Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Quota System Strikes Again

Another athletic department is in Title IX trouble and male athletes are being sent packing. At Point Loma, track/cross country took a big hit. Read more here.

This one has a couple of twists to it.

Vice President for Student Development Caye Smith and Athletic Director Ethan Hamilton called the meeting to inform the team, along with the women’s softball and men’s golf teams, that their programs will be cut after this year, and a women’s golf team will be added due to Title IX compliance issues.

Athlete gender ratios were cited as the main reason for cutting the programs. The issue began when the softball team lost use of the field in Sunset Cliffs Natural Park last May. Because the team doesn’t have an on-campus facility, the program, one of PLNU’s most successful, is being cut, which upsets the male-female ratio.

According to Smith and Hamilton, the male-female athlete ratio must reflect the male-female ratio of the student body, resulting in men’s programs needing to be cut in order to meet Title IX.

Title IX was passed in 1972 to ensure gender and racial equality in all areas of education, including college athletics. While the federal act covers only schools that receive government funding, California has since passed a similar law, which applies to both public and private institutions, regardless of funding.

The law requires institutions to provide equal opportunities, scholarships, funding and facilities for men’s and women’s sports.

But in recent years, controversy has sparked as to whether the requirements help or hinder college athletic programs.

The issue is not isolated to PLNU. Schools across the nation have made similar program-cutting decisions.

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