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attyadvisor
attyadvisor, Attorney
Category: Education Law
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Experience:  28 Years Education Law
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Please help with the following questions. Also kindly,

Customer Question

Please help with the following questions. Also kindly, support the answers with case law.1- What are the pillars for establishing prima facie when challenging a university's decision (academic decision) as discriminatory?2- What are the pillars for establishing prima facie for a hostile educational environment?3- What are the pillars for establishing prima facie for racial harassment or harassment in general?4- Is hostile educational or work environment considered harassment?
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: Education Law
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Posted by JustAnswer at customer's request) Hello. I would like to request the following Expert Service(s) from you: Live Phone Call. Let me know if you need more information, or send me the service offer(s) so we can proceed.
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
I promise a $50 bonus for helping with this question. I need answers by this weekend.
Expert:  attyadvisor replied 4 months ago.

Welcome to JA and thank you for your question. Is this a private or state funded university? Which State is the university located in and did they provide a student handbook? Anything Racial would most likely fall under discrimination as harassment is a term of art that varies state by state with regard to the legal definition. Can you tell me a little more information on the circumstances?

Here is some general information to start.

"Under federal law, race discrimination in education is prohibited by Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Title VI protects people from discrimination based on race, color or national origin in programs or activities that receive federal financial assistance. Title VI states that:

No person in the United States shall, on the ground of race, color, or national origin, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.

    Virtually all public school districts are covered by Title VI because they receive some federal financial assistance. Public colleges and universities generally receive federal financial assistance, and most private colleges and universities receive such assistance. There are some private colleges that do not receive any federal assistance, and Title VI does not apply to them.

    Education Programs and Services Subject to Title VI

    Schools and colleges that receive federal funds must operate without discriminating when it comes to race, color, and national origin. Educational programs and services that must be operated and provided in a non-discriminatory manner include, but are not limited to:

    • Admissions
    • Recruitment
    • Financial aid
    • Academic programs
    • Student treatment and services
    • Counseling and guidance
    • Discipline
    • Classroom assignment
    • Grading
    • Vocational education
    • Recreation
    • Physical education
    • Athletics
    • Housing

    The U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights

    The U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights (OCR) is responsible for enforcing Title VI as it applies to programs and activities that receive federal funds. OCR's principal enforcement activity is the investigation and resolution of complaints filed by people alleging discrimination on the basis of race, color or national origin. OCR has investigated and resolved many kinds of civil rights problems, including the following:

    • The failure of some school districts to provide equal educational opportunity for national origin minority students who have a limited proficiency in English.
    • The maintenance by some state systems of higher education of separate college facilities for students based on their race, color or national origin.
    • The discriminatory assignment of minority students to classes designed for students who are mentally retarded.

    How to File a Discrimination Complaint with OCR

    Anyone who believes there has been an act of discrimination on the basis of race, color or national origin, against any person or group, in a program or activity that receives federal financial assistance, may file a complaint with OCR under Title VI. The person or organization filing the complaint need not be a victim of the alleged discrimination but may complain on behalf of another person or group. A complaint should be sent to the OCR regional office that serves the state in which the alleged discrimination occurred. A complaint must be filed within 180 days of the date of the alleged discrimination unless the time for filing is extended for good cause by the Regional Civil Rights Director. If you have also filed a complaint under an institutional grievance process, see the time limit.

    Complaint letters should explain who was discriminated against; in what way; by whom or by what institution or agency; when the discrimination took place; who was harmed; who can be contacted for further information; the name, address and telephone number of the complainant(s) and the alleged offending institution or agency; and as much background information as possible about the alleged discriminatory act(s).

