Title IX allegations can be contentious and confusing. The federal government enacted Title IX as part of the Education Amendments of 1972. This law promised to protect your child from sex discrimination or assault while attending a federally-funded K-12 school or public university. When it comes time to abide by Title IX regulations, however, many high schools do not have the tools to deal with cases effectively.
If your student is facing Title IX processes at your Louisiana high school, you must prepare yourself. It is not at all uncommon for schools to ignore or sweep away the rights of accused students during student discipline proceedings. Since a false allegation or an unfair investigative process could result in your child having to face undeserved punishments, it's crucial that you know how to protect your child.
Louisiana Title IX Cases: Do They Really Happen?
Title IX cases involve occasions of sex discrimination or sexual assault in public schools. You may be wondering if your high school student and their peers are really in danger of sexual assault. Unfortunately, your school is not shielded from this issue. Just recently, a local news station reported that a Louisiana high school had to launch an investigation into a sexual assault on campus. Several students allegedly assaulted one other student, resulting in an uproar across the entire school community.
It is every parent's worst nightmare that their child experiences something like this while at school. Having to protect your child against false allegations of sexual misconduct can be nightmarish as well.
The Office of Civil Rights has provided policy recommendations but allows each state (and each school district) to maintain its own procedures for student discipline. Your school district must have a sexual misconduct reporting and response policy. This does not mean that your school can enforce these rules. Since your school has an incentive—their federal funding—to investigate Title IX cases quickly, your school may rush their way through unfamiliar policies. Your student's future should not fall victim to your school's lack of preparation or familiarity with their own rules.
Title IX Policies and Procedures in Louisiana
The American Civil Liberties Union of Louisiana created a guide to student's rights in school. This handbook makes your student's protections very clear. Concerning the disciplinary process in your student's high school, the ACLU's handbook tells you precisely what you can expect.
What Constitutes Sexual Misconduct in Louisiana
The posted policies for one Louisiana school district make the definition of sexual misconduct very clear. Your high school's policy may differ, but, generally speaking, sexual misconduct specifics may include:
- Uninvited calls, letters, or materials that are sexual in nature
- Uninvited gestures that are sexually suggestive
- Uninvited pressure to go on dates
- Uninvited sexual jokes, teasing, remarks, or questions
- Any uninvited touching
- Any attempted or actual assault or rape
- Demanding sexual favors
- Verbal harassment or abuse
- Intentionally brushing up against the body of another
While sexual misconduct is clearly not acceptable and justice for victims is of paramount importance, the range of actions identifiable as sexual misconduct is wide. It would be highly unfortunate and unfair if your high school student's future disintegrated due to vaguely worded policies or biased investigators. You need to know how to protect your student's rights during a Title IX process at your high school.
What Disciplinary Measures Can Your Louisiana School Use?
If your student qualifies for discipline under your high school's code of conduct, the types of punishment they may experience include:
- Written or oral reprimands
- A referral to counseling, which may be mandatory
- Written or oral notices to parents
- Immediate removal of your student from their classroom, or from school grounds entirely
- In-school suspension
- Out-of-school suspension
- Suspension of privileges for riding school buses
- Assignment to another school
Any of these punishments could make your student's life more difficult. Some might even mar your child's academic and later professional career for years to come. Don't let unfair Title IX processes affect your child's life and future. If you work with a successful Title IX advisor to be proactive about protecting your student's rights, your family may not have to experience any of these unwanted and unfair punishments.
Making Sure Your LA High School Protects Your Student's Rights
According to the posted codes of conduct for one Louisiana high school, even the rights of the accused student are paramount and protectable throughout an entire Title IX process. The policy notes that accused students have the right to:
- Receive notifications at every step of their investigation
- Tell their side of the story
- Ask questions and make comments
- Receive a written statement of the incident report
- Have a legal professional represent them during the process
Your school must have a Title IX policy in effect, and this policy must be available for you to reference. If you do not have access to this policy, or if your family has not received any of the written rights accorded to you, your school may have infringed upon your rights.
In addition to the above, recent revisions to Title IX regulations require your school to provide your student with a written document specifically stating that they are innocent until proven guilty. If you feel that your school has not treated your family fairly during your student's Title IX case, tell your Title IX advisor. Your Title IX advisor will fight to protect your student's rights at every turn.
Working with a Successful Title IX Advisor to Hold Your School Accountable
If you need a seasoned and successful Title IX Advisor to guide you through your student's Title IX case, you're in the right place. Joseph D. Lento has dealt with more than a thousand students' rights cases over the years all across the United States. Whether you need assistance resolving a student misconduct case through the investigative process or help preparing for adjudication by way of a hearing, Joseph D. Lento can help you succeed. Call the Lento Law Firm today at 888-555-3686 for more information, or simply fill out our brief online form for more information.
