Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 is a federal statute that prohibits sex discrimination in any educational program or activity receiving federal funds. Title IX states:
“No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.”
The scope of Title IX is very broad. The law protects any “person;” it’s not limited to students or employees. Also, Title IX isn’t just for public schools. Any school, college, university, or other entity providing an education program or activity, whether public or private, must comply with the law’s requirements as a condition of receiving federal funds.
Title IX coordinator and job description
Each district that receives federal funds is required to appoint an employee to coordinate compliance with Title IX. All students and employees must be notified of the name, office address, and phone number of the district Title IX coordinator.
Challenges of the Title IX coordinator role include frequent turnover, lack of training, and uncertainty concerning responsibilities. To assist districts in providing direction for the coordinator, a Title IX coordinator job description is available in the myTASB HR Resources Model Job Descriptions under Special Programs.
If responsibility for coordination is assigned to a position with multiple functions or assumed in other positions (e.g., assistant superintendent) you can incorporate the Title IX responsibilities into the job description for the primary assignment.
What can school districts do to implement Title IX?
Appointing a district Title IX coordinator, using the model job description to make sure the coordinator understands the responsibilities of the role, and communicating the coordinator’s contact information consistently across district publications are good starting points.
Districts should evaluate the equity of athletic programs and other activities to ensure sex discrimination is not occurring. Responding to reports and resolving complaints should be ongoing to ensure Title IX compliance. Implementing these key tasks can help a district not only comply with Title IX but provide equitable opportunities for all students.
In addition, human resources staff should ensure required nondiscrimination notices are posted. Title IX requires districts that receive federal financial assistance to include a notice of nondiscrimination on each vacancy notice, bulletin, catalog, or application form used in connection with recruitment of employees. In addition, the name, office address, and telephone number of the designated Title IX coordinator must be included.
More information available
For more detailed information on how Title IX applies to athletic programs and other activities, addresses sexual harassment, and what proposed Title IX changes are being considered, read the TASB School Law eSource document Title IX Basics (pdf).
Cheryl Hoover is a HR consultant at TASB HR Services. Send Cheryl an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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