Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 is a federal civil rights law that prohibits educational institutions from discrimination of the basis of sex, including pregnancy and parenting status.
Students must be allowed to take time from school for pregnancy and childbirth for as long as a doctor says is medically necessary. That could mean a few absences for necessary medical appointments, or a longer leave of absence for a high-risk pregnancy or childbirth. This rule applies even if taking medically necessary leave would require an absence for longer than the school’s leave policy ordinarily allows. This policy covers mothers AND fathers.
Return to School
When the student returns to school, she must be allowed to return to the same academic and extracurricular status as before medical leave began; this includes giving students the opportunity to make up any work missed while medically excused from school. Additionally, if a grade is based on class attendance, a student must be permitted to earn the credits she missed and be reinstated to the status she held prior to the leave.
An instructor or program may also offer alternatives to completing missed work, such as retaking a course or semester, online course options, or additional time to finish coursework and completion requirements after a period of leave. A student may determine how she will make up the work if it does not create an unreasonable burden to an educational program and is compliant with provisions of Title IX.
A lactation room can be made available that is convenient and comfortable. Please contact Student Support Services for information on lactation rooms and other accommodations.
Title IX prevents any gender-based harassment based on status as a student who is pregnant or parenting. UMPI has formal procedures in place to resolve any issues regarding pregnancy discrimination, including Equal Opportunity Complaint Procedures and the Student Conduct Code.
Mary Kate Barbosa
Director, Student Support Services