KL - Public Complaints
Students, parents/guardians and community members that live within the district are essential partners in the educational success of our students. In order to maintain a strong relationship with these partners it is important that they have an opportunity to make their concerns known to the district and that their complaints be addressed in a fair, accessible and timely manner.
Whenever possible, complaints should be resolved by communication with the school or department directly involved in the issue. A complaint specifies a concern, problem or difficulty related to the district educational process. In a complaint, an employee, student, parent/guardian or a member of the public presents the concern to the district and requests a remedy.
An individual properly presenting a concern or complaint shall be assured the opportunity for an orderly review and response to the concern or complaint without reprisal. All parties to the complaint process will be treated, and will treat others, with dignity and respect.
All complaints will be referred through the proper administrative channels for resolution. Complaints that concern Board actions or Board operations may be brought directly to the Board. The Board strongly encourages all parties to attempt to resolve informal complaints at the lowest level possible, beginning with the teacher or employee.
While many complaints may be resolved informally, if a student, parent/guardian or community member wishes to file a formal complaint it should be filed initially with the school principal or employee supervisor and would go through a 4-step process as follows:
- Principal or supervisor;
- Appropriate deputy superintendent;
- School Board.
The School Board may or may not elect to hear an appeal of the decisions of the superintendent. The Board chair, in consultation with the vice-chair, will review the appeal and the superintendent’s findings to determine whether or not to hear the matter. If the Board declines to hear the appeal, the decision of the superintendent shall be considered final.
Complaints will be responded to within 10 working days at each level, with the exception of the School Board, which shall have 10 working days from the date of the appeal to decide whether or not to hear the appeal. When the Board does hear an appeal, they have 10 working days following a mutually agreed upon hearing date from which to issue a final decision. These timelines can be extended by mutual consent with the complainant.
If a complaint alleges a violation of state standards or a violation of other statutory or administrative rule for which the State Superintendent of Public Instruction has appeal responsibilities, and the Beaverton School District complaint is not resolved at the local level, the district will notify the complainant of the right to file a direct appeal to the State Superintendent as outlined in: Oregon Administrative Rule (OAR) 581-002-0040.
A complaint of retaliation against a student or a student’s parent, who in good faith reported information that the student believes is evidence of a violation of state and federal law, rule or regulation, should be reported to the administrator.
Complaints against the principal may be filed with the appropriate deputy superintendent.
Complaints against the superintendent should be referred to the Board chair on behalf of the Board.
Complaints against the Board as a whole or against an individual Board member should be made to the Board chair on behalf of the Board.
Complaints against the Board chair may be made directly to the Board vice chair on behalf of the Board.
The superintendent or designee shall provide user-friendly information regarding the complaint process to the school community.
Complaints in the following areas are addressed in the policy/administrative regulation indicated:
- Nondiscrimination: Board Policy AC, AC-AR;
- Sexual Harassment: Board Policy GBN/JBA, GBN/JBA-AR;
- Hazing, Harassment, Intimidation, Bullying, Menacing, Cyberbullying - Staff: Board Policy GBNA, GBNA-AR;
- Hazing, Harassment, Intimidation, Menacing, Cyberbullying, Teen Dating Violence - Student: Board Policy JFCF, JFCF-AR;
- Reporting Requirements Regarding Sexual Conduct with Students: Board Policy JHFF;
- Instructional Resources/Instructional Materials: Board Policy IIA, IIA-AR.
The Board will not hear complaints against employees in open public meetings unless an employee
requests an open session.
Anderson v. Central Point Sch. Dist., 746 F.2d 505 (9th Cir. 1984).
Connick v. Myers, 461 U.S. 138 (1983).
IIA - Instructional Resources/Instructional Materials
This administrative rule sets forth specific procedures for the resolution of complaints by students, parents/guardians, staff members, and the public. The District is committed to resolving complaints in a fair and timely manner, treating all parties with respect, and ensuring that its process is accessible. The District will provide translation and interpretation services, and other accommodations to the complainant to facilitate access.
