Title IX’s Unseen Consequences Keep On Evolving

It gets old saying this, but we’re going to again: we told you so. As gender quotas used to apply Title IX in college athletics surface at the high school level, we will see the same destructive consequences — such as cuts to whole teams or partial rosters on boys team (and even girls teams) — unravel.

Unfortunately, for the College of Staten Island (CSI) High School and McCown High School in Staten Island, they’re dealing with this reality. The Public Schools Athletic League (PSAL) is axing the junior varsity boys team in their joint basketball program because of a Title IX complaint. And that’s not all. The varsity boys basketball team is in hot water as well.

Tom Dowd from Staten Island Live reports why:

Citing a Title IX complaint, the PSAL is refusing to approve a junior varsity for the combined boys’ basketball program that represents CSI and McCown high schools. Because the Dragons do not have a junior varsity sanctioned by the PSAL, the varsity team, which has steadily improved over its five years of existence, cannot enter the Staten Island High School League.

How’s that for cause and effect?

It’s got Ray Palma, who took over a program still in start-up mode following a 0-14 PSAL season in 2008, tied up in knots. The Dragons improved to 5-9 last season with forward Quamaine Tomlin selected as the program’s first Advance All Star. With his fourth season about to begin, Palma wants his team to have the opportunity to compete for a championship in the league that includes all of Staten Island’s PSAL and CHSAA varsity programs.

“It’s really penalizing my varsity,” said Palma. “They’ve really grown. My team is one of the better ones on Staten Island.”

Perhaps Title IX gender quota proponents should consider both the glaring and more subtle effects of implementing a strict numbers game before denying enthusiastic, driven student athletes the ability to play sports. This case underscores the ripple effect of gender quotas in athletic departments. Now, not only will this decision deny the junior varsity boys the opportunity to compete but also the successful boys varsity team, which is improving their winning streak and wants to continue on that path. In addition, what does the potential loss of the boys varsity team mean for the league as a whole? And finally, how many other schools will begin to take this route in the quest to impose rigid proportionality numbers?

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