SCS/SB 37 – This act establishes the "Students First Interscholastic Activities Act." It is the intent of the General Assembly that every student of high school age has the opportunity to participate in interscholastic activities, including students enrolled in public school, private school, the Missouri Virtual Instruction Program, or a home school, regardless of background and education program. Any student of high school age will have the opportunity to seek to participate in interscholastic activities through his or her school. If the school does not offer interscholastic activities, the student may seek to participate through his or her school district of residence.
Each school that offers interscholastic activities must identify by July 1 the activity programs it will provide and the approximate number of athletes who may participate at any time.
This act contains eligibility requirements for student activity participants.
Public school districts, school board members, and school district employees are prohibited from influencing a student not enrolled in the district to participate in interscholastic activities in the district.
This act also allows a school district to declare a student ineligible to participate in interscholastic activities through the district for two years if a student with an unsatisfactory grade point average ceases enrollment, begins another education program, attains a satisfactory grade point average, and seeks to participate in athletics again. A school district must examine such a situation on a case-by-case basis after an inquiry.
Nothing in this act may be construed as requiring a school to allow all students to participate in activities. Schools will have discretion as to which students may participate in interscholastic activities. In addition, no school may discriminate against a student seeking to participate in interscholastic activities based on the student's choice of education program.
Interscholastic activities include athletics, cheerleading, dance, debate, music activities, pom team, speech, and winter guard. (Section 160.1175)
This act also prohibits a school district from becoming a member of, retaining membership in, or paying any fees to any statewide activities association that is an unincorporated voluntary association of Missouri secondary schools. (Section 160.1177)
This act is similar to HB 476 (2011) and SB 788 (2010).