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Complaint Information and Resources

If you find yourself at the point of needing to file a formal complaint, we are here to help. Our goal is always to ensure that any and all complaints have been initiated for resolution with the school site principal and/or department supervisor as the first step.

Please note: Not all complaint processes below have a specific form for filing a complaint. Forms are available for General Complaints and Uniform Complaints (Including Williams, Discrimination/Harassment, Sexual Harassment, Student Fees, and Bullying) at: https://www.tustin.k12.ca.us/cms/Workspace/Section/Section.aspx?DomainID=54

TYPES OF COMPLAINTS

Below is a listing of the District's specific policies and administrative regulations for handling complaints relative to: General Complaints, Anti-bullying, Uniform Complaints, Complaints Concerning Instructional Materials, Sexual Harassment, Discrimination/Harassment, Hate Motivated Behavior, and Williams Uniform Complaints.

General Complaints

The Tustin Unified School District exists to provide the best educational program and learning environment possible for all students entrusted to its care. To that end, the District welcomes constructive criticism of policies, programs, or operational decisions in order to improve its efforts and be responsive to its clients.

It is the intent of the Tustin Unified School District that matters giving rise to a complaint be addressed first on an informal basis and at the level closest to the situation. If a complaint cannot be addressed and resolved informally, then formal steps are available for resolution to any complaint leading, if necessary, to ultimate resolution by the Board of Education.

If a complaint by a parent requires a review and changing of a student’s written record, including the student’s grade(s), this policy shall be superseded by the protocol spelled out in Education Code Sections 49070 and 49071.

If confidentiality is a concern, every effort shall be made, but cannot be guaranteed, to respect the wishes of the complainant, without compromising the rights of all other parties involved.

In the interest of protecting the rights of anyone seeking resolution to a complaint, no harassment or retaliation of any kind against a student, parent/guardian, or community member shall occur because a complaint was filed.

Download Complaint Form:

General Complaint Form and Policy (English)General Complaint Form and Policy (Spanish) Discrimination/Harassment (Title IX)

The Tustin Unified School District is committed to ensuring equal, fair, and meaningful access to employment and education services. The District prohibits, in any employment practice, educational program, or educational activity, unlawful discrimination, including discriminatory harassment, intimidation, and bullying, based on actual or perceived race or ethnicity, color, ancestry, nationality, national origin, ethnic group identification, age, religion, marital or parental status, physical or mental disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity or expression, genetic information, veteran or military status, medical condition, pregnancy and related conditions, retaliation, or political beliefs; or association with a person or group with one or more of these actual or perceived characteristics. The District will take steps to assure that the lack of English will not be a barrier to admission and participation in District programs. A copy of the District’s nondiscrimination policy is available from the Tustin Unified School District Office.

A designated Coordinator for Nondiscrimination is available at each of the District’s schools to handle complaints regarding discrimination, harassment, intimidation, or bullying, and to answer inquiries regarding the District’s nondiscrimination policies.

Any student who feels that he/she has been subjected to discrimination, harassment, intimidation, or bullying shouldimmediately contact the school’s Coordinator for Nondiscrimination, the principal, or any other staff member. In addition, any student who observes any such incident should report the incident to the Coordinator or principal, whether or not the victim files a complaint.

Any school employee who observes an incident of discrimination, harassment, intimidation, or bullying or to whom such an incident is reported shall report the incident to the Coordinator or principal within a school day, whether or not the victim files a complaint.

Any school employee who witnesses an incident of unlawful discrimination, including discriminatory harassment, intimidation, or bullying, shall immediately intervene to stop the incident when it is safe to do so.

California Education Code Section 221.8:

The following list of rights are based on the relevant provisions of the federal regulations implementing Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (20 U.S.C. Sec. 1681 et seq.):

a) You have the right to fair and equitable treatment and you shall not be discriminated against based on your sex.

b) You have the right to be provided with an equitable opportunity to participate in all academic extracurricular activities, including athletics.

c) You have the right to inquire of the athletic director of your school as to the athletic opportunities offered by the school.

d) You have the right to apply for athletic scholarships.

e) You have the right to receive equitable treatment and benefits in the provision of all of the following:

(1)Equipment and supplies

(2)Scheduling of games and practices

(3)Transportation and daily allowances.

