Advocacy Organizations Urge Schools to Implement Updated Title IX Regulations

Washington, DC – June 27, 2024 – Today, during the 52nd anniversary week of Title IX, the National Women’s Law Center (NWLC), GLSEN, and 67 other organizations released a joint letter urging K-12, college, and university administrators nationwide to promptly implement recently updated Title IX regulations that go into effect on August 1.

All students are entitled to a learning environment free from discrimination. The organizations, in their letter, emphasized the critical importance of these Title IX updates designed to create safer, more inclusive settings for all students, including LGBTQI+ students, survivors of sexual and dating violence, and pregnant and parenting students.

The updated Title IX regulations ensure schools are safe and inclusive environments for all students and addresses various forms of sex-based discrimination by:

  • Explicitly prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity, and sex characteristics;
  • Ensuring students can participate in school activities, use campus facilities, and dress according to their gender identity;
  • Strengthening protections for students facing harassment and violence;
  • Clarifying the need for reasonable accommodations for pregnant and parenting students.

Despite the strong protections these regulations provide, misinformation about the updates have spread. GOP-led states including Louisiana, Alabama, Florida, and Georgia have sued the Biden administration over the expanded protections. While litigation is pending in nine lawsuits and two courts have already issued an injunction, schools should still continue to work towards implementation of the rule by August 1 as an injunction could be lifted or stayed by an appeals court. And republican governors have instructed schools to disregard the Title IX rule and violate federal law, a move that jeopardizes schools’ federal funding while seeking to ensure discrimination in schools remains rampant. 

“School districts have an obligation to ensure that all children, including LGBTQ+ students, have a safe environment where they can learn free from discrimination. It is unconscionable that state or local decision makers would stand in the way of implementing civil rights protections that safeguard marginalized youth from bullying and harassment,” said Melanie Willingham-Jaggers, executive director of GLSEN. “We urge all school districts to move swiftly in implementing the recent Title IX updates ahead of the August 1 deadline to deepen their commitment to building safer school environments for their current students and future generations.”

“As we commemorate more than 50 years of Title IX, the updated regulations represent a crucial step forward in addressing discrimination in our educational institutions,” stated Shiwali Patel, the director of safe and inclusive schools at the National Women’s Law Center. “We will not tolerate any delays or excuses in their implementation. Schools must comply with the federal regulations by the August 1st effective date and before students return to school. The safety and dignity of our students are at stake, and we stand ready to assist schools in making these crucial changes – and holding them accountable if they don’t.”

Among the groups that have signed the letter are National Alliance to End Sexual Violence, Human Rights Campaign, National Center for Transgender Equality, PFLAG National, End Rape on Campus, and Healthy Teen Network.