School That Quit Tournament Over Trans Player Hit With Ban

Mid Vermont Christian School is 'disappointed,' plans to appeal
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 1, 2023 4:08 PM CST
Updated Mar 14, 2023 6:35 PM CDT
Girls Quit State Tournament Rather Than Face Trans Player
Stock photo of a basketball scrimmage.   (Getty Images/monkeybusinessimages)
UPDATE Mar 14, 2023 6:35 PM CDT

A Christian school in Vermont that pulled its girls basketball team out of a state tournament because an opposing team had a transgender player won't be taking part in any other tournaments. The Vermont Principals’ Association, the state's governing body for school sports, ruled that Mid Vermont Christian School had violated policies, making it ineligible to compete in future tournaments in all sports, Fox reports. The school was notified of the decision Monday. MCVS Head of School Vicky Fogg told the Bennington Banner that the school is "disappointed" and plans to appeal. "Cancelling our membership is not a solution and does nothing to deal with the very real issue of safety and fairness facing women’s sports in our beloved state," she said.

Mar 1, 2023 4:08 PM CST

Facing a rival girls basketball team with a transgender player, the team at Mid Vermont Christian School chose not to play at all. The No. 12 seed high school basketball team forfeited the Feb. 21 game against No. 5 seed Long Trail School as part of a Division IV state tournament in Vermont, per WPTZ and Valley News. "We withdrew from the tournament because we believe playing against an opponent with a biological male jeopardizes the fairness of the game and the safety of our players," MVCS Head of School Vicky Fogg said, adding "allowing biological males to participate in women's sports sets a bad precedent for the future of women's sports in general."

Though 18 states ban transgender students from competing in sports in a manner consistent with their gender identity, Vermont is not one of them. The Vermont Principals' Association states it is "committed to providing all students with the opportunity to participate in VPA activities in a manner consistent with their gender identity." According to Valley News, MVCS previously requested state permission to receive public tuition funding while objecting to anti-discrimination law allowing transgender girls to play on girls' sports teams "based on its religious beliefs."

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The VPA—which forbids "discrimination based on a student’s actual or perceived sex and gender"—"reiterates its support for each student" in a statement to CNN. Long Trail School automatically advanced to the quarterfinals of the tournament but lost to No. 4 seed Arlington Memorial on Friday. (More transgender stories.)

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