The Path for Homeschooled High School Athletes Gets Easier, While Success Rule Fails

LINCOLN – “I will tell you that from my perspective, for the most part, high school sports and performing arts in this state are in a good place, but I would be remiss if I didn’t call attention where I think, collectively, we need to make some changes. We need to make a better effort in providing the quality opportunities that our young people deserve,” declared NSAA Executive Director Jim Tenopir.

The NSAA took a step forward in allowing homeschooled athletes an easier path to participating in high school sports at Friday’s Representative Assembly. With 36 yes and 15 no votes, they passed a change in the NSAA bylaws that allow students that are homeschooled to participate in a minimum of 10 credit hours per semester at the school.

Tenopir told the delegates that he was once an opponent to the change, but the topic has grown on him.

“As one who was for, 18 years, a school superintendent, who certainly subscribed to the ‘you’ve got to be a half-time student to participate in activities,’ I’ve really come to grips with the fact that there may be reasons to take a look at other options,” said Tenopir.

The policy now goes to the schools for a vote.

A very talked about issue that was also discussed was the proposed “Success Rule.” If voted to instate the new bylaw, high school teams would be subject to a point system. In short, if a school had enough success over a four year period, they would be moved up a class.

The vote failed by an 18-33 vote.

Other topics that were discussed included a change in both Class B basketball and Class D volleyball. Class B basketball playoffs for both boys and girls will now feature eight sub-districts, with the winners and next eight highest on the wildcard standings being seeded 1-16 for the district finals. The Class D volleyball subdistricts and districts are similar, only there will be 12 sub-district winners and four wildcard teams in the district finals.

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