Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Mississippi High School Coach Sues District

Catherine Papagolos, former softball coach, filed suit against the Lafayette County School District in Mississippi, claiming that she was fired in retaliation for complaining about gender equity in her salary. Specifically, it is reported that she alleged she was fired after questioning why her salary was not comparable to that of the high school baseball coach.

While Title IX does not require coaches in similar sports to be paid the same -- factors like experience and other qualifications, size of team, and size of staff may justify differences -- it is important that for protection from retaliation to kick in, all that is required is Coach Papagolos's reasonable belief that a violation had occured. No one should get fired for complaining in good faith about the gender equity of a district's policy or decision.