June 23rd, marks the 36th anniversary of Title IX, the revolutionary federal law that outlaws sex-discrimination in education. Title IX, which was originally passed in 1972, reads: "No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance[.]" The regulations for implementing Title IX were issued in 1975, and require that schools publish grievance procedures, and have Title IX coordinators.
According to a special report in Ms. magazine the gains since 1972 are extraordinary, and not just in sports: In 1970 women were only 40% of all undergraduates, now they are 60%. Previously women received just 14% of doctoral degrees, but today they earn "nearly half." In medical schools, 50% of students are now women, whereas prior to Title IX women represented just 10%, and in law school, women students have jumped from 7% to 49%. According to the Handbook for Achieving Gender Equity through Education prior to Title IX, many scholarships "could only be awarded to men, and financial aid…could be denied to women who were married, pregnant or had children."
Title IX still faces challenges. The 2007 report from the National Coalition for Women and Girls in Education notes that "Title IX is under attack from critics who claim that there is a 'boys' crisis." Yet, "studies show…that girls' gains have not come at boys' expense." Moreover, in 2006 the Department of Education further weakened Title IX by allowing more sex-segregated education in public schools. These changes have been challenged by the ACLU in recent lawsuits.
Media Resources: Feminist Majority Foundation 6/23/2008, Feminist Majority Foundation 6/11/2008, National Coalition for Women and Girls in Education 2008, Handbook for Achieving Gender Equity through Education, 2007, Ms. magazine, Fall 2007.
8/28/2015 Alaska Court Protects Abortion Access for Low-Income Women - The Alaska Superior Court struck down a state law yesterday that would have severely limited abortion access for low-income women in Alaska.
The state's Superior Court also struck down a Department of Health and Social Services regulation that placed narrow specifications on Medicaid coverage for abortions, requiring that Medicaid-funded abortions be determined by a physician to be "medically necessary." Last year, the Center for Reproductive Rights, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Planned Parenthood sued on behalf of the Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest, claiming that the narrow definition of "medically necessary" arbitrarily established conditions designed to restrict the ability of low-income women to access abortion services.
The law was temporarily blocked last July by an Alaskan state court judge.
Superior Court Judge John Suddock ordered yesterday that the state be blocked from implementing this regulation, ruling that it placed an undue burden on low-income women seeking abortion services in Alaska.
"By providing health care to all poor Alaskans except women who need abortions, the challenged regulation violates the state constitutional guarantee of 'equal rights, opportunities, and protection under the law'," the ruling read.
"We applaud the superior court for striing down these cruel restrictions on women's health and rights that violate the Alaska Constitution," said Chris Charbonneau, CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest and the Hawaiian Islands. . . .
8/26/2015 Saudi Women Prepare to Vote for the First Time - The fight for gender equality is making slow but notable progress in Saudi Arabia, where women will be allowed to vote for the first time in upcoming December elections.
This shift in Saudi law came in 2011, when a royal decree announced that women would be allowed to vote and run in local elections beginning in December of 2015. . . .