As a result of ACLU action that led to an investigation by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights (“OCR”), the federal agency charged with enforcing Title IX, the federal law prohibiting sex discrimination in federally funded educational programs, a Birmingham public middle school has agreed to abandon unlawful single-sex classes.

As part of our Teach Kids, Not Stereotypes campaign, the ACLU and the ACLU of Alabama obtained public records from the Birmingham City School District regarding sex separation within Huffman Middle School. Those records revealed violations of Title IX which generally forbids treating students differently on the basis of sex. In December, 2012, the ACLU filed a complaint with OCR detailing the violations at Huffman.

Huffman had been separating boys and girls in every grade for all core curriculum classes, homeroom and lunch, on the theory that there are “hard-wired” differences between boys’ and girls’ brains requiring them to be taught differently.

The Birmingham City School District signed an agreement with the Office of Civil Rights promising to abandon single-sex classes at the end of the Spring 2013 semester and to comply with Title IX regulations forbidding different treatment of students based on sex.

The case is now closed.

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