Jun 23, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Biden administration proposes new Title IX protections for trans students

Education Secretary Miguel Cardona testifying before a Senate panel on June 7.

Education Secretary Miguel Cardona testifying before a Senate panel on June 7. Photo: Oliver Contreras/for The Washington Post via Getty Images

The Department of Education proposed new changes to Title IX on Thursday that would prohibit schools, colleges and universities from discriminating against transgender students.

Why it matters: The amendments would mark a major extension of protections provided by the landmark anti-discrimination legislation, which turned 50 years old on Thursday.

  • The changes would also undo and replace rules issued during the Trump administration by former Education Secretary Betsy DeVos that govern how schools investigate and resolve claims of sexual assault and sexual harassment.

What they're saying: 'I am committed to protecting this progress and working to achieve full equality, inclusion, and dignity for women and girls, LGBTQI+ Americans, all students, and all Americans," President Biden said in a statement Thursday.

  • "As we celebrate the 50th Anniversary of this landmark law, our proposed changes will allow us to continue that progress and ensure all our nation's students – no matter where they live, who they are, or whom they love – can learn, grow, and thrive in school," Education Secretary Miguel Cardona said in a statement Thursday.
  • "We welcome public comment on these critical regulations so we can further the Biden-Harris Administration's mission of creating educational environments free from sex discrimination and sexual violence," he added.

The big picture: The changes would in part protect students and employees from all forms of sex discrimination and require institutions to "respond promptly to all complaints of sex discrimination with a fair and reliable process that includes trained, unbiased decisionmakers to evaluate the evidence," the department said.

Context: The proposed changes comes as conservative state legislatures continue to introduce and pass new anti-trans legislation, with dozens of bills targeting trans youth. 2021 was the deadliest year on record for trans people in America.

  • The new rules will likely be challenged by conservatives.

What's next: They amendments will now face a public feedback period before they are finalized.

Go deeper: How 50 years of Title IX have changed American sports

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