No ‘League of Their Own’: Administration Undermines Title IX, Women’s Equality in Sports

Jun 26, 2006
Press Release

New York, NY - Today, Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney (D-Manhattan, Queens) urged the Bush Administration to reverse a controversial policy that will hamper enforcement of Title IX, a landmark law that prohibits sex discrimination in federally-funded education programs. Maloney was joined by representatives of the Women’s Sports Foundation, Equality Now, NARAL and other leading women’s rights organizations in calling on Education Secretary Margaret Spellings to reconsider a recently-enacted “clarification” of the law that allows schools to demonstrate Title IX compliance through the use of a survey e-mailed to students.  The Department’s ruling allows schools to assume that if young women don't respond to this e-mail, they're not interested in sports.

“This Administration is running Title IX into the ground,” said Rep. Maloney, “and our female athletes are losing out as a result.  Spam is not an effective law enforcement tool.  Whether by incompetence or by design, the Department of Ed. is gutting a program that’s good for young women and good for America.”  

Title IX has made possible significant advancements for women in sport: before Title IX, only 1 in 27 women and girls participated in athletics; today, that number is 1 in 3.  Participation in women's athletic programs has risen 875 percent in high schools and 437 percent in colleges since the law's passage in 1972.

This afternoon, Rep. Maloney sent a letter to Secretary Spellings asking her to reconsider the aforementioned policy and to explain what steps the Department is taking to enforce the law.  A copy of Maloney’s letter can be found at