The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights ended its Title IX investigation of a complaint filed in January 2010 in response to a decision to suspend intercollegiate tennis at Cuesta College.

The OCR found that the school did not violate the provisions of Title IX as they relate to intercollegiate athletics.

The complaint was filed in January 2010, five months after the college suspended women’s tennis due to budget restraints. Title IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972 bans sex discrimination in schools receiving federal funds.

Zachary Pelchat, a civil rights attorney who led the OCR team investigation into the complaint, sent a a letter to Cuesta officials last week.

“OCR finds that there is insufficient evidence to support a conclusion of non-compliance with regard to the issue investigated,” Pelchat said in the letter. “Thus, OCR is closing this complaint.”

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Cuesta Superintendent/President Gil Stork said the finding ended a three-year investigation. He began his career at Cuesta as an assistant football coach in 1967.

“Throughout the process we have steadfastly believed we were in compliance with Title IX edicts, and we feel vindicated by the OCR’s conclusion,” Stork said.

An investigative team from the OCR visited the campus in May 2010 and conducted interviews with administrators, staff and students. Lawyers also reviewed documents and records submitted by the college and the plaintiff.

“OCR identified no disparities favoring one sex or the other in the competitive opportunities provided to male and female athletes,” Pelchat said.


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