The Department of Education released documents on religious schools applying for – and receiving – permission to discriminate against LGBT people and women even though the schools continue to receive federal education funds.
The information is available on a department webpage that includes records from 232 religious schools, including their applications to be exempt from civil rights laws banning sex-based discrimination in school, and letters from federal officials granting those requests.
Among the applications is a letter from Spring Arbor University President Brent Ellis, who requested in 2014 “to allow the University religious freedom to discriminate on the basis of sex, including gender identity, and sexual orientation, in regard to housing, living arrangements, restrooms, locker rooms, and athletics.” The request was granted on those terms.
The release of the information comes four months after eight U.S. senators (Sens. Tammy Baldwin, Barbara Boxer, Al Franken, Edward Markey, Jeff Merkley, Patty Murray, and Bernie Sanders) requested more transparency into the practice of granting waivers from Title IX of the Education Act.