School District Failed To Look Into Dozens Of Sexual Harassment Claims, Ed Department Says


Mia Hernandez Contributor
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The U.S. Department of Education has found that Newark Public Schools failed to properly respond to dozens of sexual harassment complaints, according to a review from the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights.

Newark Public Schools was found to have nine Title IX violations after a review of 80 complaints involving student-to-student and employee-to-student sexual harassment. The district’s violations include failing to respond “to sexual harassment and assault … through its designated Title IX Coordinator” and failing “to train employees regarding the District’s obligation to respond to sexual harassment, including sexual assault,” according to the DoEd report. (RELATED: Inspector Report Found Hundreds Of Chicago Teachers Allegedly Sexually Groomed, Raped Students)

“Newark Public Schools did not meet its Title IX obligations to protect its students from sexual harassment, including from district employees, but has now committed to robust resolution terms to provide the safe and nondiscriminatory learning environment that Title IX has promised all students,” said Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Catherine E. Lhamon in a press release on Monday.

The investigation follows a series of harassment and diversity issues that impacted students and employees in Newark schools. The review included 18 high schools and 23 elementary schools, according to Chalkbeat Newark.

Newark Public Schools failed to respond appropriately to sexual harassment claims between employees and students during the 2016-17 through 2019-20 and 2021-22 school years, and claims between students during the 2018-19 and 2019-20 school years, per an email sent to the superintendent of Newark Public Schools, Roger León,

“The complaints include allegations that employees sexually assaulted, kissed and touched students, as well as incidents involving sexual assault between students,” according to Chalkbeat.

The resolution agreement ensures the district will restore compliance with Title IX by implementing training for personnel and students, maintaining records and reviewing previous complaints.