“When Bernice Sandler was a schoolgirl in the 1930s and ’40s, she was annoyed that she was not allowed to do things that boys could do, like be a crossing guard, fill the inkwells or operate the slide projector.
When she was older, teaching part-time at the University of Maryland, she was told that she wasn’t being hired for a full-time job because “you come on too strong for a woman.” Another interviewer complained that women stayed home when their children were sick. Another rejected her by saying that she was “just a housewife who went back to school.”
By that time, which was 1969, Dr. Sandler was more than annoyed. She was good and mad. And that led her to become the driving force behind the creation of Title IX, the sweeping civil rights law of 1972 that barred sex discrimination by educational institutions that received federal funding.
Dr. Sandler, who died on Saturday at 90, was known as “the godmother of Title IX.” She was central to its development, passage and implementation
The law would change the landscape of education. It required that male and female students have equal access to admissions, resources and financial assistance, among other things.
“Every woman who has gone to college, gotten a law degree or a medical degree, was able to take shop instead of home-ec, or went to a military academy really owes her a huge debt,” Margaret Dunkle, a research colleague and friend, said in a telephone interview.”