Louisiana high schools where Joseph D. Lento can help as your child's student's Title IX advisor during investigations, hearings and appeals include, but are not limited to, the following school districts:
- Acadia Parish Schools
- Allen Parish School Board
- Ascension Parish Schools
- Assumption Parish School Board
- Avoyelles Parish School Board
- Avoyelles Public Charter School-Agency
- Beauregard Parish School Board
- Belle Chasse Academy Inc.-Agency
- Bienville Parish School Board
- Bossier Parish Schools
- Caddo Parish Public Schools
- Calcasieu Parish Public Schools
- Caldwell Parish School Board
- Cameron Parish School Board
- Catahoula Parish School Board
- Central Community School System
- City of Baker School System
- City of Bogalusa School Board
- City of Monroe School Board
- Claiborne Parish School Board
- Concordia Parish School Board
- DeSoto School Board
- East Baton Rouge Arts and Technology School-Agency
- East Baton Rouge Parish School System
- East Carroll Parish School Board
- East Feliciana Parish School Board
- Evangeline Parish School Board
- Franklin Parish School Board
- Grant Parish School Board
- Iberia Parish School System
- Jackson Parish School Board
- Jefferson Davis Parish School Board
- Jefferson Parish Public School System
- Lafayette Parish School System
- Lafourche Parish School District
- LaSalle Parish School Board
- Lincoln Parish School Board
- Livingston Parish Public Schools
- Louisiana School for Math, Science and the Arts
- Louisiana School for the Deaf
- Louisiana School for the Visually Impaired
- Madison Parish School Board
- Morehouse Parish School Board
- Natchitoches Parish School Board
- New Orleans Center for Creative Arts-Agency
- New Orleans Public Schools
- Orleans Parish School Board
- Ouachita Parish School System
- Plaquemines Parish School Board
- Pointe Coupee Parish School Board
- Rapides Parish School System
- Recovery School District
- Red River Parish School Board
- Richland Parish School Board
- Sabine Parish School Board
- Saint Bernard Parish School Board
- Charles Parish Public Schools
- Saint Helena Parish School Board
- Saint James Parish School Board
- Saint John the Baptist Parish School Board
- Saint Landry Parish School Board
- Saint Martin Parish School Board
- Mary Parish Schools
- Tammany Parish Public Schools
- Southern University Laboratory School
- Tangipahoa Parish School System
- Tensas Parish School Board
- Terrebonne Parish School District
- Union Parish School Board
- Vermilion Parish Schools
- Vernon Parish School District
- Virgil Browne Glencoe Charter School-Agency
- Washington Parish School Board
- Webster Parish School Board
- West Baton Rouge Parish School Board
- West Carroll Parish School Board
- West Feliciana Parish School Board
- Winn Parish School Board
- Zachary Community School District
It is critical to make certain the Title IX investigation at your child's Louisiana high school is handled properly and that the accused student's interests and rights are protected from as early as possible during the sexual misconduct investigative process. One major reason is because even at high schools where a finding of responsibility for sexual misconduct charges is made at a hearing, the investigation will set the stage for what the hearing panel is provided prior to a hearing (and what the hearing panel will in large part rely on at a hearing), and at high schools where the finding of responsibility is made solely through the investigative process, what takes place during the investigation itself will determine whether the accused student is found responsible or not responsible for Title IX charges.
Unfortunately, some parents make the mistake of not taking the necessary precautions as soon as possible when accused of sexual misconduct. Some people will mistakenly believe that if they "just explain what happened," their school will be fair and impartial and will arrive at the truth. In a perfect world this may be the case, but in a perfect world, sexual misconduct allegations and Title IX charges would not exist.
Fighting passionately for the future of his clients at schools throughout the nation for many years, Joseph D. Lento knows how important it is to mount the strongest defense because he understands that an accused high school student's academic future is on the line. He does not settle for the easiest outcome, and instead prioritizes his clients' needs and well-being. Joseph Lento is a licensed attorney in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and New York, is admitted as an attorney pro hac vice in state and federal court if needed when representing clients nationwide, and serves as a Title IX attorney advisor to high school students facing sexual misconduct investigations and disciplinary cases in Louisiana and throughout the nation. Make certain your or your student's interests are protected - Contact National High School Title IX Attorney Joseph D. Lento today at 888-535-3686.