Equal Rights for Homeschoolers!

scales 200And just “home-schooled student”s according to the proposed “Tim Tebow” law, HB 1374. After all, homeschoolers pay property taxes so why shouldn’t they be allowed to participate in UIL sponsored activities?

Well, if it’s good enough for homeschoolers, why not any child who resides in the district no matter what private school he or she attends? Because that’s what homeschoolers are in Texas, private schools. But for some reason, it’s okay to exclude other private school students in this instance and just have a special case for homeschoolers.

Never mind the hypocrisy involved, the school environment is good enough for extracurricular but not academics. It’s the same group running both systems people.

Never mind that people will game the system, I suspect there will be a dramatic jump in the number of football players who never start high school. If you believe otherwise, you obviously have not spent a lot of time around your local high school lately. (My advice, invest in K12, one of the big providers of online public education in Texas.)

No, these are secondary issues. The real problem, as I have stated before when THSC tries to get special privileges for homeschoolers, is that it’s not in homeschoolers best interest to be defined separately from private schools in Texas.

What’s the big deal? Theoretically, it should only affect those playing sports and they’re being protected from the evils of no-pass, no-play and state mandated testing.

So what happens in three to five years, when the UIL decides that since they already have to let homeschoolers play without providing the same level of documented proof as public school students, that they may as well let private schools play in the UIL? Would homescoolers be allowed to form their own teams and compete rather than play on their public school teams?

We’ll sure, if THSC can get another bill passed to make sure it’s allowed. But what if it’s based on some sort of agreement between the UIL and the Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools where each organization will “qualify” their teams and players as eligible? Who is THSC going to force to qualify homeschool teams? And would homeschoolers be able to do both-play on a homeschool team or public school team?

Try thinking about it another way. Where would THSC be if the state mandated special education services be provided in all private schools excluding homeschoolers? Is there any service/benefit that THSC would allow the state to provide to unaccredited private schools and exempt homeschoolers? Of course not since homeschoolers in Texas are considered unaccredited private schools and demand that they should be treated as such. Except when they don’t.

The fact of the matter is that for all the reasons that homeschoolers should be allowed to participate in public school activities, the same is true of students attending private schools. There are plenty of private schools that don’t have enough people to form athletic teams–what if Tim Tebow went to one of those schools, where would football be now?

If homeschoolers accept this special status this time, they shouldn’t be surprised when they accorded similar special status as homeschoolers in the future with less favorable results.

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