Friday, September 24, 2010

Ball State agrees to changes

Issues of gender inequity in Ball State University's Athletic Department have been actively discussed for almost five years now but the university, in an effort to end OCR's ongoing investigation of the department, has come out and said it will bring the equity to the department in 10 program areas, according to a Chronicle of Higher Education article this week. They have also agreed to investigate the departures of several coaches of women's teams. This is something we haven't really seen before. I don't know if we can truly consider this a voluntary move even if it was Ball State's idea. The cynic in me thinks it was a little CYA-ish; especially when I see that the athletic director has claimed publicly that there was no retaliatory coaching changes made during the past five years and that Ball State will not admit it was not in compliance with Title IX. Just about a year ago we reported that the firing of tennis coach Kathy Bull, who had served in the position for 22 years, was a little suspect. This all serves to fuel my healthy suspicion around internal investigations. But no doubt this case was a factor in Ball State's decision to put forward an image of transparency.