December 2, 2023
On Sept. 12, Christian Excessive Faculty forfeited a women volleyball sport. Rumors included the presence of a lesbian participant for Helix.

After Christian Excessive Faculty of El Cajon abruptly forfeited a women varsity volleyball match with Helix Constitution Excessive Faculty, the La Mesa faculty’s athletic director sought in useless to study why.

Helix Constitution Excessive Faculty response to Public Data Act request from Instances of San Diego. (PDF)

Christian Excessive Faculty officers gave imprecise responses — prompting Helix to ask San Diego’s CIF workplace to evaluation the matter.

The primary response — shared by Christian Excessive’s Jeanelle Benton within the faculty’s athletic workplace — was the workforce forfeited “due to circumstances they encountered with our workforce,” referring to the Scotties.

Then, in response to a timeline obtained through a Public Data Act request, Helix athletic director Damon Chase wrote:

At 2:27 pm (Sept. 12), our coach acquired a textual content from Christian Coach Davis Ransom stating that “a scenario has risen that necessitates us forfeiting tonight’s varsity volleyball match. I’m sorry for the late discover.”

Virtually two weeks in the past, Instances of San Diego quoted a supply who needed to stay nameless {that a} lesbian’s presence on the Helix varsity workforce was the rationale for the forfeit. Helix stated it didn’t know why the match was forfeited, and Christian Excessive Faculty by no means responded to my queries.

However Chase texted Helix volleyball coach Zoe Varela-Beltz about textual content messages she had acquired.

“We consider that Christian H.S. student-athletes, admin … and oldsters assumed that we have now a transgender scholar on our workforce,” Chase stated in e mail to the Grossmont Union Excessive Faculty District and Joe Heinz, commissioner of the CIF-San Diego part. “We would not have a transgender student-athlete on our volleyball workforce and it shouldn’t matter if we did.”

Chase continued:

At no level did anybody from Christian H.S. attain out to any coach, administrator or Athletic Director at Helix Constitution H.S. relating to any considerations associated to the cancellation of yesterday’s match. Calls from myself to the Christian H.S. Athletic Director has but to be returned. We consider very strongly that the sort of motion by member colleges violates the rules of what training based mostly athletics are all about. We consider that there isn’t any place for discrimination, hate, intolerance, bigotry in our society. The actions by Christian H.S. violate the CIF Code of Conduct and Six Pillars of Character, CA Legislation and Title IX. We belief that you’ll deal with this matter appropriately.

Timeline of discussion over forfeited girls volleyball game.
Timeline of debate over forfeited women volleyball sport.

In response to textual content messages with coach Varela-Beltz: “The entire thing initially began with a scholar rumor and it gave the impression of the college/program management did little or no or nothing in any respect to vet the rumor, and simply cancelled with our AD. Nonetheless, they instructed the mum or dad physique that they (Christian HS coach) spoke to the Helix coach (I’m assuming they had been referring to you) and verified their suspicions a few explicit participant that confirmed to the gamers’ considerations.

Later, a Varela-Beltz textual content message stated:

I simply bought off the cellphone with a fellow softball mum or dad that has a daughter on the Christian HS Volleyball workforce. Christian had a program-wide assembly earlier this afternoon relating to what occurred at the moment. She shared how this occurred, and it seems their story has morphed over the course of the day to 1 they will go public with and sound much less like a bunch of bigoted amateurs.

Nonetheless, it wasn’t till they spoke to the AD, that each one 3 matches [including junior varsity and freshman teams] had been cancelled…. I utterly agree together with his choice. They had been so out of line and I’m certain additionally violate a slew of ethics and guidelines they need to subscribe to for membership into CIF and different Sports activities Participation. Free lips can sink ships.

The day after the canceled video games, Helix govt director Kevin Osborn wrote Christian Excessive officers: “As a consequence of rumors associated to why Christian officers cancelled the varsity match, our faculty wanted to assemble our scholar­-athletes in our gymnasium to deal with the matter in assist of our college students’ social-emotional nicely being. I wish to focus on this matter to make clear the rationale for the cancellation.”

Osborn sought a teleconference with Christian Excessive however didn’t get a direct response.

In emails to CIF chief Heinz, Osborn famous how opposing colleges had beforehand been “very responsive” in sharing causes for canceling sports activities occasions, equivalent to quite a few accidents.

“Nonetheless, I’ve by no means had faculty officers not reply and be forthright as to why they wanted to cancel a sport or match,” Osborn wrote.

He stated Helix suspected rumors circulating locally however had no direct proof concerning the precise cause.

“If we obtain any proof, we are going to ahead it to CIF,” Osborn wrote. “Both means, we deserve a proof as to why we had been notified concerning the forfeiture final minute, which brought on our student-athletes to overlook an athletic alternative they deserved to have. If proof is uncovered that the rationale for cancellation is expounded to gender or sexual orientation points, then we hope the CIF takes applicable actions to make sure that this doesn’t occur to the student-athletes of different member colleges.”

San Diego-CIF didn’t instantly reply to additional questions on this matter.