Site Index | CDE Offices | Staff Directory

Sex-Based Harassment

Sexual Harassment and Sexual Violence

Title IX protects both female and male students from sexual harassment connected to any school program or activity, regardless of where it occurs.  The 2008 Sexual Harassment:  It's Not Academic pamphlet defines sexual harassment as conduct that:

  • Is sexual in nature
  • Is unwelcome
  • Denies or limits a student's ability to participate in or benefit from a school's education program.

This pamphlet also covers preventing, responding to, and reporting sexual harassment.

For information on sexual harassment, see Revised Sexual Harassment Guidance:  Harassment of Students by School Employees, Other Students, or Third Parties.

On April 4, 2011, the U.S. Department of Education issued a Dear Colleague letter and multiple fact sheets which reaffirm that the sexual harassment of students, including sexual violence, interferes with their right to an education free from discrimination.  

Considerations for School District Sexual Misconduct Policies

In September 2016, the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault issued Considerations for School District Sexual Misconduct Policies highlighting a number of factors to assist districts in drafting a sexual misconduct policy.  The Task Force recommends that districts consider developing a separate sexual misconduct policy or including a separate section in existing comprehensive anti-discrimination policy dedicated to addressing the unique issues of sexual misconduct.  Use of a comprehensive drafting process which considers the unique aspects of the district and consultation with legal counsel to ensure full compliance with all applicable laws are also recommended. 

Training Materials

The National Center on Safe Supportive Learning Environments, funded by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Safe and Healthy Students released the Safe Place to Learn online resource package to assist schools in the prevention of peer-to-peer sexual harassment and sexual violence.  This resource includes:  guidance for administrators, e-learning modules for school staff, a webinar discussion guide, a coordinated response team planning guide, a trauma sensitivity training module, as well as a number of other resources.

Questions and Answers

Know Your Rights About Title IX and Sexual Violence

Gender-Based Harassment and Bullying

Gender-based harassment, also covered under Title IX, is unwelcome conduct based on an individual’s actual or perceived sex, gender identity, or nonconformity with sex stereotypes.  Gender-based harassment may include:

  • Acts of verbal, nonverbal or physical aggression
  • Intimidation or hostility based on sex or sex-stereotyping

Such acts are considered to be gender-based harassment even if they do not involve conduct of a sexual nature because the conduct is sex-based.

The Title IX obligations discussed in the April 4, 2011 Dear Colleague Letter also apply to gender-based harassment.

For more information on gender-based harassment, harassment and bullying, see:

Bullying Prevention and Education

For information on bullying prevention and education, see:


Quick Links


Contact Us

Colorado Dept. of Education
201 East Colfax Ave.
Denver, CO 80203
Phone: 303-866-6600
Fax: 303-830-0793
Contact CDE

CDE Hours
Mon - Fri 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
See also: Licensing Hours

Educator Licensing 

WCC Access