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She sensed that her case hadn't been handled properly."I did so much research about Title IX, probably obsessively," she says.
So when she was forced to go to mediation with her assailant, she knew that was against the latest guidance.
But still, she says, "I just felt like I couldn't sit there and not do something.""If the school hasn't provided academic accommodation for a survivor, I encourage those folks to speak to an attorney," says Alyssa Peterson, a policy and advocacy coordinator for Know Your IX, a survivor-led organization that aims to empower students to end sexual and dating violence in their schools.
When you hear "Title IX," you may think about female athletes in the '70s, fighting for their right to play sports at the same university level as their male peers — but the law covers so much more than that.
In the mid-'90s, Merrick Rossein, a professor at the CUNY School of Law, and his colleagues litigated one of the first school peer-to-peer sexual harassment cases under Title IX, ultimately clarifying the extent of the law.
"In addition to educational opportunities, [we argued that] equal opportunities include being in a school place free from sexual harassment." Because, as we wrote in February: How can you be expected to focus on your studies if you're worried about your basic safety?
Broadly speaking, Title IX is a civil rights law that ensures that students can go to school in an environment that's free from sex discrimination.
Over the years, and especially thanks to Obama-era evolutions in the way Title IX is handled, it's become the best course of action for students seeking justice after experiencing sexual assault and harassment on campus, but detractors now say enforcement has gone too far.
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The nuts and bolts of the law say that any school that receives federal financial assistance has to give all students the right to enroll in the classes and programs that they want, and participate in sports on a level playing field, regardless of their sex, says Anne Hedgepeth, vice president of public policy and government relations at the American Association of University Women (AAUW).