Nonpublic school students in Illinois may request to enroll part-time in public schools. The school board has the authority to accept such students into part-time attendance with restrictions but is not required by law to do so. 105 Illinois Compiled Statutes 5/10-20.24. In practice, public schools rarely let homeschool student play on their teams.

According to the Illinois High School Association, each local school determines whether a homeschool student enrolled at and attending the public school can participate in the school’s interscholastic and activity teams. Other requirements apply.

Children with disabilities enrolled in nonpublic schools (including homeschools) have a right to enroll part-time in public school. Id. 5/14-6.01.

If your homeschooled student wishes to enroll in public school driver education classes, you may use one of the sample letters attached below to either confirm or waive the requirements that your student show he received a passing grade in at least eight courses during the previous two semesters.

Things to keep in mind:

Public school access includes participation in public school classes, sports, activities, etc.

States use a unique vocabulary in this area: “extracurricular,” “cocurricular,” “curricular,” “interscholastic,” “program,” “activity,” etc. Care should be taken to distinguish one from another. When a state defines a word, it is important.

While athletic association rules are not “law,” public schools are generally constrained to operate within them, or their teams could be disqualified.

We strive toward keeping this information 100% up to date in this rapidly changing area of the law. However, this post should not be considered authoritative because of the possibility of unobserved changes in association rules, statutes, regulations, or case decisions, and because of lag time between changes and the publication of updates.