Discrimination and Harassment

I. Policy Against Discrimination

A.  No person shall, on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, age, marital status, sexual orientation, pregnancy, disability, political or religious beliefs, national or ethnic origin, or genetic information, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity; in any employment conditions or practices conducted by the School Board of Highlands County; or with respect to equal access to school facilities.

B.  The School Board shall comply with all state and federal laws, which prohibit discrimination and are designed to protect the civil rights of applicants, employees, students, or other persons or organizations protected by applicable law, e.g., Boy Scouts of America or other Title 36 Youth Groups.

C. The School Board shall admit students to District Schools, programs, and classes without regard to race, color, religion, gender, age, national or ethnic origin, marital status, disability or handicap. 

D.  The School Board shall comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA). This law makes it unlawful to discriminate against a qualified individual with a disability who can perform the essential functions of his/her job with reasonable accommodations.

II. Policy Against Sexual Harassment or Other Forms of Harassment Prohibited by Law

A.  The School Board desires to maintain an academic and work environment in which all employees, volunteers, and students are treated with respect and dignity. A vital element of this atmosphere is the Board’s commitment to equal opportunities and the prohibition of discriminatory practices. The Board’s prohibition against discriminatory practices includes prohibitions against sexual harassment, or any other form of harassment based upon a person’s membership in a protected class and specifically prohibited by applicable state or federal law. The School Board forbids sexual harassment, or any other form of illegal harassment, of any employee, student, volunteer or visitor. The Board will not tolerate sexual harassment, or any other form of illegal harassment by any of its employees, students, volunteers or agents.

B.  The prohibition against discrimination including sexual and other forms of illegal harassment shall also apply to non-employee volunteers who work subject to the control of school authorities, and to all vendors or service providers who have access to School Board facilities