Skip Office Navigation
OCR: Office for Civil Rights!
   Current Section
Policy Guidance Portal
Index



Overview
Below is a list of current policy guidance issued by the Office for Civil Rights.  These guidance documents lack the force and effect of law, unless expressly authorized by law or as incorporated into a contract.  OCR may not cite, use, or rely on any guidance document that is not posted below, except to establish historical facts.  See Executive Order #13891 for more information. 



Date Title Date Added to Portal Statute
2020/09/0409/04/2020

Office for Civil Rights Issues New Resource to Help Education Institutions Implement the Title IX Final Rule


The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) issued a new technical assistance document entitled Questions and Answers Regarding the Department’s Final Title IX Rule. This resource was issued in response to inquiries received by OCR’s Center for Outreach, Prevention, Education, and Nondiscrimination (OPEN Center) and to help institutions understand and meet their obligations under the Final Rule.

  • Questions & Answers  PDF (282K)   [OCR-000121]
2020/05/1209/04/2020
Title IX
2020/08/3108/31/2020

OCR’s Enforcement of Title IX in Light of Bostock v. Clayton County, Ga.


The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) issued a letter of notification and a revised letter of impending enforcement action which, together, illustrate the Department’s approach to Title IX enforcement in light of the Supreme Court’s decision in Bostock v. Clayton County, Ga. OCR issued a Revised Letter of Impending Enforcement Action in OCR’s cases against the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference (CIAC), Glastonbury Public Schools, and five other Connecticut school districts. OCR issued a letter of notification in its case involving Shelby County Schools notifying the parties that OCR will be opening an investigation into the complaint allegations.

  • Letter of Notification  PDF (337K)   [OCR-000119]
  • Revised Letters of Impending Enforcement Action PDF (844K)    [OCR-000120]
2020/05/1208/31/2020
Title IX
2020/05/1205/12/2020

Office for Civil Rights Issues New Resource on Schools’ Obligations to Protect the Civil Rights of Students During COVID-19


The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) issued a technical assistance document entitled Questions and Answers for Postsecondary Institutions Regarding the COVID-19 National Emergency. This resource was issued in response to inquiries received by the Department and to assist postsecondary institutions with meeting their obligations under Federal civil rights laws—including Title VI, Title IX, Title II, and Section 504—during the COVID-19 outbreak.

  • Questions & Answers PDF (212.08K)   [OCR-000118]
2020/05/1205/12/2020 Title VI
Title IX
Title II - ADA/Section 504
2020/03/2103/21/2020

Office for Civil Rights Publishes New Resource on Accessibility and Distance Learning Options Urging States to Continue Educating Students with Disabilities


The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) and Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) jointly issued a Supplemental Fact Sheet on Addressing the Risk of COVID-19 in Preschool, Elementary and Secondary Schools While Serving Children with Disabilities. This new resource clarifies that federal law should not be used to prevent schools from offering distance learning opportunities to all students, including students with disabilities and explains that as a school district takes necessary steps to address the health, safety, and well-being of all its students and staff, educators can use distance learning opportunities to serve all students..

2020/03/2103/21/2020 Title II - ADA/Section 504
2020/03/1603/16/2020

Office for Civil Rights Releases New Resource for Postsecondary Institutions on Protecting the Civil Rights of Students During COVID-19


The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) issued a Fact Sheet on Addressing the Risk of COVID-19 in Schools While Protecting the Civil Rights of Students. This new resource reminds schools to be mindful of the requirements of Section 504, Title II, and Title VI as they respond to evolving conditions related to the coronavirus. The Fact Sheet addresses how schools can implement recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) while ensuring that all students are able to study and learn in an environment that is safe and free from discrimination.

  • Fact Sheet PDF (385K)   [OCR-000115]
2020/03/1603/16/2020 Title VI
Title II - ADA/Section 504
2020/03/1602/06/2020

OCR and OCTAE Program Memorandum, Career and Technical Education and Methods of Administration


  • Program Memorandum PDF (807K)   [OCR-000114]

  Methods of Administration MOA
2020/02/2812/21/2018

Updates to Department of Education and Department of Justice Guidance on Title VI


  • "Dear Colleague" letter PDF (225K)   [OCR-000113]
  • En español (Spanish) PDF (178K)   [OCR-000113-SP]
    العربيّة (Arabic) PDF (242K)   [OCR-000113-AR]
    情况说明书 (Sim. Chinese) PDF (289K)   [OCR-000113-ZHHK]
    情況說明書 (Trad. Chinese) PDF (261K)   [OCR-000113-ZHTW]
    한국어 (Korean) PDF (430K)   [OCR-000113-KO]
    Tagalog (Tagalog) PDF (166K)   [OCR-000113-TL]
    Việt-ngữ (Vietnamese) PDF (287K)   [OCR-000113-VI]
  • Questions & Answers on Racial Discrimination and School Discipline PDF (153K)   [OCR-000112]
  • En español (Spanish) PDF (159K)   [OCR-000112-SP]
    العربيّة (Arabic) PDF (234K)   [OCR-000112-AR]
    情况说明书 (Sim. Chinese) PDF (281K)   [OCR-000112-ZHHK]
    情況說明書 (Trad. Chinese) PDF (335K)   [OCR-000112-ZHTW]
    한국어 (Korean) PDF (393K)   [OCR-000112-KO]
    Tagalog (Tagalog) PDF (157K)   [OCR-000112-TL]
    Việt-ngữ (Vietnamese) PDF (249K)   [OCR-000112-VI]
  Title VI
2018/07/0307/03/2018

