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It should be noted that some State and local laws may prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.

Also, under certain circumstances, courts may permit redress for harassment on the basis of sexual orientation under other Federal legal authority.

As outlined in this guidance, grievance procedures also provide schools with an excellent mechanism to be used in their efforts to prevent sexual harassment before it occurs.

Under agency principles, if a teacher or other employee uses the authority he or she is given (e.g., to assign grades) to force a student to submit to sexual demands, the employee "stands in the shoes" of the school and the school will be responsible for the use of its authority by the employee or agent, i.e., for harassment that is sufficiently severe, persistent, or pervasive to limit a student's ability to participate in or benefit from the education program or to create a hostile or abusive educational environment if the employee -- (1) acted with apparent authority (i.e., because of the school's conduct, the employee reasonably appears to be acting on behalf of the school, whether or not the employee acted with authority).

For example, a school will be liable if a teacher abuses his or her delegated authority over a student to create a hostile environment, such as if the teacher implicitly threatens to fail a student unless the student responds to his or her sexual advances, even though the teacher fails to carry out the threat.

Even in situations not involving (i) quid pro quo harassment, (ii) creation of a hostile environment through an employee's apparent authority, or (iii) creation of a hostile environment in which the employee is aided in carrying out the sexual harassment by his or her position of authority, a school will be liable for sexual harassment of its students by its employees under the same standards applicable to peer and third party hostile environment sexual harassment, as discussed in the next section.

That is, if the school fails to take immediate and appropriate steps to remedy known harassment, then the school will be liable under Title IX In contrast to the variety of situations in which a school may be liable for sexual harassment by its employees, a school will be liable under Title IX if its students sexually harass other students if (i) a hostile environment exists in the school's programs or activities, (ii) the school knows or should have known of the harassment, and (iii) the school fails to take immediate and appropriate corrective action.

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