Title IX


Davis Joint Unified School District is committed to making schools free from sexual harassment and discrimination. Sexual harassment is a form of sex discrimination under Title IX, a federal law passed in 1972 to ensure that male and female students and employees in educational settings are treated equally and fairly. It protects against discrimination based on sex (including sexual harassment). In addition, Title IX protects transgender students and students who do not conform to gender stereotypes. State law also prohibits discrimination based on gender (sex), gender expression, gender identity, and sexual orientation. The preamble to Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 states that:

“No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.”


Title IX requires that each school district have at least one person designated as the Title IX Coordinator.

Davis Joint Unified School District - Title IX Coordinator
Cara Messmore, Director of Student Support Services

526 B Street
Davis, CA  95616
(530) 757-5300 ext. 140
FAX: 530-757-5323

The District prohibits sexual harassment of students by other students, employees, or other persons, at school or at school-sponsored or school-related activities. Sexual harassment and sex-based discrimination include the following:

  • Any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature including, but not limited to, sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other unwanted verbal, visual, or physical conduct of a sexual nature made by someone from or in the educational setting;
  • Quid pro quo sexual harassment (placing a condition of receiving a benefit or service on participation in unwelcome sexual conduct);
  • Sexual assault, dating violence, domestic violence, or stalking;
  • Gender-based harassment.

The superintendent or his/her designee shall ensure that district students receive age-appropriate instruction about their rights to be free from sexual harassment, the district procedure for reporting and investigating complaints of sexual harassment including with whom a complaint should be filed. 

The District prohibits conduct that has the purpose or effect of having a negative impact on the individual’s work or academic performance, or that is sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive to create an intimidating, hostile, or offensive educational environment.



Sexual Harassment - Any form of discrimination which includes, but is not limited to, unwelcome sexual advances, requests, or other verbal visual or physical conduct of a sexual nature made by someone from or in the educational setting under any of the following conditions:

  • Submission to the conduct is explicitly or implicitly made a term or condition of an individual's academic status or progress; or
  • Submission, or rejection of, the conduct by the individual is used as a basis of academic decisions affecting the individual; or
  • The conduct has the purpose or effect of having a negative impact upon the individual's academic performance or of creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive educational environment; or
  • Submission to, or rejection of, the conduct by the individual is used as a basis for any decision affecting the individual regarding benefits and services, honors, programs or activities available at or through the educational institution.

Unwelcome Conduct - Some examples of sexual harassment may include, but are not limited to:

  • Deliberate written or oral comments, gestures, or physical contacts of a sexual nature or demeaning to one's gender, which are unwelcome or interfere with school productivity;
  • Implicit or explicit sexual behavior by a fellow student, district employee, or other person within the school environment which has the effect of controlling, influencing or otherwise affecting the school environment;
  • Unwelcome suggestive, vulgar, or obscene letters, notes, posters, calendars, or other visual products, or derogatory comments slurs, and/or jokes of a sexual nature.

Hostile Educational Environment - A hostile educational environment is created when sexual harassment is sufficiently severe, or objectively offensive AND persistent or pervasive.

Sufficiently Severe - Physical is more likely to be severe without need for repetition.  Touching of another's genitals, buttocks, or breasts could be considered severe depending on the age of the student(s).  Sexual assault, sexual battery, and sexual violence are considered severe.  If an incident is severe, it does not have to be persistent or pervasive to be sexual harassment.

Objectively Offensive - The behavior is such that a reasonable person would consider the behavior offensive. The behavior sometimes may involve physical threats, humiliation, intimidation, or ridicule.

Persistent or Pervasive - Persistent such that the behavior may be repeated, continuing beyond the usual, not stopping, or continuing even though others want the behavior to stop; OR pervasive such that the behavior is widespread, openly practiced, well-known among students or employees, occurring in public, occurring with regularity, or known but nobody talks about it.

Sexual Violence - Physical sexual acts perpetrated against a person's will or where a person is incapable of giving consent (e.g., due to the student's age or use of drugs or alcohol, or because an intellectual or other disability prevents the student from having the capacity to give consent).  A number of different acts fall into the category of sexual violence including rape, sexual assault, sexual battery, sexual abuse, and sexual coercion.  Sexual violence can be carried out by school employees, other students, or third parties.  All such acts are forms of sex discrimination prohibited by Title IX.

Responsible Reporter - ALL school employees are considered "Responsible Reporters" of sexual harassment.  Any employee who witnesses, suspects, or receives notification involving a student(s) or employee(s), is required to report the sexual harassment to an administrator or designee.

General Information Regarding Reports and/or Complaints of Sexual Harassment

  • Confidentiality:  The privacy of the persons involved will be protected to the extent possible. Disclosures may be required by law or to those who need to know within the context of the investigation, analysis, appeal, prevention of recurrence, or correction of misconduct.  Therefore, a guarantee of confidentiality is not provided.  Should an accuser or reporter request confidentiality and that no action be taken, the District must still discharge its duties and obligations to prevent and correct the sexual harassment.

