Back to top

Equity, Inclusion & Free Speech

The following video recording and PowerPoint presentation broadly discuss the First Amendment, House File 744 (student free speech). They are provided to public school districts pursuant to Iowa Code 256.9(64) and shall be used by school districts to provide training annually to any equity coordinator employed by the school district (Iowa Code 279.75).

Back to top

Equity Review Process

Both state and federal law requires that there be no discrimination in educational programs or in school hiring practices on the basis of race, color, national origin or ancestry, religion or creed, sex (including gender, sexual orientation, and gender identity), pregnancy, marital status, age, and disability.

One way that the Iowa Department of Education (Department), in coordination with the U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Office for Civil Rights (OCR), assures compliance with state and federal programs is through the oversight of the Methods of Administration (MOA) program. The purpose of the MOA program is to ensure that all students have equal access to high-quality career and technical education programs.

The Department administers the MOA program and is committed to reasonably assuring that sub-recipients (school districts and community colleges) of federal assistance comply with program requirements and appropriately address any areas of noncompliance. Annually, the Department utilizes an approved MOA Targeting Plan (current: 2020 Iowa MOA Plan) to identify which districts (serving grades 9-12) and community colleges will receive a focused MOA equity and accessibility review.

There are several criteria and multi-tier analysis that factor into these decisions which includes:

  • general enrollment
  • career and technical education, and
  • Perkins V Core indicators data.

Once the sub-recipients are selected for a review, the Department works alongside the identified district and community college communicating any findings for correction of noncompliance, and provides technical assistance upon request. The Department submits this information as a report to the OCR biennially.

Back to top

Equity Review Documents

Equity Coordinator Responsibilities Checklist

Guidance for Nondiscrimination Notices - PK-12 Schools

Guidance for Nondiscrimination Notices

Role and Function of the Equity Coordinator

ADA Arrow Chart to Determine Applicable Standards

ADA Facilities Checklist

Back to top

Office for Civil Rights - Dear Colleague Letters

“The mission of the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) is to ensure equal access to education and to promote educational excellence throughout the nation through vigorous enforcement of civil rights.”

Periodically, OCR publicizes a Dear Colleague Letter (DCL) to provide guidance relative to various civil rights laws and implications for federally-funded educational institutions. The following DCLs contain critical information related to several important issues, such as harassment based on disability, sex, race, or national origin. For more information, visit the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights webpage.

2016-6-15 DCL on Gender Equity in Career and Technical Education

2016-5-13 DCL on Transgender Students

2015-4-24 DCL Title IX Coordinators Guide

2015-4-24 DCL Title IX Coordinators

2015-4-24 DCL Letter to Title IX Coordinators

2015-1-7 DCL English Learners

2014-10-21 DCL Bullying of Students with Disabilities

2014-11-12 DCL Effective Communication

2013-08-20 DCL: Bullying and FAPE

2013-01-25 DCL: Extracurricular Activities and Disabilities

2011-05-06 DCL: Student Enrollment Practices

2011-04-04 DCL: Sexual Violence

2010-10-26 DCL: Harassment and Bullying

2000-07-25 DCL: Prohibited Disability Harassment

Back to top

Section 504

For information and resources, visit the Section 504 webpage.

Back to top

Title IX Education

For information and resources, visit Title IX Education webpage.


Back to top