Dear Colleague Letter Retracted

By Wyman-Blackburn, Steven | University Business, November 2017 | Go to article overview

Dear Colleague Letter Retracted


Wyman-Blackburn, Steven, University Business


Colleges are now free to abandon Obama-era guidelines requiring them to use the lowest standard of proof in deciding whether students are responsible for sexual assault. The Department of Education is withdrawing the statements of policy and guidance on the Dear Colleague Letter on Sexual Violence (2011), as well as the Questions and Answers on Title IX Sexual Violence (2014). Those on each side of the action reacted strongly to the news.--Steven Wyman-Blackburn

In agreement

'The best way to crack down on these crimes, and provide real measures of justice to victims, is to make it easier for victims to come forward, avail themselves of the legal system, and receive the support and services they need and deserve. The more [Betsy] DeVos can move the system under the umbrella of the justice system, the better of fall students will be."

--The Editors of Bloomberg

"Given this administration's disregard for matters of civil rights, it seemed best to gird for the worst: full retreat. That Ms. DeVos instead opted for a deliberative approach, including public input about potential changes, was a welcome surprise. It should be encouraged by those who want a just handling of these fraught cases."

--Washington Post Editorial Board

"College students are routinely denied even the most basic elements of afair hearing. Indeed, since the 2011 'Dear Colleague' letter was issued, students have filed more than 180 lawsuits against colleges for allegedly conducting unfair disciplinary procedures."

--Robert Shibley, executive director of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education

Not in agreement

"This interim guidance will have adevastating impact on students and schools. …

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