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Policy Would Prohibit Home-Schooled Students From Participating in Sports

Caldwell-West Caldwell Schools recommends treating home-schooled children same as private school students.

The Caldwell-West Caldwell Board of Education will vote next month on revisions to the district’s policies that would prevent home-schooled students from participating in interscholastic sports. 

The proposed policy changes come as a result of a recent change to the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association’s (NJSIAA) bylaws that state home-schooled students may participate in interscholastic sports if the district allows.

Superintendent of Schools Daniel Gerardi said the administration’s recommendation is to be consistent with how private school students are treated by the district and not allow home-schooled students to participate in sports.

“These [home-schooled] students are treated as private school students in every other respect,” Gerardi said. 

Gerardi said the district is not aware of any high school-aged students being home schooled in Caldwell and West Caldwell. He said the district does know of two families who home school children of middle and elementary school ages, noting there may be more.

“Parents no longer have to report [to the district] that they are home schooling,” Gerardi said.

He added, every 6- to 16-year-old is required by law to attend a public school or its equivalent.

Barbara April 19, 2012 at 02:03 PM
I personally know of two families in Caldwell-West Caldwell who have high-school aged children who are home schooled. While they do not participate in our sporting programs, I think it would be beneficial to follow the NJSIAA bylaws to allow home-schooled students to participate in interscholastic sports if the district allows. Most of the home schooled children in our area have friendships with the children that attend public school and do jointly participate in other Caldwell/West Caldwell events together.
Chris Wysocki April 19, 2012 at 02:30 PM
Then perhaps the Board of Education should exempt parents of home-schooled and private-schooled students from paying the school tax. Oh, but they're glad to take our money. They just don't want to provide any services. So they penalize the children. Sports activities occur outside of normal school hours. So there is no logistical reason that non-public students couldn't participate. Except, of course, that the teachers union hates it when you don't send your kid to the government school.
07006 dude April 20, 2012 at 01:35 AM
It's their choice...it's, if you want your children to stay home, then do so. But, don't be involved in the school system's programs. Pretty simple.
Richard Angerer April 20, 2012 at 01:19 PM
It is unfortunate that the Board of Education is taking a parochial, all-or-nothing approach to public schooling rather than looking out for the best interest of the children in it's district. Not only does this go against state recommendations, it is also mean spirited. There are many reasons to home school rather than attend public school: to aid a child with special gifting in pursuing a particular avenue of study, to provide more specialized support to a child with particular needs that cannot be met in a public school setting, etc. A parent who makes the commitment to home school is sacrificing significant time and money to provide what they deem best for the child. A Board of Education that is truly interested in supporting the best education of the students in it's district would be supporting home school parents in their district rather than trying to penalize them.
07006 dude April 20, 2012 at 01:23 PM
Either you pay the taxes or you don't...I'm not aware that portions of the taxes are optional.
Danelectro59 April 20, 2012 at 01:31 PM
Chris is 100% correct. If home-school parents are forced to pay for the schools through their taxes, then the district's programs are available to their children. Otherwise, stop taxing them for it. Pretty simple.
Skippy April 22, 2012 at 11:17 PM
What this article does not mention is that the NJSIAA has academic requirements for student athletes. How would a home schooled child meet those be able to document having attained certain grades in courses? There is no set curriculum for home schooled children and they do not have top take the standardized tests public school children must.
Tammy April 27, 2012 at 08:36 PM
I believe the Home School children must attend testing centers to meet the criteria set forth by the State to obtain necessary credits needed to move to the next levels. I don't mind paying the school tax and tuition for private school. The children in school or home schooled deserve to be part of our sports programs, and other after school programs. What is the big deal? Don't be selective.

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