The Alaska School Activities Association (ASAA), which oversees high school athletic competitions in Alaska, has refused to bar gender-confused biological males from competing in girls’ sports, unless it is compelled to do so by the state.
While many advocates for girls’ sports were hopeful the ASAA board of directors would change its bylaws during a May 1-2 meeting with a simple majority vote, the board declined. Instead it chose to keep the status quo, which relies on each individual school making a “gender determination” regarding a student’s sex. ASAA then accepts whatever each school determines, which means gender-confused biological males who claim to be female sometimes compete against girls. Anchorage and Fairbanks are the two largest districts that allow for this, while the Mat-Su expressly prohibits biological males from competing on all-girls teams.
After refusing to adopt a propose bylaw change – which the State Board of Education specifically requested – the ASAA board released a statement, explaining that if the Alaska Department of Education and Early Development (DEED) wants new protocols for how high school athletics are regulated, it should take the lead and address the issue by changing state regulations governing high school sports.
Since ASAA is a nonprofit that must organize and oversee Alaska’s school athletic competitions in accord with state law and regulations, it would have to comply with any new state regulations passed by DEED.
“The ASAA Board felt that until DEED changes the current regulations, it would be premature to change the ASAA bylaw,” the ASAA board stated in justifying its inaction. It added that a change in regulations would have “the practical effect of compelling ASAA to make a change to its bylaws in the future.”
“If DEED does adopt regulations adding new conditions for participation in activities associations by public schools and ASAA does not meet the new regulatory requirements, then school districts would no longer be able to support and participate in ASAA,” the ASAA board concluded. “Without the participation and support of public schools, ASAA would likely cease to be viable or relevant.”
ASAA runs all state championship events for schools throughout Alaska.
— Click here to contact the Alaska Department of Education and Early Development Commissioner’s Office.
— Click here to contact the Alaska School Activities Association Board of Directors.