FRANKFORT, Ky. (KT) — Legislation requiring K-12 students to play on teams based on their biological sex, not the gender they identify with, was approved by the Senate Committee on Thursday. education.
Senate Bill 83, sponsored by Sen. Robby Mills, R-Henderson, would direct the Kentucky High School Athletics Association (KHSAA) to develop bylaws or regulations requiring schools that participate in interscholastic athletics to designate all sports teams, activities and sports based on the biological sex of eligible students to participate, and prohibit male students from participating in sports teams, activities and sports designated as “girls”.
Mills testified that although the KHSAA has a rule on the subject, “I believe there are flaws in that rule that could ultimately lead to a female high school athlete competing unfairly against a biological male.”
He said boys had athletic advantages even before puberty in terms of cardiovascular endurance, muscular strength and endurance, speed and agility.
“An Australian study showed that a 9-year-old boy was faster in short sprints by 9.8% and over a mile run by 16.6%,” Mills said. “Male athletes still have advantages even after testosterone suppression. Hormone therapy in men after puberty does not substantially eliminate male athletic advantage.
David Walls, executive director of the Family Foundation, told the committee, “Women deserve to compete on equal terms. Allowing men to compete in women’s sports destroys fair competition in women’s sporting opportunities. Unfortunately, across the country, we are seeing more and more cases where men have taken away championships, records and countless sporting opportunities from female athletes.
Jefferson County Board of Education member James Craig testified against the bill. “We don’t know how many transgender students are in our schools, so we don’t know how many will potentially be affected by this bill. But we know the importance of sports participation for these students.
Chris Hartman of the Fairness Campaign told the committee, “Like all kids, trans kids just want to go to school, play with their friends, and feel included.”
He noted that KHSAA already had a policy in place. “These policies are worth reviewing from time to time, to ensure they are fair and inclusive, and reflect the best science, but we believe the work is best left to individual sport experts and professionals. of health.”
The bill passed 9-3, with opponents saying it is a solution in search of a problem. He is now heading to the Senate floor.