Alaska in Brief

Alaska sports board decides against barring trans girls from girls sports, for now

By: - May 2, 2023 6:38 pm
An indoor basketball court is seen in an undated photo. (Photo by Tom Sibley/Getty Images)

An indoor basketball court is seen in an undated photo. (Photo by Tom Sibley/Getty Images)

The board that governs school sports in Alaska decided against adopting a change to its bylaws  that would have prevented transgender girls from participating in girls sports. But the Alaska School Activities Association said its board could still adopt the change in the future if state Department of Education and Early Development rules compel it to. 

“The ASAA Board felt that until DEED changes the current regulations, it would be premature to change the ASAA bylaw,” the association announced in a news release

The association released its statement Tuesday after two days of board meetings in Valdez. On Monday, members of the public testified on the proposed bylaw change, with most opposing it, saying that it was anti-trans.

The bylaw change proposal was prompted by a vote by the Alaska Board of Education and Early Development, which has told the state education department to set new rules. These rules would create two divisions in sports: one for students who were identified as female at birth and one for students of any gender. 

The statement said that while the state doesn’t directly regulate the association, it does set rules for which associations schools can join. 

“Going forward, DEED could adopt regulations that prohibit public school districts from joining” or paying dues to a nonprofit like ASAA unless the association meets additional conditions, the statement said. 

“Without the participation and support of public schools, ASAA would likely cease to be viable or relevant,” the statement said.


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Andrew Kitchenman
Andrew Kitchenman

Andrew Kitchenman has covered state government in Alaska since 2016, serving as the Capitol reporter for Alaska Public Media and KTOO before joining the Alaska Beacon. Before this, he covered state and local governments on the East Coast – primarily in New Jersey – for more than 15 years. He enjoys reading, watching movies and walking around Anchorage.