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The Law & Education

Nov 17, 2020

This is the second part of our series with John Graff, taken from his Higher Ground Podcast, where he discusses the U.S. Department of Education’s new Clery Act compliance guidance. In part one we heard about the context for the announcement — the developments leading up to the Department’s drastic reversal of its longstanding guidance. Looking at that context in today's episode, John analyzes the new guidance, discusses what it means, and suggests what schools might expect to see in the Clery compliance and auditing world in the near future. We get to hear from John about the high-level takeaways from the new guidance, the timing of these decisions, what it all means in the current political circumstances, and what might happen in the next year with regards to regulation. John offers loads of details and helpful insight into all the technical aspects of this topic and provides listeners with a lot think about, so make sure to join us for this informative exploration!


Key Points From This Episode:

  • Recapping the points of discussion from part one and what we will be covered in part two.
  • Getting into the most important high-level takeaways from the new guidance.
  • Less complicated definitions and clearer meanings and usage of terms
  • Statute and regulation are all-important when it comes to the new guidelines.
  • The timing around the new guidance and it relation to the political climate 
  • The department's deferential approach to guidance in the short term. 
  • Significance around the new ways that CSAs will be defined. 
  • Clery geography requirements; the likelihood of the end of the 'one mile rule'. 
  • Areas in which the guidance has significantly fallen short. 
  • Going over the new guidance and what we can learn from its length and language.   
  • Thoughts going forward and the next year in the Clery space.



“I think we have good reason to believe that a lot of this is going to stick going forward, no matter who takes office in the White House next.” — @jtgraff [0:09:41]

“School's are much better today, when it comes to transparency, they know more about the law.” — @jtgraff [0:34:04]

“I think higher-ed will continue to struggle with the timely warning question.” — @jtgraff [0:41:04]


Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:

ICS Lawyer


John Graff on Twitter

Higher Ground Podcast

Hirsch Roberts Weinstein

HRW Higher Ground on Twitter

Department of Education Announcement Rescinding Clery Handbook (October 9, 2020)

Recalibrating Regulation of Colleges and Universities, Report on the Task Force on Federal Regulation in Higher Education (2015) 

Hot Topics In Title IX Compliance

Courtney Bullard on Twitter