Toni Wehman


Title IX has played a crucial role in changing our nation's treatment of women in education, leading to awareness about the harms of sexual harassment on both female and male students. However, in one area, Title IX jurisprudence draws a line between protected students and students who are not protected from sexual harassment. That line is determined by whether the harassment facing the student is because of perceived sexual orientation or perceived failure to adhere to gender stereotypes. School athletics is an environment wrought with such harassment that can include gender insults, i.e. "you throw like a girl" or sexual orientation insults, i.e. "stop playing like a sissy. " Often this language can develop into serious and continuous harassment of a young student athlete. Students may not have a claim against such harassment, however, if courts conclude the harassment is based on sexual orientation instead of gender