Title IX has made a colossal impact on school
sport. It has forever changed budgeting and
participation numbers between males and females
and opened up many opportunities for women.
After an intensive
investigation of the schools on the high school
and NAIA (college) levels, I believe I can speak
with authority on how they have adapted to meet
the mandates of Tide IX: What changes they have
made, the overall impact of Tide IX, and the
variances and similarities in the legal
What exactly is Title
IX? Representative Edith Green of Oregon
introduced the beginning of die sex bias issue
in education and die hearing, which led to the
first legislative step of passing Tide IX.
In 1971, five
different bills were introduced in the House,
Senate, and White House proposing to end sex
discrimination in education. Their general
sentiment was that sex discrimination should
cease, but the legislatures could not come to an
agreement on the best way to do it.
It took several
months for the House-Senate Conference Committee
to setde on the differences in all the House and
Senate education bills, 11 of which addressed
sex discrimination. Title IX was adopted by the
House-Senate Conference Committee and then sent
to the Full Senate. The Senate approved it on
May 22, 1972. From the Senate, it went to the
House, where it was passed on June 8.
On June 23, it was
signed by President Nixon and it went into
effect on July 1. The final regulations were
issued on July 20, 1974, and on May 27, 1975
President Gerald Ford signed them. They were
then presented to Congress for review (www.ed.gov).
How has Title IX
impacted sports? Title IX of the Education
Amendments Act of 1972 is a federal law that
states: "No person in the United States shall,
on the basis of sex, be excluded from
participation in, be denied the benefits of, or
be subjected to discrimination under any
education program or activity receiving Federal
financial assistance" (www.1ncaa.org).
Title IX is applied
to athletics in several ways. First, separate
teams for boys and girls must be provided;
otherwise, students of both sexes must be
allowed to try out for the same team. secondly,
equal opportunities must be provided for both
sexes in the educational institution in terms of
competitive training facilities, equipment and
supplies, facilities for practice and games,
medical and training services, coaching and
academic tutoring, travel allowances, housing
and dining facilities, compensation of coaches,
In addition, Tide IX
guidelines provide that expenditures on men's
and women's sports be proportional to the number
of men and women participating. This guideline
is applied to athletic scholarships,
recruitment, as well as equipment, supplies,
travel, recruiting, and public-ity. Finally,
Title IX requires colleges and universities to
take specific steps to provide additional
competitive sport opportunities for women
(Bucher & Krotee).
According to the U.S.
Department of Education and its publication
"Title IX: 25 Years of Progress," there has been
a dramatic increase in the number of girls and
women who participate in athletics. In 1971,
less than 300,000 high school girls played
interscholastic sports; in 1997 that number had
risen to 2.4 million.
Two years after Title
IX was enacted (1971), approximately 50,000 men
and less that 80 women received athletic
scholarships to colleges and universities.
By 1997, one-third of
all the scholarship money was going to women
To further check the
current impact of Tide IX, I conducted
interviews with current athletic directors at
both small and large high schools as well as
from NAIA colleges. I asked 10 questions on the
effect that Title IX has had on their school and
athletic programs and also asked the AD's what
types of changes they have made in order to
comply with Tide IX. I interviewed athletic
directors in order to grasp the similarities and
differences in the way they dealt with Title IX
and the similarities and differences between
small and large high schools and colleges.
The answers were
characteristically broad. There was little
difference in the impact of Title IX among high
school athletic programs. Most schools stated
that they provided female athletes with the same
opportunities as male athletes, although one
large high school stated that Title IX did come
into play when adding a new sport.
The colleges said
Tide IX gave them a platform to stand on when
requesting more money for women's athletics and
they seemed to emphasize the importance of
budgeting for women's athletics.
