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    The goal of Title IX was to bring equity to education in all forms, from the classroom experience, to all kinds of extra curricular activities.  Title IX has probably become most famous for what it has done for female athletes.  An event occurred at the high school I teach at this week that has me wondering whether Title IX was violated.
    Typically, the school has one fall pep rally and one winter pep rally.  (Don't ask me why spring sport athletes are not promoted).  The fall pep rally was scheduled for two weeks from now.  At these pep rallies, all of the athletes, male and female, are promoted to the entire school.  Each team is introduced and cheers are done for them.
    This past week it was announced that there would be a special pep rally held this week for the football team only.  It was done without consulting teachers and students.  Coaches of the other fall sports were upset that only the football team would get their own rally.  Athletes from other sports were upset, some of female athletes were nearly in tears because their teams were also doing well, and they could not understand why they could not be promoted and recognized.

    When the Athletic Director was questioned about this, his response was that the football team brings in money and deserves to have extra attention.  He also stated that all of the other athletes would have to "get over it."  The acting principal was upset that anyone would even question his decision to have a football only pep rally.  Both of them stated that no other teams would be given their own rallies.    
    I started researching and found that a mother in New York filed a complaint with the Office of Civil Rights because at her daughter's school, the boys teams were being promoted and the girls teams were not. The boys teams had cheerleaders, pep bands, and even charged for tickets.  The OCR ended up ruling that girls teams must be given the same publication and promotion as boys teams.
    Is anyone familiar with Title IX and the OCR?  Do you think a complaint should be filed with the OCR?  Is this a winning complaint?

Originally posted to Bo Team on Sun Oct 07, 2007 at 07:27 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  I appreciate your comments (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ek hornbeck, webranding

    and hopefully some lawyers can weigh in on this.

  •  I Actually Have An Issue With This (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Bo Team

    on many levels. When I was in high school I played a sport, a sport that would pay my way through college. We were 148/5. Never had a pet rally. Nothing. Nobody cared. It was fu*&ing golf. I love the sport, but it is golf. Not football, basketball, or baseball.

    I am 110% open to the concept of Title IX. I don't think how it has been put in place is close to far.

    "It is not enough to win, all others must lose," Sun Tzu.

    by webranding on Sun Oct 07, 2007 at 07:39:41 AM PDT

  •  Sorry not a lawyer... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    esquimaux, Bo Team

    But even the "the Football Team brings in the money" position is so outrageous that I'd do what I could to make sure both these arrogant assholes got fired.

    •  Let's not go overboard (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ek hornbeck, Bo Team

      Educated? Great. Reprimanded? perhaps. Fired? If holding a pep rally for a football team is their worst sin, then this solution is rather inappropriate.

      Excess ain't rebellion. You're drinking what they're selling. - Cake

      by slatsg on Sun Oct 07, 2007 at 07:54:51 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yup. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        slatsg, Bo Team

        I've actually had a musical director denied a promotion (he eventually resigned) because I and a team of investigative journalists proved he had been playing favorites.

        Won a Columbia School of Journalism Award for an editorial I wrote that year too (not on the same subject).

        Yes, it was our High School alternative newspaper, but we were unsubsidized (paid for by advertising alone) and had a circulation of about 4000.

        •  Kudus on the journalism award (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          ek hornbeck, TheBlaz, Bo Team

          I've been on both sides of this issue. As an AD, I was in the position of continually attempting to find ways of raising revenue. I tried to raise attendance at all our games.

          But the fact is football sells. This year our team is doing better than it has done in 10 years. We will play our last two games at home against two other teams which are also doing well. The gates will be tremendous and our AD (who is female) will do everything she can to promote those games, as she should.

          OTOH, as the girls track coach of a very successful program, I understand why athletes in some sports feel slighted.

          Excess ain't rebellion. You're drinking what they're selling. - Cake

          by slatsg on Sun Oct 07, 2007 at 08:23:29 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Sorry, I Wasn't Clear (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Bo Team

    what I said stands ... but a pep rally for the football team only works for me. I don't see anything wrong with it.

    "It is not enough to win, all others must lose," Sun Tzu.

    by webranding on Sun Oct 07, 2007 at 07:48:01 AM PDT

  •  The AD also said (0+ / 0-)

    when other sports can get a thousand people to come, maybe they could have a rally.

