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Education Test

Bill That Would Allow Homeschool, Private School Students To Play Sports Heads To W.Va. Senate

Will Price
West Virginia Legislative Photography
Members of the public listen to the Senate Education Committee on Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2020.

The West Virginia Senate Education Committee has approved a bill that would allow homeschool and private school students to participate in public school extracurricular activities under the state’s Secondary School Activities Commission. 

Senate Bill 131 is known as the Tim Tebow Act. The measure is named after a professional athlete who was homeschooled and sought equal access to public school sports.

Members of the Senate Education Committee discussed issues of eligibility, particularly concerning how to translate a homeschool student’s ungraded portfolio and standardized test scores in ways that would allow them meet the requirements set for public school students.

The measure has been pushed by Republican legislators in recent sessions but has not yet been signed into law. 

Gov. Jim Justice vetoed a version of the bill in 2017. During last year’s session, House lawmakers pried the bill out of committee with a discharge motion but it died when it went up for a vote in the full House. 

This year’s version of the Tim Tebow Act now heads to the full Senate for consideration.

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