Advocating for Trans, Nonbinary & Intersex Inclusion In School Sports

GLSEN led a public comment responding to the U.S. Department of Education’s (US ED) proposed Title IX athletics rule alongside our co-leads, the American School Counselor Association, interACT: Advocates for Intersex Youth, National Association of School Psychologists, National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE), and National Education Association. Despite the short, 30-day comment period, our recommendations were supported by over 200 LGBTQI+ justice, civil rights, and education organizations. GLSEN also partnered with NCTE on a comment portal where nearly 7,000 individuals submitted a comment affirming their support for trans-inclusive school sports.

As proposed, the US ED rule prohibits categorical bans on transgender students' participation consistent with gender identity and otherwise severely limits exclusionary restrictions. Our comment urges revisions to support implementation of a strong Title IX rule that advances full inclusion of trans, nonbinary, and intersex youth in all aspects of education, including school sports. Key recommendations:

  • Affirm a presumption of participation consistent with gender identity in the regulatory text.
  • Disallow the use of "injury prevention" and "fairness in competition" as cover for discrimination.
  • If the Department permits any exclusionary restrictions, it should (a) be clear such restrictions can never be justified in K-12 and college intramural and club sports contexts and (b) prohibit deeply harmful "sex testing," including visual inspections of anatomy or medical examinations.

Read the full comment letter below or download it here.

You can also learn more about Title IX or about the proposed athletics rule, and hear from GLSEN’s Executive Director about this rulemaking.


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