The Vermont Principals Association (VPA) has banned a Christian school from future tournaments after it forfeited a game because a transgender athlete was competing on the opposing team.
“The VPA again reiterates its ongoing support of transgender student-athletes as not only a part of building an inclusive community for each student to grow and thrive, but also as a clear expectation by Vermont state law(s) in the Agency of Education Best Practices, and in VPA Policy regarding transgender student athletes,” the association said in a statement released Monday.
As reported by Faithwire, Mid Vermont Christian School withdrew its all-girls basketball team on February 21 after learning that a male-to-female transgender athlete was playing on the opposing team from Long Trail School in Dorset.
At the time, the head of Mid Vermont Christian School, Vicki Fogg, stressed that the school believes “playing against an opponent with a biological male jeopardizes the fairness of the game and the safety of our players.”
“Allowing biological males to participate in women’s sports sets a bad precedent for the future of women’s sports in general.”
At the time, VPA’s executive council concluded that the MVC’s decision had violated the association’s policies on race, gender, and disability awareness. Moreover, Vermont law permits transgender female athletes to compete on female sports teams.
“Transgender and gender nonconforming students are to be provided the same opportunities to participate in physical education as are all other students. Generally, students should be permitted to participate in physical education and sports in accordance with the student’s gender identity. Participation in competitive athletic activities and sports will be resolved on a case-by-case basis,” the Vermont Agency of Education’s policy reads, according to Fox News.
In a letter sent to the state’s Agency of Education, MVC requested permission to accept public funding while upholding its right not to adhere to all of Vermont’s anti-discrimination statutes.