One NAIA college
reported tiiat Title IX impacted them very
little because they were already offering equal
opportunities to their athletes, prior to Title
have to be made when schools have to equalize
the number of men and women's athletics. One of
the questions asked was what types of decisions
had to be made in terms of cutting and adding
It was surprising
that none of the high schools or colleges I
surveyed had cut a single men's sport to
equalize the gender of the teams. Every high
school and NAIA college that I talked to had
added one or more female adiletic teams in order
to make it fair.
One strategy that
came from a large high school was to look for
programs that had both a girl's and a boy's team
in the same sport. When forced to cut athletic
teams because of budget, this strategy enabled
them to be fair to both genders.
seem to have a variety of policies that
determine what sports to cut and what sports to
add. One small high school policy is to add or
cut sports based on the equality of
participation. If one sport is cut or added, it
is done by both sexes.
Larger high schools
determined adding or cutting based on conference
affiliation, cost, revenue, facilities, number
of schools in the area that field teams in that
sport, and if it meets the needs of their
One college AD stated
that he would add or cut sports based solely on
student interest. Another used an Athletic
Committee consisting of school faculty to help
reach a decision, and then passed it on for the
approval of the administration.
participation and Title IX: Nearly all of the
AD's said that Tide IX had made no changes in
the number of female adiletes in recent years.
Since the AD's had been at tiieir respective
schools for approximately the last 10 years,
this meant that Title IX has been successful at
those high schools and NAIA colleges; and tiiat
male and female athletic participation numbers
have stabilized over the past ten years.
One might have
expected a sharp increase in female
participation that put them near equal to male
participation numbers in recent years. But it
appears that the numbers stabilized somewhat.
Of the schools
surveyed, only one monitored participation
numbers. It required each head coach to make an
end-of-the-season report, which included
participation numbers. The schools used the
report to monitor the stability of each sport,
not for Title IX compliance.
All the schools
questioned, however, make sure to offer equal
opportunities for male and females. Tide IX does
not order schools to have the same number of
male and female athletes; but it does mandate
that all have equal opportunities.
How has Title IX
affected budgeting? High schools have a
different approach to the financial effect of
Title IX. Some schools claim that Tide IX has
had no financial effect on them at all. Other
schools state that when they add sports, tiiey
take money away from other activities, so that
each sport gets a smaller piece of the pie.
No AD's mentioned
tiiat fundraising was an option they used to
make money for their program. High schools do
not have scholarship money, so their biggest
concern is reducing the money given to other
sports and use the saving to finance equal sport
The colleges viewed
Tide "IX as a way to recruit student athletes
with the charisma to put people in seats.
One way high schools
and colleges may save money is by changing their
game schedule. For example: Scheduling games
closer to home.
One small high school
and one large high school are in the process of
cutting their schedules. The small high school
cut back 10% on scheduling and eliminated some
It seems that most
schools will just find the money for their
athletic programs rather than reduce the number
of games and trips or cut the other athletic
None of the colleges
questioned have changed their scheduling in
order to save money, and none of the NAIA
colleges surveyed cut men's athletic
The survey also asked
whether men's athletic teams have the same
number of scholarships as female athletic teams.
Once again, the NAIA colleges were in agreement
with their responses. They offer an equal number
of scholarships for the same men and women's
athletic team. For example, the men's baseball
team has the same number of scholarships as the
women's softball team.
Finally, all of the
schools that responded, both high school and
college, offer the same number of men's and
women's sports in order to maintain an equal
playing field. Most of the AD's strive to make
sure that all their athletes are given equal
opportunities to participate in the athletic
program and be successful at it. And they also
make sure that the athletic teams are getting
all that they are entitled to (locker rooms,
equipment and supplies, practice facilities).
One NAIA college actually has more women's
athletic teams than men's teams.
Summing up, it is
apparent that even though Title IX went into
effect over 30 years ago, our schools are still
continuously striving to broaden and equalize
their athletic programs. The problems remain.
But one thing has to be conceded:
Though our schools
may have different routes to the promised land,
they are all on the right path when it comes to
carrying out the requirements of Title IX.