Equity in School Athletic Programs

Under state and federal law, the overall benefits and treatment of athletic programs for girls and boys must be equitable. All interscholastic, club, or intramural athletics operated, sponsored, or provided by the school district must provide similar benefits, opportunities, and treatment to female and male students.

Equal Benefits and Treatment for Girls and Boys

Discrimination is prohibited in all athletic programs — interscholastic, club and intramural sports — provided by public schools. The benefits, opportunities, and the treatment of each sex must be equal or equal in effect — though not necessarily the same.

Some differences could be nondiscriminatory. For example, the need for unique equipment for students who play football or lacrosse may explain some differences between programs.

Annual Evaluation

Districts use an annual evaluation to identify differences between boys' and girls' athletic programs that may be discriminatory. Schools should correct any differences that have a negative impact on students of one sex when compared with the benefits or services available to the other sex.

Questions, Concerns, Complaints

A discussion with your school principal, or Title IX coordinator at the school district, is often the best step to address your concerns or disagreements about equity in athletic programs. Share what happened and let the principal or coordinator know what they can do to help resolve the problem.

If you cannot resolve the concern or disagreement this way, you can file a complaint.