Browsing articles in "Bullying/Sex Education"
Oct 4, 2014

From CPL Action: Public Alerted by Newspaper Ad – MSHSL Tables Transgender Policy

Thank  you to those of you who emailed and called and went to testify in order to protect children’s innocence.  Your willingness to serve had a great effect! Here is the report on the outcome of the Minnesota State High School League meetings after this ad was placed in newspapers around the state by CPL Action:



A week ago, most Minnesota parents of school age children were entirely unaware that the Minnesota State High School League was on the verge of passing a dangerous and controversial new policy that would affect the extracurricular activities of over 500 schools—public, private, religious and home schools. The policy provided special accommodations for transgender students to participate on the team of their choice – the team matching their biological gender or cross over to the team that matched their gender choice.

The implications of boys and girls co-mingled in games and locker rooms were profound.

Last Sunday, Child Protection League Action (CPLAction) took out a full page, color ad in the sports section of the Star Tribune newspaper to alert the public that the policy that was moving rapidly under the radar and coming up for a vote this week.

The secret was out.

The public reacted swiftly. Within a matter of days, the MSHSL received over 10,000 emails. TV and radio outlets all over the state, and many nationally, ran a story. Talk radio took it up, social media lit up, and emails fanned out across the state. Suddenly, it was on everyone’s radar.

Organizations, schools, school board members, and individuals lined up to testify at Tuesday’s first public hearing. TV cameras elbowed for room with the standing-room-only crowd of elderly to students, moms to grandparents, and attorneys to former athletes. This is what public awareness looks like.

In his opening statement, MSHSL Executive Director David Stead made the most unfortunate and inaccurate claim that federal law required the Board to pass this draft policy. He was corrected by at least one attorney in the crowd who clarified that guidance from the U.S Office of Civil Rights does not constitute federal law.

CPLAction State Director Michele Lentz said, in response to the Director’s complaint about the newspaper ad, “If the MSHSL had taken out a full page ad in the Sunday paper to inform the public that an important and controversial policy that would affect all schools was up for consideration, we would not have had to.”

What became painfully obvious through testimony is that only one state organization seems to have been given a seat at the MSHSL policy-drafting table – OutFront Minnesota, an LGBT special interest group. That’s no way to make public policy or to build a consensus. And, unfortunately, it undermines the entire credibility of the MSHSL, which has a very important role to play.

In the end, after being inundated since Sunday with public reaction, the MSHSL Board prudently did not take up its original draft proposal. One Board Member pulled out and introduced a new and hastily constructed substitute that may have had some merit. But expecting to submit something, on which the public has had no opportunity to either review or comment, is completely irresponsible.

The Board chose to table the newest draft until its December 4th meeting. CPLAction will make that draft available to you, study it carefully, and make our analysis public.

The MSHSL has indicated it will appoint a committee to allow input from a wider group of the public. That’s good news. Any future policy draft should not reflect the interests of one particular group of students to the exclusion of all others. We hope they will include CPLAction in the discussion. We have demonstrated our willingness to represent the interests of the general public and the broad base of student interests in this conversation.

As with many other testifiers at the public hearings, CPLAction firmly believes all students should be allowed to participate in extracurricular athletic programs. They should be able to do so in a way that does not jeopardize anyone’s personal privacy rights, safety, or well-being, or in a way that jeopardizes the values and institutional integrity of MSHSL member schools.

This issue is far from resolved. All of us – parents, schools, organizations, churches, and interested individuals—must stay completely engaged until a fair, reasonable, and safe policy is in place in Minnesota. Please make contact with your local principals, administrators, school board members, neighbors, and your area MSHSL representative soon. December 4th will be here too quickly. Tell them what you think, ask them to be engaged and informed, and request that they get back to you on their involvement.

Working together has temporarily prevented something very unsafe from happening. But our voices must continue to be heard. Thank you.

Oct 2, 2014

Read CPL Action Letter to MN High School League on Concerning Transgendered Athletes Policy

Please see this excellent letter from Child Protection League Action  President Renee Doyle about the very concerning proposed plan of the MN High School League to allow transgendered athletes to participate in sports based on their mental gender/gender identity instead of biological gender; creating the idea that gender is a choice; without proper separation in showers, locker rooms and hotels; and creating an unfair advantage for boys changing to girls on female teams.


September 30, 2014
Board of Directors
Minnesota State High School League
2100 Freeway Boulevard
Brooklyn Center, MN 55430-1735

Dear Board Members,

Minnesota citizens are just beginning to learn about the MSHSL’s draft policy under consideration by your Board regarding transgender students’ participation in high school athletics according to their gender choice rather than actual gender.

Child Protection League Action is appalled that this proposal has made its way so far within your organization as to be seriously presented to the public and actually be considered for adoption. We are stunned at the MSHSL’s abuse of power and policymaking granted to you under MN §128c.01 Subd.2., whereby  the governing board of  a high school may “delegate its control of extracurricular activities to the league…spend money for, and pay dues to, the league.”

It is one thing for the “MSHSL to allow participation for all students regardless of their gender identity or expression” as the first line of your proposed policy states. We would agree with that policy. However, that is not the underlying assumption of the proposed policy, and it is grossly unfair to mislead the public in this regard. The true underlying assumption of your proposed policy is that gender is a matter of choice and not biology, which is absurd.

You have even gone so far as to use Title IX as your authority to establish such an overreaching policy. Title IX is remarkably clear in prohibiting sex discrimination within educational institutions, and that “sex” means biological gender. A student can transgender from one sex to another, but there are still only two “sexes.” Title IX addresses only the “imbalance” between the treatment of the two genders of “boys and girls” – as groups in general. It does not address balancing out the individual mental gender identity preferences of individuals. To scare school districts into thinking that they will be out of compliance with Title IX if they do not comply with this policy is reprehensible.

In strictly practical terms, nothing in this draft requires schools to separate men from women in showers, bathroom facilities, locker rooms or hotel rooms. In fact, the first draft of this policy states, “transgender students should not be required to use separate facilities.” While that language has been changed in the later draft, the new language vaguely describes that the schools are to ensure “reasonable and appropriate restroom and locker room accessibility for students.” What is “reasonable” and “appropriate?”  Most importantly, who will decide, and how will that decision be made? The policy contains no avenue of appealing decisions made regarding accommodations.

It is one thing to intimidate school districts, but the trauma that this will cause to our children, through the blatant privacy violations of the non-trans student is alarming. There are issues of obvious unfairness concerning mixed gender competition and athletes losing positions to a member of the opposite sex after years of practice and training. But we are shocked that this proposal intends to impose on all students and families, statewide–public, private, religious and home schools—the radical idea that gender is a choice, not biology. If implemented, it will put our children at great physical, emotional, and psychological risk.

The transgender athlete, in contrast, has four separate levels of appeal if his or her determination is denied by the school. The final judgment will rest with a single individual appointed by the Executive Director of the MSHSL Board of Directors. Who is this individual? On what basis will he/she be chosen? What qualifications will he/she have? The determination process is unprofessional at best, and cannot inspire the confidence of families or the public.

In MN, there is nothing that prevents a transgendered student to participate in any sport with their biological gender. In fact, they cannot be discriminated against if they want to play with their biological counterparts while dressing like the opposite gender. That would be stereotyping.

Minnesota enjoys a robust, competitive, and highly admired sports program, for which we recognize the MSHSL as having played a huge role. But what you are asking Minnesota parents to do is allow transgendered students something that other students do not have, and that is the flexibility to play on either team. That is taking it too far.

CPLAction works to protect children from exploitation, indoctrination and violence. We strongly urge you to reject this measure.


Renée T. Doyle,