    But who comes to these games.  The team has 50 players.  There are 2 cheerleading squads there and a huge marching band.  The parents of the cheerleaders and the band make up over half of the crowd.  If other sports were given a huge band and cheerleaders and all of their parents, they would have large crowds too.

    •  I Was One Shot Away (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Bo Team

      from winning the state title my senior year. In the rally I got no play. That our football team was above 500 was key. I wasn't mad. It is just how it is. I mean are you going to watch the NFL today or golf?

      "It is not enough to win, all others must lose," Sun Tzu.

      by webranding on Sun Oct 07, 2007 at 07:56:37 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I will watch the NFL (0+ / 0-)

        but this is about high school students.  What good does it do to boost the egos of 50 students at the cost of 100 other students.

        •  So The Tennis Team (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Bo Team

          ought to have a rally like that of a football team?

          "It is not enough to win, all others must lose," Sun Tzu.

          by webranding on Sun Oct 07, 2007 at 08:07:08 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Why not? It'll show the kids that there (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Bo Team

            other people doing all kinds of neat things.

            •  Well Maybe ..... (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Bo Team

              Nobody came out to see me win a state title in golf. Nobody walked a few feet to watch one of the better persons in the state play tennis. It was just how it was .... and will be.

              "It is not enough to win, all others must lose," Sun Tzu.

              by webranding on Sun Oct 07, 2007 at 08:14:02 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  And that's stupid, right? (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Bo Team

                No one's asking that people be compelled to watch the stuff, just give a few minutes at a pep rally (although I would've happily demurred when I made it to divisionals in tennis.  I hated going to pep rallies, I can't imagine how much worse it would've been to be in one)

                It's just high school; make the kids feel good about whatever stupid sport they're playing and be done with it.  (I include football in the list of "stupid sports," fwiw.)

          •  I am all for pep rallies (0+ / 0-)

            that recognize all athletes.  I am also all for recognition events when an individual team accomplishes something like a league championship.

            There is no reason to single out the football team or the girls tennis team if they have not actually accomplished anything.

            To single out the football team, when no other team would be singled out in such a way, diminishes the hard work and dedication of all the other student athletes.  You should have been given recognition for going to states in golf.

            These same administrators do not even attend many of the other sports' games.  A not so subtle message that other athletes are not as valued as the football team.

      •  I've coached both footbal and track (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Bo Team

        The girls team won 4 regional titles in a row. No other sports team has ever done that at our school. Had my football teams done that they would have genereated a huge amount of press and for weeks on end. As it is, my girls team usually gets a front page article after their championship, but not always.

        The girls basketball team, OTOH, has a much greater following and generates much more press when they are successful.

        Excess ain't rebellion. You're drinking what they're selling. - Cake

        by slatsg on Sun Oct 07, 2007 at 08:06:58 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  High school shouldn't be a darwinian battle, (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Bo Team

        driven by Q scores and market share.  I mean, it's just high school for God's sake.  That said, I can't get especially worked up it, either.

  •  I really don't belive it's a gender issue (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    burrow owl, webranding, Bo Team

    I think that they were probably being truthful about the revenue issue. However this also is wrong, IMHO. I've dealt with this many times over a career that includes coaching the so-called major sports(football for 30 years) and other sports(track for 24 years; head girls track coach -15 years). Prep athletics should always be about the kids and not about money. If athletics has value, which I believe, then all athletes should be accorded the same treatment.

    Another question is how well was the team doing? We've had rallies for girls teams when they were playing for a championship and visa versa.

    Excess ain't rebellion. You're drinking what they're selling. - Cake

    by slatsg on Sun Oct 07, 2007 at 07:52:18 AM PDT

    •  It was a regular season game (0+ / 0-)

      and the team will not go to the playoffs or win a championship.

      They do have their best record in a few years, but so do several of the other teams.

      There was a separate recognition rally last year for the hockey team when they won a league championship, which I have no problem with.  Accomplishments should be recognized.  It is the promotion of just one sport, a male sport, that I have a problem with.  If the other sports were give the same kind of respect and publicity from administration then maybe they would get more fans.

      It is a self-perpetuating cycle.  Football is popular, so it gets all of the extras, so it remains popular.  I have no problem football, in fact I have had NFL season tickets.  My problem is that high school students are treated differently because of what they choose to do.

      •  Well, Get Used To It (0+ / 0-)

        When I played a Division I sport we got access to resources "around" the time the football, basketball, baseball needed the resources. It is just how it works.

