Title IX: Promises Still Unfulfilled

By Fox, Connie | JOPERD--The Journal of Physical Education, Recreation & Dance, March 1997 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

Title IX: Promises Still Unfulfilled


Fox, Connie, JOPERD--The Journal of Physical Education, Recreation & Dance


When a law is enacted for the purpose of changing social values, the law causes great controversy. Title IX was enacted in 1972, and has been controversial since. Some believe it is morally wrong to "support girls' sports on the budget of boys' football"; wrong to insist that girls have sports; wrong to make a big deal about sports anyway! Others believe it is necessary to allow girls the opportunity to decide for themselves whether sports are important in their lives; necessary to allow for equal opportunity. Regardless of the controversy, those girls who were entering school in the 1970s are the first generation to benefit from Title IX.

Recently, Title IX has received its greatest praise. It has demonstrated to the world that girls and women who also are given the opportunity and encouragement to participate in athletics can succeed. The number of women in the recent Olympic games was an all-time high, and the U.S. women who were given athletic opportunities through Title IX were also a greater presence. Not only were there more U.S. women, but they were more successful than ever before. Clearly, the effects of Title IX have been demonstrated and hailed.

However, the thrust for equity in athletic opportunity is a component of Title IX that has not reached full potential. Discrepancies in collegiate funding for male and female athletes is widely known. Much has been written on the difficulty a school faces in being equitable to its students and fielding a football team. But collegiate athletics is not the only place to find Title IX violations or lack of enforcement.

Well-intentioned educational administrators view the responsibility to provide equitable athletic opportunities as a trivial matter. They believe these opportunities are important only for the highly skilled, competitive athlete. In most cases, the most highly skilled and most competitive athletes have been male. However, the women at the 1996 Olympics showed girls everywhere that high skill levels and high competence are available to girls. It is a shame that girls still need to ask for the same opportunity provided to boys.

Recent Nike commercials have probably raised more awareness of gender inequity than the passage of Title IX did. In one commercial, several girls repeat "if you let me play" while explaining the mental, physical, and social benefits from vigorous physical activity. Would a boy ever ask to be allowed to play? Other commercials focused on the competitive nature of sports and the excellence of women in those sports. But competition and sports are not the only arena for girls provided by Title IX. All physical activity must be available to girls and women.

Elementary and secondary education programs are often in violation of Title IX. It is still common to find boys wrestling and girls dancing, but extremely rare to find girls learning to wrestle while boys dance. Usually, program administrators claim ignorance until someone challenges the inequity.

In the following letter, taken from the Chicago Sun Times (Monday, April 29, 1996), a young female athlete expressed why participation is so much more than competition. As girls across the country become motivated to play or to compete from watching some of the outstanding performances of the women Olympians, let us hope that they too will be vocal and supportive of Title IX the way Carlee Bator is.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

Title IX: Promises Still Unfulfilled
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?