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Is Your School Following Title IX and Treating Girls Who Report Sexual Harassment Fairly?

Look, I hate writing about Betsy DeVos as much as you hate reading about her, but here we are again. On November 29, 2018, DeVos proposed terrible new Title IX regulations that would actually encourage—or even require—schools to ignore students who report sexual harassment.

Now, more than ever, it’s critical for students, parents, educators, and advocates to understand: What are my Title IX rights as a student or parent? What are my Title IX duties as a school employee? How can I, as an advocate, help my clients fight for their Title IX rights? What does Title IX even say anymore???

That’s why we created A Toolkit to Stop School Pushout for Girls Who Have Experienced Sexual Harassment, part of NWLC’s Let Her Learn series. This toolkit provides an easy-to-use, step-by-step checklist to help you find out if your school is complying with Title IX and treating girls fairly when they report sexual harassment.

Sexual harassment should never be the end of anyone’s education. It is a national crisis that one in five girls ages 14-18 have been kissed or touched without their consent, and that only 2% of them report the harassment to their parents, schools, or the police due to fear of victim-blaming and retaliation. And it is unacceptable that when girls do have the courage to come forward, schools often ignore or even punish them instead of investigating their reports of sexual harassment.

This toolkit will help you understand the basics of Title IX and clarify common misconceptions. For example, Title IX requires your school to investigate all incidents of sexual harassment it knows about to find out whether the harassment has made it harder for students to learn or stay in school—regardless of where it happened, who your harasser is, and what actions the police have taken.

Can you use this toolkit if you’re not a girl? Absolutely. Sexual harassment affects girls most often, but it can happen to anyone.

Can you use this toolkit if you’re a college or graduate student? Again, absolutely. Title IX applies to all K-12, college, and graduate students (and college and graduate students have additional rights under the Clery Act).

No matter what Betsy DeVos says, Title IX is still the law of the land, and you still have the right to learn in a safe environment.

Check out our toolkit here.

It's time for change, and we must act now. Time's up.