Cheatham County School District
UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION
OFFICE FOR CIVIL RIGHTS, REGION IV
61 FORSYTH ST., SOUTHWEST, SUITE 19T10
ATLANTA, GA 30303-8927
February 10, 2014
Dr. Stan Curtis
Director of Schools
Cheatham County School District
102 Elizabeth Street
Ashland City, TN 37015
Re: Case # 04-13-1716
Dear Dr. Curtis:
The U.S. Department of Education (Department), Office for Civil Rights (OCR) has completed its investigation of the above-referenced complaint filed on August 27, 2013, alleging discrimination on the basis of disability by the Cheatham County School District (District). Specifically, the complaint alleged that during an afterschool event, the gymnasium at Ashland City Elementary School (School) was not accessible to individuals with mobility impairments because of the limited access to the locked office where the ramps and lifts are located.
As a recipient of Federal financial assistance from the Department, the District is subject to the provisions of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504), as amended, 29 U.S.C. Section 794, and its implementing regulation, 34 C.F.R. Part 104, which prohibit discrimination on the basis of disability. As a public entity, the District is subject to Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (Title II), 42 U.S.C. Sections 12131 et seq., and its implementing regulation, 28 C.F.R. Part 35, which prohibit discrimination on the basis of disability. Accordingly, OCR has jurisdiction over this complaint.
OCR investigated the legal issue of whether the School’s gymnasium is inaccessible to individuals with mobility impairments in noncompliance with Section 504 and its implementing regulation at 34 C.F.R. §§ 104.21-104.23, and the Title II implementing regulation at 28 C.F.R. §§ 35.149-35.151.
During OCR’s investigation of this complaint, the District offered to voluntarily resolve the matter. Pursuant to Section 302 of OCR’s Case Processing Manual (CPM), a complaint may be resolved when, before the conclusion of an investigation, the recipient or public entity expresses an interest in resolving the complaint. Based on the foregoing, OCR accepted the District’s request and the District entered into the enclosed Resolution Agreement (Agreement), which when fully implemented, will resolve the issues in this complaint.
OCR will monitor the District’s implementation of this Agreement to ensure that it is fully implemented. If the District fails to fully implement the Agreement, OCR will reopen the case and take appropriate action to ensure compliance with Section 504 and Title II.
This concludes OCR’s investigation of the complaint and should not be interpreted to address the District’s compliance with any other regulatory provision or to address any issues other than those addressed in this letter.
Please be advised that the District may not harass, coerce, intimidate, or discriminate against any individual because he or she has filed a complaint or participated in the complaint resolution process. If this happens, the Complainant may file another complaint alleging such treatment. The Complainant may have the right to file a private suit in federal court whether or not OCR finds a violation.
Under the Freedom of Information Act, it may be necessary to release this document and related correspondence and records upon request. If we receive such a request, we will seek to protect, to the extent possible, any personally identifiable information, the release of which could reasonably be expected to constitute an unwarranted invasion of personal privacy.
This concludes OCR’s consideration of the complaint, which we are closing effective the date of this letter. If you have any questions regarding this matter, please contact Katrina Oliver, Investigator, at (404)974-9382 or me, at (404) 974-9374.