3 About Me Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs College of Engineering, University of Notre DameDirector, Women’s Engineering ProgramOf Counsel, Shedlak & Benchik Law Firm, LLPSociety of Women Engineers, Title IX LeadEducationBS in aerospace engineering (Notre Dame)MS in aerospace engineering (UCLA)JD (Notre Dame)Spacecraft Systems EngineerTRW Space & Defense Sector, Redondo Beach, CA
4 Agenda What is Title IX? What has Title IX helped to accomplish? What it coversHow it worksWhat it is and is not (myth/reality)What has Title IX helped to accomplish?Positive and negative effectsWhat remains to be accomplished?Takeaways / items for your action
6 What is Title IX?Title IX is the federal gender equity in education law enacted in 1972 to open the doors of all educational programs and activities to women20 USC 1681(a): “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 . . .”Regulations codified at 34 CFR Part 106Operates like a contract between a federal funding agency and a federal funding recipientFederal money given in exchange for a promise not to discriminate on the basis of genderFederal funding agencies have monitoring/investigative responsibilities.
7 What does Title IX cover? Certain institutional obligationsPolicies, procedures, notice requirementsPolicies related to studentsAdmissions and recruitment of studentsEducation programs and activities, course offeringsHousing and other facilitiesCounselingFinancial aidEmployment assistanceHealth and insurance benefits and servicesAthleticsSexual harassmentIncludes harassment on the basis of sexual identity, but not sexual orientation
8 What does Title IX cover? (cont.) Policies related to employees and facultyRecruitmentCompensationJob classification and structureFringe benefitsTreatment of students and employees (including faculty) on the basis of marital/parental status
9 How Title IX Works, Ideally Educational institutions provide a statement of assurance to federal funding agencies that the institution does not discriminate on the basis of genderAlso provide notice to students and employees about procedures for resolving a sex discrimination complaintAnd, maintain an environment free from sex discrimination in all of its forms, which implies that the educational institution actually looks for and works to eradicate discriminationIn exchange, the government provides money in many forms, both indirect (student loans) and direct (grants)
10 How Title IX Works, Ideally (cont.) When the educational institution is made aware of sex-based discrimination, either directly or through a funding agency, it works to cure the problemIt need not necessarily cure the problem on the first attempt, but must work toward curing the problemIf the educational institution’s efforts do not cure the problem, the government may offer assistance, or may eliminate funding in all of its forms, including student loansFunding can be restored after the discrimination is eradicated
11 How Title IX Works, Really The statement of assurance from the educational institution to the federal funding agency is, often, simply pro formaThe educational institution has no obligation to root out discrimination, but merely to respond to complaintsAnd, it need not even cure the problem, but merely work to address the problemProblems that culminate in lawsuits provide monetary relief to the aggrieved, but might not effect real changeHowever, Equity in Athletics Disclosure Act requires reporting of participation opportunities and money spent on athletics by sex
12 How Title IX Works, Really (cont.) No federal funding agency has removed funding from any educational institutionInstitutions usually remedy problems before funding is removedMost federal funding agencies don’t discharge their Title IX obligationsExceptions are Education with regard to broad policies, and NASA and Energy with regard to gender equity in STEM education
13 What Title IX IsTitle IX addresses a broad range of climate issues individually, and can also address the issue of climate at the institution as a whole.Looks at policies, procedures and practices that impede the progress of women – and men in certain fields (nursing, early childhood education)Title IX helps to identify areas of inequity, either deliberate or inadvertent.Title IX helps to identify barriers, either perceived or real, to success.Clearly this is an issue in terms of how many women decide to pursue advanced degrees in engineering.
14 What Title IX Is Not Title IX does not push quotas. Despite what we hear about athleticsMen do not need to lose in order for women to succeedTitle IX is not just a women’s law.In fact, men have used Title IX successfully to address inequities in traditionally female-dominated fields like nursingTitle IX cannot make anyone study or work in a particular field or engage in a particular sport.But it can require educational institutions to alter the conditions for studying or working in particular fields, or for participating in athletics to make those more appealing to a broader range of peopleClearly this is an issue in terms of how many women decide to pursue advanced degrees in engineering.
