Toolbox Tuesday!! How does Title IX fit in?

New regulations governing Title IX go into effect on August 14th.  Most of the media coverage about the regs will focus on the swirling controversy over how these regs address sexual harassment and due process.  Do they adequately protect the rights of the victims of sexual assault?  Do they go too far in protecting the due process rights of the person accused? There will be a lot of controversy over these issues, not to mention litigation. 

However, there is also a provision in the regs that apply to K-12 schools that should cause all educators to snap to attention.  The regs say that if any employee of the school district has knowledge that a student is the victim of sexual harassment or a hostile environment, the school district as a legal entity is then “on notice” and is obligated to do something about it. 

Any employee.  ANY employee. Let that sink in.  Imagine a situation in which a student confides in a trusted teacher aide, who then tells no one about it.  Months pass.  Under these regulations, the district is legally obligated to address the situation, even though the teacher doesn’t know about it, the principal doesn’t know about it, the superintendent doesn’t know about it and the Title IX coordinator doesn’t know about it. 

“Any employee” means just that--bus drivers, paraprofessionals, custodians, food service workers, brand new teachers. If any such person has personal knowledge that a student has been sexually harassed, the school district is obligated to address the issue. 

Training is needed.  Lots of it. At Walsh Gallegos, we are gearing up for this. Look for upcoming Zoom conferences, and let us know how we can help your district prepare for this.


Tomorrow: Remember the “boycott Israel” case?