School Blocks Girl From Football

Avatar for cmkristy
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-05-2005
School Blocks Girl From Football
Fri, 06-28-2013 - 1:00pm

In the last year, parents at Strong Rock Christian School in Locust Grove, Ga. became accustomed to seeing Maddy, with her curly hair in a French braid tucked under her helmet, charging at the opposing team on the football field. The crowd cheered when she sacked her first quarterback. Other coaches stopped her in the parking lot after games to say that she’d done a good job.  

So when the school told Maddy’s mother last week that it would no longer allow her to play on the boys' football team, Maddy was shocked.

“I sat there in silence for 10 minutes just thinking,” Maddy told “I feel that it’s completely wrong.”

Her mom, Cassy Blythe, said the school’s CEO Patrick Stuart gave several reasons for the decision, including that the boys might have “impure thoughts” about Maddy, that the locker room talk might be inappropriate for her, and that boys and girls should not compete in the same sport. Blythe says the CEO also told her the school could make such a decision since it is private.

Strong Rock Christian School told parents in an email sent Tuesday that the board of trustees and administration “fully stand behind” the school's policy, entitled "Middle school girls play girls' sports and middle school boys play boys' sports.”

Wow.  What do you think of their decision? 

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iVillage Member
Registered: 10-17-2012
Tue, 07-02-2013 - 5:24pm

I agree with the school.  If she continued she would either have gotten hurt or would have caused opposing players to alter their behavior on the field to accommodate her gender, which would have a negative effect on the game.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-27-1998
Mon, 07-01-2013 - 1:05pm

I think the school made the right decision. In the younger grades, it's fine for boys and girls to play on the same team, but once they hit puberty, a lot of things change. Boys are, for the most part, larger, more densely muscled, and faster than girls. (Yes, there are exceptions: for example, the gap in speed may be closing among elite male and female runners, but for the vast majority, men are still faster.) It makes sense for like to compete with like.

I think if I were this girl's parents, I'd encourage her to start a girls' football team if she really wants to play, or translate some of her athletic gifts into another sport, like soccer. Kids who are truly gifted at sports, as this girl seems to be, are usually good at more than one. But to fight this decision seems counter-productive, because as soon as those scrawny middle school boys start packing on the height and muscle, this girl is not going to be able to measure up, even if the school did allow her to play.