Kentucky bill would allow home-schooled students to play sports

September 15, 2014 /
We’ve seen a few states over the last couple years move toward allowing home-schooled students to play sports at their local high schools. Now Kentucky is among them.

A Kentucky legislator is moving a bill that would allow home-schooled students to participate in athletics at their local middle and high schools. The bill is in its infancy, so it’s difficult to gauge how much support it has, but an article from The Associated Press does mention that similar bills have failed and been opposed by the Kentucky High School Athletic Association. It’s unclear if the organization would support the latest proposal.

From the Lexington Herald-Leader:

Under the bill, if a nonpublic school — including a homeschool — does not offer a sport, a student would be eligible to participate in the activity at a public school. The public school would be one to which the student would ordinarily be assigned if the student were not enrolled in private school or homeschooled.

The bill is “particularly different from past acts, as it appears to offer a blanket opportunity for any nonpublic school to have its students participate in school-based sports at another school,” Tackett said in a statement. “The actual details are much more impactful to education-based athletics and its impact much more pervasive on our member schools.”

The argument from parents of home-schooled students is that their tax dollars fund high school athletics, so they should be granted the same opportunities as traditional students. 

Just to the north, Indiana modified its rules last year, allowing home-schooled students to participate in high school sports. However, the change has had little impact as school boards in individual districts continue to block students that aren’t enrolled in their institutions. It’ll be interesting to see how this develops, both in Kentucky and Indiana.

Do you have home-schooled students that participate in sports at your school? We would love to hear your thoughts below or by sending an email to [email protected].

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