The Carroll ISD board of trustees denounced federal changes to Title IX rules at a May 6 board workshop.

The Biden administration recently expanded Title IX—a 1972 nondiscrimination law—to prevent discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity and pregnancy at federally funded colleges and K-12 schools.

The backstory

Gov. Greg Abbott directed the Texas Education Agency on April 29 to ignore new Title IX rules aimed at protecting LGBTQ+ students from discrimination.

In a letter to President Joe Biden, Abbott argued the expanded rules exceed the federal government’s authority, calling them a “ham-handed effort to impose a leftist belief.”

The details

Following the governor’s direction, CISD denounced the amendments to Title IX regulations with 6-0 board approval May 6. Trustee Dudley Jordan was absent during the workshop.

The district’s resolution included Abbott’s letter as well as letters from County Judge Tim O’Hare and Texas House of Representatives support for Abbott’s decision.

The resolution stated the changes may introduce confusion and ambiguity regarding the implementation and enforcement of Title IX, potentially jeopardizing the safety and well-being of CISD students. The changes are also in conflict with district policy.

The district implemented handbook policies in 2023 that mandated students to use bathrooms and locker rooms that correspond to their biological sex, according to district documents. The policies also stipulated that the district will not compel its personnel or other students to use a requested pronoun. These policies will remain in place, board President Andrew Yeager said.

“These are common-sense policies that every school in the country should adopt,” Yeager said.

What they’re saying

Board President Cameron Bryan took issue with a section of the regulations that states school districts “may not adopt a policy or practice that prevents a person from participating in an education program or activity consistent with their gender identity.”

“What the Biden administration is doing is redefining ‘XX and XY’ to whatever you want to identify as. That is a very dangerous precedent,” Bryan said.

Conflating identity and gender rather than deferring to biological definitions could pose risks to female students if biological males leverage the new policies to enter bathrooms and locker rooms, Bryan said.

While the changes do not apply to athletic activities, Bryan said if Biden wins the upcoming election that could be the next step.

“That’s not going to happen here. While we’re on the board it's not going to happen,” he said.

Southlake resident Colleen Golestan was the lone speaker opposing the board's decision, stating that the Biden administration made it clear that the changes do not apply to athletic teams. Despite this, the school board and Abbott have voiced concerns over the issue, she said.

Golestan pointed to the letter from the Texas House of Representatives addressing Biden that stated, “[They] will not surrender our daughters to your perverse agenda seeking to sexualize our children.”

By denouncing the changes, CISD is in essence adopting this belief, Golestan said.

“Let’s make it clear that Southlake does believe LGBTQ+ students are perverse,” she said.