    If an investigation indicates there has been a violation of Title VI, OCR attempts to obtain voluntary compliance. If it cannot obtain voluntary compliance, OCR will initiate enforcement action, either by referring the case to the Department of Justice for court action, or by initiating proceedings, before an administrative law judge, to terminate Federal funding to the recipient's program or activity in which the prohibited discrimination occurred. Terminations are made only after the recipient has had an opportunity for a hearing before an administrative law judge, and after all other appeals have been exhausted." http://civilrights.findlaw.com/discrimination/race-discrimination-in-education.html

    Customer: replied 4 months ago.
    34;Is this a private or state funded university?" This is a private college"Which State is the university located in and did they provide a student handbook?" The state is New York. Yes, they did provide a student handbook."Can you tell me a little more information on the circumstances?" The matter relates to higher education as I am a graduate student. I filed an Academic Appeal with the college; however, the college did not conduct the appeal according to the terms in the handbook. I also simultaneously filed for a disciplinary harassment and discrimination proceeding with the college; however, once again the disciplinary proceeding was not conducted according to the terms in the student handbook. Also, the Academic Appeal determination issued by the college was not factual as it contained information that was egregiously false. After receiving the determinations of the college proceedings I filed with the New York Division of Human Rights and they found No Probable Cause and now I am challenging the No Probable Cause finding.
    Expert:  attyadvisor replied 4 months ago.

    Being a private school gives them a little but more protection. When a university is receiving government money they are held to the highest standard with regard to discrimination. If the school did not follow their own policies and procedures you have a breach of contract action against them. Hostile in New York is a term of law for workplace environments http://www.nycbar.org/get-legal-help/article/employment-and-labor/harassmenthostile-work-environment/

    That being said the discrimination matter would be the best basis for a case. If New York did not find probable cause you can always take this up a notch and file a complaint through the Federal government. This cases are not easy. Let me see what I can find on private schools that have been found to have discriminated against students.

    Expert:  attyadvisor replied 4 months ago.

    You may wish to file a complaint with the Department of Education at http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/docs/howto.html

    The Department of Justice will also take a complaint https://www.justice.gov/crt/how-file-complaint

    This is an older case but the law still stands today http://blogs.reuters.com/alison-frankel/files/2015/04/Yusuf-v-Vassar-College.pdf

    Just FYI

    "Prima Facia

    In common parlance the term prima facie is used to describe the apparent nature of something upon initial observation. In legal practice the term generally is used to describe two things: the presentation of sufficient evidence by a civil claimant to support the legal claim (a prima facie case), or a piece of evidence itself (prima facie evidence).

    For most civil claims, a plaintiff must present a prima facie case to avoid dismissal of the case or an unfavorable directed verdict. The plaintiff must produce enough evidence on all elements of the claim to support the claim and shift the burden of evidence production to the respondent. If the plaintiff fails to make a prima facie case, the respondent may move for dismissal or a favorable directed verdict without presenting any evidence to rebut whatever evidence the plaintiff has presented. This is because the burden of persuading a judge or jury always rests with the plaintiff.

    Assume that a plaintiff claims that an employer failed to promote her based on her sex. The plaintiff must produce affirmative evidence showing that the employer used illegitimate, discriminatory criteria in making employment decisions that concerned the plaintiff. The employer, as respondent, does not have a burden to produce evidence until the plaintiff has made a prima facie case of Sex Discrimination (Texas Department of Community Affairs v. Burdine, 450 U.S. 248,***** 1089, 67 L. Ed. 2d 207 [1981]). The precise amount of evidence that constitutes a prima facie case varies from claim to claim. If the plaintiff does not present a prima facie case with sufficient evidence, the judge may dismiss the case. Or, if the case is being heard by a jury, the judge may direct the jury to return a verdict for the respondent.

    Prima facie also refers to specific evidence that, if believed, supports a case or an element that needs to be proved in the case. The term prima facie evidence is used in both civil and Criminal Law. For example, if the prosecution in a murder case presents a videotape showing the defendant screaming death threats at the victim, such evidence may be prima facie evidence of intent to kill, an element that must be proved by the prosecution before the defendant may be convicted of murder. On its face, the evidence indicates that the defendant intended to kill the victim.

    Statutes may specify that certain evidence is prima facie evidence of a certain fact. For example, a duly authenticated copy of a defendant's criminal record may be considered prima facie evidence of the defendant's prior convictions and may be used against the defendant in court (Colo. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 18-3-412 [West 1996]). A Civil Law example is a statute that makes a duly certified copy or duplicate of a certificate of authority for a fraternal benefit society to transact business prima facie evidence that the society is legal and legitimate (Colo. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 10-14-603 [West 1996]).

    http://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/prima+facie

    "Probable Cause

    Apparent facts discovered through logical inquiry that would lead a reasonably intelligent and prudent person to believe that an accused person has committed a crime, thereby warranting his or her prosecution, or that a Cause of Action has accrued, justifying a civil lawsuit.

