In 1971, there was only one female high school athlete for every twelve males. Nationwide, only 294,000 girls were participating in high school sports, while a whopping 3.6 million boys enjoyed spots on athletic teams. Then in 1972, Congress passed Title IX, a federal law that prohibits sex discrimination in any school receiving federal money, which includes nearly all public schools, most private colleges, and many private secondary and elementary schools.
Despite the 1972 enactment of Title IX, public and private schools continue to discriminate against female athletes. CWLC fights this discrimination, proudly maintaining our role as an expert in Title IX enforcement throughout California and serving as a primary resource center in the state for girls, parents, coaches, school officials, and policymakers.
Our efforts include fighting Title IX violations, including students who are discriminated against in athletic programs, lack accommodations for those who are pregnant or parenting, and students who have experienced sexual assault and harassment on their college campuses.
Title IX: Athletics
Even though both state and federal laws have prohibited sex discrimination in sports programs for over forty years in publicly funded educational institutions and recreational facilities, girls are still losing out on the playing field. CWLC is an advocate for the need to vigorously enforce these laws. To enhance girls’ preparedness for competitive sports, CWLC is one of the few organizations focused on equity at the K-12 level.
Given our successful Title IX athletics litigation in Ollier v. Sweetwater Union High School District, CWLC continues to work with students and parents to ensure equal access to sports on school campuses across the state. We know that athletic opportunities boost young women’s confidence and help prepare them for future educational and professional endeavors.
Title IX: Pregnant and Parenting Students
CWLC is a strong advocate in the fight to end discrimination against pregnant and parenting students, and school employees. Despite legal protections against sex discrimination in education, pregnant and parenting students are routinely stigmatized, marginalized, and coerced into attending substandard, non-traditional schools.
To protect students’ rights, CWLC trains advocates, legal services attorneys, and school personnel throughout California on the educational rights of pregnant and parenting students, including their right to stay in school, participate in all extra-curricular activities, and receive child care and confidential family planning services.
CWLC intervenes on behalf of pregnant and parenting students by providing support, ranging from direct contact with school administrators to the implementation of reasonable accommodations for students, including litigation when necessary. CWLC also advocates for policy initiatives to protect the civil rights of pregnant and parenting students.
Title IX: Sexual Assault and Harassment
Title IX states that all students should have access to a fair and equal education, but sexual violence has become an epidemic on college campuses depriving female students their rights. CWLC closely monitors the fight to end sexual assault on college campuses and beyond. We are committed to providing students and their advocates the resources they need to prevent campus sexual assaults and secure justice for survivors. CWLC delivers trainings on campus sexual assault and other Title IX issues to students, educators, and attorneys in California.