Let’s talk about Title IX
What is Title IX?
Title IX of the 1972 Education Amendments (“Title IX”) is federal civil rights law that prohibits discrimination based on sex in any federally funded educational program or activity. In other words, schools that receive federal funds are legally obligated to protect students from gender discrimination. The experience of sex discrimination in any form can derail a student’s opportunity to learn, participate, and thrive in and outside the classroom. Gender discrimination, including sexual harassment and sexual violence, poses a threat to equal access to educational environments for students of all ages.
Why are we talking about this ?
President Biden’s Executive Order of 2021 on Ensure an educational environment free from discrimination based on sex, including sexual orientation or gender identity requires ED to review and re-examine all Title IX regulations, including changes made in 2020. ED is also required to issue new guidelines and regulations as necessary.
“Sexual harassment and all other forms of gender discrimination, including in extracurricular activities and other educational settings, threaten access to education for students of all ages. As a secretary, I will ensure that all students, no matter where they come from, who they are or how they identify, can be successful in the classroom and beyond. Regardless of the educational setting, students need to feel safe and able to focus on their learning. – Secretary Miguel Cardona
How will ED support the decree?
ED Civil rights office (OCR) takes action. As part of its comprehensive review of Title IX ED regulations, the OCR:
- Organize an upcoming public hearing (dates to be determined) and invite those interested to share their views on the issue of sexual harassment in schools.
- Publish a question-and-answer document to clarify how the OCR interprets the existing obligations of schools under the 2020 changes to Title IX regulations.
- Post a notice of proposed regulation, giving the public the opportunity to submit comments.
Regardless of the educational setting, students need to feel safe and able to focus on their learning. Let’s describe how the OCR Title IX review ensures that:
- OCR’s comprehensive review of ED Title IX regulations includes gathering feedback.
- These comments will help the OCR determine whether changes need to be made to ED’s Title IX regulations (and any related agency action) to meet President Biden’s commitment to ensuring educational environments free from gender discrimination, particularly based on sexual orientation or gender identity.
- These comments will also help OCR fulfill the Ministry’s commitment to ensure equal and non-discriminatory access to education for students at all levels of education. When implementing EO, OCR also strives to ensure that students who have experienced discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity have their legal rights fully respected.
Where to find more information about the next public hearing: