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The Florida High School Athletic Association imposed a fine and probation on Monarch High School on Tuesday due to a transgender student participating in the girls’ volleyball team, contravening a state law.
Monarch High, located in suburban Fort Lauderdale, faces a $16,500 fine, and both the principal and athletic director are required to attend rules seminars. The school is now under an 11-month probation, during which any further violations could result in harsher penalties.
Additionally, the association has restricted the student from playing in boys’ sports for the same duration. This action follows the 2021 “Fairness in Women’s Sports Act,” which prohibits transgender girls and women from competing in public school teams designated for athletes who are female at birth.
The involved student, a 10th grader, was removed from the team last month after an anonymous tip revealed her participation, leading to student protests at the school. Education Commissioner Manny Diaz, supporting Governor Ron DeSantis’ stance, stated, “Thanks to the leadership of Governor Ron DeSantis, Florida passed legislation to protect girls’ sports and we will not tolerate any school that violates this law.” Jessica Norton, the student’s mother, criticized the disclosure of her daughter’s identity as “endangering her child.”
The Human Rights Campaign, an LGBTQ+ rights organization, argued that the law and the association’s decision are rooted in “anti-transgender bias.”