    Probable cause is a level of reasonable belief, based on facts that can be articulated, that is required to sue a person in civil court or to arrest and prosecute a person in criminal court. Before a person can be sued or arrested and prosecuted, the civil plaintiff or police and prosecutor must possess enough facts that would lead a reasonable person to believe that the claim or charge is true.

    The probable cause standard is more important in Criminal Law than it is in Civil Law because it is used in criminal law as a basis for searching and arresting persons and depriving them of their liberty. Civil cases can deprive a person of property, but they cannot deprive a person of liberty. In civil court a plaintiff must possess probable cause to levy a claim against a defendant. If the plaintiff does not have probable cause for the claim, she may later face a Malicious Prosecution suit brought by the defendant. Furthermore, lack of probable cause to support a claim means that the plaintiff does not have sufficient evidence to support the claim, and the court will likely dismiss it.

    In the criminal arena probable cause is important in two respects. First, police must possess probable cause before they may search a person or a person's property, and they must possess it before they may arrest a person. Second, in most criminal cases the court must find that probable cause exists to believe that the defendant committed the crime before the defendant may be prosecuted.

    There are some exceptions to these general rules. Police may briefly detain and conduct a limited search of a person in a public place if they have a reasonable suspicion that the person has committed a crime. Reasonable suspicion is a level of belief that is less than probable cause. A police officer possesses reasonable suspicion if he has enough knowledge to lead a reasonably cautious person to believe that criminal activity is occurring and that the individual played some part in it. In practice this requirement means that an officer need not possess the measure of knowledge that constitutes probable cause to Stop and Frisk a person in a public place. In any case, an officer may not arrest a person until the officer possesses probable cause to believe that the person has committed a crime.

    The requirement of probable cause for a Search and Seizure can be found in the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which states,

    the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be searched.

    All states have similar constitutional prohibitions against unreasonable searches and seizures.

    The requirement of probable cause works in tandem with the warrant requirement. A warrant is a document that allows police to search a person, search a person's property, or arrest a person. A judicial magistrate or judge must approve and sign a warrant before officers may act on it. To obtain a search or arrest warrant, officers must present to the magistrate or judge enough facts to constitute probable cause. A warrant is not required for all searches and all arrests. Courts have carved out exceptions that allow police to search and arrest persons without a warrant when obtaining a warrant would be impractical.

    The precise amount of evidence that constitutes probable cause depends on the circumstances in the case. To illustrate, assume that a police officer has stopped a motor vehicle driver for a traffic violation. In the absence of any other facts indicating criminal activity by the driver, it would be a violation of the Fourth Amendment if the officer conducted a full-blown search of the driver and the vehicle. The mere commission of a traffic violation is not, in and of itself, a fact that supports probable cause to believe that the driver has committed a crime. However, if the officer notices that the driver's eyes are bloodshot or that the driver smells of alcohol, the officer may detain and question the defendant, search him, and place him under arrest. Most courts hold that a driver's commission of a traffic violation combined with the appearance that the driver has used drugs or alcohol constitute sufficient evidence to lead a reasonable person to believe that the person is driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

    Probable cause is not equal to absolute certainty. That is, a police officer does not have to be absolutely certain that criminal activity is taking place to perform a search or make an arrest. Probable cause can exist even when there is some doubt as to the person's guilt. Courts take care to review the actions of police in the context of everyday life, Balancing the interests of law enforcement against the interests of personal liberty in determining whether probable cause existed for a search or arrest.

