Code of the District of Columbia

§ 38–1853.08. Nondiscrimination and other requirements for participating schools.

(a) In general. — An eligible entity or a school participating in any program under this chapter shall not discriminate against program participants or applicants on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, or sex.

(b) Applicability and single sex schools, classes, or activities. —

(1) In general. — Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the prohibition of sex discrimination in subsection (a) shall not apply to a participating school that is operated by, supervised by, controlled by, or connected to a religious organization to the extent that the application of subsection (a) is inconsistent with the religious tenets or beliefs of the school.

(2) Single sex schools, classes, or activities. — Notwithstanding subsection (a) or any other provision of law, a parent may choose and a school may offer a single sex school, class, or activity.

(3) Applicability. — For purposes of this chapter, the provisions of section 909 of the Education Amendments of 1972 (20 U.S.C. 1688) shall apply to this chapter as if section 909 of the Education Amendments of 1972 (20 U.S.C. 1688) were part of this chapter.

(c) Children with disabilities. — Nothing in this chapter may be construed to alter or modify the provisions of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (20 U.S.C. § 1400 et seq.).

(d) Religiously affiliated schools. —

(1) In general. — Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a school participating in any program under this chapter that is operated by, supervised by, controlled by, or connected to, a religious organization may exercise its right in matters of employment consistent with title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. § 2000e-1 et seq.), including the exemptions in such title.

(2) Maintenance of purpose. — Notwithstanding any other provision of law, funds made available under this division to eligible students, which are used at a participating school as a result of their parents' choice, shall not, consistent with the first amendment of the Constitution, necessitate any change in the participating school's teaching mission, require any participating school to remove religious art, icons, scriptures, or other symbols, or preclude any participating school from retaining religious terms in its name, selecting its board members on a religious basis, or including religious references in its mission statements and other chartering or governing documents.

(e) Rule of construction. — A scholarship (or any other form of support provided to parents of eligible students) under this chapter shall be considered assistance to the student and shall not be considered assistance to the school that enrolls the eligible student. The amount of any scholarship (or other form of support provided to parents of an eligible student) under this chapter shall not be treated as income of the child or his or her parents for purposes of Federal tax laws or for determining eligibility for any other Federal program.

(f) Requests for data and information. — Each school participating in a program funded under this chapter shall comply with all requests for data and information regarding evaluations conducted under § 38-1853.09(a).

(g) Rules of conduct and other school policies. — A participating school, including the schools described in subsection (d), may require eligible students to abide by any rules of conduct and other requirements applicable to all other students at the school.

(h) Nationally norm-referenced standardized tests. —

(1) In general. — Each participating school shall comply with any testing requirements determined to be necessary for evaluation under § 38-1853.09(a)(2)(A)(i).

(2) Administration of tests. — The Institute of Education Sciences shall administer nationally norm-referenced standardized tests, as described in § 38-1853.09(a)(3)(A), to students participating in the evaluation under § 38-1853.09 for the purpose of conducting the evaluation under such section, except where a student is attending a participating school that is administering the same nationally norm-referenced standardized test in accordance with the testing requirements described in paragraph (1).

(3) Test results. — Each participating school that administers the nationally norm-referenced standardized test described in paragraph (2) to an eligible student shall make the test results, with respect to such student, available to the Secretary as necessary for evaluation under § 38-1853.09(a).


(Apr. 15, 2011, 125 Stat. 204, Pub. L. 112-10, Div. C, § 3008; Feb. 1, 2012, 126 Stat. 6, Pub. L. 112-92, § 3.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 38-1853.09.

Effect of Amendments

Pub. L. 112-92 rewrote subsec. (h)(2); and added subsec. (h)(3). Prior to amendment, subsec. (h)(2) read as follows: “(2) MAKE-UP SESSION.—If a participating school does not administer a nationally norm-referenced standardized test or the Institute of Education Sciences does not receive data on a student who is receiving an opportunity scholarship, then the Secretary (through the Institute of Education Sciences of the Department of Education) shall administer such test at least one time during a school year for each student receiving an opportunity scholarship.”