compliance Officer Constituents Services Office 2309 Tulare Street, Room 218 Fresno, California 93721
(559) 457-3736

Manager Section 504 Coordinator Fresno Unified School District
1301 M Street, Fresno, CA 93721
(559) 457-3308

Chief, Human Resources
Title IX Officer/AgeDA (Discrimination Act)
Fresno Unified School District
2309 Tulare Street, Fresno, California 93721
(559) 457-3730

Special Education Assistant Superintendent
Special Education Office
Fresno Unified School District 1301 M Street, Fresno, CA 93721
(559) 457-3226

Complaints Concerning Special Education Programs/Due Process
Assistant Superintendent
Special Education Department
1301 M Street
Fresno, CA 93721
Phone: (559) 457-3226

(All above staff can also be contacted at www.fresnounified.org)

Referrals of Complaints to Other Agencies

The following complaints shall be referred to the specified agency named in each complaint:

  1. Allegations of child abuse shall be referred to the applicable County Development Program of Social Services (DPSS), Protective Services Division or appropriate law enforcement agency. E.C. 48987; B.P. 1321.1: B.P./A.R. 5141.4 http://www.co.fresno.ca.us
  2. Health and Safety complaints regarding a Child Development Program shall be referred to the Department of Social Services for licensed facilities and the appropriate Child Development Regional Administration for licensing-exempt facilities. http://www.co.fresno.ca.us
  3. Discrimination issues involving Child Nutrition Programs shall be referred to the USDA, Director, Office for Civil Rights (OCR). http://www.fns.usda.gov/civil-rights
  4. Employment discrimination or harassment complaints shall be investigated and resolved by the district in accordance with the procedures specified in AR 4030 - Nondiscrimination in Employment.
  5. Any complaint alleging fraud shall be referred to the Legal, Audits and Compliance Branch of the California Department of Education.

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Fresno Unified School District  •   2309 Tulare St., Fresno, CA 93721   •   (559) 457-3000

Fresno Unified School District

Non-Discrimination Policy: Fresno Unified School District does not harass, intimidate, or discriminate on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, national origin, immigration status, ancestry, age, creed, religion, political affiliation, gender, gender identity or expression or genetic information, mental or physical disability, sex, sexual orientation, marital, pregnancy or parental status, military veteran status, or any other basis protected by law or regulation, in its educational program(s) or employment. Compliance Officers | Full Policy

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