Revised June 9, 1997
Revised September 8, 1998
Revised March 15, 1999
Revised November 18, 2003
HOME SCHOOLS AND THE
MINNESOTA STATE HIGH SCHOOL LEAGUE
The MSHSL is a non-profit,
voluntary association of schools. The
MSHSL receives no money from the state legislature nor is it a state agency. It is a group of schools, both public and private, that set
common eligibility guidelines for members to follow during regular and
post-season competition. Schools
set the guidelines, elect representatives to serve on the League's Board of
Directors, and determine which activities will be sponsored by the MSHSL.
Currently, the MSHSL sponsors
40 athletic and 5 fine arts programs at the varsity, junior varsity, sophomore
or "B" squad levels. During
the 1999 Legislative session, a law was passed stating that a school board
“shall allow all resident pupils receiving instruction in a home school as
defined in Section 123B.36 subdivision 1, paragraph A to be eligible to fully
participate in extracurricular activities on the same basis as public school
To that end:
Home schools that are located in the public school attendance area where they wish to participate no longer need to become members of the MSHSL.
Local boards of education cannot deny resident home school students an opportunity to participate on public school teams.
Cooperative sponsorships between home schools that are located in the public school attendance area where they wish to participate and public schools are no longer necessary.
Home school students who participate on high school teams must meet all of the same eligibility requirements as the high school students in the school.
Athletic Directors/School Principals must review the Bylaws in Section 100 and 200 of the most current MSHSL Handbook to ensure that the eligibility requirements for home school students in their home school are met and that all students who represent the school team(s) are fully eligible according to MSHSL bylaws.
In some instances, home school
students may not be able to participate in programs with the public school as
identified above. The 1999 law
applies ONLY to RESIDENT students. Non-resident
students may be able to participate on high school teams, but in order to do so,
the following guidelines must be followed:
1. A home school, just like a public school, must become a member of the League and agree to abide by the rules of competition of the MSHSL. This is an annual membership. Once a school becomes a member, the membership must be renewed not later than September 1 of any school year. If a home school chooses to become a voting member, the annual service fee is $100. In addition, there is a $90.00 fee for each activity a school will offer (i.e., membership plus football, boys’ basketball, girls’ basketball and music = $100 plus $360 = $460.00).
At its meeting on June 9, 1997, the Board of Directors of the Minnesota State High School League approved the elimination of the $100 membership fee and the $90.00 activity fee for home schools with fewer than five (5) students if those home schools just want to provide an opportunity for their student(s) to participate in athletic or fine arts activities but choose not to become a voting member. Non-voting home schools will receive an Official Handbook but must purchase other League publications if they choose to order them.
2. The school board of the public school and the non-resident home school must agree to provide the activity cooperatively by completing an application form (available on the League website). Requests for cooperative sponsorship must be submitted to the MSHSL not later than the first day of practice for that sport in order to participate during that school year.
The cooperative sponsorship of activities does not apply to junior high
or ninth grade teams. Agreement for
participation on these levels is an issue for the home school and the local
public school to determine themselves.
4. Boards of education of public schools are not required to accept students from home schools. That decision is made by board members in the school community.
Non-Resident Home Schools and
“What You Need to Know About MSHSL Athletic/Fine Arts Eligibility”
Q. Are non-resident home school or charter
school students eligible to participate on the local high school sport teams or
fine arts programs?
No. MSHSL Enrollment Bylaw
104 states “Only students who are fully enrolled
in a school are eligible to be placed on the school’s
eligibility roster and participate in League programs offered by the
school the student attends.”
Q. Are there any options that will allow
non-resident home school or charter school students the opportunity to compete
on the local high school team?
Yes. The MSHSL provides
options for non-resident home school and charter school students to participate in high
Cooperative Sponsorship: Non-resident home schools and charter schools which have students in a grade(s)
equivalent to 10th, 11th, or 12th grade may join the MSHSL and, as a member
school, enter into a cooperative sponsorship agreement with another MSHSL member
Application for Membership: The head of the non-resident home school or charter school should complete the Resolution for Membership form available on the League’s website.
Fees: The service fee for non-resident schools whose enrollment in grades 10-12 inclusive is five (5) or more students is $100 annually. There is no service fee for schools whose enrollment in grades 10-12 inclusive is fewer than five (5) students. There is a $90 registration fee for each activity sponsored by a member school, and there may be additional participation fees assessed by the partner school.
Application for Cooperative Sponsorship: The governing board for each school must approve a resolution to cooperatively sponsor the identified activities. Each school must complete the MSHSL cooperative sponsorship application form and submit the application to the MSHSL for approval. Following approval by the MSHSL Board of Directors, students from the schools involved in the cooperatively sponsored activity will be eligible.
Agreements: Non-resident home
schools, charter schools, and other non-public schools which do not have
students in a grade higher than the 9th grade may enter into a local agreement
with the local public school for participation on that school’s athletic
and/or fine arts team. See Bylaw
105 Grade Level Eligibility.
High School Participation: Non-resident
home school, charter school and other non-public school students may
participate on local junior high school teams at the discretion of the local
school board. Students
participating under this option are not
eligible to be promoted to a B-squad, Sophomore, J.V. or Varsity team.
Is there something called a non-exclusive cooperative sponsorship for
A. Yes. Charter schools who are members of the Minnesota State High School League and who are organized as prescribed by MS 124D.10 may have multiple non-exclusive cooperative sponsorships in the same League-sponsored activity with public schools provided that:
1) the charter school does not have its own team in that activity.
2) the charter school student(s) returns to the attendance area of the public school where the student(s) officially resides with his/her parent(s) or guardian(s).
3) the charter school, on behalf of the student(s) officially enrolled in the charter school, complies with all of the eligibility and financial requirements prescribed by the public school in the attendance area where the student(s) officially resides with his/her parent(s) or guardian(s).
The Boards of Education of the public school(s) and the charter school
agree to cooperatively sponsor the activity and complete the required MSHSL
cooperative sponsorship form(s).
Once the non-resident
home school or charter school has joined the MSHSL, either as a voting or a
non-voting member, it will be assigned to an Administrative Region and contacted
by the Region Secretary.
If you have questions about home schools or charter schools and MSHSL participation, please contact Dave Stead at the League office, 763-560-2262. You may also find the necessary forms on the League’s website at www.mshsl.org.