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(NewsReady.com) – There’s been a battle brewing in schools across the country: should transgender students be allowed to participate in sports made for their nonbiological sex? Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R) just answered that question for the people in his state.

On Monday, October 25, Abbott signed HB25, banning transgender students from participating in sports that correspond with their gender identity. Republican lawmakers passed the bill during the state’s third special session. Texas is now the eighth and largest state to pass such a bill. There’s one caveat to the law: if a female sport is not available, a transgender boy (someone biologically female) could participate in the boys’ sport.

Republicans believe banning transgender females from participating in girls’ sports will protect biological females. They believe it’s unfair to pit girls against biological boys because the males could have an unfair advantage. Opponents of the bill claim it discriminates against trans students who just want an opportunity to play sports with their friends like everyone else. It’s important to note, this bill doesn’t prevent any child from participating in a sport if they want to, they’ll just have to choose a team that fits their biological sex.

The legislation is expected to go into effect in January, and the law impacts only students in K-12 sports.

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