Re: FW: Title IX

Date: Tue May 09 2000 - 09:53:34 EDT

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    One of the fundamental problems is that the current interpretation of Title

    IX legislation does not require schools to provide equal opportunities in
    non-athletic extracurricular activities. While male participation is
    in athletics, female participation is higher in academic related activities

    (see AAUW, Gender Gaps Executive Summary, October 1998). Despite this
    schools receiving federal funds are not required to provide an equal
    opportunity in these academic related areas.

    Typically, it is stated that equity in these programs is not important
    they are theoretically open to both sexes. However, that ignores the
    reality. If a gender difference exists, it is due to either the school not

    providing opportunities suitable to each gender, or the school/teacher
    to maintain the gender status quo. As an example, if only two male
    sign up for the literary magazine, then only two female students should be
    allowed to join to maintain equity.

    It was also mentioned several weeks ago that athletic related funding
    in the community could not be designated for male sports. However, again
    this does not necessarily apply to non-athletic areas. Schools are not
    required to ensure that the same amount of money is spent on male and
    students. High school bands have more female than male participants and
    generally have the highest level of support from the community. Yet, this
    money is not required to be spread equally among all students.

    I would like to emphasize that any difference in participation must
    necessarily be the result of a difference in opportunity. Stating that
    students have an equal opportunity to join the literary club is the same as

    saying that female students have an equal opportunity to join the football
    team. Both may be factually true, but both ignore reality. The true test
    equality for a school is if the sum of participation in athletic and
    non-athletic opportunities is equal for each gender.


    Zachary Nichols

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