Department of Education sends mixed messages on transgender student protections

The Trump administration said it plans to investigate alleged discrimination against LGBTQ students following this summer’s landmark Supreme Court rulings that said sexual orientation and gender identity are protected traits under existing civil rights law — but only in certain circumstances, according to documents released by the Education Department’s Office for Civil Rights.

In updated guidance posted via a letter to various Connecticut schools, the Education Department said transgender students still can’t play on school sports teams that correspond with their gender identity and instead should be assigned to teams that correspond with their biological gender at birth.

At the same time, in a separate case, the department said it agreed to investigate claims of discrimination based on sexual orientation where a student alleged “homophobic bigot[ry]” at her school.

Sunu Chandy, the legal director at the National Women’s Law Center, said the two moves by the department are “totally at

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Jobs Report Sends Mixed Messages for Lawmakers and Markets

(Bloomberg Opinion) — The much-anticipated U.S. jobs report on Friday answered some important questions about the state of the labor market. Yet by also leaving some important issues outstanding, it will not serve as the much needed outside catalyst to resolve both the policy stalemate on Capitol Hill and the increasingly visible tug-of-war in financial markets.

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The narrow message of the jobs report came through loud and clear in four monthly numbers. Despite all the headwinds facing the economy, its inherent dynamism and entrepreneurship — plus a positive one-off influence from census hiring — led to buoyant job creation (1.4 million) and a sharp fall in the unemployment rate (from 10.2% to 8.4%). This was coupled with an increase in both labor force participation and the equally important employment-to-population ratio.

Pulling the lens back a bit provided a second, less reassuring message. The pace of improvement in the

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