Most female volleyball players at a Vermont high school have been banned from using their own locker room over objections to changing with a biological male, WCAX-TV reported.
Taking matters further, Randolph High School is also investigating the female players for harassment of the transgender student.
Blake Allen, one of the female players, told WCAX-TV the transgender student made an inappropriate comment as the volleyball team was changing in the locker room, which triggered an incident between the students.
After the incident, some members of the girls’ volleyball team objected to having a transgender teammate in the locker room while they were changing. Upon objecting, they were promptly banned from using the girls’ locker room altogether and placed under investigation.
Vermont education policy allows for transgender students to play sports and use restrooms or locker rooms that correspond with their “gender identity.”
“The use of restrooms and locker rooms by transgender students requires schools to consider numerous factors,” the policy states. “A transgender student should not be required to use a locker room or restroom that conflicts with the student’s gender identity.”
Vermont Agency of Education officials did not respond when asked for comment last Wednesday, according to the report.
Allen told WCAX-TV her issue is not about having a transgender student on the team or at school, but specifically in the locker room. “There are biological boys that go into the girl’s bathroom but never a locker room,” Allen said.
“It’s a huge thing. Everyone’s asking, ‘So, why aren’t you allowed in the locker room?’ I feel like, for stating my opinion – that I don’t want a biological man changing with me – that I should not have harassment charges or bullying charges. They should all be dropped.”
School officials reportedly emailed the players’ families justifying the ban, telling them the school has “plenty of space where students who feel uncomfortable with the laws may change in privacy.”
“They want all the girls who feel uncomfortable – so, pretty much 10 girls – to get changed in a single stall bathroom, which would take over 30 minutes. Where, if one person got changed separately, it would take a minute, like no extra time,” Allen said.
Officials sent another email telling the parents they are investigating whether the girls’ objections amounted to harassment of the transgender student.
Randolph Co-Principal Lisa Floyd said when policies are violated, disciplinary action aligning with school policies and state law will be applied, adding that students’ safety is the “district’s top priority.”