The opinion of the court was delivered by: Gottschall, District Judge.
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
The facts assumed to be true for purposes of this motion are as
follows.*fn1 Plaintiff, Suzanne Lindblom, was employed by
defendant, The Challenger Day Program, Ltd., as a teacher from
December 1, 1992 through August 27, 1996. Challenger is a school
for severely emotionally disturbed and behaviorally disordered
children. Challenger has two administrators, defendant Eleanor
Flynn, the executive director, and Christopher Raspante,
In 1992, plaintiff was sexually harassed by a Challenger
coworker. Def. Memo., Exhibit E. She complained to the
administration. Def. Memo., Exhibit C, Lindblom Depo. at 261. The
administration met with Lindblom and the alleged harasser, and
the administrators verbally reprimanded the harasser. Id. By
his own choice, the alleged harasser eventually left Challenger.
Lindblom alleges that subsequently, she was harassed by another
Challenger co-worker, Robert Salmons ("Salmons"). Salmons
co-taught with Lindblom at Challenger from August 1994 until
August 27, 1996. Salmons had no supervisory authority over
On August 24, 1995, Salmons hosted a party at his parents'
home. Salmons invited Lindblom to the party, and Lindblom
accepted the invitation. The party was not sponsored by
Challenger. Challenger did not pay for the party and no
Challenger students, parents, or administrators attended the
party. At the party, Salmons allegedly touched and fondled
plaintiff against her will.
After the party, Lindblom alleges, Salmons began to behave
inappropriately in the classroom. She asserts that on numerous
occasions, Salmons stared at her while she was teaching a lesson
or reading to the class. He also stood close to Lindblom and
entered her "private space". Over the course of one year, on
approximately five occasions, Salmons leaned or bent down and
steadied himself by placing his hand on Lindblom's knee, just
above the knee-cap, while speaking to Lindblom quietly. Over that
same time period, Salmons, on ten occasions, touched Lindblom's
shoulder to get her attention. In addition, on Mondays, Salmons
often asked Lindblom about her weekend. Salmons once asked
Lindblom if she would attend another one of his parties. Salmons'
conduct made plaintiff uncomfortable.*fn2
In October 1995, for the first time, plaintiff informed
Raspante that she had been "sexually harassed" by Salmons at his
party, but she told Raspante that Salmons had never sexually
harassed her at work. She met with Raspante again in February and
July of 1996. On these occasions she complained to Raspante of
inappropriate conduct by Salmons in the classroom. She told him
that Salmons stared at her and made her uncomfortable. She also
told Raspante about Salmons' conduct in putting his hand on her
knee, tapping her on
the shoulder to get her attention, and asking her about her
weekend. She told Raspante "how much it was bothering [her]
working with Bob [Salmons] in the classroom." Def. Memo., Exhibit
C, Lindblom Depo. at 264. In the February meeting, plaintiff
asked Raspante if she could be transferred to another classroom.
Raspante informed her that no positions were available. Id. at
248. In July 1996, plaintiff asked Raspante if she could be
transferred to Bridge View Day School, Inc., Challenger's sister
school, because she was uncomfortable working with Salmons. Id.
Raspante said he would see what he could do and said that she
should "hang in there". Id.
Plaintiff met with Flynn on August 1, 1996. During that meeting
she told Flynn for the first time about Salmons' conduct at his
party and informed Flynn that she was uncomfortable working with
Salmons. In her conversation with Flynn, plaintiff "told [Flynn]
I couldn't work within the classroom with [Salmons]. I don't know
exactly how I said it. I said it was just a terrible
environment." Def. Memo., Exhibit C, Lindblom Depo. at 261.
Lindblom did not give Flynn specifies about her complaints, i.e.,
the knee touching, staring, shoulder touching, and the questions
about her weekend. Id. at 262. Flynn told Lindblom she needed
to handle the situation. She suggested that Lindblom seek
counseling to help her deal with it. Id. at 406. Lindblom told
Flynn that she would not return to Challenger if Salmons was not
removed from her classroom. Id. Lindblom testified that Flynn
then asked plaintiff how Flynn could know that the party incident
actually happened. Id. Lindblom stated that Flynn said Lindblom
"enticed" the party incident. Id. at 406.
Plaintiff received annual performance evaluations from
Challenger. In plaintiff's August 1994 and August 1995
evaluations, Lindblom was informed that she needed to demonstrate
improvement in her professional image and presentation, including
her attire. Three times plaintiff was advised-twice in writing
and once orally-that her attire was inappropriate for work and
that she was dressed unprofessionally. Id. at 282-284. On June
15, 1995, plaintiff attended a school event in a summer dress
with a translucent skirt. See Def. Memo., Exhibit C, Lindblom
Depo. at 280, 282. Raspante told her that her attire was
unacceptable. See Def. Memo., Exhibit B-3; Def. Memo., Exhibit
C, Lindblom Depo. at 280, 282. Raspante told her to leave to
obtain a slip, and he covered her parent-teacher conferences
while she was away. See Def. Memo., Exhibit B-3; Def. Memo.,
Exhibit C, Lindblom Depo. at 280, 282. Raspante sent Lindblom a
memo documenting this incident on June 15, 1995. See Def.
Memo., Exhibit B-3; Def. Memo., Exhibit C, Lindblom Depo. at 280,
282. On another occasion, plaintiff wore a sweatshirt and shorts
that defendants viewed as inappropriate for work. See Def.
Memo., Exhibit C, Lindblom Depo. at 282. On June 3, 1996,
Raspante sent Lindblom a typewritten memo in which he documented
a May 20, 1996 meeting with her about her attire in which he told
her that she dressed too casually for work. See Def. Memo.,
Exhibit B-3; Def. Memo., Exhibit C, Lindblom Depo. at 280, 282.
Challenger's personnel policies and procedures manual provides
that employees must dress professionally and appropriately.
Challenger reprimanded Lindblom for tardiness on several
occasions between October 1995 and August 1996. She was required
to be at work at 7:45 a.m. Nonetheless, between September 1995
and August 1996, plaintiff was late for work six times because of
oversleeping, traffic or because she ran errands before work.
Id. at 275-276. Twice she was late by more than an hour;
Salmons and another teacher assumed Lindblom's duties in the
classroom in her absence. On both occasions, Lindblom was docked
a half day's pay. She received written warnings and a verbal