Updates to Department of Education and Department of Justice Guidance on Title VI


The U.S. Departments of Education (ED) and Justice (DOJ) withdraw guidance documents that advocate specific policies and procedures beyond what the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution or Title IV or Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 require. The Dear Colleague Letter reiterates ED’s commitment to the vigorous enforcement of civil rights laws on behalf of all students.

  • "Dear Colleague" letter PDF (335K)   [OCR-000111]
  Title VI
2017/02/2202/22/2017

Office for Civil Rights Withdraws Title IX Guidance on Transgender Students


  • "Dear Colleague" Letter PDF (386.47K)   [OCR-00108]
  Title IX
2017/01/1701/17/2017

Office for Civil Rights Releases Resources for Educators on Title VI and Religion


The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) today released a package of documents to assist schools, colleges, universities, educators, and students understand how Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, enforced by OCR, protects students of any religion from discrimination, including harassment, based on race, color, or national origin, including discrimination based on a student’s actual or perceived:

  • shared ancestry or ethnic characteristics, or
  • citizenship or residency in a country with a dominant religion or distinct religious identity.
The package includes a Know Your Rights document on when discrimination involving students who are or are perceived to belong to a religious group may be discrimination that is prohibited by Title VI of the Civil Rights Act; a fact sheet on combatting discrimination against Jewish students; a fact sheet on combatting discrimination against AANHPI/MASSA students; and a Dear Colleague Letter on Title VI and Title IX and Religious Discrimination.

  • Know Your Rights PDF (67.65K)   [OCR-00106]
  • Fact Sheet PDF (89.06)   [OCR-00107]
  Title VI
2016/12/2812/28/2016

Office for Civil Rights Releases Guidance about the Rights of Students with Disabilities in Public Charter Schools


The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) and Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) jointly issued a Dear Colleague Letter (DCL) and separate question and answer guidance documents to help educators, parents, students, and other stakeholders better understand the rights of students with disabilities in public charter schools under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504) and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). In addition, OCR and OSERS jointly issued a fact sheet that provides a brief overview of the guidance.

  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (107.78K)   [OCR-00103]
  • OSERS Frequently Asked Questions PDF (561.96K)
  • OCR Frequently Asked Questions PDF (593.96K)[OCR-00104]
  • Fact Sheet PDF (91.72K)   [OCR-00105]
  Title II - ADA/Section 504
2016/12/2812/28/2016

Office for Civil Rights Releases Guidance on the Use of Restraint and Seclusion in Schools


The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) today issued legal guidance to school districts as to how the use of restraint or seclusion can result in discrimination against students with disabilities, in violation of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. In addition, the Department also released a “Fast Facts” document that provides a brief overview of the guidance.

  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (395.68K)   [OCR-00101]
  • Fact Sheet PDF (161.97K)   [OCR-00102]
  Title II - ADA/Section 504
2016/12/2812/28/2016

Office for Civil Rights Releases a Parent and Educator Resource Guide to Section 504 in Public Elementary and Secondary Schools


The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) today issued a resource guide to help parents and the public elementary and secondary school community understand student rights’ and school district responsibilities under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504), a Federal civil rights law that prohibits disability discrimination.

  • Section 504 Resource Guide PDF (590.96K)   [OCR-000100]
  Title II - ADA/Section 504
2016/12/1212/12/2016

Office for Civil Rights Releases Guidance on the Prevention of Racial Discrimination in Special Education


The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) today issued guidance addressing the interplay of the Title VI prohibition against discrimination on the basis of race/color/national origin in the administration of special education in public schools.

  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (432.29K)   [OCR-00098]
  • Fact Sheet PDF (152.08K)   [OCR-00099]
  Title VI
Title II - ADA/Section 504
2016/07/2607/26/2016

Office for Civil Rights Releases ADHD Guidance


The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) today issued guidance clarifying the obligation of schools to provide students with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) with equal educational opportunity under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504). The guidance—in the form of a Dear Colleague Letter and accompanying Resource Guide—provides a broad overview of Section 504 and school districts’ obligations to students with ADHD, including appropriately evaluating and providing services to such students, and ensuring due process. In addition, the Department also released a Know Your Rights document that provides a brief overview of the guidance.

