A rule for high school athletics is the talk of the state after two transgender teens swept the competition at last week’s track and field state championships.
Terry Miller of Bulkeley High School in Hartford won the 100 and 200-meter dash. Andraya Yearwood from Cromwell High School took second place in the 100-meter dash. Both girls are sophomores and were born boys.
Selina Soule competed against the teens and says it was an uneven playing field. Her mother, Bianca Stanescu of Glastonbury started a petition to have the CIAC, Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference, amend their gender identity policy.
Currently, the CIAC says their policy aligns with state law and that a teen can compete for the gender-specific sport they identify with.
Stanescu and Soule say there can be both inclusivity and fairness.
“When you look at the competitions and they turn into a complete blowout, you realize something is different,” Stanescu said. “My solution is to come up with something similar to NCAA. If they did complete hormone therapy, just like Olympics requires a waiting period, at that point they should be able to compete as a female.”
Stanescu says if they haven’t undergone hormone therapy, the transgender teens can still run with the girls, but their times should be measured up with the boys.
The CIAC says it is very tricky legal territory, but they are open to listening. They say, in Connecticut, teens transitioning have to be at least 16 and meet specific requirements to undergo hormone therapy. Miller and Yearwood are only sophomores. It’s unclear if they are old enough for the therapy and/or have started it.
Our sister station WTNH is also learning a second petition is also circulating in Plainville. Stanescu says she has invited the CIAC and the transgender community to sit down at a table together and talk. She said she has not heard back from the CIAC. The CIAC says nothing has come to their desk yet.
Many in the community including those who have signed the petitions are praising Miller and Yearwood for their courage.
“Andraya Yearwood actually stepped out of the New England championships to give her spot to another girl,” Stanescu said. “She is following the rules – doing nothing wrong and she has been nothing but gracious.”