    Legislatures may maintain statutes relating to probable cause. Many such statutes declare that a certain thing constitutes probable cause to believe that a person has committed a particular offense. For example, under federal law, a Forfeiture judgment of a foreign court automatically constitutes probable cause to believe that the forfeited property also is subject to forfeiture under the federal Racketeering law (18 U.S.C.A. § 981 (i)(3) [1986])." http://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/probable+cause

    Customer: replied 4 months ago.
    Back to the original question:
    1- What are the pillars for establishing prima facie when challenging a university's decision (academic decision in this scenario) as discriminatory?2- What are the pillars for establishing prima facie for a hostile educational environment?3- What are the elements for establishing a mixed-motive case in this scenario?Please support answers with case law.The more recent the case law, the better.
    Expert:  attyadvisor replied 4 months ago.
    I don't know what pillars you are referring to This is a private school you have a battle not worth pursuing at the state level. You can either sue them for breach of contract or try to get the federal government involved. You are trying to get years of legal nuances to fit your appeal and unfortunately you will not prevail if you continue on the same path. You can go for a breach of the school's policies and/or pursue the discrimination issue. Your constitutional rights are rights owed to you by your government. A private school is a different entity. You are also confusing legal employment issues with the schools failure to follow their own procedures.
    Expert:  attyadvisor replied 4 months ago.
    Prime facia and probable cause are completely different legal doctrines. Unfortunately we are a general information site and are not permitted pursuant to the terms of service to provide specifics on your case. If you misunderstood the terms of service please let me know and I will send you the link. I am sorry that the school did not follow through properly. I would go after them for breach of contract and if there is a racial component I would add it to my complaint. But you cannot fit a square peg into a round hall. You should consider law school it would be a perfect fit for you. Thank you for using JA.
    Customer: replied 4 months ago.
    I am not asking for specifics regarding my case because for starters you don't know the specifics of my case and hence you don't need to send me the terms of service link. If you are confusing things, kindly, just forget everything above and answer the following questions stand alone.Also, sir/madam, I understand that prima facie and probable cause are different standards. “it is clear that "only the probability, and not a prima facie showing, of criminal activity is the standard of probable cause." Spinelli, 393 U. S., at 4191- Read the quote below to understand what are the elements/pillars of prima facie that I am asking for.
    "The elements of a prima facie case of discrimination are: (1) membership in a protected class; (2) satisfactory performance; (3) adverse action; (4) circumstances supporting an inference of discrimination based on protected class membership"2- Tell me about a breach of contract lawsuit; statute of limitations? Is brought in a state court? federal court? How do I file one? What would I gain as a result of the lawsuit?Regards
    Expert:  attyadvisor replied 4 months ago.

    1- Read the quote below to understand what are the elements/pillars of prima facie that I am asking for.
    "The elements of a prima facie case of discrimination are: (1) membership in a protected class; (2) satisfactory performance; (3) adverse action; (4) circumstances supporting an inference of discrimination based on protected class membership"
    What else are looking for so I can respond?

    What I think you may be having issues with is that there a difference between a private and public school. Discrimination is not permitted under the constitution for any agencies, schools or services that receive government funding. The protection is your constitutional right against the government. This does apply to private citizens or private schools receiving no funding from the government.

    "The U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights (OCR) enforces several federal civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination in programs or activities that receive federal financial assistance from the Department of Education (ED):

    • Discrimination on the basis of race, color, and national origin is prohibited by Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964;
    • Sex discrimination is prohibited by Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972;
    • Discrimination on the basis of disability is prohibited by Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (Title II prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability by public entities, whether or not they receive federal financial assistance); and
    • Age discrimination is prohibited by the Age Discrimination Act of 1975.

    These civil rights laws extend to all state education agencies, elementary and secondary school systems, colleges and universities, vocational schools, proprietary schools, state vocational rehabilitation agencies, libraries, and museums that receive federal financial assistance from ED. Programs or activities that receive ED funds must provide aids, benefits, or services in a nondiscriminatory manner. Such aids, benefits, or services may include, but are not limited to: ***** ***** financial aid, academic programs, student treatment and services, counseling and guidance, discipline, classroom assignment, grading, vocational education, recreation, physical education, athletics, housing, and employment.