  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (955.16K)   [OCR-00096]
  • Know Your Rights PDF (198.37K)   [OCR-00097]
  Title II - ADA/Section 504
2016/06/0606/06/2016

U.S. Department of Education Release Joint Fact Sheet about Combatting Discrimination against Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) and Muslim, Arab, Sikh, and South Asian (MASSA) students


The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights, the U.S. Department of Justice’s Educational Opportunities Section, and the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders issued a fact sheet that includes examples of forms of discrimination that members of the Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) and Muslim, Arab, Sikh, and South Asian (MASSA) communities commonly face.

  • Fact Sheet PDF (239.2K)   [OCR-00093]
  • The fact sheet in other languages about combating discrimination against Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) and Muslim, Arab, Sikh, and South Asian (MASSA) students.   [OCR-00094]
  Title VI
2015/12/1512/15/2015

Guidance on Voluntary Youth Service Organizations


The Dear Colleague Letter from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Catherine E. Lhamon explains the circumstances under which a school district lawfully may work with outside organizations that provide single-sex programming under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972.

  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (317.1K)   [OCR-00092]
  Title IX
2015/03/1803/18/2015

Guidance Addressing the Risk of Measles in Schools while Protecting the Civil Rights of Students with Disabilities


The Fact Sheet addresses how school officials can implement recommendations and resources from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) related to protecting children and their families from measles without discriminating on the basis of disability, particularly in the case of students who are medically unable to receive a vaccine because of a disability, and explains what school officials must do to ensure continuity of learning if a student is legitimately excluded from school. Other resources on measles can be found at rems.ed.gov/KeepSchoolsSafeFromDiseases.aspx.

  • Fact Sheet PDF (146K)   [OCR-00088]
  Title II - ADA/Section 504
2015/01/0701/07/2015

Guidance to Ensure English Learner Students Have Equal Access to a High-Quality Education


The U.S. Departments of Education (ED) and Justice (DOJ) released joint guidance: "Dear Colleague" letter: English Learner Students and Limited English Proficient Parents reminding states, school districts and schools of their obligations under federal law to ensure that English learner students have equal access to a high-quality education and the opportunity to achieve their full academic potential.” In addition to the guidance, the Departments also released additional tools and resources to help schools in serving English learner students and parents with limited English proficiency, including:

  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (499K)   [OCR-00085]
    • En español (Spanish) PDF (809K)   [OCR-00085-SP]
    • العربيّة (Arabic) PDF (656.2K)   [OCR-00085-AR]
    • 情况说明书 (Sim. Chinese) PDF (672.70K)   [OCR-00085-ZHHK]
    • 情況說明書 (Trad. Chinese) PDF (731.6K)   [OCR-00085-ZHTW]
    • Tagalog (Tagalog)  PDF (651.5K)   [OCR-00085-TL]
    • Việt-ngữ (Vietnamese) PDF (696.35K)   [OCR-00085-VI]
  • EL Student Fact Sheet PDF (536K)   [OCR-00086]
    • العربيّة (Arabic) PDF (216.11K)   [OCR-00086-AR]
    • ប្រទេសកម្ពុជា (Cambodian) PDF (541K)   [OCR-00086-KM]
    • 情况说明书 (Sim. Chinese) PDF (605K)   [OCR-00086-ZHHK
    • 情況說明書 (Trad. Chinese) PDF (629K)   [OCR-00086-ZHTW]
    • Hmong (Hmong) PDF (372K)   [OCR-00086-HMN]
    • 한국어 (Korean) PDF (396K)   [OCR-00086-KO]
    • ຄົນລາວ (Laotian) PDF (650K)   [OCR-00086-LO]
    • En español (Spanish) PDF (271K)   [OCR-00086-SP]
    • русский (Russian) PDF (689K)   [OCR-00086-RU]
    • Tagalog (Tagalog) PDF (437K)   [OCR-00086-TL]
    • Việt-ngữ (Vietnamese) PDF (660K)   [OCR-00086-VI]
  • LEP Parent Fact Sheet PDF (428K)   [OCR-00087]
    • العربيّة (Arabic) PDF (216.11K)   [OCR-00087-AR]
    • ប្រទេសកម្ពុជា (Cambodian) PDF (541K)   [OCR-00087-KM]
    • 情况说明书 (Sim. Chinese) PDF (605K)   [OCR-00087-ZHHK]
    • 情況說明書 (Trad. Chinese) PDF (629K)   [OCR-00087-ZHTW]
    • Hmong (Hmong) PDF (372K)   [OCR-00087-HMN]
    • 한국어 (Korean) PDF (396K)   [OCR-00087-KO]
    • ຄົນລາວ (Laotian) PDF (650K)   [OCR-00087-LO]
    • En español (Spanish) PDF (271K)   [OCR-00087-SP]
    • русский (Russian) PDF (689K)   [OCR-00087-RU]
    • Tagalog (Tagalog) PDF (437K)   [OCR-00087-TL]
    • Việt-ngữ (Vietnamese) PDF (660K)   [OCR-00087-SP]
  Title VI
2014/12/1612/16/2014

Guidance on Protecting Civil Rights in Juvenile Justice Residential Facilities


"Dear Colleague" letter from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Catherine E. Lhamon and Acting Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights, Vanita Gupta, U.S. Department of Justice, concerning the applicability of Federal civil rights laws to juvenile justice residential facilities. The letter provides a reminder that juvenile justice residential facilities receiving Federal funds are subject to the same Federal civil rights obligations as all other public schools, and highlights some of the legal requirements related to access to academic coursework and career and vocational training, students with disabilities, English language learners, and the administration of discipline.

