Title IX Information
In 1998, the Connecticut Women’s Educational and Legal Fund prepared a report evaluating Lewis Mills’ compliance with Title IX. In the findings of that report it was stated that Lewis Mills, as of 1998, had an equitable athletic program. Using data from the 2003-04 school year, the major areas of that report have been re-examined.
There are two main areas that public high schools must be concerned with in determining compliance with Title IX: (1) Effective Accommodation of Students’ Interests and Abilities and (2) Equivalence in Athletic Benefits and Opportunities.
(1) Effective Accommodation of Students’ Interests and Abilities
There are three tests that are used to determine if this criterion is met. A school only needs to meet any one of the three:
A. Substantial Proportionality – This test compares the ratio of male and female participants in the athletic program with the ratio of students in the school. There is no set standard for what is considered acceptable, but courts have found that differences greater than 10% would constitute failure to meet these criteria. Lewis Mills clearly meets the substantial proportionality requirement, with 288 girl participants and 237 boys in 2003-2004 (55% female athletes, 45 % male). This favorably compares to the school enrollment ratio of 357 girls and 334 boys (52% female and 48% male). Even if 45 boys football players were to be added in, the athlete percentages would still be about 50% male and female.
B. Continuing Program Expansion – This criterion examines if a school has shown a history and continued pattern of program expansion for girls. Lewis Mills currently has nine boys sports, 9 girls sports, and 3 programs that would be considered co-ed. The last 2 sports to be added were crew (co-ed) and boys lacrosse.
C. Effective Accommodation of Interests – If schools do not meet either of the above two criteria, they could show compliance by demonstrating that the interest and abilities of girls are “fully and effectively accommodated” and that there is no need for further expansion of existing programs.
(2) Equivalence in Athletic Benefits and Opportunities
This area of compliance requires that schools satisfy a list of specific requirements concerning administration and management of sports. These requirements include equipment and supplies, scheduling of games and practice times, compensation of coaches, locker rooms and facilities, and medical and training facilities.
The areas of scheduling, locker rooms, and athletic training are clearly equitable at Lewis Mills. The current expenditures on equipment, supplies, and coach’s salaries can be seen on the attached spreadsheet “Expense Summary by Gender”. Currently, Lewis Mills has a nearly equal yearly expenditure on girls and boys programs, with boys programs slightly ahead. The addition of football, at an approximate yearly expense of $35,000 (once fields, facilities, and start-up equipment have been established), would push the ratio of yearly expenditures to about 57% boys, 43% girls.
Another way to look at the equity of expenditures is to compute the average expense per athlete. Currently, Lewis Mills spends about $417 per girl athlete and about $523 per boy. Adding 40 boy football players and $35,000 in yearly expenditures would increase this figure to approximately $574 per boy athlete.
January 5, 2005