Title IX in its Third Decade: The Commission on Opportunity in Athletics


Since its passage in 1972, Title IX of the Education Amendments (44 Fed. Reg. at 71413) has, at times, provoked intense public interest and scrutiny when applied to federally funded, school-sponsored athletic programmes in the United States. In the year 2002, which marked the thirtieth anniversary of Title IX, the level and pace of the national debate on equity issues in athletics was again quite high. Within a contentious climate created by men’s sports advocates alleging that Title IX had been used to curtail or deny boys and young men equitable access to athletics, President George W. Bush charged the US Department of Education to appoint a commission to revisit longstanding and well-established enforcement guidelines, subjecting them to mass public comment and speculation. The purpose of this article is to examine the impact the appointment of the Commission on Opportunity on Athletics had on the national dialogue surrounding Title IX and its application to athletic programmes. The article concludes with an analysis of the political agenda behind the Commission’s work which was revealed in the tone and tenor of the Commission’s process and the final action taken by the Department of Education after the report of the Commission was issued.

How to Cite

Staurowsky, E., (2016) “Title IX in its Third Decade: The Commission on Opportunity in Athletics”, Entertainment and Sports Law Journal 2(3), 4. doi: https://doi.org/10.16997/eslj.129







Ellen Staurowsky



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