[r69] Athletic participation bill passes the House

Posted by: Jay Wood  | Tuesday, February 4, 2014

STATEHOUSE —House Bill (HB) 1047, authored by State Representative Jim Lucas (R-Seymour), passed out of the House Monday with a 51 to 44 vote. The measure deals with virtual charter school students participating in high school athletics.

“It is important that we give virtual charter students the same opportunity to participate in athletics that other students are granted,” said Rep. Lucas. “Playing high school sports is an excellent way for students to get physical exercise, engage socially and learn valuable life lessons like teamwork, dedication and determination.”

HB 1047 allows virtual charter students to join their local high school sports teams, as long as they live inside the respective school district and meet the eligibility requirements set by the IHSAA. The legislation disallows school superintendents from prohibiting virtual charter students from joining the teams in their district.

“We have many gifted student athletes in Indiana, and each of them should be given the opportunity to compete,” said Rep. Lucas. “Virtual charter students should not be prohibited from playing high school sports on the basis of their unique educational needs. This legislation does not guarantee that those students will be placed on a team, but it does give them the same opportunity to try out that their peers enjoy.”

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Rep. Lucas (R-Seymour) represents portions of Bartholomew, Jackson, Jefferson and Jennings Counties.