Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964
This page is meant to help our community understand their rights under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. If you believe you have been subjected to discrimination, harassment, intimidation, or bullying, you should immediately contact the school principal and/or the appropriate District personnel, which you can find in the Title IX section.
Every student has a protected right to feel safe at school. It is the right of all students to be free from discrimination from other students and adults at school.
Under Title VI, students have the federally-protected right to an education free from discrimination and harassment. It protects everyone participating in programs that receive federal funding from discrimination based on their race, color, or national origin. This protection extends to all federally-financed programs, including both public and non-public schools, and is therefore under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Department of Education and is enforced by the Office for Civil Rights.
A few things to know about Title VI:
- Discrimination can come from other students AND/OR adults at school.
- Students could be discriminated against at any age.
- Discrimination against students based on their religion can be considered a Title VI violation when their religion relates to their ethnic heritage.
- A school violates a student’s Title VI rights when it fails to appropriately remedy a hostile climate or inequity in treatment due to race, color, or national origin.
- You don't need to be the victim or their parent/legal guardian in order to file a Title VI complaint with the Office for Civil Rights on their behalf.
You may also file a discrimination complaint with the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights. For more information, visit the OCR Complaint Forms page. The electronic complaint form for the Office for Civil Rights is available online or you can access the Discrimination Complaint Form as a PDF.
Contact the Office for Civil Rights at:
San Francisco Office
Office for Civil Rights
U.S. Department of Education
50 United Nations Plaza
San Francisco, CA 94102
Telephone: (415) 486-5555
Fax: (415) 486-5570; TDD: (800) 877-8339
For information about how to file other types of complaints and the procedures for those complaints, please contact the appropriate District's Title IX coordinator.
You can also find the following Non-Discrimination Statement in the footer of our website.
NON-DISCRIMINATION: Petaluma City Schools is committed to providing equal opportunity for all individuals in district programs and activities. District programs, activities, and practices 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, or parental status, physical or mental disability, 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.