(4)Access to tutoring.

(5)Coaching.

(6)Locker rooms.

(7)Practice and competitive facilities.

(8)Medical and training facilities and services.

(9)Publicity.

(f) You have the right to have access to a gender equity coordinator to answer questions regarding gender equity laws.

(g) You have the right to contact the State Department of Education and the California Interscholastic Federation to access information on gender equity laws.

(h) You have the right to file a confidential discrimination complaint with the United States Office of Civil Rights or the State Department of Education if you believe you have been discriminated against or if you believe you have received unequal treatment on the basis of your sex.

(i) You have the right to pursue civil remedies if you have been discriminated against.

(j) You have the right to be protected against retaliation if you file a discrimination complaint.

The District’s Title IX Coordinator for Nondiscrimination is:

Sharon Cordes, Ed.D..
Director, Assessment and Evaluation
300 South C Street
Tustin, CA 92780
714-730-7301 extension 368
scordes@tustin.k12.ca.us

Download Complaint Policy and Form:

Discrimination Harassment Policy and Complaint Form (English) Discrimination/Harassment Policy and Complaint Form (Spanish)

For more information:

California Department of Education Equal Opportunity & Access: http://www.cde.ca.gov/re/di/eo/United States Department of Education's Office of Civil Rights: http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/index.html Uniform Complaint Procedures The District uses uniform complaint procedures to resolve any complaint alleging unlawful discrimination, harassment, intimidation, or bullying against any protected group as identified under Education Code section 200 and 220 and Government Code section 11135, including those with actual or perceived characteristics such as race or ethnicity, color, ancestry, national origin, nationality, ethnic group identification, age, religion, marital or parental status, physical or mental disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity or expression, or genetic information, or on the basis of a person’s association with a person or group with one or more of these actual or perceived characteristics, in any program or activity conducted by the District or that is funded directly by, or that receives or benefits from any state financial assistance.

Uniform complaint procedures are also used to address any complaint alleging the District's failure to comply with state and/or federal laws in adult education programs, consolidated categorical aid programs, migrant education, career technical and technical education and training programs, child care and development programs, child nutrition programs, special education programs, and the development and adoption of the school safety plan.

Uniform complaint procedures are also used to address any complaint alleging the district’s non-compliance with Article 5.5 of Chapter 6 of Part 27 of Division 4 of Title 2 of the Education Code (commencing with Section 49010) regarding pupil fees.

The District prohibits any form of retaliation against any complainant in the complaint process. Participation in the complaint process shall not in any way affect the status, grades, or work assignments of the complainant.

The District encourages the early, informal resolution of complaints at the site level whenever possible.

In investigating complaints, the confidentiality of the parties involved and the integrity of the process is protected. As appropriate, the District’s Uniform Complaint officer may keep the identity of a complainant confidential to the extent that the investigation of the complaint is not obstructed.

Should you have questions regarding the Uniform Complaint Procedures or find reason to file a Uniform Complaint, the District’s Uniform Complaint Officer is:

Sharon Cordes, Ed.D.

Director, Assessment and Evaluation

300 South C Street

Tustin, CA 92780

714.730.7301 Extension 368

Unless extended by written agreement with the complainant, the compliance officer will prepare and send to the complainant a written report of the District's investigation and decision within 60 days of the District's receipt of the complaint. (5 CCR 4631)

Download UCP Complaint Policy and Form

UCP Complaint Policy and Form (English)UCP Complaint Policy and Form (Spanish) Williams Uniform Complaints

The District shall use the following procedures to investigate and resolve complaints when the complainant alleges that any of the following has occurred: (Education Code 35186; 5 CCR4681, 4682, 4683)

There should be sufficient textbooks and instructional materials. Each student, including English learners, must have a textbook or instructional materials, or both, to use in class and to take home.

School facilities must be clean, safe, and maintained in good repair.

