Homeschoolers have access to interscholastic contests and competitions because the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association (WIAA) deems homeschoolers to be “regular members” of the local public school where they have filed their notice of intent to homeschool. Rule18.5.3andQ&A-2. The WIAA has prepared an academic plan contract for the student, his parents, public school principal and athletic director to sign. (See Home Based Contract.)

School districts must permit enrollment of and provide ancillary services for part-time students enrolled in home-based education programs. Washington Revised Code § 28A.150.350

Washington Revised Code § 28A.150.350.

Part time students—Defined—Enrollment authorized—Reimbursement for costs—Funding authority recognition—Rules, regulations

  1. For purposes of this section, the following definitions shall apply:
    1. “Private school student” shall mean any student enrolled full time in a private school;
    2. “School” shall mean any primary, secondary or vocational school;
    3. “School funding authority” shall mean any nonfederal governmental authority which provides moneys to common schools;
    4. “Part time student” shall mean and include: Any student enrolled in a course of instruction in a private school and taking courses at and/or receiving ancillary services offered by any public school not available in such private school; or any student who is not enrolled in a private school and is receiving home-based instruction under RCW 28A.225.010 which instruction includes taking courses at or receiving ancillary services from the local school district or both; or any student involved in any work training program and taking courses in any public school, which work training program is approved by the school board of the district in which such school is located.
  2. The board of directors of any school district is authorized and, in the same manner as for other public school students, shall permit the enrollment of and provide ancillary services for part time students: PROVIDED, That this section shall only apply to part time students who would be otherwise eligible for full time enrollment in the school district.
  3. The superintendent of public instruction shall recognize the costs to each school district occasioned by enrollment of and/or ancillary services provided for part time students authorized by subsection (2) of this section and shall include such costs in the distribution of funds to school districts pursuant to RCW 28A.150.260. Each school district shall be reimbursed for the costs or a portion thereof, occasioned by attendance of and/or ancillary services provided for part time students on a part time basis, by the superintendent of public instruction, according to law.
  4. Each school funding authority shall recognize the costs occasioned to each school district by enrollment of and ancillary services provided for part time students authorized by subsection (2) of this section, and shall include said costs in funding the activities of said school districts.
  5. The superintendent of public instruction is authorized to adopt rules and regulations to carry out the purposes of RCW 28A.150.260 and 28A.150.350.

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 therefore refer to association rules of particular importance in a number of entries.

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.