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Ombuds Office

Welcome to the Eugene School District 4J Ombuds Office

It’s all about the informal resolution of our constituents concerns.

Our Ombuds Office is guided by International Ombuds Association (IOA) Standards of Practice. 

We are confidential, informal, neutral, impartial, and independent. 

To learn more about the Ombuds’ Office and its mission, please visit the IOA website.

4J Ombuds

talatou maiga

Talatou Maiga, PhD
1045 Willamette St.

Learn more about Dr. Maiga: 4J Welcomes First Ombuds

  • The Ombuds Can:

    • Listen without being judgemental
    • Provide information and/or make referrals
    • Perform mediation between disputing parties
    • Help develop options for resolving problems or conflicts amongs district constituents
    • Reach out to parties for the resolution of a concern or problem
    • Offer a neutral perspective
    • Prevent Negative Conflict through early intervention
    • Coach communication between parties for better outcomes


    The Ombuds Cannot:

    • Assist if you are engaged in any formal grievance process or are represented by legal council
    • Keep records
    • Offer legal advice or testify at formal legal proceedings


    Things we can help with include, but are not limited to:

    • Students’ rights and responsibilities
    • Mediation of interpersonal conflicts
    • instruction related concerns, misunderstandings, or conflicts
    • Understanding school policy and procedures
    • Wanting to follow up on an unresolved concern or problem
    • Other concerns, problems, or disputes you are not sure where to start with
  • Who does the Ombuds Office serve?
    Any District constituents including students, parents/guardians, and employees.

    Why was the Ombuds Office created?
    The Ombuds Office was created as a critical component in the District's efforts to raise awareness of concerns; promote a civil, equitable, and inclusive organization; and improve organizational culture.

    Is the Ombuds Office a voluntary resource?
    Yes. Visiting the Ombuds Office is completely voluntary and may not be required as part of any formal action or disciplinary process.

    How is the Ombuds Office different from using other District channels or resources?

    • The Ombuds Office is unique and different in that it is an independent, impartial, confidential, and informal resource.
    • The Office is unaligned and separate from other district departments and functions.
    • The Office is not part of the organizational/managerial reporting structure.
    • The Office does not participate in any formal processes, investigations, or complaints.
    • The Office is an supplemental resource and does not replace existing district processes and procedures.
    • The Office is  a resource for those who have a concern for confidentiality and/or retaliation.
    • The Office is also completely voluntary and cannot be required as part of any formal or disciplinary process.

    Are communications with the Ombuds confidential?
    Yes. Confidentiality is the defining characteristic of the Ombuds Office. The Ombuds will not disclose the identity of any visitors or confidential communications unless given express approval by the visitor.

    However, Ombuds may be required to breach confidentiality in situations where there may be an imminent threat of serious harm and/or as required by law (e.g. mandatory reporting, Title IX/Sexual Harassment concerns).

    Who does the Ombuds report to?
    The Ombuds reports directly to the superintendent for administrative and budgetary purposes. The Ombuds will provide regular reports on concern-related data and emerging issues, in a manner that protects confidentiality.

    The Ombuds does not disclose the identity of visitors or subject matter of concerns unless expressly approved by the individual who contacted the office or as required by law.

    Does the Ombuds maintain permanent records on behalf of the district?
    No. The Ombuds does not maintain permanent records of confidential communications on behalf of the district. 

    The only permanent records maintained by the Ombuds relate to non-confidential documents about the general operations of the Office and statistical summaries and reports.

  • Conversations with the Ombuds are confidential.

    The Ombuds will not disclose any part of your conversation without your prior permission and no records are kept regarding the concerns or problems you discussed.

    If a matter becomes a formal action you cannot request the Ombuds to advocate against, for, or in support of any position. Rather, the Ombuds is an advocate for fair process.

    However, the Ombuds is required to report or refer certain matters to the appropriate District and/or law enforcement officials. Those matters include but are not limited to matters of sexual misconduct, discrimination, child abuse, abuse of elderly or incapacitated person, or threats of physical violence.