• COMPLAINTS AND GRIEVANCES

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    Ensuring a Positive Learning and Working Environment 

    Jefferson City Public Schools strives to maintain a positive working and learning environment for all students and staff.  Over the course of a school year we recognize that there will undoubtedly be situations of concern/complaints to students, parents, staff and the public.  Such concerns/complaints are best resolved by addressing them at the level where the concerns originate through communication with appropriate staff members.  

    Students, Parents and Public

    If a student and/or parent have a concern/complaint with an issue related to a specific class, program or staff member, they should schedule a time to meet with those individuals in order to communicate respectfully and professionally the specific concerns. 

    If after that meeting the student and/or parent are not satisfied with the action taken or answers provided, they should schedule a time to meet with the building administrator who is responsible for the immediate supervision of that class, program or staff member.  Again, concerns/complaints should be communicated both respectfully and professionally.  If after meeting with the building administrator the concerns/complaints have not been resolved the student and/or parent may address the question to the appropriate chain of supervision at the District’s Central Office.  

    If after meeting with the appropriate Central Office administration and the Superintendent, and if the student and/or parent are still dissatisfied with the decision, they may request that the Board of Education consider the issue by submitting a written request to the superintendent or secretary of the Board detailing the specific concern and requested action.  Pursuant to Board Policy KL, the Board will address the matter in an appropriate and timely manner.  

    Staff

    Board Policies GBM-1 and GBM-2 reiterate the most desirable way to resolve concerns and conflicts is through free and informal communication at the level of the concern. 

    If an employee has a concern or complaint with another employee s/he should address the concern or complaint in a respectful and professional manner with that individual whenever possible.  If the employee would like an administrator to be present to assist with efforts to resolve the concern, s/he needs to provide a request to the administrator responsible for the direct supervision of the individual or subject matter in question.

    If the employee’s concern is with an administrator, that employee may ask the supervisor of the administrator to be present to assist with resolving the issue. 

    According to the above referenced policies, if an employee believes that s/ he has a grievance, s/he shall, within 10 days following knowledge of the act or condition that is the basis for the grievance, discuss the issues involved with the appropriate individuals before initiating a grievance. 

    This procedure, as well as the Board Policies governing this process, should be viewed as a positive and constructive effort to establish the facts upon which concerns or grievances are based and to accurately implement Board policies.  Discrimination and retaliation against any employee filing a grievance are strictly prohibited by Board policy.  In addition, Board policy directs all district employees to cooperate in the grievance process.  Allegations of illegal discrimination or harassment will be resolved in accordance with policy AC.  

    Ensuring a positive learning and working environment is the responsibility of each individual.  Open and frequent communication and adherence to established policies are also the responsibility of each employee.  Board Policies CF (School Building Administration) and GBCB (Staff Conduct) outline several of the responsibilities and codes of conduct for both building administration and district staff.    In order for our schools and JCPS to be successful in providing a quality education to all students we must all be committed to both respectful and professional communication and interaction with students, parents, community and each other.

    Complaints and Grievances (GBM1 and GBM2) (Form for GBM)

    The Board subscribes to an orderly, well-defined grievance procedure for the resolution of problems derived from application of published Board policies and district regulations. Grievances will be handled expeditiously in accordance with the procedures approved by the Board.  If a complaint has been made to the employee's immediate supervisor, building-level supervisor, and the superintendent or their designee and the employee has received responses from these persons, the employee may appeal to the Board of Education. The employee must submit a written request for an appeal within five (5) workdays after receiving a decision from the superintendent. The decision of the Board will be final.

    GBM1
     
     
     

    Prohibition Against Illegal Discrimination and Harassment (AC) (Form for AC)

    The Jefferson City School District Board of Education is committed to maintaining a workplace and educational environment that is free from discrimination and harassment in admission or access to, or treatment or employment in, its programs, services, activities and facilities. In accordance with law and district policy, the district strictly prohibits discrimination and harassment against employees, students or others on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation or perceived sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, disability, age, genetic information, status as a covered veteran, or any other characteristic protected by law.

    The Board also prohibits: 

    1.       Retaliatory actions including, but not limited to, acts of intimidation, threats, coercion or discrimination against those who:

                 a.       Make complaints of prohibited discrimination or harassment.

                 b.      Report prohibited discrimination or harassment.

                 c.       Participate in an investigation, formal proceeding or informal resolution, whether conducted internally or outside the district, concerning prohibited discrimination or harassment. 

    2.         Aiding, abetting, inciting, compelling or coercing discrimination, harassment or retaliatory actions. 

    3.         Discrimination, harassment or retaliation against any person because of such person’s association with a person protected from discrimination or harassment. 

    Behaviors that could constitute sexual harassment include, but are not limited to: 

    1.         Sexual advances and requests or pressure of any kind for sexual favors, activities or contact. 

    2.         Conditioning grades, promotions, rewards or privileges on submission to sexual favors, activities or contact. 

    3.         Punishing or reprimanding persons who refuse to comply with sexual requests, activities or contact.

    4.         Graffiti, name calling, slurs, jokes, gestures or communications of a sexual nature or based on sex.

    5.         Physical contact or touching of a sexual nature, including touching of intimate parts and sexually motivated or inappropriate patting, pinching or rubbing.

    6.         Comments about an individual's body, sexual activity or sexual attractiveness.

    7.         Physical sexual acts of aggression, assault or violence, including criminal offenses (such as rape, sexual assault or battery, and sexually motivated stalking) against a person's will or when a person is not capable    of giving consent due to the person's age, intellectual disability or use of drugs or alcohol.

    8.         Gender-based harassment and acts of verbal, nonverbal, written, graphic or physical conduct based on sex or sex stereotyping, but not involving conduct of a sexual nature. 

    All employees, students and visitors must immediately report to the district for investigation any incident or behavior that could constitute discrimination, harassment or retaliation.  Behavior that is not unlawful or does not rise to the level of illegal discrimination, harassment or retaliation may still be unacceptable for the workplace or the educational environment. Demeaning or otherwise harmful actions are prohibited, particularly if directed at personal characteristics including, but not limited to, socioeconomic level, sexual orientation or perceived sexual orientation. 

    If the district determines that discrimination, harassment or retaliation have occurred, the district will take prompt, effective and appropriate action to address the behavior, prevent its recurrence and remedy its effects. 

     

    The following individual serves as the district’s compliance officer: 

    Mrs. Shelby Scarbrough
    Director of Human Resources
    Jefferson City Public Schools
    315 E. Dunklin
    Jefferson City, MO 65101
    Phone: 573-659-3013
    Fax: 573-659-3807