Media Coverage for Women's Sport
“Last summer, I wrote about two young women from Saudi Arabia, Wojdan Shaherkani and Sarah Attar, who were the first Saudi women ever to compete in the Olympics. They had to endure criticism from conservatives at home and lots of discussion about what they would wear to compete, but they served as a powerful symbol of a better future for Saudi women’s athletic participation.
Now, young women in Saudi Arabian private schools have the chance to take part in an activity open to most students all over the world – sports.
Currently, women’s sports in Saudi Arabia take place unofficially in private schools or in private “health clubs” (rather than women’s gyms, which are not given licenses). The recent decision to permit sports only applies to private schools, so girls in public schools will be left out, at least initially. However, measures to allow girls’ sports in public schools seem to be in the works, including as of this March; as early as 2011, Saudi Arabia actually said it would establish physical education classes for female students in public (government) schools, although nothing appears to have happened.”
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