2019 Regular Session
By: Representative Arnold
AN ACT TO AUTHORIZE HOME SCHOOLED STUDENTS TO PARTICIPATE IN ATHLETIC AND EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES IN THEIR RESPECTIVE SCHOOL DISTRICTS; TO REQUIRE THOSE STUDENTS TO ADHERE TO THE SAME RULES AND REGULATIONS GOVERNING THE PARTICIPATION IN ATHLETIC AND EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES BY STUDENTS IN THE LOCAL SCHOOL DISTRICT; TO PROHIBIT A LOCAL SCHOOL BOARD FROM IMPOSING ANY REQUIREMENT UPON A HOMESCHOOLED STUDENT FOR PARTICIPATION IN AN ATHLETIC OR EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITY WHICH IS NOT IMPOSED UPON FULL-TIME STUDENTS OF THE LOCAL PUBLIC SCHOOL DISTRICT; TO AUTHORIZE THE STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION TO PROMULGATE RULES AND REGULATIONS GOVERNING POLICIES IMPLEMENTED BY LOCAL SCHOOL BOARDS PERMITTING THE PARTICIPATION OF HOME SCHOOLED STUDENTS IN ATHLETIC AND EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. (1) A student who is being educated in a legitimate home instruction program, as defined under the Mississippi Compulsory School Attendance Law (Section 37-13-91), may participate in any athletic and extracurricular activities available to students in the homeschooled student's grade in the local school of the school district where that student resides. Upon the request of the homeschooled student's parent, guardian or legal custodian, the local school board shall register the student in a public school for purposes of participating in an athletic or extracurricular activity or activities. The homeschooled student must reside within the attendance boundaries of the school in which the student is seeking registration and must submit the request for registration before the deadline established by the local district for participation in the athletic or extracurricular activity in the following school year. As used in this section, the term "extracurricular" means any school-authorized or education-related activity occurring during or outside the regular instructional school day including, but not limited to, academic teams, athletics, art, band, choir, honor societies, music and theatre.
(2) A homeschooled student participating in any athletic or extracurricular activity and his or her parents must adhere to the same rules and regulations adopted by the local school board governing participation in that activity by students in the local school. Each local school board shall adopt a policy governing homeschooled student participation in such extracurricular activities, which policy must conform to any rules and regulations adopted by the State Board of Education under subsection (3) of this section. However, a local school board may not impose any requirements on a homeschooled student auditioning for or participating in extracurricular activities which are not imposed on full-time students of the local public school district. When selection to participate in an athletic or extracurricular activity at a local public school is made on a competitive basis, a homeschooled student is eligible to try out for and participate in the activity as authorized under this section.
(3) The State Board of Education may promulgate any rules and regulations as it may deem necessary to promote consistency of policies implemented by local school boards throughout the state permitting homeschooled students to participate in athletic and extracurricular activities as provided under subsections (1) and (2) of this section.
(4) This section may not be construed to require any homeschooled student to register with a school district for athletic and extracurricular activity purposes.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 2019.