The U.S. Department of Education (ED) has not yet published final rules for education programs and activities and athletic opportunities under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, despite saying that both rules would be out by the end of October. ED has not yet posted a new expected release date for the rules. The rules must go through final review and stakeholder consultation at the White House’s Office of Management and Budget once the agency has finalized them, which can take another two to three months.
A previous version of the education programs and activities rule received 240,000 public comments before the comment window closed in September of last year. The comment window for the athletics rule closed in May of this year with 156,000 public comments. Both proposed rules faced significant opposition from stakeholders concerned that the rules either went too far in mandating certain definitions of “sex,” or not far enough in protecting LGBTQI+ students. The athletics rule would also conflict with laws in a number of States that set strict parameters on which students can participate in gender-specific sports.
Given the likelihood of litigation challenging the new rules, and the need for time to review the new requirements and draft the policies and trainings needed for compliance, a longer lead-up time for these rules is likely necessary. At this point, implementation for the 2024-25 school year is still possible, but further delays may push that timeline out of reach.