The release of proposed regulations for Title IX and campus assault, the federal law that prohibits sex and gender-based discrimination in public schools around the country, has caused growing concerns among higher education observers.

The proposed regulations redefine sexual harassment under Title IX and set new standards for how schools should respond to sexual harassment reports and what it means for a student to report the misconduct.

The proposed regulations require schools to respond fairly and meaningfully to all reports of sexual harassment and provide supportive measures to victims; and permit cross-examination between both parties through an adviser after a report has been filed.

"Many schools do not have this cross examination process in effect, which would place a significant administrative burden on the schools and would require additional staff training that could be very expensive," said Bisi Okubadejo, a lawyer at Ballard Spahr LLP. "The process could also potentially dissuade some students from making reports if they believe there will be an examination portion during the resolution process."

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