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Board Policy Employee Ethics

Descriptor Code: GAGC

A. PURPOSE This Whistleblower Protection Policy encourages all employees of the District to report any activity in the District constituting fraud, waste, and abuse relating to any program and operation in the District. The District shall not retaliate against an employee for disclosing a violation of, or noncompliance with a law, rule, or regulation to either a supervisor or a government agency, unless the disclosure was made with knowledge that it was false or with reckless disregard for its truth or falsity. B. GENERAL PROVISIONS 1. Protected Disclosures - The types of disclosures protected under this Board policy include, but are not limited to, the following: suspected fraud; theft; forgery; alteration of official documents; embezzlement; accounting or auditing irregularities; bribery; pursuit of a benefit or advantage in violation of Board Policy “Code of Ethics,” Descriptor Code “GBU” or Board Policy “Staff Conflict of Interest,” Descriptor Code “GAG”; abuse of resources, including, but not limited to, District funds, supplies, or other assets; authorizing or receiving compensation for goods or services not performed; authorizing or receiving compensation for hours not worked; or any other suspected regulatory, compliance, or ethics-related issue, concern, or violation. 2. Notification - All current employees will have access to this Whistleblower Protection Policy, which shall also be posted on the District’s website. C. DEFINITIONS 1. Whistleblower - Any employee who makes a good faith report, to a supervisor or government agency, of activity constituting suspected fraud, waste, and abuse in or relating to any programs and operations in the District. 2. Employee - Any individual employed by the District, full or part-time, who performs a service for wages or other compensation. 3. Supervisor - Any individual: (1) to whom the District has given the authority to direct and control the work performance of the affected employee; (2) who has authority to take corrective action regarding a violation of, or non-compliance with a law, rule, regulation, or policy of which the employee complains; or (3) who the District has designated to receive complaints regarding a violation of, or non-compliance with a law, rule, or regulation. 4. Good Faith - An employee acts in good faith when he/she acts on a basis that one reasonably believes is true, in a manner lacking malice or consideration of personal benefit. 5. Retaliate or Retaliation - The discharge, suspension, demotion, or any other adverse employment action taken by the District against a District employee, that results from the employee’s disclosure of fraud, waste, or abuse, including any violation of a law, rule, or regulation, to a District supervisor or government agency. 6. Law, Rule, or Regulation - Includes any federal, state, or local statute or ordinance or any rule or regulation, including Board of Education policies, adopted according to any federal, 8/11/2011

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state, or local statute or ordinance. D. CONFIDENTIALITY An employee may submit his/her complaint or information on a confidential basis. The District shall not, after receipt of a complaint or information from an employee, disclose the identity of the employee without the written consent of such employee, unless such disclosure is necessary and unavoidable during the course of the investigation. In such event, the employee shall be notified in writing at least seven (7) days prior to disclosure. E. GOOD FAITH REQUIREMENT Any employee who files a complaint about wrongdoing must act in good faith and have reasonable grounds for believing the information disclosed indicates a violation. Any allegation that proves to be unsubstantiated, and that proves to have been made maliciously, recklessly, or with foreknowledge that the allegations were false, may result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination. F. RETALIATION No employee may be subjected to retaliatory action for: (1) making a good faith report to a supervisor or government agency of fraud, waste, and abuse, including violations of a law, rule, or regulation, even if the complaint is found to be meritless; or (2) objecting to, or refusing to participate in, any activity, policy, or practice of the District that the employee has reasonable cause to believe is in violation of, or noncompliance with, a law, rule, or regulation. The First Amendment rights of employees will be protected. Any negative employment action taken against any employee in retaliation for communications made pursuant to this policy shall be contrary to Board policy and subject to disciplinary action by the Board. G. INVESTIGATION If an employee wishes to report an alleged violation, he/she should follow the procedures set forth in the associated administrative regulation. Employees are required to cooperate in complaint investigations and are expected to protect confidentiality. H. EXCEPTIONS This Whistleblower Protection Policy does not apply to routine personnel matters, including, but not limited to, employees reporting violations of Human Resources policies, problems with co-workers or supervisors, alleged employment discrimination, sexual harassment, or any other form of unlawful harassment. Employees should make complaints as to these issues in accordance with applicable policies and procedures.

DeKalb County Schools Georgia Code O.C.G.A. 20-02-0989.20 Grade Integrity Description

Date Adopted: 8/31/2010

O.C.G.A. 20-02-0984.1 PSC-Adoption of standards of performance and a code of ethics

These references are not intended to be part of the policy itself, nor do they indicate the basis or authority for the board to enact this policy. Instead, they are provided as additional resources for those interested in the subject matter of the policy. 8/11/2011

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