Education: Varsity Girls

Two years ago, the athletic director at Julia Barash's high school in Monroe, N.Y., refused to let her try out for the school's varsity tennis team−an all-male squad. His shaky ground: state regulations say that girls just don't compete with boys. Julia appealed to the state education department. Advised by counsel that Julia would win a court case in straight sets, the department defaulted. She promptly became Monroe's top player and pulled the team out of the cellar into a tie for first place.

To convince diehard objectors, state officials launched a re-examination...

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