STILLWATER, N.Y. (NEWS10) – New York is one of 15 states that hasn’t passed what’s called the “Tim Tebow law”.
The law allows homeschool students to play public school sports.
It was in the classroom where Caleb Dyer’s parents felt he was struggling but getting homeschooled means getting benched.
“Everybody who knows Caleb knows he is a leader,” Sandra Dyer, Caleb’s mom, said.
Like most 13-year-olds, Caleb loves shooting hoops with his friends.
The young athlete has a knack for sports, hoping one day to score touchdowns for Stillwater High.
“Football and lacrosse are my most favorite sports,” Caleb said.
The state won’t allow that as long as he’s homeschooled.
A decision Caleb’s parents made after things in the classroom weren’t working.
“All kids are different and we knew we needed to make some changes,” Sandra said. “The more one-on-one approach, small group learning type is really working for him.”
There’s a bill that would lift state restrictions but it’s faced with stiff opposition.
Opponents argue playing on the field comes with the territory of first sitting in the classroom.
“Participating in sports is an extension of the classroom,” Robert Zayas, Executive Director of the New York State Public High School Athletic Association, said. “If the education during the school day isn’t good enough, why is the education after the school day then adequate?”
Whether it’s on the court, or even in the batting cage, Caleb just wants to be part of a team again.
“For kids who don’t come over my house as often as my close friends, the only time I would really get to see them are at lacrosse practice or football games.”
As taxpayers, his parents don’t see why he shouldn’t be.
“The one word I can think of that describes it is it’s just unfair.”
Sandra has started a petition in support of the legislation that would allow homeschooled students to play intramural sports.