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Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association Facing Allegations of Title IX Violations

The Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association is facing allegations that the organization has violated Title IX by choosing to recognize fall as its sole girls' soccer season.

From the Damned If You Do file: The Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association found itself in federal court in Las Vegas in August, facing allegations that the organization has violated Title IX by choosing to recognize fall as its sole girls' soccer season. Moving all girls' winter (southern) soccer programs to the fall, which the NIAA made effective for this school year, aligns the Class 4A seasons in southern and northern Nevada, allowing a single state champion to be determined. No matter, says Assistant U.S. Attorney Eric Johnson, father of Emma Johnson, a Green Valley High School student whose Las Vegas-area school district decided to play an independent schedule this winter to avoid moving its season.

Johnson is unhappy that the fall-only sanctioning will fail to officially recognize a southern Nevada champion, which he says would in effect violate Title IX by creating a situation that treats girls different from boys. (Girls at Green Valley would have only two winter sports, basketball and bowling, if soccer were moved, whereas boys have three.) Meanwhile, NIAA executive director Eddie Bonine told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that he has begun to field complaints from northern Nevada parents, who allege that not crowning a single state champion would be a Title IX violation. Johnson, whose daughter would be forced to choose between volleyball and soccer if the latter sport were to move to the fall, suggests that northern Nevada schools move their soccer season from fall to winter if they want a unified state champion, telling the Review-Journal, "I'm not going to say it wouldn't be cold."

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