Lake Washington School District adds girls' badminton as a high school sport
June 21, 2012 · Updated 3:33 PM
The Lake Washington School District (LWSD) will add badminton as a high school girls' sport, starting in the spring of 2013.
The Olympic sport was the top response of a community interest survey conducted by LWSD, which reviewed high school athletic offerings as part of the district's transition to four-year high schools and to ensure Title IX compliance.
"As we near the 40th anniversary of the passage of Title IX, it's appropriate that we continue to respond to girls' interests in playing sports," noted Dr. Traci Pierce, deputy superintendent. "We have a history of strong badminton programs at the junior highs in our district, it is an Olympic sport and we believe it will be a popular offering at the high school level."
There was a list of 25 different sports in the interest survey with 166 out of the 782 high school girls who responded picking badminton as their No. 1 choice, Reith said.
"(Badminton) is something that has increasing interest," said LWSD communications director Kathryn Reith, who added that the sport is already very popular at the middle school level.
The district reviewed the feasibility of adding girls' badminton, including the availability of facilities, coaches and competition.
The girls' badminton team from LWSD's four high schools — Redmond, Eastlake, Lake Washington and Juanita — will compete against each other along with teams from Bellevue, Interlake and Sammamish high schools. Newport and Mercer Island high schools also plan to add the sport, Reith said.
Badminton is not a WIAA-sanctioned sport, but with the potential of up to nine Eastside schools offering girls' badminton, Kingco officials are discussing the possibility of forming a girls' badminton league and "some kind of championship event," Reith said.
More information about the schedules, season and coaches will be available when school begins in the fall.