How to File a Title IX Complaint
This webpage describes the steps and options available for students in filing and pursuing a Title IX complaint at De Anza.
College employees (including faculty members, classified professionals and administrators) should visit the Foothill-De Anza district's Human Resources website or contact the Foothill-De Anza district Title IX coordinator for information on how to file or pursue a complaint. You may also consider other options listed at the bottom of this webpage.
What Is Sexual Harassment?
- Under Title IX federal rules, "sexual harassment" is an umbrella term that can include activity commonly described as sexual harassment, sexual assault, stalking, dating violence or domestic violence.
- In common language, sexual harassment can include unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other unwelcome verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature.
If You Have a Complaint or Concern
If you think you have been subjected to sexual harassment or discrimination at De Anza College – or if you'd like assistance in determining whether you have been – you may contact the college or district Title IX coordinator – both are listed on the Title IX Contacts webpage – to discuss your concerns. The Title IX coordinator for De Anza College is Laureen Balducci, dean of Counseling and Disability Support Programs and Services.
- You may also report a Title IX concern or complaint to any De Anza employee. They will inform the college Title IX coordinator, who will follow up with you to offer support and conduct an investigation as appropriate.
- Information from a complaint or investigation will be treated with sensitivity and will only be shared with administrators who have a need to know about the situation.
- To learn more about ways to raise a concern, and how it will be handled, see the Student Guide to Title IX.
Filing a Complaint
If you are ready to file a complaint, you can click this yellow button to open an online form.
When you submit this form, your complaint will be entered into a secure online system, known as Maxient, which the college uses to track complaints and their outcomes.
What Happens When a Complaint is Filed
Here is what typically will occur after you submit your complaint:
Even if you don't want to pursue a formal complaint and hearing, the college Title IX coordinator can advise you on how to resolve the issue through an informal process. This might include:
- Informal remedies provided by the Title IX coordinator
- An informal resolution in which both parties agree on the outcome
- An informal resolution in which the respondent accepts responsibility or agrees to abide by conditions or sanctions
Supportive measures will be given to both parties in the informal process. In addition,
- Both parties must give written consent to the informal resolution process.
- Any party can withdraw from the informal resolution process at any time and opt for a formal grievance process.
- If an informal resolution is unsuccessful, a formal grievance process may be pursued.
You are not required to pursue an informal resolution first, if you wish to pursue a formal grievance instead.
Formal Grievance Process
If you choose to pursue a formal grievance, the following will occur.
- Once you submit a formal complaint and request an investigation, the college will
provide written notice to the person making the complaint and the individual or individuals who are the
subject of the complaint. This notice will include
- The specific allegations
- The names of the individual making the complaint and any individuals who are the subjects of the complaint
- The dates and times of the alleged events
- An explanation that the subject of the complaint has not been found responsible and that a determination regarding responsibility will be made, based on a preponderance of evidence, at the end of the grievance process.
- The Title IX coordinator or an assigned investigator will investigate the complaint and write a report that summarizes any findings based on collected evidence.
- Before the investigative report is completed, both parties will be given 10 days to review the report, and both parties will be allowed to submit a meaningful written response, which the Title IX coordinator or investigator will consider before completing the report.
- The final report will be submitted with both parties and their advisers at least 10 days before any hearing is held, or if there is no hearing, at least 10 days before the Title IX coordinator makes a final determination about the resolution.
The college will provide supportive measures for both the person making the complaint and the subjects of the complaint. In addition,
- The college will set a reasonably prompt time frame for completing the process and filing or resolving any appeals.
- If any delays or extensions are provided, both parties will be given written notice about the delays and the reasons.
If the Title IX coordinator determines that a formal hearing is warranted, it will be conducted by the Division of Student Development.
- The hearing may be conducted via online video so the parties do not have to be in the same room.
- Before any hearing, each party will be allowed to select an adviser. This should be a person you trust to be supportive and clear-thinking; they do not need to be an attorney. If either party doesn't have an adviser, the college will assign one at no cost.
- During the hearing, each party's adviser will be allowed to ask relevant questions and follow-up questions of the other party and any witnesses. The person conducting the hearing, or a hearing panel, will first determine the relevancy of each question, before the questions are asked.
- Each live hearing will be recorded and the transcript will be made available to each party for review.
- After the hearing, the hearing decision-maker or panel will provide a written determination based on the preponderance of evidence. The determination will be provided simultaneously to each party.
- The determination will include the rationale for the decision, and any sanctions imposed by the decision-maker or hearing panel.
Appeals (If Any)
Either party can appeal the decision from the decision-maker or hearing panel.
- Appeals of any decision involving removal from campus for a Title IX infraction should be submitted to Michele LeBleu-Burns, dean of Student Development and EOPS.
- Appeals for all other outcomes should be submitted to Rob Mieso, vice president of Student Services.
If an appeal is filed, each party will be notified in writing and provided an explanation of the appeal procedures. The decision-maker or panel deciding the appeal will be different from the individuals who served as the original hearing panel.
Frequently Asked Questions
Will my complaint remain confidential?
Will my parents or family be told?
Will I have to confront my harasser or assailant?
What if I used drugs or alcohol?
Should I retain a lawyer?
Other Options for Students or Employees
- Foothill-De Anza District: You may also file a formal complaint by submitting an Unlawful Discrimination Complaint form to the district Office of Human Resources.
- U.S. Department of Education: At any time, you may also file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights.
- Employment-Related Claims: If you have a complaint that is related to your employment, you may contact the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing or the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
College PoliciesYou'll find De Anza's formal policies regarding sexual assault and sexual harassment on the College Policies webpage.