June 23, 2012 marks the 40th anniversary of Title IX, the landmark legislation that was enacted in 1972 and applies to all educational institutions that receive federal funding. Title IX was written into law to provide equal opportunities for all genders in regard to educational programs and activities at all levels, including but not limited to elementary schools, secondary schools and colleges and universities. Athletic programs are just one area that are considered educational programs or activities.
Title IX was passed in 1972 as part of the Educational Amendments to the 1964 Civil Rights Act. Title IX simply states, "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."