    In addition, as of January 8, 2002, OCR enforces the Boy Scouts of America Equal Access Act, part of the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001. Under the Boy Scouts of America Equal Access Act, no public elementary school, public secondary school, or state or local education agency that provides an opportunity for one or more outside youth or community groups to meet on school premises or in school facilities before or after school hours shall deny equal access or a fair opportunity to meet or discriminate against, any group officially affiliated with the Boy Scouts of America or any other youth group listed in Title 36 of the United States Code as a patriotic society.

    WHAT TO DO

    Anyone wishing to file a formal complaint with OCR should submit in writing the following information in a letter or on the Discrimination Complaint Form available from OCR enforcement offices (see listing of offices below):

    • Your name and address (a telephone number where you may be reached during business hours is helpful, but not required);
    • A general description of the person(s) or class of persons injured by the alleged discriminatory act(s) (names of the injured person(s) are not required);
    • The name and location of the institution that committed the alleged discriminatory act(s); and
    • A description of the alleged discriminatory act(s) in sufficient detail to enable OCR to understand what occurred, when it occurred, and the basis for the alleged discrimination (race, color, national origin, sex, disability, age, or the Boy Scouts of America Equal Access Act).

    HOW TO FILE AN ONLINE COMPLAINT

    OCR encourages students and parents, representatives of education institutions, and other OCR customers to use e-mail or fax to communicate with OCR, whenever possible. Also, complainants may file a complaint with OCR, online, at the following website: http://www.ed.gov/ocr/complaintprocess.html.

    For those without current e-mail accounts, Internet access may be freely available from your local public library, and free e-mail accounts are available from several large providers.

    A recipient may not retaliate against any person who has made a complaint, testified, assisted or participated in any manner in an investigation or proceeding under the laws listed above.

    WHO CAN FILE

    Anyone who believes that an educational institution that receives Federal financial assistance has discriminated against someone on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, or age, or who believes that a public elementary or secondary school, or State or local education agency has violated the Boy Scouts of America Equal Access Act, may file a complaint. The person or organization filing the complaint need not be a victim of the alleged discrimination, but may complain on behalf of another person or group.

    TIMELINESS

    A complaint must be filed within 180 calendar days of the date of the alleged discrimination, unless the time for filing is extended by OCR for good cause.

    INSTITUTIONAL GRIEVANCE PROCEDURES

    Prior to filing a complaint with OCR against an institution, a potential complainant may want to find out about the institution's grievance process and use that process to have the complaint resolved. A complainant is not required by law to use the institutional grievance procedure before filing a complaint with OCR. If a complainant uses an institutional grievance process and also chooses to file the complaint with OCR, the complaint must be filed with OCR within 60 days after the last act of the institutional grievance process."

    http://civilrights.findlaw.com/discrimination/how-to-file-an-education-discrimination-complaint-with-the.html

    2- Tell me about a breach of contract lawsuit; statute of limitations? Is brought in a state court? federal court? How do I file one? What would I gain as a result of the lawsuit? You can bring the case in State court unless you want to add the discrimination element and file in Federal court.

    Which court has jurisdiction gets complicated and it is difficult. to teach someone the entire process in a general information forum. If you can get the State or the Federal Government to file the case on your behalf by filing complaints that find compelling enough to sue a private school, you would not go this alone.

    This is a link for guidance on where to file.

    hether to Sue or Defend in a State or Federal Court

    9 4275

    When you are sued, or planning to bring a lawsuit of your own, you may have a choice between having the case decided in a state or federal court. If you have a choice, you and your lawyer will need to consider a variety of factors in deciding which court would be best.

    Whether you are able to choose a federal court is beset by federal jurisdictional technicalities your lawyer can explain - - an example is determining the state in which a corporation "resides." Putting aside time limits and other arcane technicalities, here is how it works in civil cases.

    Some cases must be brought in a federal court. Examples are actions for patent and copyright infringement, bankruptcy cases, suits for refund of federal taxes, claims under federal antitrust laws and other cases where federal jurisdiction is exclusive. A much larger number of cases must be brought and defended in a state court. These are actions in which the plaintiff's claim is based upon state, not federal, law and the plaintiff and at least one defendant reside in the same state.

