Whenever you see a woman score a soccer goal think of Patsy Mink. Whenever you see a girl shoot the winning basket think of Edith Green. And whenever you see the words “Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972,” know that four decades ago none of that existed. It wouldn’t exist even today if had not been for the perseverance and determination of Title IX pioneers, including Birch Bayh, former WSF Trustee Lillian Greene-Chamberlain, the first president of WSF Donna de Varona and other champions of the groundbreaking legislation.
Simply put, when Title IX passed, in the eyes of the law, women became equal to men in any public school program. Four decades after the establishment of Title IX and the United States has witnessed a dramatic increase in girls' and women's participation in sport—a 904% increase in high schools and a 456% at the college level. However, Title IX is still a much-needed federal legislation that will continue to open new doors for girls and women not just in athletics but in academics and in society as well.
Despite popular belief, many women and girls still face inequities in their sports opportunities. Female high school students receive 1.3 million less athletic participation opportunities than their male counterparts (2.9 million female vs. 4.2 million male). Female college athletes receive $148 million less in athletic scholarships ($617 million female vs. $765 million male). In addition, female high school and college athletes continue to lag behind males in the provision of equitable resources such as equipment, uniforms and facilities.
Click here to learn more about Title IX and our work to narrow this gap.