  • “Dear Colleague” Letter  PDF (158K)   [OCR-00084]
  Title II - ADA/Section 504
2014/12/0812/08/2014

Implementing CDC’s Ebola Guidance for Schools while Protecting the Civil Rights of Students and Others


The Fact Sheet addresses how school officials can implement Ebola guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) without discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, or disability; explains what school officials must do to ensure a continuity of learning if a student is legitimately excluded from school; and reminds school officials of their responsibility to respond to bullying and harassment. Other resources on Ebola can be found at www.ed.gov/ebola-response.

  • Fact Sheet PDF (158K)   [OCR-00083]
  Title II - ADA/Section 504
2014/12/0112/01/2014

Questions and Answers on Title IX and Single-Sex Elementary and Secondary Classes and Extracurricular Activities


These questions and answers clarify the legal requirements under the Department’s Title IX regulations governing single-sex elementary and secondary classes and extracurricular activities.
  • Questions and Answers PDF (544K)   [OCR-00082]
  Title IX
2014/11/1211/12/2014

Guidance on Effective Communication for Students with Hearing, Vision, or Speech Disabilities in Public Elementary and Secondary Schools


“Dear Colleague” letter and accompanying Frequently Asked Questions document (FAQ) and Parent Fact Sheet from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Catherine E. Lhamon, Acting Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services Michael K. Yudin, and Vanita Gupta, Acting Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Justice, concerning effective communication for students with hearing, vision, or speech disabilities in public elementary and secondary schools.

  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF(159K)   [OCR-00079]
    • En español (Spanish) PDF (159K)   [OCR-00079-SP]
  • Frequently Asked Questions PDF (103K)   [OCR-00080]
  • Parent Fact Sheet PDF (103K)   [OCR-00081]
  Title II - ADA/Section 504
2014/10/2110/21/2014

Guidance on Bullying of Students with Disabilities 


"Dear Colleague" letter from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Catherine E. Lhamon, concerning the obligation of elementary and secondary schools to respond to the bullying of students with disabilities, including those students who are not eligible for services under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act but are entitled to services under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. The guidance discusses the actions schools must take when bullying interferes with the education of a student with a disability who is bullied on any basis, and provides insight into how OCR analyzes complaints involving bullying of students with disabilities.

  • "Dear Colleague" letter PDF (363K)   [OCR-00077]
    • Carta a los Estimados Colegas PDF (388K) [OCR-00077-SP]
  • Fact Sheet PDF (88K) [OCR-00078]
    • En español PDF (40K) [OCR-00078-SP]
  Title IX
Title II - ADA/Section 504
2014/10/0110/01/2014

Guidance to Ensure All Students Have Equal Access to Educational Resources


"Dear Colleague" letter from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Catherine E. Lhamon about ensuring students have equal access to educational resources without regard to race, color, or national origin. The guidance, fact sheet, and resources for technical assistance are also available on the Resource Comparability Materials homepage.

  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (469K)   [OCR-00075]
    • Carta a los Estimados Colegas: Comparabilidad de Recursos   PDF (307K)   [OCR-00075-SP]
  • Fact Sheet PDF (179K)   [OCR-00076]
    • En español (Spanish) PDF (510K)   [OCR-00076-SP]
    • 情况说明书 (Sim. Chinese) PDF (299K)   [OCR-00076-ZHHK]
    • 情況說明書 (Trad. Chinese) PDF (431K)   [OCR-00076-ZHTW]
    • 한국어 (Korean) PDF (352K)   [OCR-00076-KO]
    • русский (Russian) PDF (254K)   [OCR-00076-RU]
    • Tagalog (Tagalog)  PDF (180K)   [OCR-00076-TL]
    • Việt-ngữ (Vietnamese) PDF (223K)   [OCR-00076-VI]
  Title VI
2014/05/0805/08/2014

Guidance for School Districts to Ensure Equal Access for All Children to Public Schools Regardless of Immigration Status


