Nondiscrimination In Programs And Activities Policy

CWCS Board Approved: May 25, 2021

The Board of Directors of Connecting Waters Charter Schools ("CWCS" or "Charter School"), a California nonprofit public benefit corporation operating public charter schools, is committed to equal opportunity for all individuals in school programs and activities. Programs and activities shall be free from unlawful discrimination, including discrimination against an individual or group based on race, color, ancestry, nationality, national origin, immigration status, ethnic group identification, ethnicity, age, religion, marital status, pregnancy, parental status, physical or mental disability, medical condition, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, gender expression, or genetic information; a perception of one or more of such characteristics; or association with a person or group with one or more of these actual or perceived characteristics; or based on any other characteristic protected by applicable federal, state, local law, ordinance or regulation. The Board shall promote programs which ensure that discriminatory practices are eliminated in all school related activities.

All individuals shall be treated equitably in the receipt of school services. Personally identifiable information collected in the implementation of any program, including, but not limited to, student and family information for the student meal free and reduced-price lunch program, or any other educational program, shall be used only for the purposes of the program, except when the Executive Director authorizes its use for another purpose in accordance with law. Personally identifiable information contained in resources and data collected by the CWCS shall not be used, directly or by others, to compile a list, registry, or database of individuals based on race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, ethnicity, national origin, or immigration status or any other category identified above.

Programs and activities shall be free of any racially derogatory or discriminatory school, team names, mascots, or nicknames. The Executive Director shall annually review district programs and activities to ensure the removal of any derogatory or discriminatory name, image, practice, or other barrier that may unlawfully prevent an individual or group with any of the protected characteristics stated above from accessing district programs and activities. CWCS shall take prompt, reasonable actions to remove any identified barrier. The Executive Director shall report his/her/their findings and recommendations to the Board after each review.

CWCS does not discourage students from enrolling or seeking to enroll in CWCS for any reason, including, but not limited to, academic performance, disability, neglect or delinquency, English proficiency, for being homeless or a foster/mobile youth, economic disadvantage, nationality, race, ethnicity, or sexual orientation. CWCS shall not encourage a student currently attending CWCS to disenroll or transfer to another school based on any of the aforementioned reasons except in cases of expulsion and suspension or involuntary removal in accordance with CWCS's charter and relevant policies.

CWCS does not request nor require student records prior to a student's enrollment.

All allegations of unlawful discrimination in programs and activities shall be investigated and resolved in accordance with the procedures specified in the Title IX, Harassment, Intimidation, Discrimination and Bullying Policy and/or the Uniform Complaint Procedures, as applicable.

The Executive Director shall notify students, parents/guardians, employees, employee organizations, applicants for admission and employment, and sources of referral for applicants about CWCS's policy on nondiscrimination and related complaint procedures. Such notification shall be included in the annual parental notification and, as applicable, in the parent/student handbook or other materials distributed by CWCS. The notification shall also be posted on the CWCS web site and other prominent locations as required by law.

The lack of English language skills will not be a barrier to admission or participation in CWCS's programs or activities. CWCS prohibits retaliation against anyone who files a complaint or who participates or refuses to participate in a complaint investigation.

At the beginning of the year, the annual parental notification shall inform parents/guardians of their children's right to a free public education regardless of immigration status or religious beliefs, including information on educational rights issued by the California Attorney General. Alternatively, such information may be posted on the CWCS website or provided through any other cost-effective means determined by the Executive Director and as permitted by law.

The nondiscrimination policy and related informational materials shall be published in a format that parents/guardians can understand. In addition, when 15 percent or more of a school's students speak a single primary language other than English, those materials shall be translated into that other language.

Access for Individuals with Disabilities

CWCS adheres to all provisions of federal law related to students with disabilities, including, but not limited to, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 ("ADA"), and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004 ("IDEA").

Programs and facilities, viewed in their entirety, shall be in compliance with the ADA and any implementing standards and/or regulations. When structural changes to existing district facilities are needed to provide individuals with disabilities access to programs, services, activities, or facilities, the Executive Director shall develop a transition plan that sets forth the steps for completing the changes.

The Executive Director shall ensure that the district provides appropriate auxiliary aids and services when necessary to afford individuals with disabilities equal opportunity to participate in or enjoy the benefits of a service, program or activity. Individuals with disabilities shall notify the Executive Director or school office if they have a disability that requires special assistance or services. Reasonable notification should be given prior to a school-sponsored function, program or meeting.

The individual identified in the Uniform Complaint Procedures as the employee responsible for coordinating CWCS's response to complaints and for compliance with state and federal civil rights laws is hereby designated as the ADA coordinator. The Coordinator listed below shall receive and address requests for accommodation submitted by individuals with disabilities, and shall investigate and resolve complaints regarding their access to district programs, services, activities, or facilities.

Sherri Nelson Executive Director 12420 Bentley Street

Waterford, CA 95386 [email protected]

The CWCS Board of Directors recognizes that responsibilities related to pregnancy or parenting may disrupt a student's education and increase the chance of a student dropping out of school. The Board therefore desires to support pregnant and parenting students to continue their education, attain strong academic and parenting skills, and promote the healthy development of their children.

CWCS shall not exclude or deny any student from any educational program or activity, including any class or extracurricular activity, solely on the basis of the student's parental status, pregnancy, childbirth, false pregnancy, termination of pregnancy, or related recovery. In addition, CWCS shall not adopt any rule concerning a student's actual or potential parental, family, or marital status that treats students differently on the basis of sex.

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