Authors COLLIN BINKLEY and ERICA HUNZINGER
The title of ICS, the law best known for its role in gender equality in athletics and the prevention of sexual harassment on campus, is 50 years old.
The law was signed by President Richard Nixon on June 23, 1972, after it was partially passed through Congress by representative Patti Mink, a Democrat from Hawaii who was the first colored woman to be elected to the US House of Representatives.
The law prohibits gender discrimination in education, and despite its age remains a vital part of the ongoing quest for equality, including for the LGBTQ community.
WHAT DOES TITLE X SAY?
The statue itself is one sentence long.
“No person in the United States will, on the basis of gender, be excluded from participation, denied benefits, or discriminated against in any educational program or activity that receives federal financial assistance.
Translation: The law should ensure equality between men and women in education, and it is broad, covering most K-12 schools and colleges and universities, as well as vocational schools, libraries and museums. That means tens of millions of students, as well as educators.
WHAT DOES CHAPTER X COVER?
The law applies to several areas of education: athletics, the classroom, sexual assault and violence on campus, employment, discrimination, admission, revenge, and even financial aid with tuition fees.
It has also been extended to other forms of gender and gender discrimination; The title of ICS was invoked when the Obama administration advised that transgender people should be allowed to use the bathroom of their choice in schools.
HOW DOES HEAD X AFFECT ATHLETICS?
In many ways, both at the K-12 and the powerful university levels. Women’s and men’s teams must be treated equally according to the law, and schools should seek to expand opportunities for women to play sports.
This does not necessarily mean that every sport will have exactly the same budget for equipment, facilities, travel or meals. For example, a women’s tennis team could give more money for rackets than a men’s tennis team. Athletics departments work under what is known as “equal action”, which means that the benefit to a men’s or women’s team in one area can be offset in another area as long as “the overall effects of any differences are negligible”.
In the hope that compliance with the ICS Title will be ensured, each athletic department at a college or university must provide annual reports on the analysis of equality data in athletics. They track participation, coaching staff and salaries, income and expenses, including recruitment and match day expenses.
Many ICS athletic disputes deal with what is known as the participation gap. Athletics departments must ensure that the relationship between men’s participation in sports and women’s participation is “largely proportional” to school enrollment.
For example, the University of Connecticut resolved the lawsuit after its women’s rowing team received a temporary restraining order. UConn is accused of putting inflated numbers in the women’s rowing list (about 20 more than it would compete) in its capital report, which means that the actual participation gap was “significantly above the sustainable size of the team”.
HOW DOES CHAPTER X AFFECT ALLEGATIONS OF SEXUAL HARASSMENT?
ICS protection extends to on-campus sexual harassment, including meeting violence, domestic violence, and stalking.
The bottom line is that all students should have a learning environment free of sexual harassment. When a violation occurs, the law should help students solve the problem, which could mean moving to another dormitory, for example, or completely removing the alleged attacker from the school.
Under the new ICS regulations finalized in 2020, students who make allegations of abuse can now face a personal interrogation and cross-examination by a person chosen by the alleged attacker. These rules have been criticized by Democrats and others for incomplete protection of victims and for discouraging complaints, and the Biden administration is expected to propose new regulations soon.
The Associated Press reported that some universities have seen a decrease in the number of complaints submitted to ICS offices.
WHAT ABOUT DISCRIMINATION?
Under the heading ICS, there is a broad definition of discrimination that may include students, faculty, administrators, or staff. It also covers discrimination against pregnant women. The law was also called for to prohibit discrimination against LGBTQ students and teachers.
Nothing in the ICS title or its federal regulations explicitly protects LGBTQ people, but the Biden administration said last year that the law should be interpreted to protect against discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. It is based on the decision of the Supreme Court from 2020, which ruled that LGBTQ people are protected from discrimination in employment.
As a result, the Department of Education said it could launch a civil rights investigation if students are prevented from using the bathroom or joining sports teams that match their gender identity.
Tennessee and several other Republican-led states have filed a federal lawsuit challenging those guidelines; yet to be decided.
The Biden administration has signaled that its upcoming decree will explicitly expand the ICS title to protect LGBTQ students from discrimination. If finalized as a federal ordinance, it would have the force of law.
WHO SUPERVISES X TEACHING IN SCHOOLS?
Each school and college should have at least one ICS Title Coordinator, whose function is to ensure that the institution is in line with all branches of the ICS Title. Sometimes the clerk is simply the school principal, while many universities have entire offices dedicated to compliance with the ICS title.
WHAT KINDS OF COMPLAINTS CAN BE FILED?
There are two types: local and federal.
Local complaints go through the school coordinator or the Title ICS office, which has established procedures for resolving cases involving gender discrimination, sexual harassment and sexual violence. Schools can bring discipline to these complaints.
Federal complaints are sent to the Office of Civil Rights of the Ministry of Education. These investigations can take months or years. A list of current federal ICS investigations can be found on the OCR website.
Those who believe their rights have been violated can also file their cases with federal courts through ICS lawsuits.
For more information on the impact of Title ICS, read the full Associated Press report: https://apnevs.com/hub/title-ik
Video timeline: https://www.ioutube.com/vatch?v=NdgNI6BZpv0
The Associated Press education team received support from Carnegie Corporation of New York. The Associated Press is solely responsible for all content.