Important updates to the joint 2011 guidance regarding school responsibilities under Plyler v. Doe, including examples of permissible enrollment practices, as well as examples of the types of information that may not be used as a basis for denying a student entrance to school.
  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (179K)   [OCR-00071]
    • español En español (Spanish) PDF (177K)   [OCR-00071-SP]
    • العربيّة (Arabic) PDF (269K)   [OCR-00071-AR]
    • 情況說明書 (Trad. Chinese) PDF (230K)   [OCR-00071-ZHTW]
    • 한국어 (Korean) PDF (244K)   [OCR-00071-KO]
    • Tagalog (Tagalog)  PDF (155K)   [OCR-00071-TL]
    • Việt-ngữ (Vietnamese) PDF (213K)   [OCR-00071-VI]
  • Questions and Answers about Dear Colleague  PDF (325K)   [OCR-00072]
    • En español (Spanish)  PDF (196K)   [OCR-00072-SP]
    • العربيّة (Arabic) PDF (233K)   [OCR-00072-AR]
    • 情況說明書 (Trad. Chinese) PDF (258K)   [OCR-00072-ZHTW]
    • 한국어 (Korean) PDF (385K)   [OCR-00072-KO]
    • Tagalog (Tagalog)  PDF (185K)   [OCR-00072-TL]
    • Việt-ngữ (Vietnamese) PDF (313K)   [OCR-00072-VI]
  • Fact Sheet about Dear Colleague PDF (569K)   [OCR-00073]
    • En español (Spanish) PDF (237K)   [OCR-00073-SP]
    • العربيّة (Arabic) PDF (202K)   [OCR-00073-AR]
    • 情況說明書 (Trad. Chinese) PDF (252K)   [OCR-00073-ZHTW]
    • 한국어 (Korean) PDF (288K)   [OCR-00073-KO]
    • Tagalog (Tagalog)  PDF (156K)   [OCR-00073-TL]
    • Việt-ngữ (Vietnamese) PDF (248K)   [OCR-00073-VI]
  Title VI
2013/06/2506/25/2013

Guidance on Supporting the Academic Success of Pregnant and Parenting Students


"Dear Colleague" letter and pamphlet from Acting Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Seth Galanter. This pamphlet clarifies the specific requirements of Title IX applicable to pregnant and parenting students. The pamphlet contains a FAQ section that explains the Title IX requirements and provides examples to ensure that schools understand their obligations and pregnant and parenting students understand their rights under Title IX. The pamphlet also provides information on strategies that educators may use and programs schools can develop to address the educational needs of students who become pregnant or have children. It also provides examples of promising practices designed to support pregnant and parenting students that schools may choose to implement.

  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (297K)   [OCR-00068]
  • Pamphlet PDF (269K)   [OCR-00069]
  • Know Your Rights PDF (412K)   [OCR-00070]
    • En español (Spanish) PDF (410K)   [OCR-00070-SP]
  Title IX
2013/06/1206/12/2013

Guidance to Health-Related Schools Regarding Hepatitis B Discrimination


Joint OCR/DOJ/HHS "Dear Colleague" letter, addressing the rights of students with hepatitis B in postsecondary medical, dental, nursing, and other health-related programs. The letter discusses the latest recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) regarding the participation of students with hepatitis B in health-related schools, and how the CDC recommendations relate to the federal laws prohibiting discrimination on the basis of disability, race, color, and national origin.

  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (108K)  [OCR-00067]
  Title II - ADA/Section 504
2013/04/2404/24/2013

Guidance on the prohibition against retaliation under Federal civil rights laws 


"Dear Colleague" letter from Acting Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Seth Galanter clarifies the basic principles of retaliation law and describes OCR’s methods of enforcement.
  Title VI
Title IX
Title II ADA/Section 504
Age
Boy Scouts
Retaliation
2013/01/2501/25/2013

Guidance on Schools' Obligation to Provide Equal Opportunity to Students with Disabilities to Participate in Extracurricular Athletics


"Dear Colleague" letter from Acting Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Seth Galanter, addressing equal access to extracurricular athletics for students with disabilities. The "Dear Colleague" letter provides an overview of the obligations of public elementary and secondary schools under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act (Section 504), and the Department’s Section 504 regulations; cautions against making decisions based on presumptions and stereotypes; details the specific Section 504 regulations that require students with disabilities to have an equal opportunity for participation in nonacademic and extracurricular services and activities; and discusses the provision of separate or different athletic opportunities.
  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (546K)  [OCR-00064]
  • 'Fast Facts' about "Dear Colleague" letter PDF (245K)  [OCR-00065]
    • En español (Spanish) PDF (241K)  [OCR-00065-SP]
  Title II - ADA/Section 504
2012/03/1403/14/2012

Notice of Interpretation of Section 504, New Construction and Alterations, (77 Fed. Reg. 14972, Mar. 14, 2012)


  Title II - ADA/Section 504
2012/01/1901/19/2012

Guidance on ADA Amendments Act Amended Legal Standards


"Dear Colleague" letter to elementary and secondary education officials with attached Frequently Asked Questions document (FAQ), from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Russlynn Ali. The "Dear Colleague" letter and FAQ discuss the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act of 2008 (Amendments Act), Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act, and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act (Section 504) in the context of students with disabilities attending public elementary and secondary schools. The FAQ addresses the broadened definition of disability and the changes made by the Amendments Act; explores how the Amendments Act affects Section 504; discusses various obligations of school districts, including the requirement to evaluate students to determine eligibility for regular or special education and related aids and services; and addresses how OCR evaluates compliance with Title II of the ADA and Section 504 in light of the Amendments Act.

