LAWS & REGULATIONS

What is Title XI?

Title IX of the Education Amendment of 1972 prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in educational programs and activities at institutions that receive federal financial assistance.

Sexual harassment, including sexual violence, is a form of sex discrimination and is therefore prohibited under Title IX. Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal, nonverbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature constitute sexual harassment when this conduct is so severe, persistent or pervasive that it explicitly or implicitly affects an individual’s employment, unreasonably interferes with an individual’s work or educational performance, or creates an intimidating or hostile work or educational environment.

THE LAW

“No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.” (20 U.S.C. §1681)

ENFORCEMENT

Title IX is enforced primarily through the Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights.

EFFECTS OF TITLE IX

Since its passage in 1972, Title IX has had a profound impact on helping to change attitudes, assumptions and behavior and consequently, our understanding about how sexual stereotypes can limit educational opportunities. We now know, for example, that gender is a poor predictor of one’s interests, proficiency in academic subjects, or athletic ability. As the First Circuit Court of Appeals noted, “interest and ability rarely develop in a vacuum; they evolve as a function of opportunity and experience.” Decision making in schools and in the labor market that relies on gender to assess what students and employees know and are able to do is both archaic and ineffective.

BENEFITS OF TITLE IX

Title IX prohibits institutions that receive federal funding from practicing gender discrimination in educational programs or activities. Because almost all schools receive federal funds, Title IX applies to nearly everyone. The Office for Civil Rights in the U.S. Department of Education is charged with enforcing the civil rights and regulations in education, extending protection to:

  • about 51.7 million elementary and secondary school students;
  • about 14.4 million college and university students;
  • almost 15,000 school districts;
  • more than 3,600 colleges and universities;
  • more than 5,000 proprietary schools; and
  • thousands of libraries, museums, vocational rehabilitation agencies, and correctional facilities.

Source: https://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr/docs/tix_dis.html

When Title IX is mentioned, most people think about women and athletics. However, Title IX is about much more; it also covers acts that can impact educational opportunities for all, including sexual harassment, sexual violence, stalking, dating and intimate partner violence (dating and domestic violence). Federal and state civil right laws also make it unlawful to retaliate against an individual for the purpose of interfering with any right or privilege secured by these laws. Retaliation is also prohibited by A&M System and university policy, regulation, and rules…

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