The National Women’s Law Center filed federal discrimination complaints today accusing 12 school systems, including Wake County, of failing to provide high school girls with equal opportunities as boys to play sports.
The complaints say the 12 school districts are in violation of Title IX, the federal law that prohibits sex discrimination in federally funded education programs. The group says that the districts have high schools with double-digit gaps between the percentage of students who are girls and the percentage of athletes who are girls.
"By not providing equal opportunities for its female high school students, the Wake County Public School System is depriving many girls of the significant benefits associated with playing sports," according to the complaint filed against Wake. "Sports participation has dramatic positive effects on young women’s health, academic success, employment prospects, and self-esteem."
The center used school district data from 2004 and 2006.
The other school districts named in the complaints are Chicago; Clark County, Nev.; Columbus, Ohio; Deer Valley (Ariz.); Henry County, Ga.; Houston; Irvine, Calif.; New York City; Oldham County, Ky.; Sioux Falls, S.D. and Worcester, Mass.
Click here to view the complaint filed against Wake with the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Civil Rights.