Office for Civil Rights
Annual Report to Congress FY 2005

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To ensure accountability and effectiveness in enforcing the civil rights laws, OCR monitors complaint and compliance review resolution agreements to ensure the commitments made by school districts, colleges, universities, and other appropriate entities, in those agreements are carried out.  During FY 2005, OCR monitored 1,838 resolution agreements.  Following are some examples of cases monitored in FY 2005 demonstrating OCR’s impact on both individual students and groups of students.

  • Pursuant to a resolution agreement with OCR, a school district is now providing girls with locker room facilities equivalent to boys and ensuring equivalent practice facilities, coaching and practice time, competition uniforms, and trainer availability to both male and female athletes during practices and scheduled games.

 . . . [T]he diligence and professionalism of [the OCR investigator’s] efforts to resolve this matter…were exemplary and will provide this child with greater opportunity for success.

Letter from an assistant superintendent to OCR, 2005

  • Students with disabilities, who were enrolled at a college and who were clients of the state’s vocational rehabilitation (VR) agency, had not received requested academic adjustments and, as a result, were not able to participate effectively in the college’s academic programs.  Consistent with the OCR resolution agreement, the college worked with the state VR agency to develop a process for  1) sharing responsibility for ensuring academic adjustments are provided to students with disabilities; 2) submitting required documentation of services in a timely manner; and 3) designating a campus liaison to coordinate services for VR students with disabilities.

  • In response to an OCR complaint resolution agreement, a school district issued letters of apology to the parents of Latino students who were discriminated against in school disciplinary actions, provided nondiscrimination training to its staff, reviewed policies and procedures to ensure nondiscriminatory treatment in future student discipline incidents, and sent a notice to all parents in the district on how to bring discrimination concerns to the attention of district authorities and how to use the district’s complaint procedures.

  • A school district discriminated against students with disabilities by organizing its bus transportation schedule in a way that resulted in shortened school days for students with disabilities.  OCR ensured the school district changed its bus schedule to allow for a full school day for these students, who also were provided compensatory educational services for instructional time missed due to the previous early dismissals.

Although we would never say we are happy to be subject of a complaint, we genuinely appreciate the pleasant and professional demeanor with which you and your colleagues conducted your site visit. We also appreciate your willingness to talk about ways [we] might be able to address some other accommodation challenges that our institution is facing. Thank you.

Comment by a university official to OCR, 2005

  • A large urban school district agreed to make magnet school programs at 19 elementary schools and two high schools accessible to students with mobility impairments.  OCR determined the district made substantial renovations at the 21 schools by installing ramps, elevators, visual alarms, computerized card catalogs and signage, and by making boys’ and girls’ restrooms accessible.

  • A community college discriminated against a student who uses a wheelchair by applying eligibility criteria for attending an annual student government conference different from the criteria applied to students without disabilities. OCR monitored an agreement in which the college agreed to provide reasonable accommodations for the student, who attended the conference.

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Last Modified: 11/01/2007