📷 Key players Meteor shower up next 📷 Leaders at the dais 20 years till the next one
2024 U.S. General Elections

Why did Biden update Title IX? How it affects students, survivors of abuse, LGBTQ kids

Rachel Barber

President Joe Biden unveiled a new set of sweeping changes to Title IX rules on April 26 to protect survivors of abuse, LGBTQ+ students, and student parents.

The latest regulations which reinstitute protections for student survivors of sexual assault and harassment that were rolled back during the Trump administration, will take effect Aug. 1.

While Biden’s updates increased protections for potentially vulnerable students, they also served as an attack in his ongoing power struggle with his Republican challenger during an election year.

Sign up for Your Vote: Text USA TODAY reporters and the elections team by joining our SMS service.

Republican Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton sued the Biden administration on April 29 over new federal nondiscrimination protections for transgender students and vowed not to adhere to the new rules.

Prep for the polls: See who is running for president and compare where they stand on key issues in our Voter Guide

"I am instructing the Texas Education Agency to ignore your illegal dictate," Paxton said in a statement. "Your rewrite of Title IX not only exceeds your constitutional authority, it also tramples laws that I signed to protect the integrity of women’s sports by prohibiting men from competing against female athletes."

What is Title IX?

Title IX is the common name for a federal civil rights law that bans sex-based discrimination against students, employees, and others affiliated with schools or any other education program that receives federal funding.

It was enacted as part of the Education Amendments of 1972. Over the years, several presidential administrations have interpreted and updated it differently.

More:Updated Biden administration rules will soon affect students across US: What to know

Students and advocates call on the Biden administration to release a final Title IX rule in Washington, D.C., on Dec. 5, 2023.

How did Biden update Title IX?

Under Biden’s new Title IX rules that will take effect Aug. 1, there will be protections from discrimination based on gender identity for the first time and harassment protections for pregnant people and student parents.

Biden’s changes also include an expansion to the definition of sexual assault in K-12 schools and colleges.

Despite much speculation, the Biden administration did not rule on whether transgender and nonbinary students can participate in school-affiliated sports teams that align with their gender.

Rachel Barber is a 2024 election fellow at USA TODAY, focusing on politics and education. Follow her on X, formerly Twitter, as @rachelbarber_

Featured Weekly Ad