The hits just keep on coming for Baylor University as the U.S. Department of Education added Baylor to its list of higher education institutes that are under investigation of possible violations of federal law over the handling of sexual violence and harassment complaints. These came after eight women took issue on how the school handled their claims dating back to June 15th of this year.
The missteps that the University is being investigated for led to the resignation of Title IX coordinator Patty Crawford. She took to her Facebook page back on October 3rd after leaving her role saying:
“So they’ve lied and they will mostly likely continue to lie. The tactic to discredit me, scare me, hurt me…it will work for a portion of the public and I get that. But, I’m pretty sure it’s a tactic to DISTRACT all of us from what this is really about. It’s not about me, or my job, it’s about discrimination…it’s about BAYLOR. It’s about a handful PEOPLE that actually run Baylor that hate that the work of the Title IX Office (not me, but the amazing team collectively making change) was EFFECTIVE. And that goes against a lot of the long-standing grain of the Baylor-way…and it’s costing them MONEY. Two of their favorite things..the Baylor way and money.”(ESPN)
U.S. Department of Education Press Secretary Dorie Not released a statement on the investigation in to the school:
“The Office for Civil Rights has opened an investigation into issues related to Title IX sexual violence at Baylor University in Waco, Texas. OCR opened the investigation after receiving a complaint from the former Baylor Title IX coordinator. Consistent with federal privacy statutes, OCR typically does not identify the specific parties, including complainants, involved in our civil rights cases. In this instance, the complainant has given permission for OCR to identify her and has spoken publicly about her complaint.”(WFAA)
Baylor has on its website that the “University takes allegations of sexual violence, assault, dating violence, domestic violence, stalking and other sexually inappropriate conduct seriously.” But, there’s saying something and putting it to print online, and following through. If the U.S. Department of Education comes through to find out that the school is not living up to their values it will be hard for them to come back.
Texas HS Football’s Owner and Director Brian Demarco wrote in a piece back in June, when these allegations began, that he believes that the school can come back saying, “In my opinion, the only thing that will save Baylor now is for the university as a whole to reflect on the original mission, and it appears that I’m not alone. After all, Baylor University is part of the fabric that makes us Texans who we are.” (TexasHSFootball.com)
He’s right in that he isn’t alone in hoping that the school can get back on track. They have a large alumni base and millions of fans across the country who cheer the Bears football team each week. It is a dark time now and hopefully the university can work hand in hand with the Department of Education to right any wrongs that may have happened.