On March 4th, during the final week of the 2020 Regular Session, the House Sports Bill was passed by the State Senate. In order to attain passage, it had to be merged into a bill that opened up the same section of the law into which the sports bill was written. So, on Wednesday the 4th, HB 3127, the homeschool sports bill, was merged into HB 4925 by Senator Rucker on the floor of the State Senate.
Access the language of HB 4925 here. The sports provisions are located in section “d.” of HB 4925.
Below is a summary of the stipulations of the bill:
· Satisfactory evidence of academic progress for one year, in compliance with homeschool instruction statutory provisions, provided that the student’s test results are within or above the 4th stanine in all subject areas.
· Enrollment in at least one virtual instructional course per semester, consistent with county board policy and the state board.
· The student has not reached age 19 by August 1 of the school year.
· The student is an amateur who receives no compensation.
· Agreement to comply with all disciplinary rules of the SSAC and the county board; and
· Agreement to obey all rules of the SSAC.
· If a homeschooled student would leave a member school during the school year, the student would have to follow the same transfer protocols that apply to member-to-member transfers, Senator Rucker said.
It is expected that the legislation will be sent to the Governor by the end of this week. Because so many bills are passed during the last week of the session, each of which must be prepared for the Governor’s signature, there is a delay before they reach the desk of the Governor. Once the Governor receives HB 4925, he will have 15 days to sign, veto, or allow the legislation to become law without his signature.
Now is a good time for sports-access supporters to send Governor Justice a simple message requesting that he support the homeschool sports bill.