    But many cases can be brought in either a state or federal court. These include actions in which the parties on each side all reside in different states (i.e., where no plaintiff and no defendant reside in the same state), where the claim in suit exceeds a certain amount, or where the plaintiff's claim is based squarely on federal law and Congress has provided that the claim can be enforced in either a state or federal court.

    Cases between corporate or individual citizens of different states invoke federal jurisdiction called diversity jurisdiction, so-called because there is diversity of citizenship among the parties. Actions based on federal law may be tried in federal court on what is called federal question jurisdiction.

    If you or your company is a plaintiff bringing the suit, you have the first choice of a state or federal court if there is a choice. But if you are sued as a defendant in a state court, you still may have a choice. This is so because cases filed in a state court can sometimes be removed to federal court. When a case is removed to a federal court, all activity in the state court stops and the case begins anew in the federal court.

    Cases filed in a state court can be removed to a federal court when there is federal question jurisdiction or when there is diversity jurisdiction and no defendant resides in the state in which the action was originally brought.

    If you have a choice of court, what should you consider before you make it? Here are some factors you should think about and discuss with your lawyer:

    http://corporate.findlaw.com/litigation-disputes/whether-to-sue-or-defend-in-a-state-or-federal-court.html

    How do I file one? What would I gain as a result of the lawsuit?

    You file the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure for cases filed in Federal Court and you file the State Rules of Civil Procedure for cases filed in Sate court. It appears that you feel that you were not provided due process pursuant to the school handbook and that you were discriminated against. You sue for damages that this caused you.

    Customer: replied 4 months ago.
    34;1- Read the quote below to understand what are the elements/pillars of prima facie that I am asking for.
    "The elements of a prima facie case of discrimination are: (1) membership in a protected class; (2) satisfactory performance; (3) adverse action; (4) circumstances supporting an inference of discrimination based on protected class membership" What else are looking for so I can respond?"Dear Sir/Madam,
    I am looking for a response for the following questions asked at the opening of the post with the answers supported by case law. Upon the successful answering, this post would conclude and I will pay the $50 bonus as promised. If for any reasons you can not answer, respectfully, ***** ***** of the question so I can seek answers else where. I have a deadline for answering these questions and it is approaching rapidly. Also, the answers that I am looking for are general "stand alone" answers supported by case law.Here is a quote of the question asked at the opening of the post:
    "Please help with the following questions. Also kindly, support the answers with case law.1- What are the pillars for establishing prima facie when challenging a university's decision (academic decision) as discriminatory?2- What are the pillars for establishing prima facie for a hostile educational environment?3- What are the pillars for establishing prima facie for racial harassment or harassment in general?4- Is hostile educational or work environment considered harassment?"Regards
    Expert:  attyadvisor replied 4 months ago.
    I wish I had the ability and time to teach you the basics of bringing a case in the proper jurisdiction. Employment law deals with hostile environments while educational institutions are held to certain standards and if they fail to provide what they promised to provide to a student it is a breach of contract. Your racial component is a civil rights matter and a private school is not held to the same standards. I would contact a civil rights attorney and see if they see any possibility for you to prevail when they have all of the facts. There are countless attorneys that provide free consultations. You are so caught up in the terminology that you are not seeing the forest from the trees. You have a breach of contract. The civil rights issues, if any, are far to complex to explain in this format. I have provided general information well beyond the usual question. We assist you in good faith. However your continued litany of unlimited questions far exceeds the services this site provides. Best wishes.
    Customer: replied 4 months ago.
    Thank you Attorney2. However, there is no such "litany of unlimited questions" as these are the very same questions I asked when I opened the post.
    Expert:  attyadvisor replied 4 months ago.

    1- Read the quote below to understand what are the elements/pillars of prima facie that I am asking for.
    "The elements of a prima facie case of discrimination are: (1) membership in a protected class; (2) satisfactory performance; (3) adverse action; (4) circumstances supporting an inference of discrimination based on protected class membership"

    You have the elements not sure what else you are looking for?

