The Trump Administration’s latest move was met with immediate opposition.
In a letter released by the Justice Department and the Department of Education, a directive put in place by the Obama administration was stepped back under Trump’s.
The letter stated that the interpretation of Title IX that had previously allowed transgender students to use the bathroom of their choosing was an overextension of the law.
“Schools, communities, and families can find – and in many cases have found – solutions that protect all students,” stated Secretary Betsy DeVos on the night of the updated guidelines.
The new guidelines would leave the decision of bathroom use to the states and local education departments. This could pose great resistance in more conservative districts or schools, or universities, that claim religious exemption.
“Advocates since December 2015 have publicized the decisions of religious colleges and universities to seek exemptions from guidance originally issued by the Obama administration earlier that year,” explains Inside HigherEd.
In the wake of the letter, transgender rights groups, as well as mental health nonprofits, have mobilized to remind transgender students that they have rights and are being fought for. A reminder that felt necessary for many following the Trump administration decision.
“By rescinding the guidance today, the Trump administration has taken the opposite stance. They have sent a deeply troubling message to students that the administration will not stand up for students’ civil rights,” states Inside HigherEd.