  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (246.39K)   [OCR-00061]
  • Frequently Asked Questions PDF (395.65K)   [OCR-00062]
  Title II - ADA/Section 504
2011/05/2605/26/2011

Guidance on Use of Electronic Book Readers and Other Emerging Technologies to Elementary and Secondary Education Officials (Follow-Up to 2010 Guidance)


"Dear Colleague" letters to elementary and secondary education officials and postsecondary education officials, with attached Frequently Asked Questions document (FAQ), from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Russlynn Ali. The "Dear Colleague" letters and FAQ follow-up on a June 29, 2010 letter, sent by the U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Justice to college and university presidents, regarding the use of electronic book readers and other emerging technologies in compliance with civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination on the basis of disability. The May 26, 2011 "Dear Colleague" letters and FAQ answer questions about the obligations of educational institutions that provide benefits to students by means of these technologies.

  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (83.57K)   [OCR-00058]
  • Guidance on Use of Electronic Book Readers and Other Emerging Technologies  to Postsecondary Education Officials (Follow-Up to 2010 Guidance) PDF (83.80K)   [OCR-00059]
  • Frequently Asked Questions PDF (187K)   [OCR-00060]
  Title II - ADA/Section 504
2010/10/2610/26/2010

Guidance on Schools’ Obligations to Protect Students from Student-on-Student Harassment on the Basis of Sex; Race, Color and National Origin; and Disability


“Dear Colleague” letter from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, Russlynn Ali, concerning recipients' obligations to protect students from student-on-student harassment on the basis of sex; race, color and national origin; and disability. The letter clarifies the relationship between bullying and discriminatory harassment, provides examples of harassment, and illustrates how a school should respond in each case.

  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (116.21K)   [OCR-00056]
    • En español (Spanish) PDF (317.48K)   [OCR-00056-SP]
  • Fact Sheet PDF (317.48K)   [OCR-00057]
    • En español (Spanish)  PDF (161.86K)   [OCR-00057-SP]
    • العربيّة (Arabic) PDF (100.50K)   [OCR-00057-AR]
    • 情況說明書 (Trad. Chinese) PDF (260.3K)   [OCR-00057-ZHTW]
    • ਪੰਜਾਬੀ Punjabi PDF (137.37K)   [OCR-00057-PA]
    • 한국어 (Korean) PDF (773.08K)   [OCR-00057-KO]
    • Tagalog (Tagalog)  PDF (93.68K)   [OCR-00057-TL]
    • Việt-ngữ (Vietnamese) PDF (173.1K)   [OCR-00057-VI]
  Title VI
Title IX
Title II - ADA/Section 504
2010/06/2906/29/2010

Guidance on Use of Electronic Book Readers and Other Emerging Technologies


"Dear Colleague" letter from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Russlynn Ali and Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights Thomas E. Perez, U.S. Department of Justice, concerning the obligation of colleges and universities to ensure that students with disabilities have equal access to emerging technologies in education. The letter, a joint guidance from the Departments of Justice and Education, reminds colleges and universities of the legal standards in regard to accessibility, and applies those standards to electronic book readers. The letter states that it is impermissible under federal law for colleges and universities to use electronic book readers or similar technology in a teaching or classroom environment as long as the device remains inaccessible to individuals who are blind or have low vision and reasonable accommodation or modification for this type of technology do not exist or are not available.

  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (150K)   [OCR-00054]
  • Questions and Answers about "Dear Colleague" letter  PDF   [OCR-00055]
  Title II - ADA/Section 504
2010/04/2004/20/2010

Guidance on Accommodating Students’ Athletic Interests and Abilities: Standards for Part Three of the “Three-Part Test"


“Dear Colleague" letter and a questions and answers document on the test used to determine whether institutions are meeting the Title IX regulatory requirement to accommodate students' athletic interests and abilities.

  Title IX
2008/10/1710/17/2008

Guidance on Report Cards and Transcripts For Students with Disabilities Attending Public Elementary and Secondary Schools  


"Dear Colleague" letter from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Stephanie Monroe providing recipients with information regarding disclosure of disability on report cards and transcripts for students with disabilities attending public elementary and secondary schools. The purpose of this guidance is to clarify how federal laws apply to statements on report cards and transcripts when these statements identify students as students with disabilities.
  Title II - ADA/Section 504
2008/09/1709/17/2008

Guidance on Determining which Athletic Activities Can Be Counted for Purposes of Title IX Compliance


"Dear Colleague" letter from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Stephanie Monroe providing recipients with information about how OCR determines which athletic activities can be counted under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (Title IX), 20 U.S.C. 1681 et seq.