16 The Good In 1972, women were By 1982, women were ~50% of college-aged population52% of high school graduates43% of undergraduates (across all majors)36% of post-baccalaureate students (across all majors)9% of medical school students, 7% of law students15% of college student-athletes, 8% of high school student-athletesBy 1982, women were51.3% of high school graduates51% of undergraduates46% of post-baccalaureate students25% of medical school students, 33% of law students31% of college student-athletes, 35% of high school student-athletes
17 The Good (continued) Today, women are 50.8% of high school graduates 57.5% of undergraduatesBut, a large proportion of non-traditional-aged students among women undergraduates58.8% of post-baccalaureate students48% of medical school students, 47% of law studentsBut, law-student percentage is decreasing from a high of 49% in 200444% of college student-athletes, 40% of high school student-athletesAnd, the number of women’s varsity teams at the collegiate level has grown from 2.5 per educational institution to 8.7
19 The Bad Demise of women’s (and men’s) colleges Only 47 all-women’s colleges remainOnly 3 all-men’s colleges remainDeclining representation of women among collegiate coachesIn 1972, women were 90% of coaches of women’s teamsToday, women coach only 43% of women’s teams, and only 2% of men’s teamsInterestingly, FBS-division schools do better than FCS-division or non- football schools, both in terms of the percentage of women coaches, the number of women’s teams and the participation of female student- athletesEarly focus on athletics has skewed public perception of what Title IX and does
21 The Unfinished Business Senator Birch Bayh, D-IN (2002):Noted that the progress of women in athletics, on the 30th anniversary of Title IX, “warms my heart,” then added, “at the time we were considering the Equal Rights Amendment and Title IX, I thought that the greatest benefit would come from opening the doors of our education system so that girls, young women, faculty members and administrators could fully utilize their God- given talents in the academic area.”
22 The Unfinished Business (cont.) Senator Ron Wyden, D-OR (2003):“Many Americans know [that] the enforcement of [Title IX] has brought women much closer to parity in high school and college sports opportunities. But in my view, what Title IX has achieved on the playing field remains undone in the classroom, where the promise of this law was originally directed. Particularly, I believe that Title IX has yet to be applied stringently enough in traditionally male-dominated fields such as the hard sciences, math and engineering—disciplines where our nation needs competent workers now more than ever before.”
23 The Unfinished Business (cont.) In engineering (similar trends in physical sciences, math, computer sciences):1960s, women earned0.7% of engineering bachelor’s degrees1.6% of engineering master’s degrees0.6% of engineering PhD degreesBy 1982, women earned12.3% of engineering bachelor’s degrees9% of engineering master’s degrees4.7% of engineering PhD degreesNo real growth since 1985 in the number of women earning engineering bachelor’s degreesStill some growth at master’s and PhD levels, but 42% of MS and 48% of PhD degrees go to non-domestic students
24 The Unfinished Business (cont.) Still work to do at K-12 level to equalize educationGirls take 55% of all advanced placement tests, but only47% of calculus and chemistry AP tests31% of physics AP tests17% of computer science testsGirls represent 53% of all SAT test takersBut score an average of 31 points lower than boys on the math portion of the test, despite equivalent performance on eighth-grade standardized math testsSome school districts remain amazingly inequitable in athletics participationNWLC filed a complaint against Chicago Public Schools in 2010, citing a 33 percentage point disparity in participation opportunities for girls, compared to boysK-12 inequities can persist at the collegiate level and beyond
25 The Unfinished Business (cont.) Persistent misinformation about Title IX can affect public and governmental/legislative support for gender equity effortsWomen are a majority of all college students, so there is no higher education problem for women.But, women are over-represented in fields where the pay is lower, which leads to lower lifetime incomes and persistent economic inequityWomen earn a majority of all STEM degrees now, so there is no problem in traditionally male-oriented fields.But, this includes social sciences and biological sciences, which again have lower pay; women remain under-represented in the higher-income fields of engineering, computer scienceTitle IX imposes quotas.While there is some truth to this in athletics, that occurs because athletics equity requires equitable distribution of resources, including money, in separate-but-equal programsNowhere else does Title IX impose such specificity
27 What Can Title IX Do?: Prescriptive Prescriptive – government says what has to happenSticks – take away federal funds unless certain reforms are effectedIs this really a credible threat?Should change occur only as a result of a threat?Carrots – spend federal funds at institutions that do certain good things (NSF “broadening participation” criteria; other requirements in recently proposed federal legislation)Might this limit institutional responses?Institutions might do only what the government requires … like in athleticsProblem with the “sledgehammer approach” is that it breeds animosity and it is ineffective as a threat because no one has ever lost federal funds for not complying with Title IX.Problem with the “carrot approach” is that it depends on others to monitor our behavior.27