  • Statute of Limitations - Uniform complaints alleging discrimination, harassment, intimidation and bullying based on sex (including sexual harassment and sexual violence) must be filed no later than six months from the date the complainant first obtained knowledge of the facts of the alleged sexual harassment. The six-month period may be extended for good cause, not to exceed an additional 90 days.
  • Retaliation - The District prohibits retaliation against any participant in the reporting and complaint process including witnesses.  A separate Uniform Complaint may be filed if retaliation occurs against any individual involved in the processing of discrimination, harassment, or bullying complaint. Each complaint shall be investigated promptly and in a way that respects the privacy of all parties concerned. Follow up with the student will occur to ensure the harassment has stopped and that there is no retaliation.
  • Criminal Complaints: Students, parents or guardians have a right to file a criminal report or complaint and a Title IX report or complaint simultaneously.

Nondiscrimination and Equivalent Opportunities in the Athletic Program

No student shall be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, be denied equivalent opportunity in, or otherwise be discriminated against in interscholastic, intramural, or club athletics on the basis of actual or perceived sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender expression, ethnic group identification, race, ancestry, national origin, religion, color, mental or physical disability, or any other basis specified in law. (Education Code 220, 230; 5 CCR 4920; 34 CFR 106.41)

(cf. 0410 - Nondiscrimination in District Programs and Activities)
(cf 5145.3 – Nondiscrimination/Harassment)

The Superintendent or designee may provide single-sex teams where selection for the teams is based on competitive skills. (5 CCR 4921; 34 CFR 106.41)

Each student shall be allowed to participate in any single-sex athletic program or activity consistent with his/her gender identity and for which s/he is otherwise eligible to participate, irrespective of the gender listed on the student’s records.

When a school provides only one team in a particular sport for members of one sex, but provides no team in the same sport for members of the other sex, and athletic opportunities in the total program for that sex have been previously limited, members of the excluded sex shall be allowed to try out and compete with the team. The same standards for eligibility shall be applied to every student trying out for a team, regardless of sex, sexual orientation, gender expression, or other protected group status. (5 CCR 4921; 34 CFR 106.41)

When determining whether equivalent opportunities are available to both sexes in athletic programs, the Superintendent or designee shall consider, among other factors: (5 CCR 4922; 34 CFR 106.41)

  1. Whether the selection of sports and levels of competition offered effectively accommodate the interests and abilities of both sexes
    The athletic program shall be considered to effectively accommodate the interests and abilities of both sexes if it meets one of the following criteria: (Education Code 230)
    1. The interscholastic-level participation opportunities for male and female students are provided in numbers substantially proportionate to their respective enrollments. 

    2. When the members of one sex have been and are underrepresented among interscholastic athletes, the district can show a history and a continuing practice of program expansion that is demonstrably responsive to the developing interests and abilities of the members of that sex.

    3. When the members of one sex are currently underrepresented among interscholastic athletes and the district cannot show a history and continuing practice of program expansion as required in item #b above, the district can demonstrate that the interests and abilities of the members of that sex have been fully and effectively accommodated by the present program.

  2. The provision and maintenance of equipment and supplies

  3. Scheduling of games and practice times, selection of the season for a sport, and location of the games and practices

  4. Travel and per diem allowances

  5. Opportunities to receive coaching and academic tutoring

  6. Assignment and compensation of coaches and tutors

  7. Provision of locker rooms and practice and competitive facilities

  8. Provision of medical and training facilities and services

  9. Provision of housing and dining facilities and services

  10. Publicity

  11. Provision of necessary funds

To view current high school athletic participation totals:





Workshops, Training, and Meeting Information


Online training will be completed by all employees at the start of the school year and will be required of all new hires during the school year.  The training is administered by Target Solutions from North Bay Schools Insurance Authority (NBSIA).  A transcript of the training can be found here.

Administrators assigned to handle Title IX matters will be trained according to their role in the process (i.e. investigator, decision-maker, appeals officer). Training materials will be linked below.

Trainings Attended

Title IX staff and DJUSD administrators attended the following workshops:

Monthly Meetings

Beginning with the 2020-2021 school year, the Title IX Coordinator will hold monthly meetings at the District Office with site and district point persons who handle Title IX and Civil Rights complaints. The first meeting for 2020-21 will be held on September 24.

How to File a Title IX Complaint

Filing a Report or Informal Complaint of Discrimination, Harassment, Intimidation, or Bullying Based on Sex

Staff, students, parents, or guardians may report any act of discrimination, harassment, intimidation or bullying based on sex (in any area covered by Title IX, including sexual harassment) to any district employee.  That employee is mandated to contact the Title IX coordinator within 24 hours to begin the intake process for reports of sexual harassment. 