  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (2.4M)   [OCR-00048]
  Title IX
2008/08/2808/28/2008

Guidance on the Use of Race in Assigning Students to Elementary and Secondary Schools


"Dear Colleague" letter from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Stephanie Monroe to provide postsecondary institutions with information on how OCR assesses the use of race in admissions consistent with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. 2000d (Title VI). This guidance sets out the applicable Title VI principles, including pertinent standards enunciated by the U.S. Supreme Court in the past five years.
  Title VI
2008/08/2808/28/2008

Guidance on the Use of Race in Postsecondary Student Admissions


The Office for Civil Rights in the U.S. Department of Education issues this guidance to provide postsecondary institutions with information on how OCR assesses the use of race in admissions consistent with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. 2000d (Title VI). This guidance sets out the applicable Title VI principles, including pertinent standards enunciated by the U.S. Supreme Court in the past five years.

  Title VI
2008/07/2507/25/2008

Dear Colleague Letter Commemorating the 18th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Providing Information for Wounded Veterans


"Dear Colleague" letter from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Stephanie Monroe commemorating the 18th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). This letter discusses the broad impact that Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act (Section 504) and the ADA have had on aspects of education. The linked pamphlet “So You Want to Go Back to School” (July 2008) provides information for wounded veterans who are qualified individuals with disabilities under Section 504 and ADA with an overview of their rights and responsibilities regarding academic adjustments, auxiliary aids, and reasonable modifications to school policies and practices at postsecondary institutions.
  Title II - ADA/Section 504
2008/05/2205/22/2008

Dear Colleague Letter: Title VI Access to AP Courses


  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (3.60M)   [OCR-00043]
  Title VI
2008/03/2703/27/2008

Title IX Athletics Three-Part Test


Letter re-affirming the Department of Education's policy on the application of the Three-Part Test to high school athletics, which measures the accommodation of student athletic interests and abilities.

  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (1.73M)   [OCR-00042]
  Title IX
2007/12/2612/26/2007

Guidance on Access by Students with Disabilities to Accelerated Programs


"Dear Colleague" letter from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Stephanie Monroe addressing the rights of students with disabilities to participate in schools’ and school districts’ accelerated programs, such as Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate classes or programs.

  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (2.8M)   [OCR-00041]
  Title II - ADA/Section 504
2007/06/2506/25/2007

Guidance on Nondiscriminatory Treatment of Pregnant Students in Athletic Scholarships


"Dear Colleague" letter from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Stephanie Monroe addressing the Title IX regulatory requirements related to nondiscriminatory treatment of pregnant students in the context of athletic scholarships.
  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (191K)   [OCR-00040]
  Title IX
2007/03/1603/16/2007

Guidance on Students with Disabilities and Transitioning to Postsecondary Education ("Dear Colleague" letter)


“Dear Colleague” letter and “Dear Parent” letter from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Stephanie Monroe, providing information about the legal rights and responsibilities of students with disabilities as they transition from high school to institutions of postsecondary education.

  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (568K)   [OCR-00038]
  • "Dear Parent" letter PDF (306K)   [OCR-00039]
  Title II - ADA/Section 504
2007/01/3101/31/2007

Guidance on Notification of New Single-Sex Regulations


  Title IX
2006/07/2107/21/2006

Guidance on Assurance of Compliance


  Boy Scouts
2005/03/1703/17/2005

Additional Clarification of Intercollegiate Athletics Policy: Three-Part Test – Part Three


  • Additional Clarification of Intercollegiate Athletics Policy: Three-Part Test – Part Three PDF (1.M) [OCR-00034]

  Title IX
2005/03/0103/2005

User’s Guide to Developing Student Interest Surveys Under Title IX


  • User’s Guide to Developing Student Interest Surveys Under Title IX PDF (1.42M) [OCR-000034]

  Title IX
2004/09/2009/20/2004

Joint DOJ/OCR Guidance on Segregated Proms


"Dear Colleague" letter addressing the issue of civil rights violations inherent in allocation of extracurricular awards or honors on the basis of race, or violations inherent in racially separate proms or dances.

  Title IX
2004/09/1309/13/2004

Title VI and Title IX Discrimination


"Dear Colleague" letter addressing the right of all students, including students of faith, to be free from discrimination in our schools and colleges under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972, in cases where such discrimination may be commingled with religious discrimination.

  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (452.48)   [OCR-00032]
  Title VI
Title IX
2004/02/0102/01/2004

OCR Publication: Race-Neutral Approaches to Diversity in Education


Achieving Diversity: Race-Neutral Alternatives in American Education
  Title VI
2003/07/2807/28/2003

First Amendment


"Dear Colleague" letter reaffirming that OCR's regulations and policies do not require or prescribe speech, conduct or harassment codes that impair the exercise of rights protected under the First Amendment.
  Title VI
Title IX
Title II - ADA/Section 504
Age
2003/07/1107/11/2003

Further Clarification of Intercollegiate Athletics Policy Guidance Regarding Title IX Compliance


Dear Colleague letter from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Gerald Reynolds

  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (149.41K)   [OCR-00027]
  Title IX
2003/03/0103/2003

Race-Neutral Alternatives in Postsecondary Education: Innovative Approaches to Diversity


Race-Neutral Approaches to Diversity in Education
  Title VI
2002/05/0305/03/2002

Guidelines on current title IX requirements related to single-sex classes and schools


"Dear Colleague" letter on current title IX requirements related to single-sex classes and schools .

