Grievance Procedure

In keeping with federal/state antidiscrimination legislation, the Montclair Public Schools Board of Education has adopted and hereby publishes the Grievance Procedure provided for the resolution of student, employee, and parent complaints.

Complaint/Referral Form
Appeal Form


  1. To provide students, employees, and parents a procedure by which they can seek a remedy for alleged violations related to discrimination on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, affectional or sexual orientation, sex, gender identity, gender expression, ancestry, national origin, disability, or socioeconomic status.


Grievance - A formal written complaint.

Grievant - Any student, employee, or parent aggrieved by a decision or condition falling under the guidelines of federal and/or state anti-discrimination laws.

Affirmative Action Officer - The district employee designated to coordinate efforts with antidiscrimination legislation and charged with the responsibility of investigating complaints.

What is a Human Resources/Affirmative Action Council Representative?

A Human Resources/Affirmative Action Council Representative is a member of the professional staff who supports the district’s Affirmative Action Officer’s efforts to comply with the regulations of the N.J.A.C. 6A:7 and to promote a working and learning environment free of discrimination on the basis of race/ethnicity, color, national origin, religion, gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, age or disability. Each school with the Montclair Public Schools is required to Human Resources/Affirmative Action Council Representative. The Council will meet monthly. The Council will have deliberate conversations with community partners working on work related to the N.J.A.C. 6A:7. Upon request, meeting minutes are available.

Should you have questions, concerns or would like to request meeting minutes or grievance forms, please contact Mr. Damen Cooper, 973-509-4020 x50202.


Step #1 - The grievant must present the complaint in written form to the responsible person designated as the Affirmative Action Building Representative, or the grievant may present his/her concern directly to the District Affirmative Action Officer, Mr. Damen Cooper, 973-509-4020 x50202.  (Use Complaint/Referral Form.)

Step #2 - The Affirmative Action Building Representative/District Affirmative Action Officer has five working days from the time the complaint is received to investigate and provide a response. Depending on the nature of the investigation, additional time may be needed and the grievant will be notified accordingly.

Step #3 - If the grievant is not satisfied, the grievant may appeal within ten-working days to the District Superintendent (Use Appeal Form.)

Step #4 - Response by the Superintendent or designee must be given within five working days from the time the appeal is received by the Superintendent.

Step #5 - If the grievant is not satisfied at this level, an appeal may be made within ten working days to the Montclair Board of Education, which will hear the complaint at the next regular meeting or within thirty calendar days of receiving the appeal. The appeal can be written in business letter format with documentation from steps 1-4 attached.

A Local Board hearing shall be conducted so as to accord due process to all parties involved in the complaint such as written notice of hearing dates, right to counsel, right to present witnesses, right to cross-examine and to present written statement. The decision of the Board shall be by a majority of the members at a meeting which shall be public.

Step #6 – The Montclair Board of Education shall respond to the grievant within thirty calendar days from the hearing date.

Step #7 - If the grievant is not satisfied with Board's decision, the grievant can have it referred to the County Superintendent of Schools.

Essex County Office of Education
Leroy Smith Public Safety Building
60 Nelson Place, 1st floor South
Newark, NJ 07102-1501
Phone: (973) 621-2750

Step #8 - The grievant maintains the right to by-pass the grievance procedure and submit the complaint directly to any or all of the following agencies:

  1. The Commissioner of Education
    Bureau of Controversies and Disputes
    New Jersey Department of Education
    PO Box 500
    Trenton, New Jersey 08625
    Phone: (609) 292-5705

  2. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
    Newark District Office
    1 Newark Center, 21st Floor
    Newark, New Jersey 07102
    Phone: 800-669-4000 or 973-645-6383

  3. U.S. Office for Civil Rights
    U.S. Department of Education
    32 Old Slip, 26th Floor
    New York, NY 10005-2500
    Phone 646-428-3900 or TDD: 877-521-2172
    Email: [email protected]

  4. New Jersey pision on Civil Rights
    140 East Front Street, 6th Floor
    P0 Box 090
    Trenton, NJ 08625-0090
    Phone: 609-292-4605 or TDD 609-292-1785

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