Calif. Christian school forfeits game vs. team that allows girls

0 30

First Baptist Church in Santa Maria, Calif., is the religious institution that runs Valley Christian Academy, which is located behind the church.

First Baptist Church in Santa Maria, Calif., is the religious institution that runs Valley Christian Academy, which is located behind the church.

Photo courtesy of Google Street View

A private Christian high school in Santa Maria, California, gave up its shot at an undefeated season and forfeited a football game for the fourth season in a row because its opponent has a teenage girl on the team.

According to the San Luis Obispo Tribune, Valley Christian Academy refused to play its eight-man football game on Saturday, Sept. 30, against Coast Union High School of Cambria, California, on religious grounds. But the religious issue the school is apparently basing the decision on is the fact that Coast Union has two female players on its team.

Advertisement

Article continues below this ad

VCA and Coast Union have been in the Coast Valley eight-man football league together since 2014 and played each other in every year but 2020, with Coast Union winning five of the games played on the field. But last year, Coast Union fielded Andrea Aguilar as a junior on its football team, which led VCA to forfeit the game. It was VCA’s final game of the regular season and cost them a shot at the outright Coast Valley League title. The following week, VCA lost 27-25 to Flintridge Prep in the first round of the Southern Section Division I playoffs.

This year, VCA started its season 4-0, scoring more than 50 points in each of its three victories on the field (it won one game by a forfeit because its opponent reportedly had too many injuries).

Coast Union isn’t the only school VCA has refused to play in the past. The Santa Maria school forfeited two games against Cuyama Valley High School in 2021 — in the spring season postponed by the pandemic and again in the fall — because of the presence of a girl on the roster.

Advertisement

Article continues below this ad

According to the Santa Maria Times, the parent of that girl sued VCA, alleging the school was discriminating on the basis of gender, after VCA superintendent and lead pastor Joel Mikkelson sent a letter to Cuyama Valley saying they would not play the game because VCA’s student handbook states “there is to be no physical contact between boys and girls at Valley Christian Academy.”

The Santa Maria Times reported that part of Mikkelson’s undated letter also cited Bible verses and added, “Football is a violent game and we understand the value of such in training our young men within the boundaries of an organized sport. We mean no ill will at all towards Cuyama Valley High School or any of its students or their families.”

The suit claimed that VCA was violating Title IX, the federal law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in education programs. VCA and the Cuyama Valley student reached a settlement that required VCA to pay $20,000 to the girl and her attorneys, though it allowed VCA to “deny all liability, wrongdoing or fault.”

VCA did release a joint statement with the plaintiff, saying that it maintained its refusal to “was based on First Baptist’s and Valley Christian’s understanding of biblical principles governing how men are to treat women.”

Advertisement

Article continues below this ad

The school has continued that refusal, which has now led to a fourth straight year where VCA forfeited a game because of the presence of a female player on the other team. And, given that Reed is a junior at Coast Union, VCA may do it again next year, too.

Source link

Denial of responsibility! YoursTelecast is an automatic aggregator of the all world’s media. In each content, the hyperlink to the primary source is specified. All trademarks belong to their rightful owners, all materials to their authors. If you are the owner of the content and do not want us to publish your materials, please contact us by email – [email protected]. The content will be deleted within 24 hours.
Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.