New Hampshire Transgender Track Athlete Favored To Win State Championship Meet This Upcoming Weekend

Printed from: https://newbostonpost.com/2024/02/05/new-hampshire-transgender-track-athlete-favored-to-win-state-championship-meet-this-upcoming-weekend/

If betting on high school sports were legal, then it would make sense to bet on the male competing on the girls’ side of the New Hampshire Interscholastic Athletic Association Division 2 state championship meet next weekend.

That’s not a hunch. Going into the Division 2 state championship meet on Sunday, February 11, Kearsarge Regional High School sophomore Maelle Jacques, a biological male, is ranked as the top high jumper in the division, according to the state’s Track & Field Results Reporting System. The championship meet is scheduled to take place at Plymouth State University in Plymouth, New Hampshire. 

Jacques has competed in four regular season meets this season, and has earned a first-place finish every time, according to the Track & Field Results Reporting System. Jacques is also the only Division 2 girls’ competitor in New Hampshire who has cracked the five-foot mark this season. Jacques’ top jump is 5 feet 1/2 inch — besting the top jumps of the next two best girls’ competitors season-bests by 0.75 inches. (And adding to Jacques’s advantage:  one of those competitors appears to be out with an injury, while the other competes in several events and has regressed in the high jump as the season has progressed.)

In the spring 2023 outdoor track season, Jacques finished second in the 1600-meter run (5:32.39) and fifth in the high jump (4 feet, 10 inches) at the New Hampshire Interscholastic Athletic Association Division 3 championship meet.

Kearsarge Regional School District superintendent Winfried Feneberg defended allowing Jacques to compete on the girls’ sports teams, in a written statement emailed to NewBostonPost last spring:

 

Kearsarge supports all students and student-athletes regardless of their gender identity. Each student-athlete has the right to compete in the activity of their choice.

The New Hampshire Interscholastic Athletic Association’s stance on this issue is clear:  Denying that opportunity is a violation of equal rights afforded under state and federal law.

Further, we believe that limiting access to any activity violates our core mission and vision, which are grounded in supporting every student and student-athlete’s right to pursue their goals and interests. As a school community – parents and guardians, faculty, staff, and peers – we celebrate student success and personal growth on and off the field. We firmly believe in guiding each student to become caring, compassionate people who contribute positively to the world and those around them.

We are thankful that our student-athletes have been welcomed throughout the season by competing teams and their coaches, in the true spirit of athletic competition. And we remain grateful to the Kearsarge community for its steadfast commitment to equity and inclusion.

As a school community – parents and guardians, faculty, staff, and peers – we celebrate student success and personal growth on and off the field.

 

The Independent Council on Women’s Sports reported the runner’s transgender status in a tweet on May 25, 2023.

Several right-of-center news outlets reported on Jacques’ transgender identity at the time, including TB Daily News, BreitbartDaily Wire, and The Washington Times, among others.

The organization that governs interscholastic sports in New Hampshire allows athletes to compete based on their self-selected gender identity.

Here is the organization’s transgender athlete policy, according to its web site:

 

The NHIAA is committed to providing transgender student-athletes with equal opportunities to participate in NHIAA athletic programs consistent with their gender identity. Hence, this policy addresses eligibility determinations for students who have a gender identity that is different from the gender listed on their official birth certificates.

The NHIAA has concluded that it would be fundamentally unjust and contrary to applicable State and Federal Law to preclude a student from participation on a gender specific sports team that is consistent with the public gender identity of that student for all other purposes.

 

Kearsarge Regional High School, the public school in Sutton that Jacques attends, has about 520 students. It serves the towns of Bradford, Newbury, New London, Springfield, Sutton, Warner, and Wilmot. Sutton is a small New Hampshire town with about 2,000 residents located about 25 miles northwest of Concord, New Hampshire, the state’s capital.

 

 

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