The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights announced today that two major amendments to the regulations implementing Title IX will not be finalized until October 2023 at the earliest. The Title IX grievance procedure rule, which was proposed on June 23, 2022, would dramatically alter the process that schools, colleges, and universities must use for sexual harassment and other sex discrimination complaints under Title IX. The Title IX gender identity and athletics rule, proposed on April 6, 2023, would implement a new test for schools that wish to limit student participation in athletics based on gender identity. The result of today’s announcement is that the sexual harassment grievance procedure requirements implemented under the Trump administration in 2020 will remain in effect for at least the first semester of the 2023 academic year. Moreover, uncertainty will remain with respect to OCR’s enforcement of Title IX against schools that limit the participation of transgender students in athletics.
ED Department Proposes Title IX Amendment Prohibiting Outright Bans on Transgender Athlete Participation
By Jackie Gharapour Wernz and Kendra Yoch
On April 6, 2023, the U.S. Department of Education proposed an amendment to Title IX prohibiting categorical bans on transgender athletes’ participation in school sports. If adopted, the proposed rule would override the laws of twenty states, including Texas, that require students to participate on the sports team matching their sex assigned at birth. The proposal would implement a new test for such rules, balancing the objectives of schools in limiting transgender student participation against the potential for harm to students whose opportunity to participate is denied. What should your school, college, or university know about the proposed rule now?