Cherry Creek High School violated Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972 by failing to allow a pregnant student maternity leave for as long as her doctor determined was necessary. School officials told Mia Lopez that she would suffer serious academic consequences, including loss of credits for work she has already done, if her maternity leave lasted more than three weeks, an arbitrary length set by school administrators.
US Department of Education regulations, issued under the authority of Title IX, protect girls in school from sex and pregnancy discrimination, in part, by requiring schools to allow an excused leave of absence for pregnancy and childbirth “for so long a period of time as is deemed necessary by the student’s physician.”
The ACLU of Colorado wrote to the School District urging compliance with Title IX and accommodation for Mia Lopez’s maternity leave for as long as her doctor determines is medically necessary.
In response, Cherry Creek High School agreed to comply with Title IX by allowing Mia to take as long a maternity leave as is medically necessary without being academically penalized. Mia had her baby on October 28, 2013. Mom and baby are happy and healthy.
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