A Florida principal and four school officials have been reassigned after reportedly allowing a transgender biological male to join the girls’ volleyball team.
The principal, James Cecil, had worked at the Monarch High School in Broward County for 25 years, according to his LinkedIn profile.
Broward County Public Schools said that Cecil and the other staff members were transferred to non-school sites pending an investigation into allegations of improper student participation in sports, according to a report from NBC 6. No further details were offered.
“Although we cannot comment further, we will continue to follow state law and will take appropriate action based on the outcome of the investigation,” the statement said. “We are committed to providing all our students with a safe and inclusive learning environment.”
Under Florida’s “Fairness in Women’s Sports Act,” an “athletic team or sport that is designated for females, women, or girls may not be open to students of the male sex, based on the student’s biological sex listed on the student’s official birth certificate at the time of birth.”
The bill applies to interscholastic, intercollegiate, intramural, or club athletic teams or sports that are sponsored by a public secondary school, high school, public college, or university institution.
The day after the reassignments, some students at the school staged a walkout to protest.
Not all students were on the same page, however.
“He should not be able to play on the team,” a student told NBC6. “If he is a biological boy, I don’t think he should be able to play on a girl’s team.”
According to a press release from Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’ office at the time of the law’s signing, “The designation of separate sex-specific athletic teams or sports is necessary to promote equality of athletic opportunities, and the majority of Americans support this action. Multiple polls have stated more than 60 percent of Americans believe that biological males should not be participating in women’s sports.”
“As a father of two daughters, I want my girls, and every girl in Florida, to compete on an even playing field for the opportunities available to young women in sports,” said Governor DeSantis. “Women have fought for decades to have equal opportunities in athletics, and we have to prevent those opportunities from being eroded as is happening in other states. It’s common sense. Many thanks to Senator Stargel and Representative Tuck for their thoughtful work on this bill to ensure fairness in women’s sports.”