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The State of Texas filed a federal lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Education, contesting the Biden administration’s latest amendments to Title IX, giving more protections to LGBTQ+ students.

The modifications, set to be implemented on August 1, are set to broaden the scope of protections to include not only sexual orientation and gender identity but also reinstate protections for survivors of sexual assault and harassment that had been scaled back during the Trump administration.

Attorney General Ken Paxton of Texas has vehemently opposed these changes, arguing that they unlawfully extend federal reach and undermine the rights of women, particularly in the realm of athletics. “Your rewrite of Title IX not only exceeds your constitutional authority,” Paxton stated, addressing President Biden, “but it also tramples laws that I have enacted to uphold the integrity of women’s sports.”

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The updates to Title IX also seek to protect pregnant students and student parents from discrimination and expand definitions related to sexual assault in educational settings. Despite these inclusive measures, the Biden administration has not yet made a determination on the participation of transgender and nonbinary students in school sports which aligns with their gender identity.

These changes reflect an ongoing national discourse around the rights of transgender individuals and are perceived as a strategic move in the broader political arena, particularly during an election year when Biden is positioning against a Republican challenger.

Governor Greg Abbott has also aligned with Paxton’s stance, instructing the Texas Education Agency to disregard the new rules, which he deems an “illegal dictate” from the federal government.

Title IX, part of the Education Amendments of 1972, is a federal civil rights law prohibiting sex-based discrimination in any education program receiving federal funding. Its interpretation has evolved across different administrations, reflecting shifting societal attitudes towards gender and sexuality.

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