Dear Knox Community,
Last week, the Office of Civil Rights of the U. S. Department of Education announced changes in Title IX procedures, rescinding Obama-era guidance from 2011 and 2014. The department also issued a new Q&A on Campus Sexual Misconduct and announced a notice and comment process for gathering feedback from the public. Although we are still reviewing these changes and will continue to monitor further developments, the core mandate of Title IX remains: providing a prompt, equitable process for resolving complaints of sex discrimination, including complaints of sexual misconduct.
I write today to affirm Knox College’s commitment to that core Title IX mandate and to nurturing the underlying culture of respect necessary for an educational environment of equity and inclusion. We are confident our current Policy and Procedures related to sex discrimination, sexual misconduct, and interpersonal violence provide an equitable process for all parties—and these remain in effect. We will also continue to observe the requirements set forth by the State of Illinois for all institutions of higher education, including the use of the preponderance of evidence standard (established as part of the Illinois Preventing Sexual Violence in Higher Education Act), as well as the requirements under the VAWA Amendments to the Clery Act.
Throughout the early weeks of this term, we have engaged new and returning students and employees in the project of building the Knox culture of respect. Through interactive online programs, in workshops led by peer educators and staff, and working in partnership with RAs, OLs, SPARK Mentors, Admission Ambassadors, and student leaders in Greek Life, Athletics, and Student Organizations, we continue our efforts to prevent all forms of sexual misconduct on our campus. As President Amott, Interim Dean of the College Mike Schneider, and Vice President for Student Development Anne Ehrlich said in their comments to open the year, let all of us at Knox help ensure that this College is one that has no tolerance for sexual violence by holding ourselves and each other accountable for our actions.
If you have any questions about the College’s commitment to Title IX, please contact me. Additional information and resources are available online here.
Kimberly K. Schrader
Title IX Coordinator