Title IX complaints can be filed by completing the UNIFORM COMPLAINT FORM [English] [Spanish] and returning it to:

Davis Joint Unified School District
Title IX Coordinator
Cara Messmore, Director of Student Support Services

526 B Street
Davis, CA  95616
(530) 757-5300 ext. 140
FAX: 530-757-5323
[email protected]

When notified of a potential sexual harassment complaint, the Title IX Coordinator will promptly schedule a meeting with the complainant to hear the allegations and concerns.  If the complainant describes sexual harassment allegations, the Title IX Coordinator explains the Title IX complaint process and informs the complainant of their right to file or not to file a formal complaint and the right to receive supportive measures even if a formal complaint is not filed.  If the alleged victim chooses not to file a formal complain, the Title IX Coordinator may file a formal complaint in situations when a safety threat exists. In addition, the Title IX Coordinator may file a formal complaint in other situations as permitted under the Title IX regulations, including as part of the district's obligation to not be deliberately indifferent to known allegations of sexual harassment. In such cases, the Title IX Coordinator shall provide the alleged victim notices as required by the Title IX regulations at specific points in the complain process. 

Supportive Measures

Upon receipt of a report of Title IX sexual harassment, even if a formal complaint is not filed, the Title IX Coordinator shall promptly contact the complainant to discuss the availability of supportive measures which are nondisciplinary, nonpunitive, and designed to restore or preserve equal access to the district's education program or activity without unreasonably burdening the other party.  Such measures may include, but are not limited to, counseling, course-related adjustments, modifications of class schedules, mutual restrictions on contact, increased security, and monitoring certain areas of campus.  The Title IX Coordinator shall consider the complainant's wishes with respect to supportive measures implemented.

The district shall maintain as confidential any supportive measures provided to the complainant or respondent, to the extent that maintaining such confidentiality would not impair the district's ability to provide the supportive measures.

Emergency Removal from School
A student shall not be disciplined for alleged sexual harassment under Title IX until the investigation has been completed. However, on an emergency basis, the district may remove a student from the district's education program or activity, provided that the district conducts and individualized safety and risk analysis, determines that removal ins justified due to an immediate threat to the physical health or safety of any student or other individual arising from the allegations, and provides the student with notice and an opportunity to challenge the decision immediately following the removal. This authority to remove a student does not modify a student's rights under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act or Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. 

If a district employee is the respondent, the employee may be placed on administrative leave during some or all of the investigation. 

Dismissal of Complaint
The Title IX Coordinator shall dismiss a formal complaint if the alleged conduct would not constitute sexual harassment as defined in 34 CFR 106.30 even if proved.  The Title IX Coordinator shall also dismiss any complaint that did not occur in the district's education program or activity or did not occur against a person in the United States, and may dismiss a formal complaint if the complainant notifies the district in writing that the complainant would like to withdraw the complaint or any allegations in the complaint, the respondent is no longer enrolled or employed by the district, or sufficient circumstances prevent the district from gathering evidence sufficient to reach a determination with regard to the complaint.

Upon dismissal, the Title IX Coordinator shall promptly send written notice of the dismissal and the reasons for the dismissal simultaneously to the parties, and shall inform them of their right to appeal the dismissal of a formal complaint or any allegation in the complaint in accordance with the appeal procedures described in the section "Appeals" below.

If a complaint is dismissed, the conduct may still be addressed under the Uniform Complaint Procedures as applicable. 

Informal Resolution Process
When a formal complaint of sexual harassment is filed, the district may offer a voluntary informal resolution process, such as mediation, at any time prior to reaching a determination regarding responsibility.  The district shall not require a party to participate in the informal resolution process or to waive the right to an investigation of a formal complaint.

Informal processes cannot be used when the allegation is that a district employee sexually harassed a student.

Formal Complaint Process
If a formal complaint is filed, the Title IX Coordinator shall provide the known parties with written notice of the allegations with sufficient details known at the time, including the identity of parties involved in the incident if known, the conduct allegedly constituting sexual harassment, and the date and location of the alleged incident if known.  The notice will be provided with sufficient time for the parties to prepare a response before any initial interviews.

Known parties shall also receive written notice of the district's complaint process, including any informal resolution process, as well as detailed information about the investigation procedures. This information shall include information about the investigation timeline and what shall be included in a written decision once the investigation has been concluded. 

The Title IX Coordinator will designate a trained district employee to investigate the allegations which includes conducting interviews with the relevant parties and witnesses, gathering relevant evidence and preparing a final investigative report.  Both parties will have an opportunity to review the report and submit additional written questions that they want asked of any party or witness.  Once the investigator has conduct additional interviews the investigative report will be finalized and provided to both parties and the trained district decision-maker who determines responsibility. 

The decision-maker will provide a written decision that includes any  recommendations for disciplinary sanctions for Respondent, remedies to the Complainant, and instructions on how to file an appeal.

Either party may appeal the district's decision or dismissal of a formal complaint or any allegation in the complaint, if the party believes that a procedural irregularity affected the outcome, new evidence is available that could affect the outcome, or a conflict of interest or bias by the Title IX Coordinator, investigator(s), or decision-maker(s) affected the outcome. Appeals must be filed within 10 calendar days of receiving the notice of decision or dismissal. 

Information about how to file an appeal shall be included in the written decision shared with all known parties at the conclusion of the initial investigation or dismissal of the complaint. 

Please contact the Title IX Coordinator for further information about remedies, corrective and disciplinary actions, and record-keeping for Title IX complaints.