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School Wants to Review Homeschool Student’s Curriculum Before She Can Swim

by Tj Schmidt • March 20, 2018

A homeschooled teenager in Maricopa County wanted to swim with her local public school team. She was ready to try out, and there was no legal obstacle because Arizona law allows homeschool students to participate in public school interscholastic activities.

But then the local school’s athletic director asked for something to which he was not entitled. In a letter to the girl’s parents, he said he needed detailed information about what curriculum they were using in their homeschool program.

The parents felt this demand went too far—that it violated their right to choose what is best for their daughter. As members of Home School Legal Defense Association, they contacted us for help.

I called the athletic director and talked with him. I pointed out that the public school did not have the authority to approve the curriculum of a homeschool student. According to Arizona law, all it can ask for is verification of the student’s grades and whether or not she was making academic progress.

The athletic director quickly agreed and stated that he would correct future requests from homeschooling families.

After I followed up with the family, they submitted the information on their daughter’s grades and her academic progress.

Their daughter must still comply with age, behavior, and other standards required of public school students, but otherwise she is eligible to try out for the swim team.

Thomas J. (Tj) Schmidt

Staff Attorney

Tj is an attorney and homeschooling dad dedicated to defending the rights of homeschooling families across the country. Read more.

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