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Friday, April 07, 2006

Sexual harassment in school

Sexual harassment isn’t just a corporate problem, it occurs in schools, when teachers harass students in return for high grades or students harass peers with lewd remarks and inappropriate touching.

Schools are legally and financially liable for failing to take action against sexual harassment in accordance with Title IX. Understanding and identifying sexual harassment is the first step in avoiding liability for your school. The next step is taking appropriate action by establishing clear policies for filing complaints and training staff on how they should respond to harassment. Schools should also provide awareness training for students so they understand what sexual harassment is and how to respond to it.

Any instances of sexual harassment should be reported immediately and investigated thoroughly with law enforcement officials notified if criminal activity has occurred. When sexual harassment has been judged to have occurred, schools should take disciplinary action, punish the harassers and provide counseling for the victim.