After winning the women’s Euro in July 2022, England’s national women’s soccer team landed another victory off the pitch as the world celebrates International Women’s Day.
Responding to an open letter written by the team, the U.K. government is providing roughly $710.4 million over the next two years to create equal school opportunities for girls — including requirements to offer equal sporting access and a minimum two hours of physical education per week.
“The success of the summer has inspired so many young girls to pursue their passion for football,” said Leah Williamson, captain of the 2022 Euro champs. “We see it as our responsibility to open the doors for them to do so, and this announcement makes that possible.
“This is the legacy that we want to live much longer than us as a team.”
Only 46% of schools provide the same extracurricular opportunities as boys, according to the FA, while 67% of all schools and 41% of secondary schools offer equal soccer opportunities in PE lessons.
ESPN reported that an additional $67.5 million will go toward open sport facilities outside school hours, with another $26 million made available to the School Games Organisers network.