(WEAU)-- A proposal to allow home schooled kids in Wisconsin to participate in extracurricular activities and sports at public schools is headed back to the drawing board after schools and organizations shared concerns.
“None of our members have made us aware that they would like to see passage of this legislation,” Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association Executive (WIAA) Director Dave Anderson said.
The proposed bill, written by Republican Rep. Jeremy Thiesfeldt of Fond du Lac, would have allowed independent charter, private and home schooled students to participate in public school sports. But the condition for charter and private school students is the rule would only apply to sports not offered by their school.
WIAA writes the rules for high school sports in the state. The current law says a student must be a full time student at a school to be eligible to play for the school.
Anderson says the rule is there to ensure that there is an equal standard for each of the more than 500 schools who participate in WIAA sports.
“This bill would create an opportunity for kids in private schools that doesn't exist for kids in public schools,” Anderson said.
Regis Catholic Schools President Mark Gobler says he agrees with the WIAA. He says the idea of opening up school sports to non-students sounds good but actually putting the bill into place is complicated.
"Using Eau Claire as a simple case would kids in the north area play at North (High School) and the other region play at Memorial,” Gobler said.
The Wisconsin Parents Association, an organization that represents the interests of families who home school, says they too have concerns with the current bill.
The organization posted a statement on the bill on its website:
"This would put homeschoolers under the thumb of the DPI and/or our local school districts, exactly where we have worked very hard for the past 30 years not to be."
Thiesfeldt’s office says he is looking at redrafting the bill. Similar legislation has passed in around half U.S states.