Franklin Pierce University's policy pertaining to transgender students' participation in sports that allowed CeCe Telfer to compete in women's track and field become a 2019 NCAA national women's champion has been found by the US Department of Education's Office of Civil Rights to be in violation of Title IX.
In September, FPU signed a resolution agreement assuring the Department it would rescind the policy as of October 2, 2020.
Prior to joining the Franklin Pierce's women's track roster in senior year, Telfer competed in track and field for the school on the men's team with lackluster results. In 2016 and 2017, Telfer ranked 200th and 390th, respectively, among NCAA Division II men in the 400 meter hurdles.
But when Telfer started competing for FPU's relatively new women's track and field program, Telfer fared much better, immediately winning multiple medals in nearly every meet Telfer entered in the indoor and outdoor seasons. This brought heretofore unknown levels of sports glory to Franklin Pierce, a small college of 1,400 in Rindge, New Hampshire.
Over the course of the 2018-19 indoor and outdoor seasons, Telfer was repeatedly named NE-10 Women's Track Athlete of the week, often many weeks in a row.
In February 2019, Telfer was named Most Outstanding Women’s Track Performer at the NE10 Championship in earning All-American honors in both the 60 meter hurdles and 200 meter.
In March, Telfer's accomplishments in women's track continued apace, marking more firsts for Franklin Pierce:
In May 2019, Telfer achieved the ultimate glory for Franklin Pierce by becoming the 2019 Division II national champion in the 400 m women's hurdles. In its announcement of Telfer's victory, FPU said Telfer was the first student in the school's history to win an individual national title in sports.
Telfer won the national women's title handily, as can be seen here:
Soon after, ESPN lionized Telfer as a "Trailblazer" and framed objections to Telfer's participation in women's sports as being criticisms of Telfer's identify, when in fact the issue is biology. Women's sports are ring-fenced by sex, not gender identity. They're for persons with female bodies and any kind of personality, not for people with male bodies who say they feel feminine and would prefer to be seen as the opposite sex..
In the resolution agreement, FPU has further agreed that it "will take such measures as are necessary to ensure that female athletes are provided intercollegiate athletic opportunities and benefits that are equal to those provided to male students".... and it will not permit athletes of one sex to participate in sports of the other sex except in the narrow circumstances permitted under Title IX implementation regulations.
Yesterday, October 17, a brief statement appeared on the Franklin Pierce sports compliance page that says in its entirety:
Franklin Pierce University regrets that we must remove our previously published Transgender Participation and Inclusion Policy. We remain committed to an inclusive environment for all of our students while also complying with federal law. Franklin Pierce University and the Department of Athletics will continue to support all students and student-athletes.