NASHVILLE, Tennessee (LifeSiteNews) – Tennessee public schools will lose state funding under a new law signed by Republican Gov. Bill Lee if they allow so-called “transgender” students to compete on sports teams for the opposite sex, including gender-confused males in girls’ sports.
SB 1861, which Gov. Lee signed Friday, mandates that the Tennessee education commissioner withhold “a portion of the state education finance funds” from school districts that do not determine a student athlete’s sex. The law doesn’t state the exact amount of funding that should be withheld from noncompliant districts.
The Tennessee state senate passed SB 1861 in an overwhelming 26-5 vote two weeks ago. It comes into effect at the beginning of July.
The measure expands on a law approved by Gov. Lee in March 2021 that requires students to compete in public school sports based on sex, rather than “gender identity,” in grades five through 12.
Tennessee state Sen. Joey Hensley, who sponsored SB 1861, said that the new legislation is designed to “put teeth” in the 2021 law, according to Breitbart.
Earlier this week, Tennessee lawmakers also passed a bill that bans males from competing against women in college sports, as well as another bill to protect public school teachers from having to use a student’s preferred pronouns that conform with a false “gender identity.”
At least 14 other states have enacted laws in recent years to restrict male participation in female athletics, as gender-confused men increasingly dominate women’s sports at the high school, college, and professional levels.
Gov. Lee last year also approved legislation that outlaws supplying dangerous transgender hormone drugs to pre-pubescent children for gender dysphoria and another bill designed to limit use of bathrooms and other private spaces to members of the same sex.