- The School's boundary guidelines, harassment and sexual misconduct policies, and disciplinary process and policies have been revised and strengthened in consultation with industry experts to ensure they continue to align with the most current best practices.
- The School’s sexual misconduct reporting process has been updated and expanded, increasing the channels for reporting sexual misconduct and boundary violations within the community, including options for reporting to a third-party (outside of Thacher) and anonymous reporting.
- The School has further clarified the mandatory reporting obligations of its employees for any reports or reasonable suspicion involving potential child abuse or neglect.
- The School has formalized its protocol for providing supportive measures for students who report sexual misconduct to the School and connecting them with resources, both within and outside of the Thacher community.
- Thacher has established an agreement with existing partner programs, including Maine Coast Semester at Chewonki and School Year Abroad, to ensure information about the conduct of participants is shared.
- Thacher has strengthened practices for handling student discipline for serious sexual misconduct (including students who have withdrawn or left campus as a result of such allegations) to address issues including, for example, communication with a student’s subsequent schools or colleges, awarding of diplomas, and exclusion from future School events and activities.
- Thacher’s policies and most recent updates have been vetted by our external student safety partners. All policies in the student safety realm are and will continue to be prominently publicized to current and incoming employees as well as to students/families via the Student/Parent and Employee Handbooks.EDUCATION & AWARENESS
- Each student, parent, and employee (including part-time and contract employees) must annually review and affirm their understanding of these policies and procedures, reporting protocols, and support resources.
- The School conducts multiple training sessions on disparate aspects of sexual misconduct prevention, including boundary guidelines, reporting, trauma-informed response and student support, annually for all adults, including sessions prior to our students’ arrival at the start of the school year.
- The School’s sex education curriculum has expanded and evolved to include a term-long focus—reflecting the full spectrum of gender and sexual identities—on health and wellness, prevention and response to sexual harassment and sexual assault, healthy relationships and boundaries, affirmative consent, and self-care in 9th grade; 10th, 11th, and 12th graders meet as a class several times annually to build on their skills and awareness.
- To promote students’ ongoing understanding of how to report an instance of interpersonal harm and how to seek support resources, information has been posted throughout campus, including in all dorms.
- A formal bias incident reporting form has been made available to the on-campus community and may be used as a first point of contact to report a possible bias related incident. Students are also encouraged to go directly to trusted adults to report a possible bias incident, who will share with the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.
As the Thacher Student and Parent Handbook states, a bias incident may include actions dangerous to the health, safety, or well-being of other persons, including the expression of intolerance or discrimination towards any race, color, religion, national or ethnic origin, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, or appearance, or other forms of willful and malicious harassment; the infliction or threat of personal injury; hazing; and/or the willful destruction of property, constitute a violation of our rules. If you submit this form you will be contacted within 72 hours from a member of the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion to learn more.
- Recruitment, hiring, and onboarding processes have been updated and expanded to reflect the School’s commitment to student safety to ensure that new members of the community have a clear understanding of and share our commitment to the policies, procedures, and ethos that reinforce this commitment.
- The School has enhanced its existing practice of conducting background checks on every new hire, intensified efforts to identify individuals reported to have engaged in sexual misconduct, and strengthened our policies on communication to potential future employers regarding departing employees.
- The School conducts periodic campus climate surveys to better understand students’ perceptions and experiences, identify strengths and areas for improvement, and measure progress on sexual misconduct prevention and response.