These procedures are intended to provide a process for resolving complaints as required by state and/or federal law. These procedures will be followed to resolve complaints brought pursuant to Board Policies AC (Discrimination), GBN/JBA (Sexual Harassment), GBNA (Hazing/Harassment/Intimidation/Bullying/Menacing/Cyberbullying-Staff), GBM (Staff Complaints), JFCF ((Hazing/Harassment/Intimidation/Bullying/Menacing/Cyberbullying-Student), and all other general complaints.
Informal Problem Solving
Parents and guardians, students and staff frequently work together to problem solve issues and improve District processes with the goal of creating the best possible educational experience for students. This type of collaboration is often the most direct and effective way of resolving concerns.
Complainants are encouraged to first speak to the teacher or staff person involved. If this direct communication does not resolve the concern, the complainant is encouraged to speak with the principal of the school or the staff member’s supervisor/department administrator, which may include an in-person conference. If the complainant is not able to resolve the concern through this informal problem-solving process, then the complainant would initiate a formal complaint in writing as set forth below. If the complainant does not feel safe addressing a concern directly with an employee, the complainant may go directly to the principal or supervisor.
All complaints about behavior that may violate the District’s Sexual Harassment, Hazing/Harassment/Intimidation/Bullying/Menacing/Cyberbullying, Sexual Violence, or Discrimination policies shall be promptly investigated and addressed in accordance with the formal complaint procedure below.
Formal Complaint Procedure
Because most concerns are resolved through the informal, problem-solving process outlined above, the District encourages the use of that process before the filing of a formal written complaint. A formal complaint may be filed at any time, however, using the process identified below. The District’s receipt of a formal written complaint starts the 90-day completion timeline for purposes of state law.
A. Level 1 – School or Department Level
- A complaint form is available on the District’s website and upon request of the building principal or department administrator. Completed forms should be submitted to the building principal or department administrator. In the absence of a completed complaint form, complainants may use any form of written communication which identifies the matter as a complaint.
- Any student, district employee or third party who has knowledge of conduct in violation of the District’s Sexual Harassment, Hazing /Harassment /Intimidation /Bullying / Menacing /Cyberbullying, Sexual Violence, or Discrimination policies, or feels they are the victim of Sexual Harassment, Hazing /Harassment /Intimidation/Bullying /Menacing/ Cyberbullying, Sexual Violence, or Discrimination, is strongly encouraged to immediately report their concerns to a building administrator or supervisor. Concerns may also be reported to a teacher, counselor, or other school employee, who will promptly notify the appropriate District official.
- Upon receipt of a formal complaint, the building principal or department administrator will promptly undertake an appropriate investigation, or refer the complaint to the appropriate District official for a determination of who will perform the investigation. An investigation will generally include personal interviews with the complainant, the person(s) about whom the complaint is made, and others who may have knowledge of the incident/concern, and may include other methods of gathering information.
- With respect to complaints regarding Sexual Harassment or Sexual Violence, the following additional steps will be taken by the building principal or department administrator:
a. If the complaint involves a student, the building principal or department administrator will
contact the parent(s) or guardian(s) of the student alleged to have been harassed or
discriminated against. Parents/guardians will be informed of the allegations and the process.
b. The building principal or department administrator will contact the person accused of
engaging in sexual harassment to inform them of the allegation and the process.
c. If the complaint involves a District employee, either as the complainant or as the accused,
the building principal or department administrator will promptly notify Human Resources and
the District’s Title IX Officer. The complaint shall be investigated in collaboration with a Human
Resources administrator or other appropriate district official.
d. The building principal or department administrator will take interim measures, as appropriate,
before the conclusion of the investigation, to protect the parties involved in the complaint
process and to address the impact of the alleged conduct. Interim measures may include
schedule modifications, no contact agreements, academic supports, increased supervision,
counseling, placing the accused on administrative leave, and similar accommodations.
