Utah Senate Crushes Bill

6 March 1:00 am
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by Amy Tjaden News Editor


I have to admit that I didn’t see this coming.

I recently reported that there was a bill making its way through the Utah Senate. If passed it would require all public schools to allow homeschoolers to participate in their sports programs.

Republican senator Mark Madsen sponsored the bill. As I was doing the research for the previous article I felt that Madsen was quite optimistic. I felt that he believed the bill would surely pass. After everything I read, I felt that it probably would too. After all, it did pass through the second reading of the senate.

I knew there was some opposition from parents who have children in public schools. That is to be expected. But I find myself surprised by this ruling. Although I supposed it shouldn’t be at all surprising. It seems that for homeschoolers it is two steps forward, one step back.

The reason the bill failed is that lawmakers felt it gave an unfair disadvantage to homeschoolers. All students participating in sports need to prove academic eligibility. For homeschoolers all they need is a signature from a parent to show that they’re meeting academic standards.

So, basically their concern is that parents of homeschoolers will lie so their children can participate in school sports. Which brings me back to the point I made before; teachers and administrators lie so that students can participate in sports. Students cheat to maintain their GPA.

No, it probably isn’t the majority. I realize that. But guess what? I doubt the majority of homeschoolers would lie about it either. And I have no doubt that more than 90% of the homeschoolers that would participate in school sports are excelling well beyond their public schooled peers when it comes to academics anyway.

I am disappointed. I’m not as disappointed over the demise of the bill as I am over the weak reasoning behind the demise.

Copyright 2009

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