Can Homeschool Students Participate in Public School Activities?
By: Mahmuda Afreen / Read more about us.
The percentage of children having homeschooled is increasing by 2x in the United State of America. Comparing the data of the previous year, the amount is more than double this year. According to the official Statement, it is more than 6% of the total students from elementary to high school.
But the main concern of the parents is whether their kids will lag in extracurricular activities, socializing with others, and many more. Regarding that, they look for attending these activities in the public school.
Following that wish, they ask a question such as Can Homeschool Students Participate in Public School Activities? Specifically, only 33 of the total States of America allow this activity with different rules and regulations. The rest of them do not allow such a scheme and parents have to look for alternatives to living in those areas.
Looking for more information? Have a look below and read the information properly.
Homeschool Students Participate in Public School Activities
If one does not know about homeschooling, one must know the term before going any further. Because parents or people who came to ask this type of question mostly do not know about this. They learn or heard some misconceptions from different media or others.
Regarding providing education to the kids at home, many people think that those children cannot socialize with others and they lag in outdoor activities such as different sports, trips, and so on. To avoid that misconception and learn further, one must know the definition of the term.
Specifically, homeschooling means arranging sufficient education for the kids of elementary level to high school level at school. Seating the study curriculum according to their expertise level or interest is one of the basic features of this type of education.
Mainly, parents look after the overall education of their children. Sometimes they hire a private tutor for different subjects for their kids. Moreover, some online academies offer both private and public school education systems completely online.
According to laws of the State, parents can design the education at home as they want. However, the different State of America has different rules, they need to follow the rules of the State they are living in. but the thing is every state of America legalized homeschooling and online schooling.
Kids will need a proper gadget to attend the classes and access the course materials. Moreover, the parents need to be super active with them. They will have to monitor every activity of the student and keep the instructor updated.
Overall, the whole education will be at home bounded by the walls. They will not attend classes physically at school in a classroom with other kids. They will not attend the gym or take extra sports activities like the regular kids. That what concern the parents who have no option but to provide education to their kids at home.
Luckily, it is possible to participate in the outdoor activities, sports, trips, and extracurricular activities of a public school as a homeschooled kid. But there are also rules that they need to follow which will be different for the different states of America.
Using the help of the institution they are registered in for the kid, parents will have to find a way how to participate actively in different outdoor activities. Because the kids need to socialize, make found, learn to communicate with others, try to understand other’s feelings by different expiration, and so on.
All those lessons cannot be learned by reading a book or watching videos. These are all about practical knowledge of real-life experience. Being mandatory lessons to live a life as a human, parents have to ensure all of those facilities for the students.
It will not only help their mental growth of them, but it will also highly contribute to their physical health too. Moreover, who knows what talent is hidden inside the kid? Maybe they are not good at math or science but excellent at baseball or football or dance. So, it will also help find the hidden talent of the kid to give him or her a proper career outlook.
As we said, different state has their own rules regarding homeschooling. Some of them allow private tutoring at home and some of them do not. Things are similar regarding participating in public school extracurricular activities as a homeschooler
Many States do not allow such things but most of them do. In the next part, we will learn details about those.
Which State of America Allows Homeschooled kids to participate in public school activities?
There are laws of the ministry of sports association for the country and the states separately. Also, some of the public schools are directly connected to the sports federal and the laws continuously get reformed. In terms of the benefit of the students and their welfare, the authority changes its rules and regulation.
Moreover, the states that allow the kids to have an education at home to participate in different activities such as sports, classes, clubs, trips, and so on is,
- Alabama; Tim Tebow Bill
- Arkansas; Tim Tebow Bill
- Idaho; requires part-time enrollment
- Illinois; requires part-time enrollment
- Kentucky; Tim Tebow Bill
- Maryland; allows competition with private schools that include homeschooled athletes
- Massachusetts; requires local district approval
- Michigan; requires part-time enrollment
- Missouri; requires part-time enrollment
- Nebraska; requires part-time enrollment
- New Hampshire
- New Mexico
- North Dakota; requires local district approval
- Ohio; requires part-time enrollment
- Rhode Island; requires local district approval
- South Carolina
- South Dakota; requires local district approval
As of the list above, 33 States offer the facility I am talking about for now. However, they have separate rules here too. Some of them follow different laws than others. For example, Alabama, Arkansas, and Kentucky follow the Tim Tebow Bill law for this facility.
Moreover, some states such as Idaho, Illinois, Michigan, and some other area requires part-time enrollment in a public school. This enrollment will require a small fee which will allow participation in the schools’ sports and other activities.
