WASHINGTON (AP) – Education Secretary Betsy DeVos plans to end the Obama administration’s rules for investigating allegations of sexual violence on campus.
She says any new policy on investigating sexual assault on college campus must balance the rights of victims and the accused.
DeVos has announced plans to replace Obama administration guidance that spells out schools’ responsibility. She calls that a failed system and says the rights of all parties must be taken into account. Also, DeVos says schools are committing discrimination if they fail to take seriously a student who reports sexual misconduct. Those that use “a system biased toward finding a student responsible for sexual misconduct” also are committing discrimination, according to DeVos.
DeVos suggests that the definition of sexual assault is too broad and that too many cases involve student and faculty “simply for speaking their minds or teaching their classes.”
At the same time, she says acts of sexual misconduct are “atrocious” and must be confronted head-on. DeVos will seek public input in developing a new policy for investigating Title IX complaints.