Friday, December 13, 2013

Childbirth Discrimination Case Settled

In August we blogged about the Title IX complaint Brandi Kostl filed with the Department of Education after she failed two classes because her college, Logan College of Chiropractic, refused to allow her to make up the 11 days of schoolwork she missed because of an emergency Cesarean delivery.  This week, Inside Higher Ed reports a settlement in the case, under which the college will remove Kostl's failing grades from her record and allow her to re-take the classes at no cost.  She will also receive a tuition refund for the semester affected by Logan's discrimination.  

Logan has also agreed to update its policy to ensure that faculty do not penalize students who must miss classes due to pregnancy or childbirth. Faculty must either allow students to make up missed work, or to provide the opportunity to withdraw from the course with no financial penalty.

Pregnancy discrimination in colleges and universities is a common problem, according to lawyers and scholars interviewed by Insider Higher Ed.  Earlier this year, a complaint similar to Kostl's against the Borough of Manhattan Community College also resulted in a student-friendly settlement.  The National Women's Law Center represented the plaintiffs in both cases.