Which State does not allow the participation of homeschooled kids in public school activities?
For now, there are 17 State who does not allow public school activities participation. The homeschooling kids cannot actively attend any program such as sports, extra classes, field trips, or anything. The parents will have to seek authority in the private school paying a high amount of fees. Those States are,
- New Jersey
- New York
- North Carolina
- West Virginia
What types of public school activities are available for homeschooled kids?
I have already mentioned that people with homeschooled kids living only in the selective State can actively join public school activities. Among all the states there are 17 that do not offer the facility parents are looking for. I have already listed the name above. One must check whether the name of their living place is on the list.
If yes then the information below will be helpful. First of all, in the approved place, children having their education at home can join almost every extracurricular activity such as outdoor activities; sports, field trips, and so on. Below I will explain the most exciting activities one can have.
1. Foreign Language
People of America learn different languages along with their mother tongue. Mainly, they learn Spanish, Italian, French, and many more. It is one of the common things that most of the people here can speak more than one language. Mostly, they start learning a foreign language at school. It is one of the minor courses or one can say extracurricular activities.
2. Sign Language
Sign language is one of the most exciting things to learn. When humans did not discover verbal and written ways of communication, they used to use sign language. However, with time, it becomes the language of those with hearing and speaking disabilities.
But many enthusiastic students in the USA like to learn sign language as an extra activity. They find it useful and mesmerizing. Sometimes, they feel good using that language with other people having disabilities.
3. Art and Craft Classes
Art and craft classes are a mixture of different activities such as painting, pottery, crafting, and more. Children choose any of these according to their interests and talent. According to much research, kids from these classes do well in their later life and career. So, it is important to participate in such a program.
It is no wonder that many cannot communicate with others. Mainly, kids with extremely introverted personalities and autism. In this type of class, experts teach how to communicate with people differently. Also, they provide speech therapy to children with the hardship of talking.
5. Music Lessons
Some of the kids are so into music and they want to learn it from a professional angle. But hiring a private tutor for learning music is not possible for 95% of the family. So, they choose the classes of public school. Many schools in the United States are quite resourceful in musical instruments and other facilities. So, it becomes easier for the interested kid having an education at home to learn music.
In some schools, cooking classes are mandatory but not for homeschooling kids. They can take it if they are interested in it.
Mainly, girls prefer to take dance classes in school. They like classical dance, ballet, and so on. However, not all school has a ballet dance facility but many of them do.
One of the most common games in American schools. Students play this game with extreme interest and look forward to building a career in this at an early age. Almost every school has a baseball coach where the homeschooled children can join.
It serves as both indoor and outdoor games. Not so popular in elementary schools but highly popular in high school. Many public schools have their team of talented players who participate in regional, and state. National, and international competitions proudly.
Not so popular in public schools but many kids want to learn golf. It is called to be the game of rich but who knows who will become a world-famous player someday? As I said, it is not so popular, if the kid is really into golf, parents will have to find out which schools offer this for regular students and the homeschooled ones.
If one counts the most popular game in the USA, football will be one of the three most popular sports. Mainly, the elder I mean the high school level have this sport. So, it will not be hard to find this sport in public school as a homeschooling student.
12. Filed Trip, and many more
There are many other activities that students attending school physically or being homeschooled can have. Rather than those, a field trip is one of the most exciting activities where students have a short or long trip to a city, state, in different states or different countries at some time. In the areas we mentioned that they legalize homeschooling kids joining public school activity, they can join in the field trip too.
What is the Tim Tebow Law?
In reality, Tim Tebow was a person, a homeschooler, and an amazing athlete. During his time, there were no laws or legalization of a homeschooled kid being allowed to actively participate in a public school activity. However, he was a special case, and his school in Pennsylvania allowed him to play and he became an NFL quarterback.
After his achievement, he spoke out to the media on behalf of the homeschooled kid. His voice was about allowing these kids to participate in the activities of a public school. After that in many states, the law has been passed and named after him.
However, still there are many State who does not have that law or allow that law. There have been many controversies regarding that issue in the state not allowing the facility.
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Is there any alternative to public school activities in the States who does not allow those to homeschool kids?
Sadly, many States of America still do not allow the homeschooled kid to attend, join, and learn in public school. They are only allowed to learn in the private academy of instructors. In those states, there are some alternatives to those public school activities. Such as,
1. Recreation teams/YMCAs
2. Homeschool teams
3. Private school teams
4. Travel teams
5. Unique (lifetime) sports, and more.