  Title IX
2002/03/2503/25/2002

Guidance on Boy Scouts of America Equal Access Act (Boy Scouts Act)


  Boy Scouts
2001/01/1901/19/2001

Guidance on Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Access to Educational Resources


"Dear Colleague" letter from U.S. Secretary of Education Richard W. Riley, concerning racial and ethnic disparities in access to educational resources, including teachers, facilities, instructional programs and support, technology, and school funding.
  • “Dear Colleague” Letter PDF (852K)   [OCR-00023]
  Title VI
2000/07/2507/25/2000

Guidance on Prohibited Disability Harassment


Dear Colleague Letter, from Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights Norma V. Cantú and Assistant Secretary for Special Education and Rehabilitative Services Judith E. Heumann, on prohibited disability harassment.

  Title II - ADA/Section 504
1998/07/2307/23/1998

Funding of Athletic Scholarships


"Dear Colleague" letter from Norma Cantú, Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights regarding the investigation of complaints which allege discrimination in the awarding of athletic scholarships in intercollegiate athletics programs. Dear Colleague" letter from Dr. Mary Frances O'Shea, National Coordinator for Title IX Athletics to Bowling Green State University General Counsel, which clarifies the coverage of Title IX and its regulations as they apply to both academic and athletic programs; and the funding of athletic scholarships budgets for men's and women's intercollegiate athletics programs.
  Title IX
1997/03/1903/19/1997

Guidance on the Effect of Proposition 209 on the Responsibilities of California's School Districts and Colleges Under Federal Educational Programs and Civil Rights Laws


Effect of Proposition 209, California's ban on affirmative action, on the responsibilities of California's school districts and colleges under educational programs and civil rights laws administered by the Department of Education.

  Title VI
Title IX
1996/01/1601/16/1996

Clarification of Intercollegiate Athletics Policy Guidance: The Three-Part Test (memorandum)


The memorandum from the OCR Assistant Secretary and clarification of the "three-part test" described in the Education Department's 1979 Policy Interpretation. This test is used to determine whether students of both sexes are provided nondiscriminatory opportunities to participate in athletics.

  Title IX
1994/03/1003/10/1994

Notice of Investigative Guidance, Racial Harassment ( 59 Fed. Reg. 11448, Mar. 10, 1994)


  Title VI
1994/01/3101/31/1994

Notice of Application of Supreme Court Decision in Fordice, (59 Fed. Reg. 4271, Jan. 31, 1994)


  Title VI
1992/10/2610/26/1992

Notice of Policy Guidance, Deaf Students Education Services, (57 Fed. Reg. 49274, Oct. 30, 1992)


  Title II - ADA/Section 504
1991/09/2709/27/1991

Policy Update on Schools' Obligations Toward National Origin Minority Students With Limited-English Proficiency


  Title VI
1990/04/0604/06/1990

Office for Civil Rights Policy Regarding the Treatment of National Origin Minority Students Who Are Limited English Proficient


  Title VI
1984/09/1109/11/1984

Language Minority Compliance Procedures


  Title VI
1980/12/2212/22/1980

Notice of Interpretation, Use of Parent’s Insurance to Pay for Required Services for Students with Disabilities


  Title II - ADA/Section 504
1980/12/2212/11/1979

Title IX Policy Interpretation: Intercollegiate Athletics


The following Policy Interpretation represents the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare's interpretation of the intercollegiate athletic provisions of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and its implementing regulation. Title IX prohibits educational programs and institutions funded or otherwise supported by the Department from discriminating on the basis of sex. The Department published a proposed Policy Interpretation for public comment on December 11, 1978. Over 700 comments reflecting a broad range of opinion were received. In addition, HEW staff visited eight universities during June and July, 1979, to see how the proposed policy and other suggested alternatives would apply in actual practice at individual campuses. The final Policy Interpretation reflects the many comments HEW received and the results of the individual campus visits

  Title IX
1980/12/2203/21/1979

Guidelines for Eliminating Discrimination and Denial of Services on the Basis of Race, Color, National Origin, Sex, and Handicap


  Title VI Race and National Origin
Title IX Sex
Title II - ADA/Section 504 Disability
Methods of Administration MOA
1978/08/1408/14/1978

Disability Policy Interpretations on Program Accessibility; Carrying Individuals with Disabilities; Participation of Students with Disabilities in Contact Sports; School Board Members as Hearing Officers


  Title II - ADA/Section 504
1975/11/1111/11/1975

1975 Memorandum to Chief State School Officers, LEA Superintendents, and PSE Presidents on Title IX obligations in athletics, including athletic scholarships; intercollegiate, club, and intramural programs.


This memorandum provides guidance with respect to the major first year responsibilities of an educational institution to ensure equal opportunity in the operation of both its athletic activities and its athletic scholarship programs.

  Title IX
1970/05/2505/25/1970

Identification of Discrimination and Denial of Services on the Basis of National Origin


  Title VI

 



   
Last Modified: 09/11/2020