Title IX at 50

June 23, 2022, marked the 50th anniversary of Title IX, the groundbreaking civil rights law that prohibits gender-based discrimination in any school or educational program that receives federal funding. Title IX has been a catalyst for building awareness of and appreciation for the positive impact of sports, play, and recreation on the social-emotional development of young girls.

The State of Play for Girls in Sports

  • Since its passage, at the high school level, participation opportunities for girls have risen from 294,015 in 1972 to 3.4 million in 2018-2019. And girls who were once only 7% of high school varsity athletes, now comprise 43% of athletes.
  • Girls who play sports have higher levels of confidence, self-esteem, and long-term health benefits. But only 11% of girls aged 5-13 in southeast Michigan get one hour of play per day.
  • Girls who have female coaches see them as role models and mentors who show them that they belong in sports. But only 27% of youth sports head coaches are women. 
  • Young girls in Michigan participate in athletics at a lower rate than boys, mirroring national trends.
  • Socioeconomic status and geographic region have the largest impact on the likelihood of girls’ participation in K-12 sports. Schools with students from lower socioeconomic status backgrounds experience lower rates of participation and retention.

Demand IX

We are proud to partner with the Title IX Anniversary Coalition, a group composed of Billie Jean King Leadership Initiative, National Women’s Law Center, Women’s Sports Foundation and other key youth and community leaders to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of Title IX and to support ongoing efforts for strong Title IX protections and enforcement.

Sign the Demand IX pledge

By signing this pledge you are demanding to fight until the full promise of Title IX is real. Your signature means that you value fairness and equity for everyone. Your signature means that you will work to demand that our civil rights are protected. Your signature means that you demand all students be protected under Title IX.


Girls on the Run

Women’s Sports Foundation 50 Years of Title IX: We’re Not Done Yet

The Women’s Sports Foundation has been working toward gender equality in sport through research, advocacy, education, grant-making, and leadership development. As a national partner, established in 1974 to advance the lives of women and girls through sports and physical activity, the Women’s Sports Foundation enables all girls and women to reach their potential in sports and life.

Michigan Task Force on Women in Sport: Research Report

This report represents research to understand the status of women and girls in sports in Michigan. It begins with a landscape overview of the current state of Michigan girls and women in sports at a K-12, college and professional level, and then proceeds to discuss Michigan female participation in athletics and the experience of athletes and sports leadership professionals.

State of Play Southeast Michigan 

An independent assessment conducted by the Aspen Institute’s Sports & Society Program that examines access, quality, and participation in youth sports in Southeast Michigan.