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Senate committee kills “Tebow Bill”

A Senate committee Thursday shot down the “Tebow bill” aimed at allowing home-schoolers to participate in public schools’ sports and other extracurricular activities.

The Senate Education and Health Committee defeated House Bill 1442 on a 7-8 vote, thus taking the matter off the table for this legislative session.

All of the Republicans on the committee except Sen. Harry Belvins, R-Chesapeake, voted in favor of HB 1442. Belvins joined the seven Democratic committee members in opposing the bill.

The legislation is nicknamed for NFL quarterback Tim Tebow, who as a home-schooler in Florida played football for his local high school team.

HB 1442 would have allowed home-schoolers in Virginia to do the same, said Delegate Robert Bell, R-Charlottesville, who sponsored the measure. “Home-school kids just want a chance to try out.”

The committee heard testimony on the bill Thursday morning. Bell brought many home-schooled children, teenagers and even a few college students to testify and show their support.

“All I’m asking you … is to give me simply the opportunity to play sports,” said Eli Marellus, a 14-year-old home-schooler.

Virginia is one of 21 states that do not give home-schoolers access to play public school sports. The remaining states have a policy or law permitting home-schooled students to participate in public school activities and sports.


time for northern va to succeed from virgina. Way too many idiot politicians south of here…. And just think, we could keep all the money we send to Richmond.

I have two children in LCPS, but still support(ed) the Tebow Bill. I find it odd that so many of the opponents cite the lack of academic standards for home schoolers, and the perceived unfairness of teammates not having to meet the same academic criteria.

I know about a dozen home schoolers, and to a T, they are no academic slouches. This makes sense when you figure in the combination of an individual education and motivated parents.

As I’ve posted before, Dr. Hatrick has no problem including home schoolers in the school census he provides to the state for funding. And shouldn’t have a problem with a handful of them availing themselves to a few extra-currics.

Based on most of the comments by those opposed to the Tebow Bill - their only reasoning for Homeschoolers for not having access to HS “Afterschool” activities is that the kids parents choose to teach them themselves rather than have them taught at school.  This seems to me to be a bit petty and selfish on their part.

by their bleats, you shall know them…

tough luck, homeschoolers.  Being a citizen and member of the community isn’t an a-la-carte sort of thing.  You choose not to contribute to the community school, that’s fine.  Can’t you leave it at that?

I agree WestLoudouner. What a circus. Had the home schooled kids been poor, disabled or mentally challenged, they would have approved. So glad the poor are able to have free cell phones in case of an emergency…

It’s funny that out Democratic lawmakers have no problem giving $$ away to individuals that don’t earn or pay for anything, but have a problem providing services to individuals that have already paid for them.

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