Tuesday, April 20, 2010

President Biden announces strengthening of Title IX

From: U.S. Department of Education [mailto:OPA@ed.gov]
Sent: Tuesday, April 20, 2010 2:32 PM
To: U.S. Department of Education
Subject: Vice President Biden Announces Strengthening of Title IX

U.S. Department of Education
Office of Communications & Outreach, Press Office
400 Maryland Ave., S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20202

April 20, 2010
Contact: Justin Hamilton
(202) 401-1576 or justin.hamilton@ed.gov


Today, Vice President Biden announced that the Administration has issued a 'Dear Colleague' letter that withdraws a 2005 interpretation of Title IX policy. Enacted in 1972, Title IX mandates that any educational institution receiving federal funding for programs and activities cannot discriminate on the basis of sex. The 2005 policy issued compliance standards that were widely criticized for being inadequate and inconsistent with Title IX's nondiscrimination goals. Today's announcement reverses this interpretation, and returns to a more thorough test for assessing compliance with Title IX. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and Senior White House Advisor Valerie Jarrett, Chair of the White House Council on Women and Girls, joined the Vice President at George Washington University for this announcement.

"Making Title IX as strong as possible is a no-brainer," said Vice President Biden. "What we're doing here today will better ensure equal opportunity in athletics, and allow women to realize their potential - so this nation can realize its potential."

"There is no doubt that Title IX has dramatically increased athletic, academic, and employment opportunities for women and girls, and educational institutions have made big strides in providing equal opportunities in sports," said Secretary Duncan. "Yet discrimination continues to exist in college athletic programs--and we should be vigilant in enforcing the law and protecting this important civil right."

For more than three decades, the Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights (OCR) has provided three options to determine whether athletic programs at colleges, universities and secondary schools provide equal opportunities for athletic participation. Under one of these three options, OCR policy evaluated multiple indicators to determine the athletic interests and abilities of the underrepresented sex at educational institutions. The new 'Dear Colleague' letter clarifies that OCR does not consider survey results alone to be sufficient evidence of a lack of student interest or ability in sports.

Today's event at George Washington University also provided sports activities for youth.

"Title IX has helped women to compete at all levels in athletics, which today's event showcased," said Valerie Jarrett. "By working through the agencies, the White House Council on Women and Girls will continue to support laws such as Title IX that provide opportunities for young girls to get ahead in life."

Today's 'Dear Colleague' letter provides recommendations for effective procedures for collecting, maintaining, and evaluating information on students' interests and abilities, including technical assistance on the nondiscriminatory design and implementation of surveys as one indicator among others of student interests and abilities.

For more information about Title IX, or to review the 'Dear Colleague' letter, please visit:


Anonymous said...

How timely considering our recent audit. Has the new athletic committee met yet?

Note that his announcement includes secondary schools and also diminishes the importance of surveys for information. The woman who did the PPS audit relied alot on surveys for information.

justsayin said...

about this PPS committee...is anyone else concerned that the focus in on a general overhaul and should first be concerned with equalizing the girls and boys offerings and treatment? It seems like this is how things get out of whack in this in this distrcit, somebody says something (in an audit perhaps) and then others create the work they want to do rather than the work that needs done first. Could it be how actions get justified?

Anonymous said...

You have a very valid point about the PPS focus. They did commission a Title IX audit and it did show that the female sports needed attention. Now they are going to address everybody. You are right. If that was their intention all along, we could have saved the year and a half wasted waiting for the audit (and $10,000). The people on this blog, however, seem to feel that the entire sports program needs overhauled. The program as a whole is bad - boys and girls.

Supposedly this committee is going to work to change things. Will they really? Personally, I think it is just more PPS smoke and mirrors. I'll believe it when I see it. Time and money has already been wasted at our student-athletes' expense.

Anonymous said...

Props to the "Questioner" for finding and posting this release. Should we send a copy to Derrick Lopez and his committee or do you think he received one? Would it even matter to him in the scheme of things?

justsayin said...

True that many believe the sports programs need an overhaul but after it is completed we may need to ask for another Title IX audit since the results of the overhaul as it affected girls' sports will need to be measured. Professionalizing the AD position in high schools may go a long way, or not.

Anonymous said...

Mike Gavlik, the Director of Athletics, receives a significant salary. He needs to earn it. No one holds him accountable. Start at the top. He needs to get out to the schools on a daily basis and see what is going on and then speak up. Don't allow the status quo, if not right, to go on year in and year out. PPS spends alot of money on athletics. We aren't getting our tax dollars monies worth whether for boys or girls. That is the bottom line.

Mark Rauterkus said...

Title IX is a false god in terms of PPS.

IMNSHO, the Title IX audit was a ploy for PPS as the audit gave them a pass to do nothing for two or more years.

You win by addition. Meanwhile, Title IX has done much to equalize by subtraction. (i.e., Duquesne in 2010)

On the overall global view, PPS sports for boys suck really, really bad.

PPS sports for girls suck really, really, really bad.

If you want equality, you are part of the problem.

The work that needs to be done is what I want to focus upon. So, I too will have belief when I see it. But, to the Q above.

1. The committee was formed and it did meet once last week.

2. I'm on the committee. We meet again in May.

3. Time will tell. And, another Title IX audit won't hurt in another 5 years.

Stay tuned. My "to do list" in the weeks to come includes the release of a 'pink paper' on this topic.

Anonymous said...

Is it public knowledge who else is on the committee? Are you allowed to say who is on it?

If the next meeting isn't until May, it is safe to say no changes will be forthcoming for the 2010-2011 school year. In other words, another year will be lost.

Mark Rauterkus said...

I've asked that question about the members being 'secret' or not. But I've only asked to other members, and not to the one's who is the gatekeeper. I'll inch forward on that today when I visit there for other reasons. Calls to the Parent Hotline might get noticed. ??

Plus, I can't publish a full list as I only saw who was at the meeting and don't have all the names/contacts in a clear format.

Another year might be LOST in terms of an OVERHAUL for sports in PPS but it will happen one way or another. ;)

It is hard to do implementation until after the evaluation and plans have been hatched. And, we'll need to sell this to others so as to get the support for change.

Ten years ago a task force on sports gathered and made a report. Glaciers have out sprinted many of these recomendations. In the past, the voice to act and the will to change district wide systems (in sports) wasn't there at the top.

A is for Athlete, and Archery: We need more wood behind the arrow, I dare say.

Mark Rauterkus said...

The PA House and PA Senate have a new Title IX bill pending. I got the scoop on that this past Friday with a visit there. It is for High Schools.


Anonymous said...

What do you mean, "Eeeks"? Do you have a link or bill number?

Mark Rauterkus said...

Senate Bill 890.

The Education Chairman is not happy with the bill as it could be used in the future for justifications to cut men's sports. I feel the same way. However, I've got a few suggestions that I'll make to overhaul the bill to make is otherwise.