Published in the August 28, 2015 edition
Following is a press release from Supt. of Schools Cyndy Taymore. Officials would not provide any additional information about the circumstances surrounding the investigation.
MELROSE — In November of 2014, the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) notified the Melrose Public Schools that it had opened an investigation into allegations that one of our Melrose Memorial Middle School students had been subjected to harassment based on race in the spring of 2014. Since the opening of the investigation, the Melrose Public Schools has cooperated fully with OCR’s investigation. Recently, verbal notification was received that OCR has determined that the school district was found to be in violation of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
OCR additionally informed the Melrose Public Schools of its intent to enter into a dialogue with the school district to resolve this matter. At this point, OCR has not provided any written notification or details regarding its determination.
The Melrose Public Schools takes very seriously its legal and ethical obligation to address and redress any instances of discrimination that may have occurred within its schools, and looks forward to this opportunity to work with OCR to continue to improve its practices and to address the moral imperative of providing a safe atmosphere in which all students may achieve their academic potential. It is the explicit goal of the Melrose Public Schools to provide an environment for students in which they may feel safe, flourish and succeed regardless of their race or other protected status. We intend to work collaboratively with OCR to continue our ongoing efforts to achieve this goal and to comprehensively address any concerns that OCR identifies. Due to the pending discussions with OCR, the Melrose Public Schools will not have any further comment on this matter until after successfully reaching a resolution with OCR.