Guidance and Resources

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Fact Sheet: Confronting LGBTQI+ Harassment in Schools

On June 23, 2021, the Civil Rights Division (the Division) of the U.S. Department of Justice and the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) of the U.S. Department of Education jointly issued a resource for students and families on confronting LGBTQI+ discrimination in schools.  The document recognizes that in schools around the country, LGBTQI+ students have reported bullying and harassment by classmates because of their perceived or actual sexual orientation or gender identity.  The document provides timely examples of the kinds of incidents the Division and OCR can investigate and reminds parents of specific actions that can be taken by families when schools fail to respond to reports of harassment or other forms of discrimination based on sex, including sexual orientation and gender identity.  It also provides information on how to file a complaint with the Division and OCR.  

Fact Sheet | PDF

Fact Sheet: Confronting COVID-19-Related Harassment in Schools

On May 10, 2021, the Civil Rights Division (the Division) of the U.S. Department of Justice and the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) at the U.S. Department of Education jointly issued an updated resource for students and families on confronting COVID-19 related bullying and harassment against Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) students. The document recognizes that in schools around the country, AAPI students have reported bullying and harassment by classmates because of their race or national origin, including their ethnicity, ancestry, and language. The document provides timely examples of the kinds of incidents the Division and OCR can investigate and reminds parents of specific actions that can be taken by families when schools fail to respond to reports of harassment based on race or national origin. It also provides information on how to file a complaint with the Division and OCR. The resource is available in twelve AAPI languages. 

Fact Sheet | PDF

မြန်မာစကား (Burmese)简体字 (Chinese - Simplified)簡體字 (Chinese – Traditional)Hakha Chin (Hakha Chin)日本語 (Japanese)ကညီကျိာ် (Karen)ខ្មែរ (Khmer)한국어 (Korean)ພາສາລາວ (Lao)Tagalog (Tagalog)ไทย (Thai)Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)

Fact Sheet: Combating Discrimination Against AANHPI and MASSA Students

On June 6, 2016, the U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights, the U.S. Department of Justice's Civil Rights Division, 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. This fact sheet is intended to help parents understand what types of harassment and other forms of discrimination may violate federal civil rights laws that the Departments of Justice and Education enforce.  The applicable federal civil rights law include, among others: Titles IV and VI of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, 42 U.S.C. §§ 2000c-6, 2000d-d-7; Title VI’s implementing regulations, 34 C.F.R. Pt. 100, 28 C.F.R. Pt. 42; Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, 20 U.S.C. § 1681a; and the Equal Educational Opportunities Act of 1974, 20 U.S.C. §§ 1701-1758. 

This guidance document is not intended to be a final agency action, has no legally binding effect, and has no force or effect of law.  The document may be rescinded or modified in the Department’s complete discretion, in accordance with applicable laws. The Department’s guidance documents, including this guidance, do not establish legally enforceable responsibilities beyond what is required by the terms of the applicable statutes, regulations, or binding judicial precedent.  For more information, see "Memorandum for All Components: Prohibition of Improper Guidance Documents," from Attorney General Jefferson B. Sessions III, November 16, 2017.

Fact Sheet | PDF

العربية (Arabic) |  বাঙালি/বাঙ্গালী (Bengali) | မြန်မာစကား (Burmese) |  ខ្មែរ (Cambodian) 简体字 (Chinese - Simplified) | 簡體字 (Chinese - Traditional) | Hakha Chin | Hmoob (Hmong) | 한국어 (Korean) | ਪੰਜਾਬੀ (Punjabi) | Soomaali (Somali) | Tagalog (Tagalog)اُردُو (Urdu) | Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)

Department of Justice and Department Education Release Joint Guidance to Ensure English Learner Students Have Equal Access to a High-Quality Education

On January 7, 2015, the U.S. Departments of Education and Justice issued a joint guidance 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. The applicable federal laws include, but are not limited to:  Title VI of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, 42 U.S.C. §§ 2000c-6, 2000d-d-7; the Departments’ Title VI’s regulations, 34 C.F.R. Pt. 100 and 28 C.F.R. Pt. 42; and the Equal Educational Opportunities Act of 1974, 20 U.S.C. §§ 1701-1758.

The guidance documents are not intended to be final agency action, have no legally binding effect, and have no force or effect of law.  The documents may be rescinded or modified in the Departments’ complete discretion, in accordance with applicable laws. The Departments’ guidance documents, including this guidance, do not establish legally enforceable responsibilities beyond what is required by the terms of the applicable statutes, regulations, or binding judicial precedent.  For more information, see "Memorandum for All Components: Prohibition of Improper Guidance Documents," from Attorney General Jefferson B. Sessions III, November 16, 2017.

View additional information about the Dear Colleague Letter  | Vea información adicional sobre la carta a los estimados colegas sobre los alumnos que aprenden inglés y padres de familia con dominio limitado del inglés 

Department of Justice and Department of Education Dear Colleague Letter on the Rights of All Children to Enroll in Public Schools

On May 8, 2014, the Departments of Justice and Education issued an updated set of guidance documents to all public school districts reminding them of their obligation under federal law to provide equal educational opportunities to all children residing in their districts, and to offer assistance to ensure they are complying with the law. The applicable federal statutes, regulations, and judicial precedent include, among others: Titles IV and VI of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, 42 U.S.C. §§ 2000c-6, 2000d-d-7; Title VI’s implementing regulations, see, e.g., 34 C.F.R. Pt. 100, 28 C.F.R. Pt. 42; the Equal Educational Opportunities Act of 1974, 20 U.S.C. §§ 1701-1758; and Plyler v. Doe, 457 U.S. 202 (1982).

The guidance documents are not intended to be final agency action, have no legally binding effect, and have no force or effect of law.  The documents may be rescinded or modified in the Departments’ complete discretion, in accordance with applicable laws. The Departments’ guidance documents, including this guidance, do not establish legally enforceable responsibilities beyond what is required by the terms of the applicable statutes, regulations, or binding judicial precedent.  For more information, see "Memorandum for All Components: Prohibition of Improper Guidance Documents," from Attorney General Jefferson B. Sessions III, November 16, 2017.

Dear Colleague Letter | PDF

Carta a los estimados colegas sobre los derechos de todos los niños a matricularse en la escuela | Español PDF

Fact Sheet | PDF

Hoja informativa sobre los derechos de todos los niños a matricularse en la escuela | Español PDF

Questions & Answers for States, School Districts, and Parents and Community Members | PDF

Preguntas y respuestas para los estados, distritos escolares, padres y la comunidad | Español PDF

Korean | PDF

Updated July 8, 2021

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