Homeschool students can now participate in extracurricular activities under some circumstances thanks to a new bill signed into law.
Governor Brian Kemp recently signed Senate Bill 42, which allows home school students in grades six through 12 to participate in extracurricular and interscholastic activities in the student’s resident public school system.
Specifically, the bill:
- Requires students to attend one course in their resident school (A resident school is defined as the school the student would attend if he/she were enrolled) in middle and high school for each semester they wish to play sports. The student must enroll 30 days priors to the start of the semester
- Permits the course to be virtual or face-to-face
- Allows dual enrollment classes to be considered qualifying courses for extracurricular activities
- Requires that the home study student provide proof of satisfactory progress in other courses taken outside of the resident school
- Requires the home school student to participate in the ‘try out’ process just as other students do
- Stipulates that if a student withdrawals from school to go to home study, they cannot participate in extracurricular for a period of 12 months
- Prohibits a school or school system from barring a home school student from participation if the student meets all of the aforementioned requirements
Senate Bill 42 was a vehicle bill during the 2021 legislative session – meaning it entailed different legislation with alternative verbiage when it was initially filed. After Crossover Day, lawmakers removed the original language of SB 142, which addressed school climate ratings, and replaced it with the language that ultimately passed because that language failed to make its way through the process in time. In this case, it was House Bill 545.
“I was incredibly honored to stand beside Governor Kemp as he signed Senate Bill 42, also known as the Dexter Mosely Act, into law,” Senator Bruce Thompson said of the legislation. Thompson is a Republican in Cherokee County. “This legislation is six years in the making and will expand athletic opportunities to more of Georgia’s youth. While homeschooled students are typically taught the same subjects as their peers in public schools, they have previously been deemed ineligible from participating in team sports, solely because they are homeschooled. Additionally, their parents pay the same taxes that fund these public schools. Thanks to this new law, homeschooled students will now have the same opportunities that their public school friends have.”
You can read the bill here.