There should be no teacher vacancies or misassignments. There should be a teacher assigned to each class and not a series of substitutes or other temporary teachers. The teacher should have the proper credential to teach the class, including the certification required to teach English learners, if present.

TeacheTeacher vacancy means a position to which a single designated certificated employee has not been assigned at the beginning of the year for an entire year or, if the position is for a one-semester course, a position to which a single designated certificated employee has not been assigned at the beginning of a semester for an entire semester.

Misassignment means the placement of a certificated employee in a teaching or services position for which the employee does not hold a legally recognized certificate or credential or the placement of a certificated employee in a teaching or services position that the employee is not otherwise authorized by statue to hold.

If you do not think these requirements are being met, you can obtain a Uniform Complaint Form at the school office, District office, or downloaded from the District’s web site. You may also download a copy of the California Department of Education complaint form from the following Web site: www.cde.ca.gov/re/cp/uc.

The District’s Coordinator for Williams Uniform Complaints is:

Sharon Cordes, Ed.D.

Director, Assessment and Evaluation

300 South C Street

Tustin, CA 92780

714.730.7301 Extension 368

Download Complaint Form:

Williams UCP Complaint Policy and Form (English)Williams UCP Complaint Policy and Form (Spanish)

Uniform Complaints - Student Fees:

Complaints alleging District noncompliance with the prohibition against requiring students to pay fees, deposits, or other charges for participation in educational activities may be filed using the complaint forms below:

Download Complaint Form:

Student Fees UCP Complaint Policy and Form (English)Student Fees UCP Complaint Policy & Form (Spanish)

Uniform Complaint - Sexual Harassment (Students)

The District is committed to maintaining an educational environment that is free from harassment and discrimination. The District prohibits sexual harassment of students by other students, employees, or other persons, at school or at school-sponsored or school-related activities. The District also prohibits retaliatory behavior or action against persons who complain, testify, assist, or otherwise participate in District complaint processes.

Download Complaint Form:

Sexual Harassment UCP Complaint Policy and Form (English)Sexual Harassment UCP Complaint Policy & Form (Spanish)

Uniform Complaint - Bullying

Every student is entitled to a safe school environment free from discrimination, harassment, intimidation, and bullying. The District’s Policy on Bullying can be accessed on the District’s website. Copies are available in the school office.

The District prohibits bullying. Bullying is defined in Education Code section 48900(r). This includes, but is not limited to, discrimination, harassment, intimidation and bullying based on the actual or perceived characteristics set forth in Penal Code Section 422.55 and Education Code section 220, such as disability, gender, gender identity, gender expression, nationality, race or ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, or association with a person or group with one or more of these actual or perceived characteristics.

School personnel must immediately intervene if they witness an act of discrimination, harassment, intimidation or bullying, provided it is safe to do so. Acts of discrimination or bullying should be brought to the attention of the principal.

You may make an anonymous complaint by contacting the principal. Complaints of bullying or discrimination will be considered confidential. However, it may be necessary to disclose certain information in order to effectively investigate. Students who violate the District’s policies on bullying or discrimination may be subject to discipline, including suspension and expulsion. The District prohibits retaliation against individuals who make complaints of bullying or provide information related to such complaints.

Download Board Policy and Complaint Forms:

Bullying UCP Complaint Policy & Form (English)Bullying UCP Complaint Policy & Form (Spanish) Hate Motivated Behavior - Students

The District affirms the right of every student to be protected from hate-motivated behavior. It is the intent of the District to promote harmonious relationships that enable students to gain a true understanding of the civil rights and social responsibilities of people in our society. Behavior or statements that degrade an individual on the basis of his/her race, ethnicity, culture, heritage, gender, sexual orientation, physical/mental attributes, religious beliefs or practices shall not be tolerated.

Complaints Concerning Instructional Materials

The District uses a comprehensive process to adopt District instructional materials that is based on selection criteria established by law and Board policy and includes opportunities for the involvement of parents/guardians and community members. Complaints concerning the content or use of instructional materials, including textbooks, supplementary instructional materials, library materials, or other instructional materials and equipment, shall be properly and fairly considered using established complaint procedures.

For more information, please contact your site principal.