AAUW Statement on Release of Department of Education Data on Gender Equity in Public Schools

June 07, 2016

The American Association of University Women (AAUW) welcomes the release of the U.S. Department of Education’s Civil Rights Data Collection (CRDC) for 2013–14, which includes several important, school-specific gender equity data points that are helpful to advocates, parents, students, educators, and Title IX coordinators at schools nationwide.

Since 1968, the CRDC has provided the tools necessary to hold states, districts, and schools that receive U.S. Department of Education funding accountable for enforcement of all civil rights for our nation’s students. In the past several years, the CRDC has been improved to shed additional light on the pervasiveness of sex discrimination in our schools.

“AAUW members across the country use the CRDC to investigate Title IX compliance in their local communities,” said Lisa Maatz, AAUW vice president of government relations. “For example, AAUW members have used this valuable tool to identify disparities in athletics and the alarming underreporting of sexual harassment in their schools. This transparency has led to better communication between school administrators and the community and better practices to address gender inequality where it exists.”

The collection and improvement of education data is also very important to AAUW research. “Understanding of complex gender issues, such as harassment and bullying, cannot occur in a data vacuum,” said Catherine Hill, AAUW vice president of research and author of Crossing the Line: Sexual Harassment at School. “We welcome this new data.”

AAUW-supported improvements were included in this most recent collection, including the identification of schools’ civil rights coordinators and reporting of allegations of bullying or harassment based on sexual orientation or religion.

“The data released today reflects the Department of Education’s commitment to ongoing work with education stakeholders to ensure we have the information we need to protect and improve gender equity at all levels of education,” said Maatz.


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