In order to prohibit biological males from competing in Alaska’s high school sports designated specifically for girls, the Alaska School Activities Association (ASAA) needs to change its bylaws. That could happen this week, when the ASAA board of directors gathers in Anchorage for their fall meeting.

The Oct. 9-10 meeting includes an agenda item aimed at revising ASAA bylaws to comply with the State Board of Education’s recent 7-0 vote to ban biological males from competing in girls-only events.

Since ASAA oversees high school athletics for the state, it is expected to conform with the State Education Board’s policies.

Currently, however, ASAA bylaws allow each school district to determine the so-called “gender-identity” of their athletes. If a district claims that a biological male identifies as a female, ASAA simply goes with the district’s determination. That’s no longer allowed under state policy, thanks to the Education Board’s Aug. 31 policy change, which explicitly states that participation on teams created for females will be limited to “females who were assigned female at birth.”

Following the Education Board’s vote, Chair James Fields stirred some controversy by suggesting that the ASAA board might be able to comply with the Education Board’s new policy by formally barring males from girls’ sports, but then creating a waiver to allow certain boys to skirt the policy, so long as they’ve undergone puberty blockers.

Nothing in the Education Board’s new policy, however, makes any mention of possible waivers or exceptions, and Fields’ was the only Education Board member to suggest the idea. Nevertheless, his comments could influence the way ASAA implements the new requirements at its upcoming meeting.

The bylaw issue is expected to generate considerable public testimony on both sides, as it did prior to the Board of Education’s vote this summer.

Planned Parenthood, the ACLU of Alaska and other Democratic and left-leaning organizations have been encouraging LGBTQ activists to flood the ASAA board meeting with comments in favor of letting gender-confused males continue competing against high school girls.

These groups claim that certain Alaska school districts, such as Anchorage and Fairbanks, will need to change their current policies in order to prevent males who say they are transgender, from competing against females.

LGBTQ activists, such as State Senator Löki Gale Tobin (D-Anchorage), also assert that by changing its bylaws, the ASAA might lose certain school districts, which would then be ineligible to compete in statewide championships.

“What makes this so infuriating is that it is entirely unnecessary. Trans-girls are not pushing their way into high school sports seeking some sort of competitive advantage,” Sen. Tobin said in an Oct. 4 email intended to drum up testimony against the proposed changes. “Instead, trans girls are just like other high school students who are trying to find their way in an uncertain world. Many high school students find great comfort in athletics, and it is unfair to limit a student’s participation based on some outdated concept of gender.”

Alaska’s effort to address this issue follows on the heels of many other states that have also moved to protect women’s sports from biological males. To date, nearly half of all U.S. states have similar policies in place. These changes have come in part due to multiple instances in which biological males have shattered female records on the way to championships and titles that have squeezed out top female athletes in recent years.

Those supporting a change in Alaska policy say it’s necessary to protect both the integrity and safety of girls’ high school sports. They point to the fact that the physical advantages of males are established well before the onset of puberty.

A recent expert report on athletic performances of elementary-age boys and girls supports this. It found that, even by age six, boys have significant advantages in cardiovascular endurance, muscular strength, muscular endurance, speed, agility, and power tests. In the study, the boys outperformed girls at every age in measures of handgrip strength, long standing jump, 200-meter shuttle run, and oxygen consumption, which accounts for 30-40% of success in endurance sports.

Likewise, the idea that cross-sex hormones can somehow even the playing field is also highly questionable. According to the recent study, no amount of testosterone suppression in a male who has undergone natural puberty can eliminate significant advantages in arm or leg strength, running speed, muscle mass or bone structure and density. On average, there is around a 5% loss of muscle mass and strength, but that cannot reverse the 40-50% difference that typically exists between men and women. And even after two full years of testosterone suppression, the average male still runs much faster than his female counterpart.


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One hurdle left to protect Alaska high school girls’ sports from gender-confused males

Joel Davidson
Joel is Editor-in-Chief of the Alaska Watchman. Joel is an award winning journalist and has been reporting for over 24 years, He is a proud father of 8 children, and lives in Palmer, Alaska.


  • Jon and Ruth Ewig says:

    We were alive back in the 60s when girls’ sports were nonexistent. It took the feminist movement to represent the importance of girls’ sports not just boys’ sports.
    When a boy identifies as a girl, he needs help not appeasement. He needs conversion counseling to put his mind back in order. The government provides free counseling for gender confusion.

    Gender decisions that we make need to be tested first by Scripture, then by Biology and lastly by Common Sense.

    Feeling a certain way does not entitle us to act on our feelings. Feeling like killing someone is an example. There are regulations in place to protect biological girls. A boy who feels like a girl needs a reality check. The US Constitution when applied sets a standard for all of us called the law. Organizations such as yours also have equal standards and structures that should not be thrown out by an aggressive group rights campaign.

    There are individuals with integrity who understand right from wrong. There are others such as Senator Tobin who lacks those standards and who uses intimidation and control through her position in the legislature which she gained through the questionable rank/file voting system. She would likely not have been elected and yield this power against us.

    Why go backwards just to “get along” because you are being pressured and threatened. Girls either have rights in sports or they don’t. Ask the feminists…

    • DaveMaxwell says:

      Amen again to Jon and Ruth
      We need to stop paying public leaders until they surrender to common sense!

  • Eulalie Hendricks says:

    Men and boys should not be allowed to compete in women and girls sports, period. Men are physically stronger, have larger lungs and wind capacity, which gives them greater stamina. It is grossly unfair to allow them to invade female sports.

  • jon says:

    It’s easy, why make it so complicated? Divisions should be female/male/trans. Then it would be fair for everyone.

    • Friend of Humanity says:

      The original divisions are male and female and it is going to stay that way jon. That is the simple and fair way for everyone.