28 What Can Title IX Do?: Transformative Transformative – Title IX reviews can provide a guide to understanding where in the educational process inequities do occur and where changes should occurEvidence of inequities is specific to a particular educational environmentSolutions fit the unique institutional missionCreativity could lead to a range of solutions that could benefit a wider range of studentsProblem with the “sledgehammer approach” is that it breeds animosity and it is ineffective as a threat because no one has ever lost federal funds for not complying with Title IX.Problem with the “carrot approach” is that it depends on others to monitor our behavior.28
29 Critical Issue #1: Climate 2004 GAO report (GAO ) on Title IX and STEM noted that “the variability in men’s and women’s participation in the sciences may result from [actual] discrimination in the workplace or [from] subtler discrimination about what types of career or job choices women can make”When a woman makes a decision not to participate in a particular field, she often bases that decision on who she sees around her and how she views their success and happinessTitle IX can help to identify aspects of an unfriendly (or chilling or toxic or hostile) academic climate that includes few role models to inspire younger women and that passively (or in some cases actively) discourages women from participating in particular fields29
30 Critical Issue #2: Success Standards A related climate issueSome fields (such as STEM fields) present themselves as objective, in terms of criteria for success, but the system generally rewards those who behave like those who have come before them and have succeededIt does not bend to incorporate factors that can help women succeedExample: the long hours required to achieve meaningful research success within the first six or seven years of employment as a faculty member (tenure)Can be detrimental to mothers or women who want to be mothersCan force women to choose between motherhood and careerAnd some policies designed to help women here might actually hurtOn that last point about some factors hurting women, mentionfamily leave policies that allow men to do additional researchhow stopping a tenure clock might look to outside tenure reviewers.3030
31 Success Standards (cont.) Example: Admissions standards that, while seemingly objective, actually favor menAmong women and men taking the same advanced math courses in college, women with somewhat lower SAT scores often do better than men with higher scores.So, SATs under-predict female performance and over-predict male performanceAnd, reliance on standardized test scores impacts women more negativelyNearly twice as many boys as girls score over 700 on the SAT math test, and the ratio is even more skewed as scores approach 800But boys also are much more likely than girls to get all the questions wrongIs the SAT (or GRE) truly an objective predictor of success?Can other indicators of success allow more women to enter programs?On that last point about some factors hurting women, mentionfamily leave policies that allow men to do additional researchhow stopping a tenure clock might look to outside tenure reviewers.3131
32 Title IX: Transforming the Climate Unless climate issues are addressed, we cannot know whether the under-representation of women in certain fields is a result of personal choices, or societal acculturation and expectations, or utter weariness and frustration with a system that simply does not work for womenThis is where Title IX can be a powerful tool for transformative change – in identifying the policies, procedures and practices that limit the participation of women in certain educational programs and activitiesAnd this is where organizations such as AAUW can be a catalyst for meaningful change, by supporting efforts that improve the climate for women in higher education32
34 TakeawaysTitle IX has done a lot to transform higher education for women, but work remainsAt the K-12 level, because those young women and girls are future college studentsIn particular programs in higher education, because women continue to be under-represented in programs that can yield high incomesThe federal government has had little impact on gender equity in academic programsNASA & Energy reviews, while good, have focused on only a few fields at only a few educational institutionsNo reviews have focused on overall institutional climateFederal legislation (EADA-like) to force educational institutions to review themselves has stalled every time it has been introduced
35 Takeaways (continued) Institutions/programs can conduct NASA-like reviews to self-assessIndividual faculty can assess institutional commitment to gender equityDo you know who your institution’s Title IX compliance officer is?Do you receive annual notices about Title IX, including the grievance policy at your institution?Does your institution actively seek information on why women leave the faculty or staff?Do policies or procedures differentially impact women versus men?Parental leave is a particularly sticky subject
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