Title IX - Preventing Sex Discrimination

Pregnant & Parenting Support

Pregnant & Parenting Student Rights

We recognize that nursing, pregnant and/or parenting employees and students can have any gender identity; please be aware that some of the language throughout these sections is reflective of legal text, which we recognize may be limiting in terms of identity. Click on the topics below for additional information.

The information shared in this section is adapted from the Office for Civil Rights guide to pregnant and parenting student rights.(opens in new window)

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (“Title IX”), 20 U.S.C. §1681 et seq., is a Federal civil rights law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex—including pregnancy and parental status—in educational programs and activities.

All public and private schools, school districts, colleges, and universities receiving any Federal funds (“schools”) must comply with Title IX.* Here are some things you should know about your rights:

Classes and School Activities

  • Allow you to continue participating in classes and extracurricular activities even though you are pregnant. This means that you can still participate in advanced placement and honors classes, school clubs, sports, honor societies, student leadership opportunities, and other activities, like after-school programs operated at the school.
  • Allow you to choose whether you want to participate in special instructional programs or classes for pregnant students. You can participate if you want to, but your school cannot pressure you to do so. The alternative program must provide the same types of academic, extracurricular and enrichment opportunities as your school’s regular program.
  • Allow you to participate in classes and extracurricular activities even though you are pregnant and not require you to submit a doctor’s note unless your school requires a doctor’s note from all students who have a physical or emotional condition requiring treatment by a doctor. Your school also must not require a doctor’s note from you after you have been hospitalized for childbirth unless it requires a doctor’s note from all students who have been hospitalized for other conditions.
  • Provide you with reasonable adjustments, like a larger desk, elevator access, or allowing you to make frequent trips to the restroom, when necessary because of your pregnancy.

Excused Absences and Medical Leave

  • Excuse absences due to pregnancy or childbirth for as long as your doctor says it is necessary.
  • Allow you to return to the same academic and extracurricular status as before your medical leave began, which should include giving you the opportunity to make up any work missed while you were out.
  • Ensure that teachers understand the Title IX requirements related to excused absences/medical leave. Your teacher may not refuse to allow you to submit work after a deadline you missed because of pregnancy or childbirth. If your teacher’s grading is based in part on class participation or attendance and you missed class because of pregnancy or childbirth, you should be allowed to make up the participation or attendance credits you didn’t have the chance to earn.
  • Provide pregnant students with the same special services it provides to students with temporary medical conditions. This includes homebound instruction/at-home tutoring/independent study.


  • Protect you from harassment based on sex, including harassment because of pregnancy or related conditions. Comments that could constitute prohibited harassment include making sexual comments or jokes about your pregnancy, calling you sexually charged names, spreading rumors about your sexual activity, and making sexual propositions or gestures, if the comments are sufficiently serious that it interferes with your ability to benefit from or participate in your school’s program.

Policies and Procedures

Helpful Tips for Pregnant and Parenting Students

  • Ask us for help—meet with our Title IX Coordinator or counselor regarding what we can do to support you in continuing your education.
  • Keep notes about your pregnancy-related absences, any instances of harassment and your interactions with school officials about your pregnancy, and immediately report problems to our office, Title IX Coordinator, counselor, or other staff.
  • If you feel you are being discriminating against because you are pregnant or parenting you may file a report or a complaint:
  • Contact OCR if you have any questions.

If you want to learn more about your rights, or if you believe that a school district, college, or university is violating Federal law, you may contact the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights, at 800-421-3481 or ocr@ed.gov. If you wish to fill out a complaint form online, you may do so.

Lactation Support

The Lactation Support Program encompasses the accommodations available to expecting and new parents, supporting their transition back into the workplace or classes after the birth of their child. Chico State understands the challenges of leaving your newborn and is committed to easing the transition through accommodations for employee break times and use of campus lactation spaces.

Lactating parents have a right to request a reasonable lactation accommodation, including a private space reasonably close to their working and learning environment.