Judge Rules Cheerleading Is Not A University Sport

Finds Quinnipiac University in Violation of Title IX

Judge Rules Cheerleading Is Not A University Sport
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Judge Rules Cheerleading Is Not A University Sport

A federal judge has ruled that colleges may not count competitive cheerleading as a sport under Title IX gender-equity regulations. WNPR's Diane Orson reports that Quinnipiac University planned to cut its women’s volleyball team in favor of cheerleading.  

The coach and members of the women’s volleyball team at Quinnipiac University sued the school in 2009 after officials announced they planned to eliminate the sport in a cost-cutting move. Quinnipiac said cheer teams cost less and involve more women. A key question was whether cheerleading qualifies as a university sport. Sandy Staub, legal director for the ACLU/CT which represented the women, says the judge’s decision is clear.

"He specifically holds that competitive cheerleading, the team, does not qualify at this time as a varsity sport for the purposes of Title IX."

Quinnipiac says it's disappointed by the decision and will continue to press for competitive cheer to become an officially recognized varsity sport.

For NPR News, I’m Diane Orson in New Haven.