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SLCC found to have violated Title IX, Section 504 following pregnancy discrimination investigation

Jun 15, 2022, 11:07 AM | Updated: 11:20 am

Salt Lake Community College...

Salt Lake Community College

SALT LAKE CITY — The Salt Lake Community College was found Tuesday to have violated Title IX and Section 504 after the school allegedly encouraged a student to drop a course because she was pregnant, and did not provide her with academic adjustments or necessary services during her pregnancy.

The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights — sometimes called the OCR — conducted an investigation, with the resolution announced in a press release Tuesday, June 14.

“OCR found that the college violated Title IX and its implementing regulations by failing: (1) to respond promptly and equitably to the student’s complaint of pregnancy discrimination, (2) to engage in an interactive process with the student to determine the appropriate special services and/or academic adjustments to provide in light of her pregnancy, and (3) to excuse her absences related to pregnancy, provide her the opportunity to make up work missed due to these pregnancy-related absences, or provide her with alternatives to making up missed work at a later date,” the release stated.

The OCR also found that SLCC violated Section 504 by “failing to engage in an interactive process with the student and to consider whether her pregnancy caused a temporary disability requiring academic adjustments.”

Catherine E. Lhamon, assistant secretary for Civil Rights, said, “We look forward to working with Salt Lake Community College to promote a nondiscriminatory educational environment by ensuring pregnant students’ equal access to the college’s offerings.”

“As we approach the 50th anniversary of Title IX next week, Salt Lake Community College’s commitments today take an important step to provide the equal access to education Congress has promised these 50 years,” she said.

To resolve those pregnancy-related violations, the school agreed to implement a resolution agreement.

“The College will promptly and fully address OCR’s feedback with regard to each Item below until the College receives notice from OCR that no further reporting is required for each Item,” part of the agreement stated.

SLCC’s commitments include:

  • Revising its non-discrimination notice and grievance procedures to comply with Title IX.
  • Publishing information on its website for pregnant students about their Title IX rights and how to seek academic adjustments, special services, or excused absences.
  • Training its Title IX coordinator, Disabilities Resource Center staff, and other school employees regarding Title IX ’s and Section 504’s protections for pregnant students and the academic adjustments and special services available to pregnant students.
  • Completing and documenting its investigation of the student’s complaint of pregnancy discrimination. And,
  • Taking other measures to remedy the discrimination against the student.

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SLCC found to have violated Title IX, Section 504 following pregnancy discrimination investigation