Purpose and Authority
Annually, the ICCB conducts a comprehensive civil rights review at two Illinois community colleges which 1. offer CTE programs and 2. receive federal Perkins funding. Throughout the review process, the ICCB interviews staff, faculty, and students, as well as conducts a review of a college’s facilities.
The purpose of the review is to ensure compliance with federal civil rights laws that bar discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, and disability. The ICCB reviews compliance with the following federal civil rights laws:
- Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 [race, color, national origin]
- Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 [sex]
- Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 [disability]
- Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 2010 [disability]
- The Vocational Education Program Guidelines
What gives the ICCB the authority to conduct these reviews?
Through the Methods of Administration (MOA) program, the United States Department of Education (USDE), Office for Civil Rights (OCR) is able to oversee the civil rights compliance programs of state agencies that administer CTE programs. As the administering of these programs is overseen by the ICCB, it is the responsibility of the ICCB to ensure this compliance on behalf of the OCR.
What is the MOA program?
The Methods of Administration program was developed by the USDE, OCR, to ensure that all students, regardless of race, color, national origin, sex, or disability, have equitable access to high-quality CTE programs. The guidelines for ensuring this access, as well as the responsibilities for administering agencies, are laid out in the Guidelines for Eliminating Discrimination and Denial of Services on the Basis of Race, Color, National Origin, Sex, and Handicap in Vocational Education Programs (Guidelines).
The ICCB utilizes specific selection criteria to determine which two colleges will be reviewed during the academic year. Points are assigned to each college based on the criteria and are then tabulated to determine the college’s rank. These criteria have been reviewed and deemed acceptable by the OCR. Points are assigned based on the following factors:
- disparities between total enrollment and CTE enrollment in the areas of race, sex, and disability; and,
- when, if ever, the college last received an on-site civil rights review.
The ICCB conducts these reviews with assistance from the Illinois Center for Specialized Professional Support (ICSPS).
The Office for Civil Rights’ (OCR) Center for Outreach, Prevention, Education, and Non-discrimination (OPEN Center) today launched a short webinar entitled “How to File an OCR Complaint.” This short webinar describes who can file a discrimination complaint with OCR, the four ways in which one can file a complaint, and the type of information that must be provided in the complaint. This is the sixth webinar launched by OCR, all of which are available on OCR’s website under Technical Assistance.
Other OCR Webinars:
The U.S. Department of Education today released its Final Rule under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in education programs or activities receiving federal financial assistance. In addition to posting the unofficial version of the Final Rule, the Department is releasing a Final Rule Fact Sheet, a Final Rule Overview, a document detailing the major provisions of the Final Rule, and a document highlighting changes between the prior Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and the Final Rule. Finally, the Office for Civil Rights has also released a Webinar describing the Final Rule and many of its features.
The Final Rule is clear, predictable, and effective at ensuring schools have the tools they need to address incidents of sexual harassment in their programs and activities. Under the Final Rule, schools know the importance of responding to such incidents appropriately by supporting survivors, as well as by providing a fair, transparent process for investigating and adjudicating sexual harassment matters. The Final Rule will carry the force and effect of law as of August 14, 2020.