One of the nation’s largest Christian education associations will be allowed to intervene in a lawsuit challenging the Biden Administration’s attempt to expand Title IX protections.
Last week, a federal district court ruled that the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI) may join a lawsuit filed by the attorneys general of 20 states. The suit challenges “guidance documents” released by the U.S. Department of Education that say schools receiving federal funding cannot use gender identity or sexual orientation to exclude students from sports or other activities.
Title IX legislation was enacted in 1972, and prohibits educational programs that receive federal financial assistance from discriminating on the basis of biological sex. In 2020, the Biden administration directed federal agencies, including the Department of Education, to expand the legal definition of sex discrimination to include sexual orientation and gender identity.
This revised definition paved the way for biological males, who identify as female, to compete in women’s athletics and use female-designated showers and locker rooms.
ACSI President Dr. Larry Taylor called the court decision an “encouraging win” for Christian schools and educators.
“This court order enables ACSI to challenge the Biden administration’s reinterpretation of federal law that would allow males to compete on female athletic teams,” Taylor said in a statement. “We are passionate about protecting and preserving fairness for our female athletes.”
ACSI’s interest in the case comes in part because its 5,000 member schools compete against public schools that are required to follow the federal mandate.
“This places Christian schools and their female athletes at a disadvantage because the public schools they compete against in athletic events would be required to permit males to compete on female sports teams,” ACSI said in a statement.
Alliance Defending Freedom, a nonprofit legal organization, represents ACSI in the suit.
“We are pleased that the Association of Christian Schools International and the female athletes we represent will have the opportunity to participate in this case,” said Jonathan Scruggs, ADF senior counsel, in a statement. “Female athletes deserve to compete on a level playing field.”