An investigation of the impact of Title IX on the physical education instructional programs in the public secondary schools of the state of Tennessee.

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Rogers, Doris
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Middle Tennessee State University
This study was designed to investigate the impact of Title IX of the Educational Amendments Act of 1972 on the physical education instructional programs of Tennessee's secondary public schools in terms of: (1) scheduling and grouping of students, (2) feelings about coeducational classes, (3) effect of Title IX on skill development and 10 instructional aspects, and (4) changes in status of selected activities.
Cover letters and questionnaires were mailed to the principals of 135 randomly selected public secondary schools, requesting that the physical education chairpersons complete and return the questionnaires. Ninety-six subjects participated in the study. Data were analyzed by frequency distribution and cross tabulations for school size, school level, and geographic area, yielding percentages.
Based on the data obtained, the following major conclusions appear to be warranted: (1) A change occurred in the physical education programs of Tennessee's public secondary schools, and the majority of schools appeared to be approaching full compliance as set forth by the Title IX Regulations. (2) The majority of chairpersons and other physical education instructors was male. (3) Most of the chairpersons and other physical education teachers favored some coeducational physical education, while the majority of students preferred sex-segregated classes. (4) Skill development of the majority of boys and girls was perceived to be negatively affected when a member of the opposite sex was present. (5) Most aspects of the physical education curriculum either improved favorably or remained basically as they were before Title IX. (6) The most obvious impact of Title IX was the decrease of sex-differentiated activities, with team sports observed to be the most dominant category of activities. (7) Class AAA schools were perceived as making the implementation with less difficulty than other size schools, with West AAA schools having more difficulty with implementation than did East and Middle AAA schools. (8) Chairpersons, other physical education teachers, and students from East AAA schools were perceived to prefer coeducational physical education classes more than their counterparts from AAA schools in Middle and West. (9) All Middle Tennessee schools (A, AA, and AAA) were perceived to have improved more in teaching conditions, effective use of facilities, and managing discipline problems, than did their respective counterparts in East and West schools.
Based on the results of this investigation, the following recommendations were made: (1) The State Department of Education should consider the revision of the 1975-76 State Physical Education Curriculum Guide, to include a coeducational activity format. (2) Schools should encourage increased participation by both sexes in a wide variety of activities. (3) New discipline techniques and criteria for acceptable behavior for both boys and girls need to be developed and enforced in a consistent manner. (4) Attention needs to be directed to those educational practices which facilitate maximum skill achievement by both boys and girls in a coeducational setting. (5) Previous stereotype images and/or expectations associated with male or female students must be reappraised, and new expectations for both male and female students in coeducational activities must be developed.
It was noted that the conclusions and recommendations have implications for institutions of higher education concerning the professional preparation programs for training future physical education teachers and that clinics, in-service programs, and workshops need to be afforded teachers who are currently involved with the implementation of the Title IX mandates in regard to coeducational physical education classes.