    Discrimination elements

    1. Did an official or representative (agent or employee) of a recipient treat someone differently in a way that interfered with or limited the ability of a student to participate in or benefit from a program or activity of the recipient?
    2. Did the different treatment occur in the course of authorized or assigned duties or responsibilities of the agent or employee?
    3. Was the different treatment based on race color, or national origin?
    4. Did the context or circumstances of the incident provide a legitimate, non-discriminatory, non-pretextual basis for the different treatment?

    Where, based on the evidence obtained in the investigation,questions 1-3 are answered "yes" and question 4 is answered "no,"OCR will conclude that there was discrimination in violation of title VI under this standard different treatment analysis. If question s 1,2 or 3 are answered "no," or if questions 1 through 4are answered "yes," OCR will find no violation under this theory.If warranted by the nature and scope of the allegations or evidence, OCR will proceed to determine whether the agent's or employee's actions established or contributed to a racially hostile environment as described below. OCR also will conduct a"hostile environment" analysis where actions by individuals other than agents or employees are involved.

    2- What are the pillars for establishing prima facie for a hostile educational environment?

    Hostile Environment Analysis

    A violation of title VI may also be found if a recipient has created or is responsible for a racially hostile environment i.e., harassing conduct (e.g., physical, verbal,graphic, or written) that is sufficiently severe, pervasive or persistent so as to interfere with or limit the ability of an individual to participate in or benefit from the services,activities or privileges provided by a recipient. A recipient has subjected an individual to different treatment on the basis of race if it has effectively caused, encouraged accepted, tolerated or failed to correct a racially hostile environment of which it has actual or constructive notice (as discussed below).

    Under this analysis, an alleged harasser need not be an agent or employee of the recipient, because this theory of liability under title VI is premised on a recipient's general duty to provide a nondiscriminatory educational environment.

    To establish a violation of title VI under the hostile environment theory, OCR must find that: (1) A racially hostile environment existed; (2) the recipient had actual or constructive notice of the racially hostile environment; and (3) the recipient failed to respond adequately to redress the racially hostile environment. Whether conduct constitutes a hostile environment must be determined from the totality of the circumstances, with particular attention paid to the factors discussed below.

    Severe, Pervasive or Persistent Standard

    To determine whether a racially hostile environment exists,it must be determined if the racial harassment is severe,pervasive or persistent. OCR will examine the context, nature,scope, frequency, duration, and location of racial incidents, as well as the identity, number, and relationships of the persons involved. The harassment must in most cases consist of more than casual or isolated racial incidents to establish a title VI violation. Generally, the severity of the incidents needed to establish a racially hostile environment under title V varies inversely with their pervasiveness or persistence.

    First of all, when OCR evaluates the severity of racial harassment, the unique setting and mission of an educational institution must be taken into account. An educational institution has a duty to provide a nondiscriminatory environment that is conducive to learning. In addition to the curriculum,students learn about many different aspects of human life and interaction from school. The type of environment that is tolerated or encouraged by or at a school can therefore send a particularly strong signal to, and serve as an influential lesson for, its students.

    This is especially true for younger, less mature children,who are generally more impressionable than older students or adults. Thus, an incident that might not be considered extremely harmful to an older student might nevertheless be found severe and harmful to a younger student. For example, verbal harassment of a young child by fellow students that is tolerated or condoned in any way by adult authority figures is likely to have a far greater impact than similar behavior would have on an adult.Particularly for young children in their formative years of development, therefore, the severe, pervasive or persistent standard must be understood in light of the age and impressionability of the students involved and with the special nature and purposes of the educational setting in mind

    As with other forms of harassment, OCR must take into account the relevant particularized characteristics and circumstances of the victim especial] the victim's race and age when evaluating the severity of racial incidents at an educational institution If OCR determines that the harassment was sufficiently severe that it would have adversely affected the enjoyment of some aspect of the recipient's educational program by a reasonable person, of the same age and race as the victim,under similar circumstances, OCR will find that a hostile environment existed. The perspective of a person of the same race as the victim is necessary because race is the immutable characteristic upon which the harassment is based. The reasonable person standard as applied to a child must incorporate the age,intelligence and experience of a person under like circumstances to take into account the developmental differences in maturity and perception due to age.

