In early June 2013, members of the Fabulous 70s traveled to Capitol Hill in Washington, DC to participate in two events to celebrate Title IX and raise support for HR 455: The High School Data Transparency Act. The morning's event was held in the Canon House Office Building where the American Association of University Women (AAUW) and Rep. Louise Slaughter's (D-NY) office set up two basketball hoops in the historic Caucus Room (where the McCarthy hearings were once held). Members of the WNBA's Washington Mystics held a clinic for local middle school girls and then Congressional members and staff participated in a shooting competition with the Fabulous 70s as referees. In the evening, we screened Granny's Got Game in the Capitol Visitor's Center and had a discussion with the audience about what we all can do to help girls get more opportunities to play sports. Photos from the day are on our Facebook page here.
Title IX and The High School Data Transparency Act
Title IX, the law that prohibits sex discrimination in educational programs which receive federal funding assistance, has made great strides in breaking through barriers for women athletes. But today, more than 40 years later, there is still work to be done, particularly at the high school level. High schools girls continue to face discrimination in scheduling, equipment, facilities, and overall participation opportunities.
Better information can help high schools enhance compliance with Title IX and continue expanding athletic opportunities. Unlike colleges, high schools are not currently required to release any data on equity in sports, making it difficult for high schools and the communities they serve to assess the status of girls' access to athletic opportunities. The High School Data Transparency Act (H.R. 455/S. 217) would address this gap, requiring high schools to report basic data on the number of female and male students in their athletic programs and the expenditures made for their sports teams. This data is already collected, but not reported. You can read the text of the bill and follow its progress here.
The HR 455 bill is sponsored by Rep. Louise Slaughter. You can read her letter to her fellow Congressional members about the bill here.
If you aren't already familiar with Title IX and would like to learn more, I suggest reading this fantastic resource from the National Coalition for Women and Girls in Education here.
How you can help!
The American Association of University Women (AAUW) has a wonderful website called the Two-Minute Activist. You simply enter your zip code and it figures out your Congressional representatives and helps you write them an email to cosponsor and support The High School Data Transparency Act. It is very easy! We learned on our Capitol Hill trip that representatives actually do listen to their constituents if we speak loudly enough. Please take just two minutes to do this! The website is here: