Pregnant & Parenting Students
Pregnant and Parenting Students: Student Information
Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 prohibits discrimination based on sex in education programs or activities including academic, educational, extracurricular, athletic, and other programs or activities of schools. This resource document provides an overview of the Title IX requirements as it applies to pregnant or parenting students.
Right to Continue with Educational Program
You have the right as a pregnant or parenting student to continue with your educational program for as long as you are able. Rules may not be established that have the effect of preventing you from participating in course work, research, lab work, internships, practicums, field work or any associated travel. In other words, restrictions or additional rules may not be applied to you that are not applied to all students participating in the same program or activity.
There is no Requirement to Disclose Pregnancy
You are under no obligation to disclose your pregnancy or parenting status unless you need and choose to request accommodations. These adjustments are applied to enable you to continue with your academic studies or any other educational activity in which you are participating. You will need to contact the Title IX Coordinator with any request for accommodations and any documentation related to your request, should only be provided to the Title IX Coordinator. The Title IX Office facilitates the accommodation process and ensures university staff, including faculty and other administrators, understand the rationale for the accommodation(s) and appropriate measures for implementation.
Accommodations Required by Title IX
- You must be allowed to take time off from school for pregnancy, childbirth, miscarriage, abortion, and recovery for as long as your doctor says is medical necessary. This rule applies regardless of any established leave policy related to a specific course or completion of an academic program.
- You cannot be penalized for taking medically necessary leave and must be able to return in the same status they held before taking leave.
Examples of Title IX Related Accommodations
- Additional time to complete assignments
- Ability to make up work without penalty
- Attendance adjustments without penalty
- Remote coursework
- Additional time to complete degree requirements
- Alternate seating arrangements (larger desk, ability to stand as needed)
- Access to food and drink
- Time and space to express/pump breast milk
- Frequent breaks
- Seating near an exit
- Excuse absences due to pregnancy or childbirth with medical documentation
This list is not intended to be inclusive, but merely illustrative of accommodations that may be appropriate to your needs.
Intersection with the ADA
Pregnant students, or students recovering from a pregnancy related condition, dependent upon their circumstances, may also be protected by and have rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
Title IX specifically requires any institution that accommodates students with temporary disabilities to offer and provide the same adjustments for students with pregnancy related temporary disabilities. Examples of covered conditions include, but are not limited to:
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Gestational Diabetes
- Severe morning sickness (hyperemesis gravidarum)
- Chronic migraines
- Severe back, leg, or foot pain
You should first contact the Title IX Coordinator regarding any pregnancy or parenting related accommodation requests. The Coordinator will consult with the Center for Educational Access as needed to facilitate timely and effective provision of accommodations.