5. When circumstances trigger an employee’s mandatory child abuse reporting obligations under
Oregon law, a child abuse report will be made to the Department of Human Services or law
enforcement. The District may conduct its own investigation, even when another agency has
initiated an investigation into a complaint.
6. All formal complaints will receive a final written response and decision within 15 calendar days of
receipt of the complaint, unless impracticable or the parties agree otherwise. The response will
include information about the next step in the complaint process as well as any remedies offered
to the complainant. The response may include other steps the District has taken or intends to
take to address the concerns, if substantiated by the investigation. The response will be
provided to both the complainant and the respondent.
7. Responses to complaints alleging a violation of OAR Chapter 581, Division 22 (School
Standards), ORS 339.285 to 339.303 or OAR 581-021-0550 to 581-021-0570 (Restraint and
Seclusion), ORS 659.850 (Discrimination), or ORS 659.852(Retaliation), the written decision will
address each allegation in the complaint and contain reasons for the District’s decision.
B. Level 2 – District Level
If the issue is not resolved to the complainant’s or respondent’s satisfaction at Level 1, a review by the appropriate Central Office administrator may be requested in writing.
If a complainant or respondent is dissatisfied with the District’s response to a complaint regarding Sexual Harassment, Hazing/ Harassment/ Intimidation/ Bullying/ Menacing/ Cyberbullying, Sexual Violence, or Discrimination, the appeal will be heard by the Superintendent.
- The request for review must be submitted in writing within 10 calendar days of the complainant receiving the Level 1 written decision, and should be submitted to the Office of the Superintendent. It may be submitted in letter or email form. The request for review should state the nature of the complaint, the remedy being requested, and describe why the complainant believes the Level 1 decision is incorrect or insufficient. It should also include a copy of the written complaint and response at Level 1.
- The reviewing administrator will review the record and any additional information that he or she may request. The reviewing administrator may choose to meet with involved parties.
- If new concerns are raised at Level 2, the reviewing administrator may refer the new concern back to Level 1. The original concerns already addressed at Level 1 will continue to proceed through Level 2. If significant new information that would have changed the outcome of the investigation at Level 1 is introduced at Level 2, the reviewing administrator may refer the complainant back to Level 1 for dispute resolution, or may investigate the matter at Level 2.
- Following the review, the reviewing administrator shall decide whether to uphold the Level 1 determination or the specific actions that will be taken in response to the complaint.
- The reviewing administrator will respond to the complaint in writing within 15 calendar days of receipt of the appeal.
C. Level 3 – Superintendent Level
If the issue is not resolved to the complainant’s or respondent’s satisfaction at level 1 or Level 2, a review by the Superintendent may be requested in writing.
- The request for review must be submitted in writing within 10 calendar days of receipt of the Level 2 written decision, and should be submitted to the Office of the Superintendent. It may be submitted in letter or email form. The request for review should state the nature of the complaint, the remedy being requested, and describe why the complainant believes the Level 2 decision is incorrect or insufficient. It should also include a copy of the written complaint and responses at Level 1 and 2.
- The Superintendent will review the record and any additional information that he or she may request. The Superintendent may choose to meet with involved parties.
- If new concerns are raised at Level 3, the Superintendent may refer the new concern back to Level 1. The original complaint already addressed at Level 1 is eligible for appeal to the Superintendent and will continue to proceed through Level 3. If significant new information that would have changed the outcome of the investigation at Level 1 or 2 is introduced at Level 3, the Superintendent may refer the complainant back to Level 1 for dispute resolution, or may investigate the matter at Level 3.
- Following the review, the Superintendent shall decide whether to uphold the previous determinations or the specific actions that will be taken in response to the complaint.
- The Superintendent will respond to the complaint in writing within 15 calendar days of receipt of the appeal.
