After refusing to voluntarily do the right thing for well over a decade, Franklin County High School has finally filed an agreement in court (PDF) to schedule its girls’ basketball team equally in primetime slots (Friday and Saturday games). Unfortunately, it took a Title IX lawsuit to convince the school that scheduling almost all of the boys’ games on weekends and only about half of the girls’ games on weekends was unfair. Nevermind that the United States Department of Education sent a letter to Indiana high schools expressing concern over their scheduling practice of reserving primetime slots for boys’ games – in 1997!
The unequal scheduling of girls’ games denied them the opportunity to play before the bigger crowds who come out on weekends and forced them to have to do their homework and play games on weeknights—burdens the boys did not face. The school’s decisions also made girls feel like they just were not as important as the boys.
Over the next several years, the school district will schedule at least two more girls’ games in prime time each year until the scheduling is equal. It is way past time for these girls to get the equal treatment to which they are entitled under the law, which was passed forty years ago.