    To determine severity, the nature of the incidents must also be considered. Evidence may reflect whether the conduct was verbal or physical and the extent of hostility characteristic of the incident. In some cases, a racially hostile environment requiring appropriate responsive action may result from a single incident that is sufficiently severe. Such incidents may include,for example, injury to persons or property or conduct threatening injury to persons or property

    3- What are the elements for establishing a mixed-motive case in this scenario? I am not sure I understand that question?

    New Questions:

    Tell me about a breach of contract lawsuit; statute of limitations? Is brought in a state court? federal court? How do I file one? What would I gain as a result of the lawsuit?

    How do I file one? What would I gain as a result of the lawsuit?

    You file the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure for cases filed in Federal Court and you file the State Rules of Civil Procedure for cases filed in Sate court. It appears that you feel that you were not provided due process pursuant to the school handbook and that you were discriminated against. You sue for damages that this caused you.

    Discrimination cases: The investigation and analysis of cases under title Vt of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. 2000d, (title Vt) relies,to a large extent, on case law developed under Title VII of theCivil Rights Act of 1964,42 U.S.C. 2000e, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex,and religion in employment. See Dillon County District No. I and South Carolina State Department of Education, No. 84-VI-16(Civil Rights Reviewing Auth.1987); United States v. LULAC, 793F.2d 636, 648-49 (5th Cir. 1986); Georgia State Conference of Branches of NAACP v. Georgia, 775 F.2d 1403,1417 (11th Cir.1985); and NAACP v. Medical Center, Inc. 657 F.2d 1322 (3dCir.1981). See also, generally, EEOC Revised Enforcement Guidance on Recent Developments in Disparate Treatment Theory, No. N-915.002 (July 14,1992).

    http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/docs/race394.html

    This case fits your situation factually This is an older case but the law still stands today Yusuf v. Vassar College, 35 F.3d 7

    Hostile Environment Cases:

    A violation of Title Vt may be found if racial harassment is severe, pervasive, or persistent so as to constitute a hostile or abusive educational environment. See Meritor Savings Bank v.Vinson, 477 U.S. 57 (1986) (sets similar standard for sexual harassment under title IX) (relying on Rogers v. EEOC, 454 F.2d234, 238 (5th Cir. 1971) (race discrimination can consist of an"environment heavily charged with ethnic or racial discrimination"), cert. denied,406 U.S. 957 (1972)); Harris v.Forklift Systems, Inc., 114 S.Ct. 367 (1993) (reiterating Meritor standard). Accord, Hicks v. Gates Rubber Co., 833 F.2d 1406,1412(10th Cir.1987); Snell v. Suffolk County, 782 F.2d 1094,1102 (2dCir. 1986); Gray v. Greyhound Lines, East, 545 F.2d 169,176 (D.C.Cir. 1976) (noting with approval that EEOC has consistently held that title VII gives employee right to " 'a working environment free of racial intimidation' "). See also, e.g., Defiance College, OCR Case No. 05-9>2024 (violation where college was aware of "repeated" and "patently offensive" verbal and physical racial harassment committed by students).

    Whether conduct constitutes a hostile environment must be determined from the totality of the circumstances. See Harris v.Forklift Systems, Inc., 114 S.Ct. 367 (1993) (under title VII.factors to consider may include frequency and severity of discriminatory conduct, whether it is physically threatening or humiliating or merely offensive, and whether it interferes with work performance; psychological harm is not required but may betaken into account like any other relevant factor); Johnson v.Bunny Bread, 646 F.2d 1250,1257 (8th Cir.1981) (court examined nature, frequency, and content of racial harassment, as well as identities of perpetrators and victims). See also Snell, 782 F.2dat 1103 (citing Henson v. City of Dundee, 682 F.2d 897,904 (11thCir. 1982)) (same standard for sexual harassment).

    http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/docs/race394.html

    Additional cases: http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-2nd-circuit/1225390.html

    With all due respect you are dealing with a private school. Since you have not provided how the racial component fits in I don't how to address it. What is very clear is that the school denied you due process pursuant to the terms as set out in their policies and hand books.

    No worries your question is still open to all attorneys. Hopefully someone will call you and be able to assist you.

    I wish you all the best!

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