Transgender girl crowned homecoming princess at Colo. high school

Scarlett Lenh

Scarlett Lenh

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — A transgender student has been crowned homecoming princess at a Colorado Springs, Colo., high school.

Scarlett Lenh

Scarlett Lenh

The Gazette of Colorado Springs reported Saturday that Scarlett Lenh received the majority of the votes from her junior class at Sand Creek High School, besting three other girls for the honor.

Lenh, 16, was bestowed the honor during Friday night’s football game. She began identifying as a girl this school year, and said she’s known she was a girl since about age 7 or 8.

“It was really exciting. It felt really good. I couldn’t stop smiling,” Scarlett said after she found out at an afternoon assembly that the majority of the junior class had voted for her.

Two of the other girls who were nominated by their peers were “extremely supportive,” Scarlett said, and the other “was really upset.”

Scarlett said she didn’t think she’d be nominated.

“One of my friends mentioned it, and I didn’t think anything of it because I didn’t think I’d be nominated. But, now, it really matters to me,” she said. “This is something I’ve wanted to do since my freshman year. I want people to be themselves and not feel uncomfortable in their own body and mind.”

The school in Falcon School District 49 is in the same city as Focus on the Family.

“The leaders at Sand Creek High School and in District 49 respect the decision of the Scorpion student body in electing their homecoming court,” district spokesman Matt Meister said in a statement. “Our board policy sets the standard that we do not exclude any person from participating in any program or activity on the basis of gender identity and gender expression.”

Not everyone is supportive.

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“It’s craziness,” said Jana Neathery, whose granddaughter attends Sand Creek. “Originally, it was a joke that he was going to be nominated for homecoming princess, but he got a lot of nominations,” she said, referring to Scarlett, “and now there are a lot of upset girls because a spot was taken from them.

“I’m very sympathetic that he’s transgender, but he should be on the boys’ side, not the girls’.”

Last year, a transgender first-grade girl won the right to use the girls’ restroom at another Colorado Springs-area school district. The Colorado Civil rights Division ruled that not allowing Coy Mathis to use the girls’ bathroom violated Colorado’s Anti-Discrimination Act.

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