D. Level 4 – School Board Level
If the issue is not resolved to the complainant’s or respondent’s satisfaction at Level 1, Level 2, or Level 3, a review by the School Board may be requested in writing. The School Board may or may not elect to hear an appeal of the decisions of the Superintendent. The Board Chair, in consultation with the vice-chair, will review the appeal and the Superintendent’s findings to determine whether or not to hear the matter. Request for an appeal to the School Board must be made in writing within 10 calendar days of the complainant receiving the Level 3 written decision, and should be submitted to the Office of the Superintendent. If the Board declines to hear the appeal, the decision of the Superintendent shall be considered final.
If the Board elects to hear an appeal, then the Board will be provided with a copy of the complaint record, including the original complaint and the District’s written decisions at Levels 1-3. The Board will decide in open session what action, if any, is warranted, which decision shall be communicated to the complainant in writing. The Board’s decision is the final decision.
The Board’s final decision of a complaint alleging a violation of OAR Chapter 581, Division 22 (School Standards), ORS 339.285 to 339.303 or OAR 581-021-0550 to 581-021-0570 (Restraint and Seclusion), ORS 659.850 (Discrimination), or ORS 659.852 (Retaliation), may be appealed to the Deputy Superintendent of Public Instruction as further provided in OAR 581-002-0040.
A decision is final when: (1) the complainant has exhausted this complaint procedure and a final decision has been issued; (2) the District has failed to render a written decision within 30 days of the submission of the complaint at Levels 1-4; or (3) the District has not resolved the complaint within 90 days of the initial filing of the formal complaint, unless the District and complainant have agreed in writing to a longer time period.
The District does not determine which complaints the Oregon Department of Education will review. In addition to this procedure, persons making Special Education complaints may make them directly to the Oregon Department of Education by sending a copy of the complaint to the District at the same time as filing it with the Oregon Department of Education.
A. The timelines above may be extended by mutual agreement.
B. The District is committed to ensuring access to the complaint process. If a complainant would
like to proceed with a written complaint but is unable to submit it in writing due to disability,
illiteracy, or otherwise, district staff will assist the individual in writing the information. The
District will ensure that interpretation and translation services are available to complainants in
need of such services.
C. If a formal complaint raises concerns that a specific employee engaged in misconduct, the
Human Resources Administrator will be notified so that the complaint may also be processed
through the appropriate personnel process and in accordance with the collective bargaining
agreement applicable to the employee. Allegations of employee misconduct are taken
seriously and will be investigated.
D. No District employee, volunteer, student, or board member may engage in retaliation against
any person who files or participates in the complaint process. Any employee or student who
engages in any form of retaliation against a person is subject to discipline.
E. With respect to sexual harassment and/or sexual violence complaints, the District utilizes a
preponderance of the evidence standard of proof. This means that the District will consider
whether the evidence gathered through the investigation process determines that the alleged
complaint is more likely than not to have occurred.
F. Complainants and respondents shall be allowed to have advisors/representatives accompany
them at each stage of the complaint process in accordance with Title IX and the collective
bargaining agreement, where applicable.
G. These complaint procedures do not apply to certain types of complaints. When the District has
other policies or administrative rules that required a specific resolution or appeal process,
those specific rules will apply.
H. A person wishing to make a formal complaint against the Superintendent should complete the
complaint form and present it to the Board Chair on behalf of the Board. The Board Chair will
present the complaint to the Board. The Board may refer the complaint to a third party for
investigation and presentation of investigation results to the Board. The Board will decide what
action, if any, is warranted, which decision will be communicated to the complainant in writing
I. A person wishing to make a formal complaint against the Board as a whole or against an
individual Board member should present the completed complaint form to the Board Chair on
behalf of the Board. The Board Chair will present the complaint to the Board. The Board may
refer the complaint to a third party for investigation and presentation of investigation results to
the Board. The Board will decide what action, if any, is warranted, which decision will be
communicated to the complainant in writing. Complaints against the Board Chair may be
made directly to the Board Vice-Chair on behalf of the Board.