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Carlsbad USD |  AR  1312.2  Community Relations

Complaints Concerning Instructional Materials   

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Complaints concerning instructional materials will be accepted only from staff, District residents, or the parents/guardians of children enrolled in a District school.

Step 1:  Informal Complaint

If a staff member, District resident, or parent/guardian of a student enrolled in a District school has a complaint regarding the content or use of any specific instructional material, he/she shall informally discuss the material in question with the principal.

Step 2:  Formal Complaint

If the complainant is not satisfied with the principal's initial response, he/she shall present a written complaint to the principal.

Complaints regarding printed material must name the author, title and publisher, and identify the objection by page and item numbers.  In the case of nonprinted material, written information specifying the precise nature of the objection shall be given.  The statement must be signed and identified in such a way that a proper reply will be possible.

Anonymous complaints will not be accepted.

Upon receiving a complaint, the principal will acknowledge its receipt and answer any questions regarding procedure.  The principal will then notify the Superintendent or designee and the teacher(s) involved about the complaint.  The Superintendent or designee will determine whether the complaint should be considered on an individual basis or whether a review committee should be convened.

During the investigation of the complaint, the challenged material may remain in use until a final decision has been reached.  However, upon request of the parent/guardian who has filed the complaint, his/her child may be excused from using challenged materials until a resolution has been reached.  The teacher shall assign the student an alternate material of equal merit.

Step 3:  Superintendent Determination

The Superintendent or designee shall determine whether a review committee should be convened to review the complaint.

If the Superintendent or designee determines that a review committee is not necessary, he/she shall issue a decision regarding the complaint.

Step 4:  Review Committee

A review committee may be formed under the direction of the Superintendent or designee.  The committee shall be composed of administrators and staff members selected from relevant instructional and administrative areas.

In deliberating challenged materials, the review committee shall consider the educational philosophy of the District; the professional opinions of other teachers of the subject and of other competent authorities; reviews of the materials by reputable bodies; the teacher's stated objectives in using the materials; and the objections of the complainant.

The review committee shall determine the extent to which the challenged material supports the curriculum, the educational appropriateness of the material, and its suitability for the age level of the student.

Within 30 days of being convened, the review committee shall summarize its findings in a written report and submit it to the Superintendent or designee for final action.  The Superintendent or designee shall notify the complainant of his/her decision no later than 60 days after the complaint was filed.

The report of the review committee together with the Superintendent or designee's recommendation may be brought to the Board of Trustees for consideration and final decision.

When any challenged instructional material is reviewed by the District, it shall not be subject to any additional reconsideration for 12 months.

State-Adopted Material

If the questioned material has been adopted by the State of California, the Superintendent or designee may forward the complaint, without action, to the California Department of Education for reevaluation and decision.


approved:  July 26, 2006 Carlsbad, California

revised:  March 24, 2010