In accordance with State requirements and Board of Education Policy GABC, we are providing an excerpt from the District 211 Employee Policy and Procedure Manual regarding Faith's Law. This law is intended to protect students from acts of sexual misconduct by school employees, substitute employees or employees of contractors. This page provides information in the event of suspected or reported sexual abuse.
This resource guide, published by the Illinois State Board of Education, provides additional details.
The text below is excerpted from the District 211 Employee Policy and Procedure Manual.
Employee Conduct Procedures
All District employees are expected to maintain high standards in their school relationships, to demonstrate integrity and honesty, to be considerate and cooperative, and to maintain professional and appropriate relationships with students, parents, staff members and others. In addition, the Code of Ethics for Illinois Educators, adopted by the Illinois State Board of Education, is incorporated by reference into these procedures as adopted by Board Policy GBAC. Any employee who sexually harasses a student, willfully or negligently fails to report an instance of suspected child abuse or neglect as required by the Abused and Neglected Child Reporting Act (325 ILCS 5/), engages in grooming as defined in 720 ILCS 5/11-25, engages in grooming behaviors, violates boundaries for appropriate school employee-student conduct, or otherwise violates an employee conduct standard will be subject to discipline up to and including dismissal.
District employees are mandated reporters and required to comply with all reporting requirements of the Abused and Neglected Child Reporting Act (325 ILCS 5/), Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (20 U.S.C. §1681 et seq.), and the Elementary and Secondary Education Act.
Employees, students, parents, and any third party can report prohibited behaviors and/or boundary violations to a District Complaint Manager, Nondiscrimination Coordinator, Title IX Coordinator, or any other District administrator or staff member the person feels comfortable reporting to.
Employees are required to participate in mandated training related to educator ethics, child abuse, grooming behaviors and boundary violations as required by law and policies. Employees will be notified of these mandated trainings yearly via memo.
Prohibited Grooming Behaviors
Grooming behaviors include, at a minimum, sexual misconduct. Sexual misconduct is (i) any act, including but not limited to, any verbal, nonverbal, written, or electronic communication or physical activity, (ii) by an employee with direct contact with a student, (iii) that is directed toward or with a student to establish a romantic or sexual relationship with the student. Examples include, but are not limited to:
- A sexual or romantic invitation.
- Dating or soliciting a date.
- Engaging in sexualized or romantic dialog.
- Making sexually suggestive comments that are directed toward or with a student.
- Self-disclosure or physical exposure of a sexual, romantic, or erotic nature.
- A sexual, indecent, romantic, or erotic contact with a student.
Employees with a valid driver’s license are permitted to transport students in District 211 cars or vans if there is an educational or extracurricular purpose that has been preauthorized by District 211. Examples include, but are not limited to, driving athletes/participants to a school-sponsored event such as a contest, taking students on a career trek or field trip, or traveling to an off-campus curricular experience such as Building Construction or Driver Education. There must be a minimum of three people in the vehicle (employee and two students, or two employees and one student).
Should unplanned or emergency circumstances arise requiring students to be transported outside of preauthorized trips, an employee must obtain the permission of an administrator.
Taking or Possessing Photos/Videos of Students
All photos and videos taken by an employee must adhere to District policy regarding Social Media and Electronic Communication, student records laws, and other related procedures contained in the Policy and Procedure Handbook. Any photos or videos of students should be taken on a District device and/or stored on a District storage drive. Photos or videos of students should not be stored on personal devices.
Meeting with Students
Employees may meet with students within school facilities when there is a school-related reason to do so. An individual employee should not meet with students outside of school nor should employees meet with students outside of the employee’s professional role. When meeting with a student, the classroom door should remain open, and the employee should conduct the meeting in a part of the classroom that is visible from the hallway. Employees with their own offices may meet with students if there is consistent visual access to a person in the office. Any exception to these procedures must be pre-approved by an administrator.
Appropriate Methods of Communication with Students
Employees may send messages with a school-related purpose to students through District-approved accounts. Employees are strictly prohibited from using any form of communication with students (emails, letters, notes, text messages, phone calls, conversations) that includes any subject matter that would be deemed unprofessional and/or inappropriate between an employee and a student. Employees should not exchange messages with students through any means that cannot be monitored by the District. Any exception to these procedures must be pre-approved by an administrator.