The University of California Berkeley has agreed to be placed under indefinite Title IX monitoring by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights.
According to a report by The Daily Californian, the agreement is the result of an OCR investigation into UC Berkeley’s Title IX compliance, specifically as it pertains to the school’s women’s field hockey team.
The OCR investigation found that UC Berkeley’s field hockey team was without a home field for two consecutive years. The school says it has finished the field at Underhill Field, a multi-year $8 million project. As part of OCR’s monitoring, UC Berkeley has to prove that its men’s and women’s teams have equal access to practice and competitive fields. The school also has to prove that it equally promotes men’s and women’s sports.
UC Berkeley field hockey head coach Shellie Onstead said it was significant that OCR actually made a visit to Berkeley’s campus to ensure Title IX compliance. “It’s super rare for OCR to actually come onto campus,” she said.
The OCR investigation began in May of 2015 when six field hockey players field a Title IX complaint. According to the Californian, UC Berkeley has not admitted to any wrongdoing in the OCR agreement.