Public school sports open to all students under new bill
     2015-01-29      By Annie Bohling - Nebraska News Service   
LINCOLN—Home schooled and other students in Nebraska could be on public schools’ sports teams if LB103 is passed.

The bill, introduced by Sen. Bill Kintner of Omaha on Jan. 8, is essentially an extension of an existing law, which allows students in private, denominational or parochial schools to be part-time students in public schools within their district. Under LB103, those students could also take part in the public schools’ extracurricular activities, like sports teams.

“I did cross country and track in college and from that I gained relationships that I will cherish forever,” said Spencer Finley, an Omaha home schooling parent speaking in favor of the bill. “But sports in college were only possible because I did sports in high school first.”

Charity Baker, an Elmwood home schooling mother for 17 years, was another proponent speaking on the bill at the public hearing on Jan. 20.

Baker said extracurricular activities are available for home-schooled students—basketball, debate and flag football—but the fee for each is $250 to $600.

“Plus, the drive for me to the site of the activities is 45 minutes,” Baker said. “And some of the tournaments are for entire weekends in Kansas, so that means hotel costs and additional fees.”
Baker said the bill would benefit home schooling parents who purchase their own curriculum for the subjects they teach. Allowing their child to take a class at a public school would save parents and teachers like Baker money.

“The bill would also benefit public schools,” Baker said. “They would receive more funds and could do better in athletics because more students would be contributing.”
Members of the Legislature’s Education Committee, which held the hearing, were curious about socialization of home schooled students.
Tomeka Walker, a supporter of the bill and an Elkhorn home schooling mother of three, answered.

“One of the misnomers about the home schooling method of education is that home schooled kids don’t get the socialization necessary,” Walker said. “This is not as much of an issue these days as opposed to several years ago where, for example, home schooled kids were on a farm with no one else around.”

Walker said her children play with others in the neighborhood, which helps build their social skills.

Two people testified in opposition to the bill, Rhonda Blanford-Green, executive director of Nebraska School Activities Association (NSAA), and Brian Maher, the Kearney- based District IV NSAA director. Home schooled students and others pay money to play sports through NSAA.

Contact Annie Bohling at nns.abohling@gmail.com

Share this story on Facebook
LOGIN or REGISTER for exclusive access to premium content

Good Afternoon friend!
Recently Read Sports
611Public school sports open to all students under new bill
951Rapid City sweeps Twilight Track Meet
1770Scottsbluff Bearcats tennis team
675Gering golfers look to build on first-meet results
951Gering girls, Scottsbluff boys win in doubleheader
1231Fields tosses another one-hitter in doubleheader with Trinidad
726WNCC volleyball players ink commitments to continue play
698District B-6 action off, running for Bulldogs, Bearcats
680Bearcats take third, Tigers finish ninth at state golf tourney
900Gering boys get back on winning track
1127All Points West: Papuchis should demand perfection
1120Bearcats boys cross country state champions
3908Mitchell track off to a strong start
1370All Points West: Dealing with Lochte monster
1562Gering golfers drive toward return to state tourney
922Bearcat boys finish big season at state tournament
1160Bearcats, Bulldogs pace their way to state meet
1180Runners ready for state cross country meet
695Howton signs with Midland
1158Scottsbluff MMA fighter gets bout Friday in Cheyenne: RFA card that includes Acevedo’s 2nd pro match to be televised on AXS Network
Most Read Sports 2012
3908Mitchell track off to a strong start
3781Morrill baseball back in business
3193Rivals make good friends, better training partners
2973Mendoza spirit lives on in softball tournament
2856Gering wrestling builds on experience
2755Bulldogs basketball ready to run Class B gauntlet
2629Raising the bar high
2580Gering breaks two records at Chadron: Track season gets underway at Chadron Indoor Meet
2564Kizzire and Kautz take first place
2525Gering resident lives his dream
2498All Points West: Time to get tough Huskers
2409All Points West: We’ll miss 2016 seniors
2390Doing the heavy lifting
2293Gering girls’ soccer team creating team first attitude
2282Basketball girls hungry for more wins
2245Cougars clench 18th straight Region IX title
2192Beam to golf at Midland
2161Sterkel Colorado bound, inks with Rangers
2118Morrill Lions move to eight-man offers opportunity
2056Gering Boys’ soccer builds foundation
Most Read Sports 2011
3908Mitchell track off to a strong start
3781Morrill baseball back in business
3193Rivals make good friends, better training partners
2973Mendoza spirit lives on in softball tournament
2856Gering wrestling builds on experience
2755Bulldogs basketball ready to run Class B gauntlet
2629Raising the bar high
2580Gering breaks two records at Chadron: Track season gets underway at Chadron Indoor Meet
2564Kizzire and Kautz take first place
2525Gering resident lives his dream
2498All Points West: Time to get tough Huskers
2409All Points West: We’ll miss 2016 seniors
2390Doing the heavy lifting
2293Gering girls’ soccer team creating team first attitude
2282Basketball girls hungry for more wins
2245Cougars clench 18th straight Region IX title
2192Beam to golf at Midland
2161Sterkel Colorado bound, inks with Rangers
2118Morrill Lions move to eight-man offers opportunity
2056Gering Boys’ soccer builds foundation
Platte Valley Companies
Fresh Foods
Hale Multimedia LLC
Spectrum Photo
Kendell Henderson
= = = Platte Valley Companies' = = =
Sports Page

Check out the
Gering Bulldogs on