        "It is not enough to win, all others must lose," Sun Tzu.

        by webranding on Sun Oct 07, 2007 at 08:03:03 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I doubt that wrestling, track or cross country (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Bo Team

        will generate the crowds that football does, regardless of the publicity.

        When I was AD we had all kinds of promotions for the Girls BB team, which was successful at the time. Our 3-6 football team still had more fans than the girls. Even our JV football ganes most often had more fans.

        The question you should ask yourself is why do have athletics? It certainly isn't to raise money. (Though as a former AD I do understand the quest for the dollar). It also shouldn't be adulation. Even though few people come to watch the girls onmy team run, throw or jump, they still consider tarck a great experience.

        Excess ain't rebellion. You're drinking what they're selling. - Cake

        by slatsg on Sun Oct 07, 2007 at 08:14:39 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  This doesn't sound sexist to me at all. (0+ / 0-)

    It sounds stupid, perhaps, but in truth, the money argument CAN be valid.

    I wrote several papers about Title IX in college, did lots of research. In many colleges, revenue from the football teams paid for nearly 50% of the athletic department's costs, including equipment for both girls and boys teams.

    I really don't have a problem with them just promoting the football team. If the students do, they should boycott or protest (peacefully), but a lawsuit?

    That reeks of nannyism. This isn't a sexism issue, and there's more to Title IX than meets the eye.

    It's a laudable thing, but some of the instances in which it's used are ridiculous. I've read about sports teams that had to be disbanded because of Title IX, where colleges were forced to have the same amount of sports teams for girls as there were for boys, REGARDLESS of whether there was enough interest to warrant it.

    Like I said, Title IX is a good thing, but I've discovered a LOT of ways in which its use has ruined athletic programs for literally no good reason.

    Weave a circle round him thrice, And close your eyes with holy dread, For he on honey-dew hath fed, And drunk the milk of Paradise.

    by TheBlaz on Sun Oct 07, 2007 at 08:09:39 AM PDT

    •  It seems (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      esquimaux

      that doing something for male athletes that you would not do for female athletes does not constitute gender equity.

      •  That's true, (0+ / 0-)

        but it's extremely dishonest of you to make an argument that what's happening here is sexist OR gender inequality.

        In order for this to be an example of sexism or gender inequality, the entire motive would have to be that "we'll do it for the guys' teams, but not for the girls' teams."

        That's not happening here. ONLY the football team is getting this rally. They're discriminating against EVERY other team--male and female.

        If they were having special rallies for all the guy teams and NOT the girl ones, then you'd have an argument. But that's not happening here, and I think it's really shady and disengenuous of you to suggest otherwise.

        Weave a circle round him thrice, And close your eyes with holy dread, For he on honey-dew hath fed, And drunk the milk of Paradise.

        by TheBlaz on Sun Oct 07, 2007 at 09:06:43 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  The Office of Civil Right in New York (0+ / 0-)

          ruled otherwise.  Not all the boys teams were given cheerleaders, but if they were given to a boys team, they also had to be given to a girls team.  If a rally is given to a boys team, then it also should be given to a girls team.

          •  I'm not disputing that aspect of the law. (0+ / 0-)

            I'm disputing your claims and implications that the football rally is sexist or is an example of "gender inequality."

            It's not. You've made no arguments against that point of mine, you're just arguing against something I'm not disagreeing with you on.

            Weave a circle round him thrice, And close your eyes with holy dread, For he on honey-dew hath fed, And drunk the milk of Paradise.

            by TheBlaz on Sun Oct 07, 2007 at 10:46:41 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Okay, I understand what you are saying. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              TheBlaz

              I guess the point we disagree on is that I feel it is inherently sexist to favor football as educators.  But, I understand how you can see that differently.

              Also, I have known the people involved and their views on sports and gender.

              •  Fair enough. (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Bo Team

                I think it's inherently stupid to favor any sport over academics, but such is the world we live in, I suppose.

                Weave a circle round him thrice, And close your eyes with holy dread, For he on honey-dew hath fed, And drunk the milk of Paradise.

                by TheBlaz on Sun Oct 07, 2007 at 11:27:28 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

  •  Lots of more important things to worry about (0+ / 0-)
    •  Then I will find the (0+ / 0-)

      most important thing in the world and focus only on that.  Thanks for setting me straight.  This will no doubt be my last post because there are much more important things than posting on blogs.

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