Call-Out and Cancel Culture and Title IX: How Should Educational Institutions Respond?

It’s happening across the country at all levels of education. Students from schools, colleges, and universities are taking to Twitter, Instagram, and other social media and online platforms to call out other students or employees for alleged sexual harassment and abuse. A recent situation involving the University of Utah is just one example. The university suspended Greek activity after two students reported sexual assault and others posted anonymously about their experiences online. A similar account at Atascadero High School in California raised similar issues (pages 4-5) and drew significant attention. Of course, call-outs are not limited to the online sphere; there are plenty of cases in which steps are taken to call out or cancel individuals alleged of sexual harassment in the brick and mortar schoolhouse. There is no doubt that a call-out can put a school in a difficult predicament, especially when social media magnifies the reach. How can—and should—schools respond when an alleged perpetrator believes call-ous or cancel posts cross the line into harassment or bullying?

New Year, New Title IX Policy? Four Steps to Get Your Policies and Procedures in Shape

It’s 2022. We know that we are expecting new proposed Title IX rules in April 2022. Still, if that tells us anything, it’s that we will be living with the current Title IX regulations for at least another calendar year, and probably for a whole school year after that. Schools cannot be complacent in ensuring that policies and procedures are up to standard under the current rules simply because new rules are coming sometime in the future. I know; it’s not what anyone wants to hear. But the good news is, updating your policies and procedures does not have to be painful. Here are four steps you can take to get your policies and procedures in the best possible position for the next few semesters while the 2020 Title IX rules will still be in effect.

Are “Gender Plus” Bathrooms New? And How Should Schools Handle Them?

CPS Bathroom SignsAs many of you know, I was a Chicago Public Schools parent until four months ago, when my family and I moved to Dallas. So, I have been watching with great interest a battle that has been unfolding following a CPS announcement that its schools would begin using new signs for school bathrooms. Some bathrooms, including single-occupancy restrooms and some multi-stalled restrooms, are labeled as gender-neutral, while the rest are labeled as “girls plus” and “boys plus.” Is this something new? And how should schools handle “gender plus” bathrooms? Keep reading to learn more.

 

Webinar: Top 10 Client Questions During the Title IX Grievance Process

At Thompson & Horton, our attorneys are grateful to be the first call for many Title IX administrators dealing with reports, formal complaints, and other matters involving Title IX sexual harassment. Recently, T&H attorneys Holly McIntush, Rebecca Bailey, and I got together to discuss the top legal questions we have been hearing from clients regarding the Title IX grievance process. We hope that the webinar will answer some questions you are considering, whether you work for a K-12 or higher education institution and are a Title IX Coordinator or an administrator or employee with other duties during the Title IX process.

Did we address your most burning question? If not, please email it to titleix@thlaw.com so we can address it here on the blog. As always, if you have ideas for any blog posts or webinars, please send those our way, as well.

 

Title IX Tips Webinar on Avoiding Title IX Pitfalls

Join Thompson & Horton attorneys Jackie Gharapour Wernz, Holly McIntush, and Rebecca Bailey on October 28, 2021, for a free webinar to discuss the pitfalls that can steer your Title IX team off track—and how to avoid them. We will discuss topics such as moving too fast, ignoring off-campus conduct, and being overly deferential to law enforcement. We will help you stop, drop, and Title IX—the right way—to reduce the risk of challenges in OCR and the courts. Register here: conta.cc/3vuLuEJ