The Florida High School Athletic Association will pay $41,200 in legal fees to lawyers for parents who sued over cuts in student sports, according to a settlement agreement.
A group of parents sued the organization in June, saying it unfairly hurt female student athletes through schedule changes that cut the number of varsity games by 20 percent and all other play by 40 percent through the 2010-11 school year.
The association said it made the cuts to help school districts cope in the sour economy. Parents said the changes, which exempted football, violated Title IX, the federal law that requires schools to offer equal athletic opportunities to men and women.
A month after the lawsuit, the group’s board of directors backed off the announced cuts, saying then that it did not want to pass along the costs of a legal challenge to member schools. Under the terms of the settlement, the association also will provide gender-equity training and will not retaliate against parents or children involved in the lawsuit.
A version of this article appeared in the October 21, 2009 edition of Education Week as Florida Athletic Group to Pay Fees for Parent Suit Over Sports Cuts