Iowa’s transgender law is unnecessary and discriminatory. Excluding transgender girls from school sports is denying them the benefits from participating, including physical, social, and emotional well-being as well as self-discipline and teamwork.
The most important consideration is every child’s right to equal opportunity in education, including extracurricular activities. “The core values of equal opportunity and inclusion demand that educational leaders adopt thoughtful and effective policies that enable all students to participate fully in athletics programs.”
The NCAA addressed these concerns in their Inclusion of Transgender Student-Athletes policy, adopted in 2010. “It is important to know that any strength and endurance advantages a transgender woman arguably may have as a result of her prior testosterone levels dissipate after about one year of estrogen or testosterone-suppression therapy.”
Iowa should ensure fairness and inclusion in school sports by adopting the NCAA policies for participation of transgender student-athletes:
- A trans male (FTM) student-athlete who has received a medical exception for treatment with testosterone for diagnosed Gender Identity Disorder or gender dysphoria and/or Transsexualism, may compete on a men’s team, but is no longer eligible to compete on a women’s team without changing that team status to a mixed team.
- A trans female (MTF) student-athlete being treated with testosterone suppression medication for Gender Identity Disorder or gender dysphoria and/or Transsexualism, may continue to compete on a men’s team but may not compete on a women’s team without changing it to a mixed team status until completing one calendar year of testosterone suppression treatment.