Home school students can’t participate in sports at public schools that belong to the Missouri State High School Activities Association, but some lawmakers want that changed. A bi-law prevents such students from being eligible. Association Executive Director Kerwin Urhahn said by-laws are passed by schools that belong to the Association.
Representative Don Rone (R-Portageville) said the Association needs to change that rule or else the Legislature will get involved.
“If your people in your Association doesn’t address it, I assure you that this group right here will address it,” said Rone. “I assure by what I’ve seen up here in a year, you won’t like what this side of the aisle does, compared to when your superintendents get together and decide.”
Representative Kirk Matthews (R-Pacific) said sports can enhance a student’s life.
“I would suggest to you that, as full taxpayers, if they’re opting out of the educational experience, they’re not opting out of the entire educational experience,” said Matthews. “They should be able to have the exposure to the extracurricular activities.”
Representative Brandon Ellington (D-Kansas City) disagrees with allowing such students to participate.
“If I had the opportunity to stay home and still go to school and play ball, but I didn’t have to show up to school, listen to the teachers, not follow the disciplinary procedures, not wear a uniform, then it would be counterproductive on my part,” said Ellington.
Urhahn said he will again ask schools that belong to the organization if they want to change the by-law.