What Is Title IX Of The Education Amendments Of 1972?
Title IX began as a law to help equalize women’s rights in college sports. But the law goes beyond just providing females with athletic opportunities. It touches every aspect of the education system, including how a school responds to sex discrimination, sexual harassment, and how it responds when a female student is drugged or raped.
To succeed on a Title IX claim, the Supreme Court has held that a claim for money damages based on sexual harassment may arise under Title IX only if (1) “an official who at a minimum has authority to address the alleged discrimination and to institute corrective measures on the [funding] recipient’s behalf has actual knowledge of discrimination in the recipient’s programs and fails adequately to respond,” and (2) the inadequate response “amount[s] to deliberate indifference to discrimination.” Gebser v. Lago Vista Independent School District, 524 U.S. 274, 290, 118 S.Ct. 1989, 141 L.Ed.2d 277 (1998).
Schools are liable under Title IX for only their own misconduct and not just any type of misconduct. The school must be found to have acted with legal culpability known as deliberate indifference. See Reese v. Jefferson Sch. Dist., 208 F.3d 736, 739 (9th Cir. 2000); Fox v. Pittsburgh State Univ., 257 F. Supp. 3d 1112, 1131-1132 (D.Kan. 2017). A Title IX complaint will often say that the school violated Title IX based upon the victim’s gender by depriving her/him of an equal opportunity to finish their education due to the school’s deliberate indifference, or clearly unreasonable, response to the claim of discrimination or sexual harassment, or bullying.